Mar 26, 2008 at 04:23pm IST

Dalmiya arrested for fund embezzlement, gets bail

New Delhi/ Mumbai: Former Indian cricket board chief Jagmohan Dalmiya was arrested and released on bail Wednesday on charges that he embezzled Rs 2.90 crore from a bank account meant for the 1996 World Cup.

The Mumbai Police’s Economic Offences Wing (EOW) arrested Dalmiya, former chairman of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and later produced him before a Mumbai court.

Dalmiya was released on bail by the court for a surety of Rs 25,000. Dalmiya was arrested after the EOW filed a chargesheet against him under various sections of the Indian Penal Code pertaining to cheating, criminal breach of trust and conspiracy.

"The EOW recently completed its investigations into Dalmiya's role in the case and has found him guilty of misappropriation of BCCI funds," Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Rakesh Maria told IANS.

Dalmiya’s lawyer Rajendra Shirodkar told CNN-IBN the arrest was “on paper” and he would comment on the charges against his client after reading the chargesheet.

His secretary K M Chaudhury was also arrested and subsequently released on bail today while a third accused, one Gautam Dutta, was earlier arrested and released on bail.

Acting on a case filed by the BCCI in March 2006, the EOW has allegedly found Dalmiya diverted funds meant for legal fees to other expenses including payment of personal phone bills.

What is the case

Dalmiya, as BCCI chief, was authorised to operate an Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) account for PILCOM, the organising committee of the 1996 World Cup hosted jointly by Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka.

This account was closed when in 2006 Sharad Pawar became the BCCI president. The BCCI then asked Dalmiya to provide details of the spent funds. The cricket board accused him of using over Rs 21 lakh from the account for his personal use.

The EOW alleges Dalmia misappropriated the funds to pay for phone bills, hotel bills and car rentals, and for purchasing foreign exchange and stationery.

“Of Rs 2.90 crore, Rs 85 lakh has been diverted towards phone bills alone. Dalmiya has been found to have paid his personal phone bills, one registered in his mother’s name and phone bills for three companies run by him,” Maria had said on Monday

Maria said an investigation of car rentals led the police to discover that the registration numbers of the vehicles supposedly used by the BCCI actually belonged to some trucks and motorcycles.

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