CWG scam: Bail for Darbari, hearing on Jayachandran’s plea Monday (Night Lead)

Friday, January 14, 2011

NEW DELHI - The Delhi High Court Friday granted bail to former Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC) official T.S. Darbari and slated for Jan 17 the bail plea of another official, M. Jayachandran. Both are facing investigations in the Queen’s Baton Relay scam.

Justice Hima Kohli granted Darbari bail on technical grounds as the CBI failed to file a chargesheet against him within the stipulated 60 days of his arrest. He was given bail on furnishing of a personal and surety bond of Rs.50,000 each.

Darbari, a former aide of organising committee chief Suresh Kalmadi, was arrested Nov 15 by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

According to the Criminal Procedure Code, an undertrial is entitled for bail if the investigating agency fails to file a chargesheet within two months of his arrest.

The bail plea of Jayachandran, joint director (finance) in the OC, who too was arrested and sacked, was heard Friday and the hearing will continue Jan 17.

He was arrested Nov 21 for making questionable payments to an Indian-owned London-based private firm AM Car and Van Hire Limited during the Queen’s Baton Relay function in London.

CBI has time till Jan 20 to file its chargesheet against Jayachandran, who was arrested on Nov 21, failing which he too would have to be released on bail.

The third accused, Sanjay Mahendroo, who has so far not moved his bail application, would also be released on the grounds of parity as he is also in jail for last 60 days. He was arrested along with Darbari.

Earlier, during the hearing, the accused took the plea that they were not empowered to take decisions in the Baton Relay at London as all major decisions were taken by the OC.

A lower court had dismissed their bail pleas saying corruption in awarding the contracts by the OC has tarnished the image of the country and that the probe in the case was at the nascent stage. It had said that they (accused) being influential, can tamper with the ongoing probe.

The accused are facing charges of causing losses to the exchequer in award of contract to the tune of Rs 1.55 crore in the Baton Relay Oct 29, 2009 in London before the mega sporting event.

The CBI had registered two cases in connection with contracts awarded to London-based A M Films and AM Car and Van Hire Limited at exorbitant rates.

The CBI has questioned Kalmadi and carried out searches at his premises in Delhi, Pune and Mumbai.

The agency has named Darbari, Mahendroo, Jayachandran, OC director Raj Singh, transport director Ashish Patel, and other unknown people under sections 468 (forgery of court records and public documents), 471 (using forged documents as genuine), 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act.

The second case involves London-based A M Films and the probe agency had named Patel, Mahendroo, Darbari and others under sections 420 (cheating), 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act.

The accused are already facing charges of violation of Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) and have been questioned by the Enforcement Directorate.

The ED had registered its first case under FEMA in CWG after British authorities referred to the Indian High Commission a matter regarding A M Films, a little-known company, to which a huge sum of money was transferred through the Royal Bank of Scotland.

–Indo Asian News Service

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