With scarcely two months left for the New Delhi Commonwealth games, a flood of allegations of extensive corruption has shaken the Games Organizing Committee and Indian government.
The event involving 71 nations is already the most expensive Commonwealth Games in history, with an infrastructure and organizing budget of two billion dollars, even though unofficial estimates state that the cost is triple the amount (around 35 thousand crore rupees).
Adding to the woes of the Commonwealth Games Organizing Committee, the roof of the weightlifting auditorium, in New Delhi Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, which was inaugurated on Sunday, Aug 01 started leaking due to heavy showers.
However, the news of widespread corruption in the preparations of commonwealth games is now a burning issue in India. The Games Organizing Committee has insulted India in front of the world.
The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), a government watchdog body, in its report revealed massive irregularities in a tender issued for a Commonwealth Games project worth several crores. The CVC asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to register a corruption case against those officials involved in the projects.
The CVC pointed out grave wrongdoings like award of works at higher rates to bidders, pitiable quality of construction and grant of work to ineligible agencies in different Games-related construction works.
In the report prepared by CVC"s Chief Technical Examination Wing, far-reaching procedural violations, including corruption, have been noticed in 16 projects. The cost of the projects has been estimated to be about Rs 2,000 crore. Based on this report, the Prime Minister"s Office has directed Cabinet Secretary to review the status of the projects.
Days before this, Times Now, a leading private television news channel, exposed another swindle by the organizing committee. A M Films, a little known event management firm in London received bulky amount of money from the Games Organizing Committee through Royal Bank of Scotland. The British Government has raised questions over this.
According to the expose, funds worth 2,47,469 Pounds were transferred in Oct 2009 from the Organizing Committee of the Commonwealth Games to a UK-based company AM Films UK Ltd.
The money was transferred during the Queen's Baton Relay function in London. In addition to that money, 25,000 pounds are being transferred into AM Films account every month. Altogether, about 4,50,000 pounds have transferred to London so far.
Suresh Kalmadi, Chairman of the Games Organizing Committee denied all charges. M S Gill, Union Minister for Sports, said that he would take action against all those who involved in the corruption.
BJP, major opposition party in India, has demanded a judicial inquiry into the entire shameful affair, but only after the conclusion of the sporting event. The party feels that the prestige of the nation was at stake and it was important that the event itself should succeed.
Actually, the Common wealth games is supposed to be a demonstration of India"s strength before the world as China did in the Olympics. However, even before the kick off function, India being is forced to hide its face in shame.
No one would be surprised even if a stadium collapsed during the games. Based on unofficial sources, the Indian Government has already allotted Rs 35,000 thousand crore for the Common Wealth Games. However, lion share of this money had moved out to the bank accounts of the officials of Games Organizing Committee and not for the functioning of games.
In the name of Common Wealth Games, the Games Organizing Committee, with the help of Indian Government, is looting the wealth of common Indian.
Dipin Damodharan is a Journalist (Sub Editor with Jeevan TV ) based in Kerala.He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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