Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was open to the idea of restructuring the Commonwealth Games Organizing Committee (OC) in 2007 but no concrete proposal for the same was submitted by the sports ministry.
Sports minister Ajay Maken suggested this while defending the Prime Minister's Office, which has been accused of inaction in reforming the OC despite numerous complaints, as observed by the Comptroller and Auditor General in its report on the 2010 games.
"The suggestion that no action was taken on the reform proposals of sports minister is not correct. The sports ministry was asked to get back with concrete proposals of restructuring. However, for various reasons, including the constant monitoring of the multifarious tasks and projects, a major restructuring of the OC and its linkage with the Ministry of Sports could not be taken up," sports minister Maken said.
Maken insisted that nothing could be done about OC chairman Suresh Kalmadi because he had been elected by the Indian Olympic Association and the UPA government was bound by the Host City Agreement (HCC) signed by the previous NDA government with the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).
"There was a contract which mandated that the games would be conducted by the OC set up by the IOA," Maken said.
The minister noted that Mani Shankar Aiyar had written a letter to the PMO on October 23, 2007 and to the Prime Minister two days later.
The then sports secretary SK Arora also wrote a letter to PMO on the issue of OC.