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CWG: Charge Framing Order Against Kalmadi on Nov 21
A Delhi court has fixed November 21 for pronouncing its order on framing of charges against former Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC) chairman Suresh Kalmadi and others accused in a Games-related graft case.

Special CBI Judge Talwant Singh has concluded hearing the arguments on charges advanced by CBI as well as all the accused and reserved the order for November 21.

Besides Kalmadi, former CWG OC Secretary General Lalit Bhanot and nine others have been charge-sheeted by CBI under various provisions of the IPC and the Prevention of Corruption Act for allegedly "illegally" awarding a contract to install the Timing, Scoring and Results (TSR) system for the 2010 CWG to Swiss Timing, allegedly causing a loss of over Rs 90 crore to the state.

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.

Besides Kalmadi and Bhanot, the other nine accused in the case are OC's Director General V K Verma, Director General (Procurement) Surjit Lal, Joint Director General (Sports) A S V Prasad and Treasurer M Jayachandran. They are no more associated with the sporting body.

Promoters of two construction companies - P D Arya and A K Madan of Faridabad-based Gem International and A K Reddy and his firm 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, and AKR Constructions are also accused in the case.

During the arguments on charges, Kalmadi's counsel had argued that the facts given in CBI's charge sheet were contrary to the documents which the agency 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.

During the arguments, CBI prosecutor V K Sharma had told the court 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.

The prosecutor had also argued that two bids were received for TSR contract from Swiss Timing and MSL Spain and the same were opened on November 4, 2009 but Kalmadi and Verma had on October 12, 2009 announced in a meeting that the contract would be awarded to Swiss Timing.

He had also said Kalmadi had made up his mind in advance to award the contract to the Swiss firm.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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