Who will answer these questions, Dr. Gill?
On February 2, the Hindustan Times requested an interview with Sports Minister Dr MS Gill. We were granted time at 12:30pm, Friday, February 6, at Shastri Bhavan, the Sports Ministry headquarters. The Ministerial staff asked if we could send the questions in advance, so the Minister could prepare accordingly. We emailed questions on February 4 and received an acknowledgement by email, saying they might require modifications/deletions of some questions. The interview was postponed (verbally). We were told the various (sports) departments needed time to research answers.
Despite repeated reminders, we never got time again, till finally, four days ago, the interview was cancelled. Here are some of the questions we asked.
With the global financial meltdown, sponsors are not willing to spend on popular sporting events like soccer or golf. Even in cricket, sponsorship has dropped. How and from where will India generate so much money?
How do you keep a tab on the Organising Committee? Does Suresh Kalmadi report to you on day-to-day happenings of the organizing committee? Is there a lack of coordination between the various wings involved in Delhi 2010?
When you go out to check the venues under construction how and what do you evaluate? What exactly do you compare this all against?
How will we ensure that our stadiums do not fall into neglect like post the 1982 Asiad?
There is a revolving door out there somewhere - many officials have changed since the time work began on the games. Many of the people in charge have no connect to sport. Does that hamper work?
When will you begin a drive for volunteers and how many are you looking at? Melbourne, a city with a population one-fifth of Delhi's, had 15,000 volunteers. Is there a plan to get the people of Delhi ready with dummy programmes/training?
The IOA has told us that it is a revenue neutral project. What guarantee do you have on this and would there be accountability on the same? Is there transparency from the IOA's side on matters like TV and sponsorship deals?