CBI closes corruption case against ex-IOA chief Narinder Batra

New Delhi, May 24 (PTI) After nearly two years of investigation, the CBI has closed a corruption case against former Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president Narinder Dhruv Batra and Hockey India Executive Director Cdr R K Srivastava as it could not find evidence of wrongdoing against them, officials said Friday.

The CBI had registered an FIR in the July 2022 case after its three-month-long preliminary enquiry report found prima facie material indicating “the commissions of cognizable offences” relating to criminal conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, and corruption against Batra.

Some officials of Hockey India including its Executive Director R K Srivastava, former president Rajinder Singh and former secretary general Mohd Mushtaque Ahmad were also booked.

When contacted, Batra refused to comment on the closure report, saying he has no information about the development. The CBI also did not offer comments on the closure of the case despite repeated attempts.

The CBI could not find enough evidence against Batra, Singh, Ahmad and Srivastava after over two years of investigation to file a charge sheet, the officials said.

The central probe agency has now filed a closure report in the case before a special court here. The court will decide whether to accept the report and close the matter or direct the agency to investigate further.

The officials said the case arose from a complaint alleging that Batra had got his his office in the IOA Bhawan renovated in violation of norms.

The FIR alleged that the accused “executed the work of renovation & furnishing of the office of the President of IOA without prior approval of Executive Board of Hockey India,” a CBI spokesperson had said after the agency conducted searches on July 18, 2022.

It was further alleged that records were fabricated and falsified to justify and cover up the fraudulent expenditure at the approval stage.

Batra ceased to be the president of the IOA when the Delhi High Court, on May 25, 2022, struck down the post of ‘life member’ in Hockey India.

In three handwritten notes, Batra had officially tendered his resignations from the IOA, International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Hockey Federation (FIH).

He had cited “personal reasons” behind his decision in all the letters.

Source: PTI News


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