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Who says Games are over? They are just starting

Last updated on: October 16, 2010 10:26 IST

Who says Games are over? They are just starting

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A Delhi Correspondent
With the Commonwealth Games coming to a close, Suresh Kalmadi and others involved in organising the event are being put in the dock. Even Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit is not being spared.

The government plans to institute multiple inquiries into Games-related financial irregularities and misutilisation of the government funds.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi has given a clear line to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that the misdeeds for which the government and the Congress got the flak should not be pushed under the carpet just because Kalmadi and Sheila Dikshit belong to the party.

She wants a thorough probe into all allegations made against the CWG organising committee and other agencies, Congress sources said.

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Image: The CWG closing ceremony
Photographs: PIB
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A top source in the Prime Minister's Office said a comprehensive probe is being considered as the prime minister was equally concerned.

Agencies to be involved in probing various aspects of the  irregularities will be identified and announced within the next few days, the source said.

The Central Vigilance Commission and the Enforcement Directorate had already seized on matters even before the Games began while the government is examining which other agencies should get cracking to examine complaints from all angles, the source said.

Parliament's Public Accounts Committee had already prepared a report on the games but its chairman and Bharatiya Janata Party veteran Murli Manohar Joshi had put it on the hold as he felt nothing should be done at the stage of preparations lest they get derailed, bring disrepute to the country. 


Image: Kalmadi hands over the Commonwealth Games Federation flag to Delhi Lt Governor Tejinder Khanna at the closing ceremony of the Commonwealth Games, at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit is also seen
Photographs: PIB
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With the Games over, the PAC report may be the first to arraign the organisers as it may be tabled in Parliament during the winter session beginning next month.

The first to speak out on behalf of the government was External Affairs Minister S M Krishna.

Asked if the government will forget the charges of corruption that surfaced before the Games in view of its successful completion and let Kalmadi go scot free, Krishna shot back, "The success of Games is one side of the story but natural corollary will be followed. The government has already said this and will follow it up."

Without mincing words, Congress spokesman Manish Tiwari also called for an inquiry, stating: "Anyone allegedly mishandling of government funds has to be brought to book."


Image: Kalmadi receives Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium ahead of the closing ceremony
Photographs: PIB
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"Obviously huge public money was spent in organising the event and such expenditures always undergo the audit process. We expect the government agencies and constitutional and statutory bodies will perform their  responsibility to deliver the verdict, satisfactory to the nation,"  Tiwari affirmed at the AICC Press briefing on Friday.

Asked if Kalmadi will get the clean chit for ultimately successful conduct of the Games, he shot back: "Our party is not in the business of giving or not giving clean chit to anybody." The party's stand has always been that those mishandling the public money should not be spared, he said.

He said there were two aspects of the Games.

One was the irregularities and delays. All the same, he wants to put on record that the party is satisfied with the successful and secure conduct of the games and it congratulates all those players who bagged medals for the country. Because of their efforts, India finished second in the game with its 100 plus tally of medals, he added.



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BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar said: "The public jury is already out from the way spectators cheered every player and every artist at the closing ceremony Thursday night, but jeered Kalmadi and company."

"It only showed the anger and mood of the nation and we will now wait for what actions the government takes as both the prime minister and United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi have gone on record that nobody will be spared."

"We will wait for three-four days for the government action, though we are ready with our own investigations. We will pursue the issues of corruption, delay and mismanagement," Javadekar affirmed while talking to reporters at the BJP headquarters.


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