India’s Commonwealth Shame

Indian investigators say they have arrested the chief organizer of last year’s scandal-plagued Commonwealth Games as part of a corruption probe.
The Central Bureau of Investigation said Monday that Suresh Kalmadi has been charged with conspiracy to favor a Swiss company in the purchase of equipment for timing and scoring events. It also says the prices were inflated, AP reported.
Two other officials on the Games’ organizing committee were arrested earlier for involvement in the same case.
The bureau, the Indian equivalent of the FBI, accuses Lalit Bhanot and V.K. Verma of causing a huge loss to the Indian government by paying 1.41 billion rupees ($31 million) to Swiss Timings Ltd. for equipment available from another company for much less.

According to local television reports, Indian federal police have arrested Suresh Kalmadi in an investigation into corruption claims during the October Commonwealth Games.

Kalmadi is the former Commonwealth Games Organizing Committee chairman and ruling Congress party lawmaker.

The federal investigating body has raided homes and offices of Games organizers in a probe into $21.7 million worth of misplaced funds.

Local media reports that Kalmadi will be interrogated by India’s Central Bureau of Investigation for the fourth time, in connection with irregularities in contracts for the games.

The Games, which cost $6 billion, were dogged by several cases of alleged corruption.

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