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DDCA rebuts allegations against ex-prez Jaitley again

The Delhi and District Cricket Association on Thursday again strongly refuted AAP’s allegations of financial bunglings by Finance Minister and its former chief Arun Jaitley, saying that these charges were completely baseless and without any substance.

For the second successive day, the entire top brass of the DDCA addressed the press conference where they made a point by point rebuttal of the alleged charges made by the AAP against Jaitley.

AAP on Thursday alleged huge financial bunglings in DDCA during his 13 year-old tenure as its chief, saying large amounts were siphoned off through fake companies besides other irregularities including in team selection.

DDCA’s working president Chetan Chauhan said that Jaitley had in fact worked for the betterment of cricket in general and had made the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium into a world class facility and it was uncalled for to drag him into this controversy.

Chauhan read out the break-up of expenses incurred during the renovation of Feroz Shah Kotla to substantiate that there were no siphoning of funds during Jaitley’s tenure as DDCA president.

“We spoke on Wednesday and clarified a few points at our end. We are not hiding anything nor will we hide,” he said.

“On Wednesday I said the cost of building stadium is Rs 114 crore. Initially, the contract given to EPIL was of 27 crore for one block in ground floor. But when we made three storeyed we realised capacity will increase to 45,000. Costs escalated to Rs 57.20 crore for initial construction. Then other additions made it Rs 114 crore which I wrongly said Rs 141 crore on Wednesday. I can provide the break-up,” he added.

Asked how Jaitley can get a clean chit, Chauhan said, “No embezzlement took place during Jaitley’s tenure. You can check SFIO report. There were only procedural lapses and we have compounded (paid fine) for those lapses. There are no criminal cases during his period as president. Had there been anything SFIO would have taken action.

“Also in 2012, the government was different and enquiry completed during the tenure of the previous government and all the irregularities were taken care of. So Mr Jaitley was not in power at that time,” said Chauhan.

Asked why Jaitley quit as DDCA chief in 2013, Chauhan said, “Because Assembly elections were there. We wanted him to continue but Lok Sabha elections were there. He never interfered in day-to-day working. As someone who has done tremendous service, we always fall back to him.

“Yes, we always fall back for his guidance whenever he can afford some time because of his enormous experience.

According to DDCA bylaws, all powers rest with EC and president never had separate powers,” he said.

He reiterated that the Delhi government has no locus standi to investigate the DDCA issue.

“They conducted enquiry, please tell us what are terms of reference. We did not know they formed an enquiry committee.

They told us please come and discuss. They have no powers to ask us questions as we are Section 25 company and we come under Union Company Affairs Ministry,” said Chauhan. 
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