Kalmadi has wings clipped

Kalmadi has wings clipped

“The Committee of Secretaries, headed by the Cabinet Secretary, will have the status of an empowered committee. It will have jurisdiction over matters relating to the Organising Committee,” said a PMO statement, after a 90-minute meeting chaired by the PM, in which Games OC Chairman Suresh Kalmadi was summoned.

The high-level meeting, the first after weeks of complaints over financial irregularities and delays in completion of Games-related works, including stadiums, was attended by Urban Development Minister Jaipal Reddy, who heads a Group of Ministers on the CWG, Union Sports Minister M S Gill, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit, Lt Governor Tejendra Khanna and  Cabinet Secretary K M Chandrasekhar. The decision to bring the OC in the ambit of the Committee of Secretaries, which has so far been liaisoning with the OC, is significant as questions have been raised over it and charges of corruption against its top brass, including Kalmadi.

“A secretary-level officer of the Cabinet secretariat will liaise with the OC on a daily basis,” the statement said. The Cabinet will also be briefed on the state of preparations on a weekly basis.

Earlier at the meeting, Manmohan Singh asked the GoM to meet frequently, saying it was empowered to take all decisions necessary for smooth conduct of the Games. The GoM could refer any matter that may require further consideration to Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee for a final decision. He said the OC would take appropriate steps urgently to conclude all pending preparations.

Talking about slippages in time schedules of construction works and deficiencies in works, he also asked ministries concerned to thoroughly probe into complaints of “procedural and other irregularities”.

The meeting comes in the wake of discussions held on Friday by the Congress Core Committee where the CWG issue had come up. Urging those concerned to speed up all pending works through time-bound action plans, the PM also called for a quality audit of the completed facilities.

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