Organiser of 2010 Commonwealth Games arrested

Indian officials arrested the chief organiser of last year’s Commonwealth Games on Monday as part of a corruption investigation into the scandal-plagued competition in New Delhi.

India had hoped that the Games would help it project the image of a rising superpower, but instead it was deeply embarrassed by corruption allegations, construction delays and cost overruns as the budget ballooned to 700-billion rupees (about R106-billion) from an estimated 18.9-billion rupees.

Suresh Kalmadi, the last member of the organising committee to be arrested, has been charged with conspiracy to favour a Swiss company in the purchase of equipment for timing and scoring events, Central Bureau of Investigation spokesperson Dharini Mishra said.

Two other officials on the Games organising committee — Lalit Bhanot and VK Verma — had been arrested earlier in the same case.

The bureau — the Indian equivalent of the FBI — claims the government was bilked out of 1.41-billion rupees, paid to Swiss Timings for equipment available from another company for much less. — Sapa-AP

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