New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) would file the first charge sheet over irregularities in awarding a contract for timing equipment to a Swiss company for last year's Commonwealth Games by May 23, an official said on Monday.

 “We have collected ample evidence on tweaking of technical qualifications to favour a Swiss company, ‘Swiss Omega Gem International’ in the timing, scoring and result (TSR) system scam, causing a loss of Rs.95 crore to the exchequer,”  said a CBI official.

The official said that Games organisers abused their position and entered into a criminal conspiracy with the Swiss company to cheat the government by awarding the TSR system contract to the company.

“There was a conspiracy to favour the Switzerland-based company by awarding the contract at an inflated cost of Rs.141 crore. The investigation is nearly complete and we are finalising the charge sheet of the case which will be filed in the special court by May 23” said the official.

After investigation in the case, the CBI detained former Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (OC) chairman Suresh Kalmadi, former secretary-general Lalit Bhanot and officials V.K. Verma, Surjeet Lal, A.S.V. Prasad, M. Jayachandran, T.S. Darbari and Shekhar Deorukhkar.

All of them have been booked for criminal conspiracy, cheating and under various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The original idea was to float a request for proposal (RFP) for a system that could take care of 'timing, scoring or result'.
The RFP that was eventually brought out from Bhanot's office read 'timing, scoring and result', replacing 'or' with 'and', with the result that only the Swiss company could qualify for the proposal.

The expression of interest was published announcing that only the Swiss firm met the criteria set by the organisers. 
“The RFP was issued on Oct 1, 2009. This was surreptitiously amended on Oct 4, 2009, thereby making the bids even more restrictive. In response to the RFP, two bids were received” said the official, adding that a Spain-based firm was allegedly wrongfully eliminated at the pre-qualification bid stage.

The Organizing Committee officials allegedly conspired with the Indian representatives of the Swiss firm and the contract was awarded by wrongfully restricting and eliminating competition in a pre-meditated and planned manner.
So far, the CBI has registered 12 first information reports in connection with lapses during the Games.

(Agencies)