Games equipment fail to clear customs check
The 2010 Commonwealth Games preparations are in a disarray with various Games-linked projects running behind schedule. Moushumi Das Gupta reports.delhi Updated: Aug 19, 2010 23:36 IST
The 2010 Commonwealth Games preparations are in a disarray with various Games-linked projects running behind schedule.
If this was not enough, now, with just 44 days to go, the organisers are racing against time to bring more than 200 containers carrying various Games equipment to the host city.
The issue will come up for discussion at the Empowered Group of Ministers (EgoM) on Commonwealth Games headed by Union Urban Development Minister S. Jaipal Reddy on Friday. "The Organizing Committee (OC) has been asked to make a presentation on the status regarding the containers, stuck at different airports and ports across the country," said a UD Ministry official.
About 200 containers carrying overlays material, sports equipment, equipment for opening and closing ceremonies and the host broadcaster's equipment have failed to get clearance from Customs officials. This is threatening to derail the Games preparations. "This has forced the Cabinet Secretary, K.M. Chandrashekhar, head of the Committee of secretaries, to intervene and expedite the clearance," said the official.
Officials say the delay is being caused due to technical reasons relating to a notification issued by the Department of Revenue on customs exemption. In the Committee of Secretaries meeting on August 13, Member (Customs) was requested to expedite the amendments to the customs notification to facilitate release of the Games goods. There are 910 containers carrying Games equipment that have to arrive in Delhi.
Besides, the EGoM will also decide on the proposed plan for the movement of Queen's Baton in Delhi. A decision to appoint venue service managers and the service team of each of the venues would also be taken in the meeting.
The government has already made it clear that all the work at the different venues would be completed by August 31 and testing will have to start by September 1.