CWG organisers launch print campaign to erase corruption slur

New Delhi: Amid charges of corruption, the organising committee of the 2010 Commonwealth Games Wednesday issued full page advertisements in leading newspapers about its budget and expenditure in conducting the event, avowedly to “reveal facts” in “public interest”.

Calling it a special Commonwealth Games report, the ad said the responsibility of the organising committee (OC) was to “conduct the Games” and had “no role” in developing any infrastructure.

Using colour highlighter, photographs and arrows, one of the several boxes in the ad was about the “myth and truth” of tissue paper rolls and umbrellas procured for the Games.

The myth, the ad said, was that tissue paper rolls were bought at the rate of Rs.4,000 each. The truth, however, was that boxes containing 100 units of rolls were bought at Rs.3,850. Therefore each roll cost Rs.38.50.

The umbrellas, it similarly said, were not like “any other umbrella” as imagined. “They were not normal umbrellas. They are large in size, 100 percent water proof, fire-retardant and come with a support structure”.

According to the OC, its budget was Rs.1,813 crore plus the overlays. The amount spent till now is Rs.1,400 crore plus the overlays.

The revenue raised by the OC through sponsorship, TV rights and ticketing was Rs.674 crore and the value of contract awarded to government agencies, the Commonwealth Games Federation and Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) was Rs.620 crore, the ad said.

The ad detailed the responsibilities of the OC and also had a box on the international acclaim the Games received.

On Tuesday, the government admitted that the Commonwealth Games OC failed to achieve an expected revenue of Rs.1,708 crore from the mega sporting event.

“An amount of Rs.1,708 crore was expected to be generated through revenue by the organising committee (OC) which has not been achieved,” Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs M.S. Gill told the Lok Sabha in a written reply.

Amid charges of corruption against him as the chairmen of the OC, Suresh Kalmadi Tuesday resigned as the Congress Parliamentary Party (CPP) secretary.

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