Dikshit, Kalmadi downplay CWG apprehensions
Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Organising Committee (OC) chairman Suresh Kalmadi downplayed Michael Fennell's scepticism , saying that India will host a "highly successful Games".india Updated: Sep 14, 2009 19:37 IST
A day after Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) chief Michael Fennell expressed scepticism over India's ability to host the 2010 Games, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Organising Committee (OC) chairman Suresh Kalmadi downplayed the apprehensions, saying that India will host a "highly successful Games".
Fennell, concerned about the slow progress of the projects for the 2010 Games scheduled to be held Oct 3-14, has sought an appointment with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to apprise him of the situation.
Fennell was reportedly upset with the Organising Committee (OC) during the meeting of its executive board on Thursday and asked Kalmadi to fix an appointment with the prime minister during his next visit for CGF general assembly in October.
Dikshit said the Delhi government was satisfied with the progress of the preparations for the Commonwealth Games in October 2010.
"It is an honour for us and for the country to hold the games. All the concerned officials are working hard to complete the work on time. Work will be completed on time," she said.
"We are satisfied but nervous about the preparations for the games. We will not allow them to suffer and we are also keeping all alternatives ready in case of delay in some of the projects," Dikshit told reporters here.
Kalmadi said he will be happy to arrange a meeting of Fennell with the PM next month and discuss all the issues whatever he has.
"India will deliver a highly successful Commonwealth Games. I will be happy to arrange a meeting of Mr. Fennell with the PM next month," Kalmadi told reporters Monday.
"The venues will be complete on time. As far as security is concerned, the Home Secretary has already apprised CWG's Heads of Missions and there will be another meeting of the security commanders of the participating nations Sep 23-24," Kalmadi said.
"The OC has competent Indian professionals who have vast experience in conducting world class events like the Afro-Asian Games and world championships. We also believe that we have the right mix of overseas and Indian professional to run the Games."
The chief minister said she didn't know about the letter that CGF president Fennell reportedly wrote to the executive board of the organising committee expressing concern over preparations for the games.
"He (Fennell) came to me a month back asking whether there would be enough power available during the games. I said there would be no power problem. Things are being done but we cannot be ready a year before the games," she said.
A four-month old report on the preparation for the games released by the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India seems to have alarmed Fennell.
A top official of the OC told IANS that the CAG report had details of last year's preparation but development work including construction of venues and organisation have improved rapidly in the last few months.
"The CAG report was four months old and the details were of last year's progress. Fennel's observation were based on last year's development work. But this year, specially in the last four months, we have done well in all aspects of organisation and the venues will be ready well before the Commonwealth Games start," the official said.
The official said that better co-ordination between the OC and the government would have avoided such situation.