Suresh Kalmadi today evaded media grilling after his last formal address to the press as the Commonwealth Games chief organiser and walked away to receive Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at the men's hockey final even as a question was fired at him by a scribe.
At the customary media conference on the last day of the Games, Kalmadi extended his vote of thanks and walked off the dias, even as a scribe asked "Mr Kalmadi if you have a minute..." Kalmadi's abrupt departure on the final day, after having skipped the mandatory conference on a few more occasions, left Commonwealth Games Federation chief Michael Fennell, CGF CEO Michael Hooper and OC secretary-general Lalit Bhanot to face the barrage of questions from the media.
Bhanot was also asked whether he saw himself as the 'villain' and subjected to the grilling with his boss Kalmadi missing from action when some searching questions were asked. "We always had the confidence. You had seen it during all these times. We always had the confidence to deliver. Our job is limited to conduct the Games and we have been successful."
Earlier Kalmadi, during his short address said, "This is the final press conference. Our interaction has been delightful. There were apprehensions, but hope they have disappeared. The whole game was built around athletes and they have enjoyed. They were happy with the set-up, food, everything. "They enjoyed their stay here. We hope when they go back they will go with happy memories and great appreciation for india," he said. He signed off saying: "I have to attend to the Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh) who is there in hockey venue for the (India-Australia) final."