Indian Commonwealth Games bosses are arrested

Image caption,
The Games were a success for India, despite the corruption allegations

India's top investigating agency has arrested two senior Commonwealth Games officials suspected of corruption.

Organising committee Secretary General Lalit Bhanot and another top official, VK Verma, are accused of financial irregularities linked to the Games.

These are the most high-profile arrests in the ongoing investigation into allegations of corruption over last year's showpiece event in Delhi.

Both men deny the allegations. They will appear in court on Thursday.

The row over corruption at the Games is one of a series of graft scandals that has rocked India in recent months.

Former Telecoms Minister Andimuthu Raja resigned at the end of last year amid allegations that he had undersold mobile phone licences.

Lalit Bhanot was second-in-command to the Game's chief, Suresh Kalmadi, who is also being investigated.

'Absolutely wrong'

A spokesman for India's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) said that Mr Bhanot and Mr Verma are accused of inflating costs while procuring timers and scoring equipment from a Swiss manufacturer, Swiss Timing, allegedly costing the government nearly $24m (£15m).

Swiss Timing has rejected all accusations against it. Its director general, Christophe Berthaud, said that they were "absolutely wrong".

The BBC's Sanjoy Majumder in Delhi says that the Commonwealth Games were a huge success for India but were marred by allegations of financial mismanagement and cost overruns.

Last month several international companies claimed they were owed millions of dollars in unpaid bills and threatened to take legal action.

Mr Bhanot was in the news last October, when concerns prior to the start of the Games were raised about filthy, unfinished housing at the athletes' village.

"Everyone has a different standard of cleanliness," he told reporters, adding that the rooms at the village "are clean according to you and me, but they [foreigners] have some other standard of cleanliness".

Last month the sports ministry sacked Mr Bhanot and Mr Kalmadi from the organising committee to enable police to conduct "impartial and unhindered investigations".

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