OC ‘gives away’ CWG equipment

With two months left for the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC) to be dissolved and with its bosses being removed from the post on Monday, officials are busy distributing Games equipment at throwaway prices. Vijaita Singh reports.
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Updated on Jan 25, 2011 12:59 AM IST
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Hindustan Times | ByVijaita Singh, New Delhi

With two months left for the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC) to be dissolved and with its bosses being removed from the post on Monday, officials are busy distributing Games equipment at throwaway prices.

The showpiece aerostat alone cost the OC Rs 70 crore. The balloon is currently lying unused at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium. The OC has floated a tender for the same but has got no bidders yet.

It was given a loan of Rs 1814 by the central government but was able to generate only R650 crore as revenue.

On Monday, the Sports Ministry sacked OC chairperson Suresh Kalmadi and general secretary Lalit Bhanot following a slew of corruption charges against them. Three OC officials have already been arrested in the case.

The OC will have to wrap up its office and vacate the premises at Jai Singh Road by March 31, when its composition stands dissolved. Before this happens, the OC will have to ensure that the Games equipment is disposed properly.

The OC is reportedly giving away equipment like television sets, computers, bedsheets, pillow covers and other such items purchased for use at the Games Village and various stadia to Sports Authority of India (SAI) offices in the country.

Though the rate at which the equipment is being sold was not specified by the OC, officials said it was considerably lower than the original price. The OC has decided to distribute the Commonwealth Games (CWG) kitchen equipment to the Ministry of Defence (MoD).

"We are not distributing the equipment for free but at prices fixed by the government. We have given out some items to the officials of SAI," said Jarnail Singh, CEO of the OC.

When contacted, Pravin Krishnan, a senior SAI official, refused to speak to HT.

"These are used items and cannot be sold at original prices. Some depreciation has to be taken into account," said a senior OC official.

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