No CWG stadium to be ready in time for handover

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NEW DELHI, 21 July 2010: On August 1, the agencies constructing Commonwealth Games venues are supposed to hand over the finished stadiam, Games Village and other sites to the Organizing Committee, which will then start crucial overlay work to ready these sites for the event. But come August 1 and what the OC will actually get is unfinished competition venues like the main stadium but also uncompleted accompanying projects like landscaping, approach roads and clearing of the debris.


In short, the handover will be mostly technical, with agencies like CPWD and DDA continuing to frantically finish the job after August 1 even as the OC begins its overlay work in tandem, official admit. How these two agencies will plan their work without getting into each other’s way and whether there will be any time left for conducting trials is anybody’s guess. A senior DDA official admitted, "The finishing touches like landscaping and other work is going to continue after August 1."



Apart from finishing construction, most of the venues also need to tackle the huge amount of debris that still remains within the premises. While OC spokesperson Lalit Bhanot refused to comment on the matter, sources say the fact that most of the remaining construction work is for approach roads as well as landscaping is worrying. "Frankly, the debris is the least of our problems, since that can be cleared out soon. But landscaping and roads within the premises are important aspects that should ideally have been completed."


As per the venue owner agreements with the OC, the venues are all to be handed over on August 1 with the OC remaining in-charge of the premises till October 20. The idea was to give enough time to the OC for its overlay work -- basically putting up temporary structures needed to conduct the Games.



According to Lalit Bhanot, OC spokesperson, the majority of the overlay work is expected to take place outside the actual stadium. Said Bhanot, "From setting up tents to cabling and marking broadcast areas, all of this is part of the overlay work. Most of it will be outside the actual stadium."


At the Village, the slow pace of work prompted the L-G on Tuesday to visit the site again, so that more manpower is deployed to finish the work. Of the 34 towers that were to be furnished by the ITDC for the Games, only two has been completed. Officials claim the rest will be done after the hand over.



Meanwhile, the Yamuna sports complex still doesn’t have a pedestrian movement plan, even though work here is pegged to be completed by July 31. In fact, a number of venues are still to be completed -- both the main athletics stadium as well as the weightlifting stadium at Jawaharlal Nehru complex, the SP Mukherjee swimming pool complex, the Siri Fort and Yamuna sports complex as well as the Commonwealth Games Village. This is as per an internal report of the ministry of sports and youth affairs.


Agencies claim the work left is "minimal". Said a senior official, "Only the finishing touches are left. It can be done alongside OC’s overlay work." That’s a statement that may ring false considering venues like JN’s weightlifting stadium is still getting a roof or the SP Mukherjee swimming pool complex, which is still to be completed.



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Comments on this Article
Noel Martis, Kallianpura / Doha Wed, July-21-2010, 7:03
This is normal. The objective of the project was to make super money, not timely delivery. Now that a crisis has been deliberately created by wasting time in the initial stages, every purchase and procurement henceforth be on a war footing, a splendid opportunity to make money. All purchase procedures will be thrown to the wind; politicians and govt officials will line their pockets. All as planned!
Antony Menezes, Shirva Wed, July-21-2010, 6:07
I remeber reading in news paper about 6 months ago when CWG international committee person complained about how work was not being completed on-time and offered help. These 2 idiots in charge of CWG (Suresh and Gill) said they did not need any help and they did not agree with assessment and they know what they are doing. This is the same story every where in India. NRI help would not mean anything. It is a culture. Look at newest airport terminal T3 at IGI airport and dog is roaming the runway. Train accidents where many people die because the infra-structure is very poor.
Albert Monis, Udyavara / Jeddah Wed, July-21-2010, 5:48
This is what happens when politicians and bureaucrats constitute the organizing committee. These people are all thieves. What will happen in the worst case scenario? Nothing. Talk of national pride and shame are for common people. If stadiums collapses and people die.. who cares? After all has any of them been ever penalized for anything? Off course not.
Victor DSouza, Moodubelle / Doha Wed, July-21-2010, 5:24
Suresh Kalmadi and Sheila Dixit are not bothered at all, as for them common wealth games are just like another indian wedding where preparations continues till the wedding itself is finished and nobody remembers it after the marriage.
Joe Dsouza, Mangalore Wed, July-21-2010, 5:19
Kalmadi had no clue of the scope of work involved and the huge responsibilities he is shouldering. I do not know much about his past credentials and experience, but none of that really matters. What matters is the fact that the world has noticed our ill-preparedness a year ago and cautioned us; we are still ill-prepared now ready to go into the event and host so many nations. The outcome is indeed undesirable.
raj, belle Wed, July-21-2010, 4:35
These politicians got lottery.They do not want missuse this chance.They should pay from their pocket not from public tax money.
Vijay Dsouza, Moodubelle Wed, July-21-2010, 2:17
Hang all the politicians including Mr.Kalmadi, Mr.Gill who gave so many promises. Root problem is No accountability chalta hai attitude. India tum kab sudrega ???
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