The Sports Ministry might have recommended his sacking, but T S Darbari, whose name featured during the exchange of mails between the OC and the Indian High Commission, in the Queen's Baton Relay controversy, is putting up a brave front.
It has been reliably learnt that Darbari, in a letter to Jarnail Singh (who is heading a three-member probe panel to verify the authenticity of the email, and the deal with AM Car and Van Ltd), has said that he had no role whatsoever in the deal. He has reportedly stated this was backed up by the minutes of the meetings.
The letter states, "Consequent upon a later confirmation of the President of India to grace the occasion, event arrangements had to be upscaled. This resulted in readdressing the budgets for conducting all related aspects."
The letter adds there wasn't enough time for a fresh tender to be floated to match rising costs and so, the Finance Committee of Organising Committee (OCFC) was requested to consider extending the work of M/S Jack Morton Worldwide by 25 per cent of original contract value.
For additional work, the Indian High Commission was to be approached to help out in finding vendors. The approach was accepted by the OCFC and thereby, "on recommendation of the Indian High Commission", M/s AM Car and Van Hire Ltd were considered for services.