Commonwealth Games Organising Committee former chairman Suresh Kalmadi is now being chased by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for information regarding the conduct of Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) in London.
Sources in the ED termed the reply received from Kalmadi as “evasive”. The ED investigators now plan to send Kalmadi a reminder in this regard. The ED is investigating the QBR under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (Fema) and Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
Kalmadi is also under the CBI scanner for the conduct of QBR in October, 2009. The former organising committee (OC) chairman was called for questioning by the CBI on Wednesday but he didn’t turn up, as he was away in Pune. The CBI has registered two FIRs in the specific case of conduct of the QBR.
According to sources in the ED, they want information from Kalmadi about some payments made to London-based firms AM Car and Van Hire Limited and AM Films Limited. Both firms are promoted by Ashish Patel who has been questioned by the CBI officials in London in this regard. The firms were hired by the OC for taxis, branded buses and giant video screens.
The ED investigators have alleged that the contracts to Patel’s firms were awarded on the basis of fake quotations and on exorbitant rates. The payments were made to these firms in a hurry.
The OC also claimed that these firms were on the panel of Indian High Commission in London, but the claim turned out to be false. The purported mail of an Indian High Commission staffer in the regard was found to be a forged one.
The ED wants some clarifications from Kalmadi on these issues. But Kalmadi responded to ED that he will be away from the country this month.