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22 more CWG works under CVC scanner

Source: PTI
October 17, 2010 20:10 IST
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Widening its probe, the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) is looking into at least 22 more Commonwealth Games-related construction and procurement works carried out by different government agencies here for alleged financial irregularities.

Besides, the CVC has found alleged misuse of an official position by Raj Kumar Sacheti, Joint Director General of Commonwealth Games, who is considered a close aide of Organising Committee Chairman Suresh Kalmadi.

According to the information received in response to an RTI application, out of the total of 22 projects, a highest of six were being carried out by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, four by Delhi Development Authority, three by Organising Committee and two each by Municipal Corporation of Delhi, Central Public Works Department, Government of Delhi.

One work each relating to Department of Commerce, Indian Meteorogical Department and New Delhi Municipal Council is also being probed, the reply said.

An analysis by Chief Technical Examination Wing of CVC earlier found alleged financial and administrative irregularities in 16 construction and procurement projects.

Six of them were done by PWD, three by MCD, two each by CPWD, DDA, NDMC and one by RITES, a Government of India Enterprise, the CVC report said.

The expansion of the probe by the CVC came even as it directed all agencies concerned to submit their reports by the month-end.

Official sources said a reminder has recently been issued to Central Public Works Department (CPWD), Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and Public Works Department (PWD) in this regard.

The move came after Central Vigilance Commissioner P J Thomas objected to the "lackadaisical approach" and continuous delay by agencies in submitting replies to the queries raised by the anti-corruption watchdog, they said.

A senior CVC official said that based on their replies, the CVC will give its findings or final report to a committee formed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh headed by former Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India V K Shungloo.

As per the RTI information, it has been found that some of the agencies are sitting on the clarification or delaying their replies asked by CVC on corruption charges since January this year.

"Complaint regarding misuse of official position and corruption by Raj Kumar Sacheti, Joint Director General of Commonwealth Games, 2010; factual report awaited from the CVO, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports," the CVC said.

In a related move, both the Income Tax Department and Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) have also tightened the noose around all the agencies for alleged irregularities.

The Income Tax department has collected documents pertaining to tenders and award of contracts for its "two pronged" probe into the finances of the Games.

The I-T department's second line of probe will go into deductions under the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) category which the Organising Committee of the Games is expected to cut from the salaries of professionals hired by it like event managers, anchors and other officials.

The CAG has also asked the CWG Organising Committee and the Sports Ministry to keep a sample of each item of the equipment and props hired from foreign suppliers for the Games venues ready for its inspection.

The agency will start the audit work of Commonwealth Games Village here from October 28 to probe allegations of financial irregularities.

Official sources said the CAG will also audit the accounts of Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the expenditure incurred for building over 1,160 residential apartments inside the Village in addition to the alleged undue favours given to Emaar MGF, a leading real estate group, for its construction.

Emaar MGF did not respond to an email query sent by PTI.

The audit process by CAG teams began in the middle of August. However, later it was halted between September 24 and October 14 in view of the Games.

The audit resumed this Friday and memos have been issued to different parties including Delhi Government and others.

"At least 10 teams would conduct the audit. Each team has at least three supervisory officials. Three teams have already been pressed into service for the audit of Central Public Works Department (CPWD), DDA, New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), Public Works Department (PWD), Organising Committee (OC), Delhi Government etc," a senior CAG official said.

According to the auditing agency, huge financial irregularities worth crores of rupees have been noticed in various contracts by civic and construction departments.

Meanwhile the CWG OC Chairman Suresh Kalmadi on Sunday met Urban Development Minister S Jaipal Reddy.

The Minister later said Kalmadi had come to wish him on Dussehra festival.

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