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Kalmadi hits out at critics, says ouster 'illegal and uncalled for'

January 25, 2011 - New Delhi

After being sacked as the Chairman of Commonwealth Games Organising Committee, an embattled Suresh Kalmadi on Tuesday hit out at his critics and said his ouster is 'illegal and uncalled for'.

Kalmadi, however, said that only the Indian Olympic Association, which has appointed him to the post, has the power to remove him.

Earlier on Monday, Kalmadi made it clear that he would not step down from his other post of Indian Olympic Association (IOA) President.

"Commonwealth Games were organized in an excellent manner, we got the maximum number of medals ever and the whole world is talking about how India organized the games. Now the Commonwealth Games are over and it has nothing to do with Indian Olympic Association," Kalmadi told reporters in Ranchi on Monday.

Kalmadi's close aide and Commonwealth Games Organising Committee Secretary General Lalit Bhanot was also removed with immediate effect.

Sports Minister Ajay Maken, who took over the charge recently, on Monday said: "In the light of the concerns expressed by the CBI and in the interest of impartial and unhindered investigations, it has been decided to remove Kalmadi from the position of the Chairman of the Organizing Committee and the position of Chairman, Executive Board of the organizing, CWG, with immediate effect."

"Kalmadi and Bhanot have been directed to handover charge to Jarnail Singh, Chief Executive Officer, Organizing Committee, who is also a Member, Executive Board, Organizing Committee, CWG, 2010," said a Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports release on Monday.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on January 6 carried out raids on Kalmadi"s aides and companies that were connected to the overlays in the sporting event.

Carrying out the raids at ten locations across Delhi and NCR, the investigating agency lodged a fourth FIR in connection with the financial irregularities during the conduct of the sporting extravaganza.

The CBI had earlier conducted raids at Kalmadi's home and offices in Delhi, Mumbai and Pune, as part of its ongoing investigations into the multi-crore sporting extravaganza.

The raids were conducted in the wake of reports that some crucial documents related to Commonwealth Games deals have gone missing.


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