Maken not to attend National Games closing ceremony

Written by: Pti
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New Delhi, Feb 26 (PTI) After intense speculation, SportsMinister Ajay Maken has decided to give the closing ceremonyof the 34th National Games a miss today, citing "preoccupationwith current parliament session" as the reason.

Since yesterday, there were doubts about Maken''s travelto Ranchi for the National Games closing ceremony todayapparently because he doesn''t want to share the platform withsacked Commonwealth Games Organising Committee chief SureshKalmadi, who will be present there in his capacity aspresident of the Indian Olympic Association.

But the Sports Minister cleared the air this morning in astatement, saying, "On account of my preoccupation with somepressing issues concerned with the current session ofParliament, I am unable to go to Ranchi for the National Gamestoday."

Maken yesterday said that he was still undecided whetherto attend the closing ceremony or not.

On being persistently asked by reporters outside theParliament yesterday that whether his reservations aboutattending the ceremony had anything to do with Kalmadi''spresence there, Maken said, "There are 24 hours for me todecide on it."

Kalmadi is facing a CBI probe over alleged irregularitiesin the conduct of the Commonwealth Games.

Most of his aides, including Lalit Bhanot, VK Verma and TS Darbari, have been arrested and there has been talk for sometime now that the CBI is slowly and steadily tightening thenoose around Kalmadi''s neck too.

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