The spotlight may shift from the Suresh Kalmadi-led Organizing Committee (OC) to the Sheila Dikshit government, with a tax probe into Commonwealth Games (CWG) sleaze finding indications of payoffs to its officials from contractors handling the Games projects.
Scrutiny of the documents seized during the October 28 Income Tax (I-T ) raids on Games vendors and contractors have thrown up evidence of a money trail leading up to officials belonging to the Delhi government, NDMC and MCD along with those from CPWD and DDA.
The payoffs are linked to contracts for supply of sports accessories and laying of synthetic track surfaces, streetlighting , streetscaping, beautification and other infrastructure projects.
Sources said the seized documents reveal that some of the payments were made on a monthly basis. In some other cases, payoffs turned weekly as the projects neared completion and payments were released.
A comprehensive report has been prepared and the matter is likely to be referred to the Central Vigilance Commission for action against the corrupt public servants.Online GST Certification Course by TaxGuru & MSME- Click here to Join
Linkages of some important functionaries of the government may not be ruled out with the taxmen suspecting benami ownership of some of the firms thathad bagged key Games projects.
The direction of the probe may cause embarrassment to Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit , who had asserted in October that ‘‘ real corruption’’ was limited to projects worth Rs 1,600 handled by the OC.
About 50 premises were raided in the nationwide coordinated I-T search operation that covered four major contractors — Shiv Naresh Sports, Sweka Powertech Engineers and Satya Prakash Brothers (all from Delhi) and MBL Infrastructure from Kolkata. The action was spread across Delhi, NCR, Kolkata, Bangalore, Jamshedpur and Mumbai.
While the second round of I-T raids focused on infrastructure projects executed by agencies such as the Delhi government, MCD, NDMC, DDA and CPWD, during the first raid a week before on October 19, the focus was on firms that had supplied overlays to the OC.
The probe is also looking into over-invoicing of goods and services supplied in the projects as many of them had shown massive escalation in prices than what was initially quoted.
Sources said some of the payoffs may have gone to tax havens and later brought back through fictitious entities and invested in property deals in Delhi and NCR.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED), CBI, CAG and CVC are the other enforcement and vigilance agencies that are already probing contract papers and invoicing details to ascertain the magnitude of corruption in execution of CWG projects.
A preliminary finding of the CVC had found that the OC overlays suppliers had alone inflated bills allegedly to the tune of Rs 200 crore. In its investigation against Games projects executed by Delhi government agencies, it had forwarded an alleged streetlighting corruption case to the CBI.
The CVC had also raised questions about the poor quality of work. Many certificates given to Games projects were found to be fudged as samples collected by the CVC teams from the project sites failed prescribed quality specifications