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Congress alleges financial irregularities in DDCA, seeks JPC probe

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New Delhi, Dec 16 : The Congress on Wednesday demanded that alleged financial irregularities during Arun Jaitley’s tenure as chief of the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) should be probed by a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC).

“Indian National Congress draws attention of people of India to the farcical vendetta game and the diabolically convenient mutual side show being played with the sole aim of saving Shri Arun Jaitley and his colleague office bearers of DDCA from speedy inquiry and prosecution for serious financial irregularities,” the Congress said in a statement.

“We demand that Shri Arun Jaitley as chairman of DDCA and his team’s gross financial irregularities are inquired into by a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to arrive at the truth.

“Since the dramatic and crass threats of setting up a Commission of Inquiry by Delhi government are nothing but empty rhetoric owing to the fact that as per law, Delhi government does not have the power to do so without the approval of the LG and the Home Ministry, it will prima facie give Shri Jaitley a chance to sit pretty while wrangles over jurisdiction will typically continue. We also demand that pending the completion of inquiry through a JPC, Shri Arun Jaitley steps down, failing which the Prime Minister should sack him,” the statement added.

The Congress also listed a series of alleged wrongdoings during Jaitley’s tenure as DDCA chief from 1999 to 2013. According to the statement, most of the tenders for the re-construction work at the Ferozeshah Kotla Stadium during the period 2002-2007 were handed out to DDCA officials and the final cost of the project overshot the original contract by Rs.90 crore.

“In the year 2012, the Director, Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO), Ministry of Corporate Affairs received complaints regarding financial irregularities in the construction of Ferozeshah Kotla Stadium by DDCA (a section 25 Non-profit Company).

“During the course of investigation the DDCA conceded that reconstruction of Kotla was carried out between 2002 to 2007. The initial budget was Rs.24 crore but eventually ended up costing Rs.114 crore. As per the investigation by the SFIO, the original contract was for Rs.24 crore. However, the final payment was made for Rs.114 crore,” it said.

“It was also revealed during the investigation that there was no record of tender for most of the contracts issued by DDCA for construction of the stadium. Many companies that were given contracts of construction and allied work of Ferozeshah Stadium were actually owned by the office bearers of the DDCA.

“DDCA has illegally constructed 10 Corporate Boxes in the stadium and have sub-leased these boxes for 10 years to corporates for a collective approximate amount of Rs 36 crore,” it added.

Alleging irregularities in DDCA accounts, the statement went on to say that a report by the association’s internal fact finding committee also pointed out huge corruption by officials.

“The DDCA constituted an internal Fact Finding Committee on 13.12.2014 which only inquired into the affairs of DDCA for the limited period of year 2013-14. Even for this limited period, the Committee found that there is evidence of huge financial irregularity,” it said.

Politics

Sajid Javid stepped down to avoid humiliation

He had then cleared absconding businessman Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India in February last year following the decision by the Westminister Magistrates Court in December 2018.

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Sajid Javid

London, Feb 29 : Sajid Javid has revealed that he decided to resign as the UK Chancellor instead of being “humiliated” by sacking all his aides at a Cabinet reshuffle, a media report said on Saturday.

On February 13, Javid resigned as the Chancellor of the Exchequer over differences with Prime Minister Boris Johnson in a cabinet reshuffle. He was offered to retain the post if he fired all his advisors but declined.

He was replaced by Indian-descent Rishi Sunak, who is married to Akshata, the daughter of Infosys co-founder N.R. Narayana Murthy.

“It was really hard. I wanted to do a budget but when the Prime Minister said to me these are the conditions, in my mind it was black and white,” the Daily Mirror quoted Javid as saying to the Times newspaper.

“Even if I had entertained the idea for a second I would be absolutely humiliated afterwards.”

Javid said that other Cabinet members hastily congratulated him after defending the right of Ministers and telling him “well done”, while thanking him for speaking on all their behalf.

“I loved my job. I have wanted to be Chancellor since I knew who Nigel Lawson was when I was a kid and the only person that believed I could ever become chancellor was my dad. He never got to see it,” he told the Times.

Javid further said that he had “no option” but to leave the Cabinet when he was told to sack his advisers, and he still has to unpack boxes after moving from the seat of British power in Downing Street.

Pakistani-descent Javid, who became the first Asian to become a Cabinet Minister when he was made Secretary of State of Culture, Media and Sports in the David Cameron government in 2014 after stints as Economic Secretary to the Treasury (2012-13) and Financial Secretary (2013-14), was earlier the Home Secretary in the the Theresa May government.

He had then cleared absconding businessman Vijay Mallya’s extradition to India in February last year following the decision by the Westminister Magistrates Court in December 2018.

Javid, who ran for Conservative Party leadership after May quit but lost to Johnson, was made Chancellor by the latter.

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Politics

Delhi govt ill informed about Kanhaiya case: Chidambaram slams Kejriwal govt

The Delhi government on Friday had granted sanction to the Delhi Police to prosecute former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar and others in the 2016 sedition case.

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P Chidambaram

New Delhi, Feb 29 Senior Congress leader and former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has slammed the Arvind Kejriwal government for the go-ahead to the police to prosecute former Jawaharlal Nehru University students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar and nine others in a sedition case of 2016.

Chidambaram called the Delhi government “ill-informed”. “Delhi Government is no less ill-informed than the central government in its understanding of sedition law”, Chiadambaram said in a tweet.

He also criticized the Delhi government for giving the sanction. “I strongly disapprove of the sanction granted to prosecute Mr Kanhaiya Kumar and others for alleged offences under sections 124A and 120B of IPC”, he added.

The Delhi government on Friday had granted sanction to the Delhi Police to prosecute former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar and others in the 2016 sedition case.

The Delhi Police Special Cell on February 19 wrote to the Delhi Home Secretary requesting to “expedite” the process of grant of sanction in the JNU sedition case involving former JNUSU President Kanhaiya Kumar.

In a letter written by Deputy Commissioner of Police, Special Cell, Pramod Singh Kushwaha to the Deputy Secretary, Home, he said, “It is therefore requested to expedite the process to accord prosecution sanction under Section 196 CrPC as required for offence under Chapter VI of the IPC i.e. Section 124A IPC.”

A Delhi court had asked the Delhi government to file a status report relating to the issue of pendency of sanction in the case to prosecute student leader Kanhaiya Kumar and others.

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Cities

Congress delegation visits violence-hit Delhi areas

As per figures available till February 28, a total of 39 persons were killed, of which 13 had gunshot wounds. As many as 22 died of severe injuries suffered during rioting.

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Congress Delegation

New Delhi, Feb 28 : The Congress’ five-member delegation, set up by interim President Sonia Gandhi to file a report on Delhi violence, visited the GTB hospital and interacted with victims admitted to the hospital and their families.

The deadly clashes in northeast Delhi, after a clash between opponents and supporters of the CAA on Sunday took on a communal turn, have left over 40 people dead and over 200 injured and extensive damage to property, including homes, shops and other establishment

Earlier on Friday, Gandhi constituted the delegation comprising party general Secretary Mukul Wasnik, Delhi in-charge Shaktisinh Gohil, former Union Minister Tariq Anwar, Haryana unit chief Kumari Selja, and Mahila Congress chief Sushmita Dev.

The delegation was tasked to “assess the situation emanating from the mindless violence in riot affected areas and its after-effects and submit a detailed report to the Congress President immediately”, as per the release issued by party General Secretary K.C. Venugopal.

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