CWG: CBI raids homes of Kalmadi aides

Kalmadi

The Central Bureau of Investigation today conducted searches at 11 places, including at the residences of two top aides of Commonwealth Games chief Suresh Kalmadi, in connection with the alleged irregularities in a contract for the CWG result-update system.

Cases were registered against OC Secretary General Lalit Bhanot and Director General V K Verma after the raids, official sources said.

They said the searches started early this morning with regard to a Rs 107 crore deal struck with a firm for the results-update system for the Commonwealth Games. The searches were carried out in Gurgaon, Noida and the national capital, the sources said.

This is the third FIR in connection with the alleged irregularities in CWG projects. The CBI has already registered two FIRs in connection with alleged irregularities in CWG projects and has arrested some former Games officials.

This is the first time when premises of both Bhanot and Verma, both considered close to Kalmadi, were searched.

While Verma has been questioned by the Enforcement Directorate a couple of times, Bhanot was also on their radar, the sources said.

Verma claimed, "These allegations are absolutely baseless. Any suspicion on any individual is totally baseless because you should see this whole matter has been examined by so many high-level committees... several committees had examined the matter."

"The whole thing was referred to the ministry. This whole presentation, the whole discussion took place in the executive board meeting of the CWG. So there has been complete transparency of every step taken in this case," he said.

On November 15, two other close aides of Suresh Kalmadi T S Darbari and Sanjay Mahendroo were arrested for their alleged roles in the financial irregularities in the organisation of the Games.

A few days later, the CBI arrested sacked treasurer of the Organising Committee M Jayachandran in connection with the alleged bungling in the Queen's Baton Relay (QBR) in London last year.

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