A Delhi court on Friday ordered framing of charges against sacked Commonwealth Games chief Suresh Kalmadi and 10 others in the CWG scam case. All the accused will be charged with the offence of cheating, forgery, criminal conspiracy and also under Prevention of Corruption Act.
The court has fixed January 10 as the deadline for formally framing charges against all the accused in the case. Along with Kalmadi, former CWG Organising Committee secretary general Lalit Bhenot is also one of the accused in the cases.
Besides Kalmadi and Bhanot, nine others were chargesheeted by the CBI for allegedly "illegally" awarding a contract to install Timing, Scoring and Results system for the 2010 CWG to Swiss Timing at an inflated rates causing a loss of over Rs 90 crore to the public exchequer.
They were chargesheeted under various provisions of the IPC, including those of criminal conspiracy under section 120(B), cheating (section 420), forgery (section 468 & 471) of the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act. The CBI had alleged Kalmadi and others had rejected Spanish firm MSL's much lower bid of Rs 62 crore and awarded the contract to Swiss Timing Omega, causing a loss of over Rs 90 crore to the exchequer.
The other nine accused in the case are OC's Director General VK Verma, Director General (Procurement) Surjit Lal, Joint Director General (Sports) ASV Prasad and Treasurer M Jayachandran. They are no more associated with the sporting body. Promoters of two construction companies - PD Arya and AK Madan of Faridabad-based Gem International and AK Reddy of Hyderabad-based AKR Constructions are also accused in the case.
Besides the two firms, Swiss Timing Omega, the Swiss firm which was awarded the contract allegedly at exorbitant rates, is also an accused in the case. During the arguments on charges, CBI counsel VK Sharma had argued that Kalmadi and others had decided to award the contract for installing the TSR system for the CWG to Swiss Timing even before the firm had bid for it.
Sharma had also said that for TSR installation, two bids had been received - one from Swiss Timing and other from MSL Spain, and the same were opened on November 4, 2009 but Kalmadi and Verma had announced in a meeting on October 12, 2009 itself that the contract would be given to Swiss Timing. He had also said Kalmadi had made up his mind in advance to award the contract to the Swiss firm.
Kalmadi's counsel, however, had argued that the facts given in the CBI's chargesheet were contrary to the documents which the agency had filed in the court. Kalmadi had told the court that he was only doing the work assigned to him as the OC chairman and nothing wrong was done by him in the entire process. The counsel appearing for other accused had also opposed the allegations levelled against them by the CBI.
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