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Two held over corruption

NEW DELHI, November 15 – Indian police Monday arrested two top former officials of the Delhi Commonwealth Games on charges of corruption, officials said.

A Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) spokesman said sacked Organising Committee joint director general T. S. Darbari and deputy director general Sanjay Mahendroo were arrested after detectives raided their homes.

Anurag Kumar said the two handed out contracts at "exorbitant rates" to two London-based private firms for providing transport services and video screens for a 2010 Delhi Games-related event held in London last year.

"The contracts were handed out at exorbitant rates and without following standard procedures," Kumar told reporters in New Delhi.

The CBI slapped charges of forgery, criminal conspiracy and corruption against the two detained officials as well as against owners of London-based companies — AM Car-Van Services and AM Films, he said.

Darbari and Mahendroo were sacked by organising committee’s chairman Suresh Kalmadi after the scandal surfaced before the Games began.

Kalmadi, who quit as secretary to India’s ruling Congress party last week following calls for a probe into his alleged role in Games-related corruption, was not immediately available for comment.

The budget for the sporting extravaganza ballooned to around six billion dollars but the event was still hit by delayed venues and organisational problems.

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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh set up a panel to investigate claims of financial irregularities and two other government bodies are also running separate probes.

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