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Comrades under arrest, Kalmadi cries foul

delhi Updated: Feb 24, 2011 14:17 IST
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A day after the arrest of two of his close aides, sacked Commonwealth Games OC chairman Suresh Kalmadi on Thursday accused the investigating agencies of "targeting" only the Organising Committee when government officials were also part of the entire decision-making process.

He expressed shock and displeasure over the way the entire matter has been handled by the investigating agencies when all the documents pertaining to the conduct of the Games were with them.

Asked whether he anticipated arrest any time, Kalmadi ended a press conference abruptly saying "Let's see".

He repeated his demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the conduct of the Games and said that law should take its course.

Former OC secretary general Lalit Bhanot and director general V K Verma were on Wednesday arrested by the CBI in connection with alleged irregularities in the Rs 107 crore deal inked with a Swiss timing firm.

"Only officials of the Organising Committee are being called for questioning by the investigative agencies. The entire process seems to be against the officials who have worked with the Organising Committee for many years.

"No decision related to the Games was taken alone by anyone. So I am shocked that investigative agencies are only calling the officers of the organising committee and that no government officers have so far been called by them.

"I don't understand that when all the details are with the investigating agencies, all documents are with them, then why are they only calling the OC officials. OC members are only being targeted, why not others involved in the decision making. We want this thing to become clear when all the papers are with the agencies," said Kalmadi.

Kalmadi, also the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president, said that all the decisions had been approved by the Executive Board, consisting of senior Central and Delhi government officers.

"I would like to state that all the decisions had been made by the members of the executive board and not alone by the OC members. It's not the decision made by any individual. Nowhere decisions were made by the members of the OC. There was the finance sub-committee, finance committee and the executive board. They all have senior government officers. They all were participatory in the decision-making process.

"The executive board (of the Organising Committee) comprised two officers from government of India, two from Delhi government, three officials from Commonwealth federations and then IOA people, including myself and Ranbir. So it was a very balanced team, and all decisions have been taken unanimously.

"Everybody was part of it and the Union Sports ministry has been also part of the decision-making process at every step. There was no case where we people differed. So again I ask why only the organising committee is being singled out," he lamented.

Reiterating his demand for a JPC probe,he said "My request for the JPC is still on, this is my request that it should be conducted. Right now, the impression is that only organising committee was involved in every matter. But no single individual had taken any decision. So, I think JPC should be launched and they will look into it and everything will become clear."

Kalmadi parried a query when asked whether the Congress had sidelined him saying the IOA comprised of persons affiliated to difference parties.

He said that he has been cooperating with various investigating agencies in relation to enquiries related to the Games.

"All OC officials have been cooperating. I am also cooperating. All the material, all the documents are being given to the CBI. So that has been done," he said.