The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday arrested Suresh Kalmadi, Member of Parliament and former chairman of the organising committee (OC) of the Delhi Commonwealth Games (CWG). The CBI has charged him with criminal conspiracy to buy timing, scoring and result (TSR) system from a Swiss company at an inflated cost of Rs 141 crore.
The CBI has alleged that this cost the government Rs 95 crore extra. The Congress has suspended Kalmadi. He is going to be kept at the CBI headquarters and produced in court on Tuesday. Two other senior OC officials, deputy director general (procurement) Surjit Lal and joint director general (sports) ASV Prasad, were also arrested.
"It was Kalmadi's role in his then official capacity as chief of the OC's executive board that led to his arrest," CBI spokesperson Dharini Mishra said. "The price paid to the Swiss firm was more than thrice the amount of Rs 46 crore sought by the only other bidder, MSL of Spain."
"Investigation has revealed that the OC committee for short-listing prospective bidders for TSR was constituted by selecting handpicked officials who favoured the Swiss company while members of the tenders-evaluation committee were coerced and threatened to disqualify other bidders," she said.
The CBI has alleged that MSL was eliminated despite the fact that it had supplied the TSR system earlier for the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games in China.
The OC committee allegedly eliminated MSL since it did not have the experience to deliver TSR services for the 17 enlisted disciplines and on a turnkey basis.
The CBI probe is trying to establish the end-recipient of around Rs 23 crore, out of the Rs 141 crore paid to the Swiss company, which was meant for its two Indian sub-contractors.
"The two Indian sub-contractors had done nothing so we want to find out where this money has gone," the spokesperson said.
The Indian representatives of the Swiss company were allegedly in regular contact with the three arrested OC accused much before the award of the TSR tender, according to her.
The CBI had earlier arrested former OC secretary general Lalit Bhanot and director general VK Verma in the case.