Pattaya Daily News

22 September 2010 :: 09:09:50 am 39763

Delhi Games Plagued with Problems as Bridge Collapses

A footbridge has collapsed near the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Delhi that is to host the Commonwealth Games, leaving twenty three people injured and five in a critical condition.
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Delhi, 22nd September 2010: The footbridge which links the parking area with the venue for the Commonwealth games collapsed yesterday just days before the arrival of the international athletes, injuring 23 labourers and is the latest of setbacks that have plagued the upcoming event on top of allegations of corruption and an outbreak of dengue fever.

Other safety concerns surrounding the Games heighten at the weekend when gunmen shot and wounded two tourists near Delhi’s Jama Masjid, one of India’s biggest mosques. Organisers of the event which is to run from the 3rd to the 14th October said that the facilities would be excellent, and would be better than the village at the Beijing Olympics, but has in fact been described by the team delegates as being filthy, unhygienic and unfit for human habitation.

The head of the Commonwealth Games Federation has demanded the Indian government take immediate action to improve conditions at the athletes’ village, saying that “Many issues remain unsolved and the village was seriously compromised.”

Although the international zone and main dining area has made an impression with team officials, they were shocked by the state of the accommodation. Mr. Fennell added, “The village is the cornerstone of any Games and the athletes deserve the best possible environment to prepare for their competition.”

With just two days before the village officially opens to the first 7,000 athletes, New Zealand, Scotland, Canada and Northern Ireland have all demanded that their teams be put up in hotels if their accommodation is not ready with suggestions that the Games may even be cancelled.

Indian media has reported that only 18 of 34 residential towers at the village have been completed. The Games village which is made up of several blocks of high rise luxury flats was meant to be the events show piece for the athletes, but has become a disappointment considering the amount of time they had to prepare.

Built on the banks of the Yamuna River the area outside the village is surrounded by pools of green stagnant water left by the floods from Dehli’s worst monsoon in three decades which has become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and fears of a rise in dengue fever.

The secretary general Lalit Bhanot of the organizing committee said in a news conference that the athletes’ accommodation merely needed a deep clean, but everything would be ready on time. “According to us,” he said, “the rooms are clean, but the foreign officials may require a certain standard of cleanliness and hygiene which may differ from ours. We are on the job and everyone is working day and night.”

This is the first time India has hosted the Commonwealth Games.

Reggie Colbeck

Photo : Internet   Category : World News

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