Indian Olympic Association President Suresh Kalmadi on Friday sought to tone down his public spat with Commonwealth Games Federation CEO Mike Hooper, saying he would try to sort out issues with the CGF through talks when he meets its president Michael Fennell in London on October 29-30.
Kalmadi, who had asked the CGF to transfer Hooper to London from Delhi as he has been an "impediment" to the working of the Games Organising Committee, today refused to say whether he stands by his earlier demand.
When asked whether he would persist with Hooper's transfer from Delhi when he meets Fennell in London during the launch of Queens Baton Relay, Kalmadi said, "Don't ask about it now. We want to sort out matters through talks. We don't want any more confrontation."
"Hopefully, we will sort out our concerns when I meet Fennell in London," he said at a hurriedly-called press briefing before departing for London for the Queen's baton relay.
The CWG OC Chairman also said Sports Minister M S Gill, who had wanted to broker peace between Kalmadi and CGF top brass, was free to join his meeting with Fennell in London.
"He (Gill) is welcomed to join the meeting. He has said something (to broker peace)," Kalmadi said.
Kalmadi also informed that top bureaucrat Jarnail Singh has taken charge as Chief Executive Officer of the CWG OC.
"Jarnail Singh has joined us at CWG OC and he has been a distinguished officer who has served as Chief Secretary of Manipur. He is not appointed by the government. We have recommended his name. We are also requesting the Cabinet Secretary to give us two or three more staff to work with Jarnail Singh," he said.
"The various sub-committees (to work under OC vice-chairman Randhir Singh) will also shift in to the OC headquarters here next week and start work," he said.
Kalmadi informed the current staff in the CWG OC was 450 and it will increase to 1600 before the Games.
"We are working as a united team so that we can host a successful Games," he said.