NEW DELHI: A Delhi court on Wednesday sentenced five persons, including four officials of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), to four years imprisonment each, and the managing director of a firm to six years in the first conviction in a 2010 Commonwealth Games scam case. The Rs 1.44 crore street lighting scam is one of the 10 corruption cases relating to the mega sports event.
Special CBI Judge Brijesh Garg awarded four-year rigorous imprisonment each to MCD superintendent engineer D K Sugan, executive engineer O P Mahla, accountant Raju V and the civic body’s tender clerk Gurcharan Singh besides Sweka Powertech Engineering Pvt Ltd’s Director J P Singh.
The five convicted persons were sentenced for various offences, including criminal conspiracy, cheating and using forged documents, under the IPC and Section 13 (1)(d)(criminal misconduct by a public servant by corrupt means and abusing position) of the Prevention of Corruption Act. The court also jailed the firm’s managing director T P Singh to six years for the same offences. “In this case, the allegations proved against the convicts are quite serious in nature. They had conspired together and had cheated the MCD/GNCTD for forging the tender documents, a valuable security, and have also forged the tender opening register,” the judge observed. The court slapped a fine of Rs 70,000 on the firm, Rs 30,000 each on the MCD officials, Rs 42,000 on T P Singh and Rs 22,000 on J P Singh.
During arguments on the quantum of sentence, CBI prosecutor Praneet Sharma contended that the convicts had caused a loss of over Rs 1.44 crore to the MCD and demanded the maximum punishment of seven years. As per the charge-sheet, after opening of the tenders and announcing the rates, certain cuttings and interpolations in the tender papers of Sweska were made and the amount quoted by it was increased, which led to a loss of about Rs 1.44 crore to the state exchequer and corresponding wrongful gain to the convicts.
The court had earlier termed Sugan as the “kingpin” of the conspiracy and had said the tenders were opened in his office on May 14, 2008, and he had allowed fudging of Sweska’s tender papers.
It, however, had discharged Philips India official Mehul Karnik, as it noted that the company initially participated in the tender process but ultimately did not submit the tender. The prosecutor had argued that all the circumstances clearly indicated that the chargesheeted people were hands in glove with each other and had conspired together to cause a pecuniary loss of Rs 1,42,83,000 to MCD.
During the trial, the four MCD officials had claimed that the sanction granted by the then MCD commissioner to prosecute them was not valid. The case is just the tip of the iceberg as the total CWG scam is estimated to have caused a loss of thousands of crores.