15 Aug 2010

PM orders investigation into Games

1:25 pm on 15 August 2010

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India has ordered government ministries to investigate complaints of corruption and mismanagement in the preparations for the Commonwealth Games in October.

The cost of the event has risen more than 17.5 times over the original budget estimate and there are concerns some venues will not be ready.

An anti-corruption agency has identified 16 projects where financial irregularities are suspected.

After meeting senior Games officials on Saturday, Mr Singh ordered investigations into the graft charges. His office said in a statement he would inspect some of the venues this month.

Indian media have reported that graft is suspected in the awarding of contracts and in hiring or purchase of equipment such as air conditioners and treadmills and even toilet paper.

Three senior Games officials have already been suspended over financial irregularities.

The Games are scheduled to run from 3 - 14 October.