Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Delhi needs Psychic Octopus Paul to predict the fate of Commonwealth Games!

WITH THE curtains coming down on the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the spotlight again shifted to the Commonwealth Games in Delhi. The Commonwealth Games, scheduled to be held between 3rd – 14th October in Delhi, will be the largest multi-sport event to be held in India after the Asian Games in 1951 and 1982. As many as 72 nations will participate in the games. This will be the second time, the Commonwealth Games will be held in Asia. Therefore, the event is significant and a big moment for India.
However, with only 82 days to go, questions are being asked if Delhi will be ready to host the big event. The apprehensions are valid as the organizers of theCommonwealth Games missed another key deadline on 30 June.
Many games-related projects are yet to see the light of the day. Recently, two ministers of the Delhi government expressed concerns over delay in games-related projects following a visit to trans-Yamuna areas. Worst, the main stadium, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, where the opening and closing ceremonies are to be held, is yet to be completed. This has forced an International Invitational Weightlifting test event for the Games to be postponed.
Clearly, the tall claim of the authorities to complete the stadium by June 2010 falls flat once again. Originally, the stadium was to be completed by December 2009. Now even the stadium is completed by the next deadline it is not hard to imagine the quality and standard the stadium will offer.
The repeated delays are pushing up the cost of the mega event as well. For example, the estimated cost of the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium was about Rs. 455 crore. Now the delay in the construction will cost more than double (about 961 crore).
On 9 July, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit pulled up various agencies implementing theCommonwealth Games related projects for lack of coordination among them and set a final deadline of August 31 to complete all minor as well as major works linked to the event.

Yet, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) and the organising committee of the games still keep insisting on holding the “best-ever” Games. These conflicting statements are further creating confusion in the minds of the people.
It remain to be seen whether all the major and minor works linked to the mega event will be completed within the new final deadline. It is also not a bad idea to hire Paul, the Psychic Octopus to predict whether Delhi will be ready in time for the mega event.
The organisers of the Commonwealth Games need to make a super marathon effort to pull it off as rhetoric and blame game will be of little help now. 

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