The government may have assured the 71 countries participating in the Commonwealth Games that security during the 12-day event will be foolproof but with just six months to go, it isn’t so sure itself.
Security and toilets were top concerns at a review meeting chaired by Union cabinet secretary KM Chandrashekhar and attended by all the stakeholders — ministries, civic agencies, sports bodies and the Delhi government — last month.
<b1>The Games’ organising committee blamed the police for delaying the implementation of security measures by eight to 10 months. “There were genuine concerns in the process of security arrangements made by the Delhi Police, including procurement of equipment,” committee CEO Jarnail Singh said at the meeting. HT has a copy of the meeting minutes.
“Security preparations were complicated due to the insistence of the police on having their own screening and accreditation process for people working in the stadia,” said Delhi chief secretary Rakesh Mehta.
The police are still to hire cargo scanners and buy equipment like hand-held metal detectors, road blockers. But they denied there was a delay. “We have bought some equipment and tenders for others are in the final stage,” said Rajan Bhagat, spokesman, Delhi Police.
With the committee also concerned about inadequate toilets, it was decided that additional toilets will be constructed but only outside the venues, with access from inside.