Suhrid Barua, Pune Mirror, October 12, 2008
Pune: Given the utter confusion surrounding the CYG, one is left wondering how much more one has to put up with when the action begins on Sunday. If there is one thing that we are very good at, it has to be sports rhetoric. Take for instance, Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president Suresh Kalmadi wearing torrents of pride in his sleeves when he recently talked about India’s readiness to host the 2020 Olympics. Of course, there’s nothing amiss in spelling out about India’s seriousness to bid for the world’s biggest sports extravaganza.
Winning the right to host two biggies — 2010 Commonwealth Games and 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games is a big thing achievement wise and IOA can take a lot of credit for that. Holy MessBut the pertinent point here is that are we doing enough to ensure the Games, hosting of which are a matter of ‘pride and prestige’ for the country, has been reduced to a ‘holy mess’ thanks to the unprofessional functioning of the organisers, are conducted in an orderly manner.Excuses will be there for all the ‘circus’ that is going all around the Games venue.
Even two top officials of IOA had been to the Beijing Olympics to carry out a feasible study of how to conduct an event of such magnitude with utmost ‘professionalism’. Even those efforts of IOA seems to have fallen flat. Talking of the all-pervading chaos girdling the Games, one just wonders how much one has to put up with when the real ‘action’ starts on Sunday. To start with, the scribes were made to run from pillar to post to obtain their accreditation passes for the Games.
What’s more, the agency handling media accreditation wanted the scribes to fill up a written accreditation form and then told to do the same online. Believe it or not, the agency again wanted the members of the fourth estate to go through another written form process as the agency claimed that they lost all data’s of the journos due to virus problem. Can they ever be such a height of chaos witnessed anywhere else?
If you thought that was it, you are wrong. The multi-discipline extravaganza was hailed with gusto as being the ‘Green Games’ as all the 71 participating teams were supposed to get saplings from their respective countries and plant it in the complex but it was conspicuously unnoticeable inside the complex. Wrong people?Worse, is the absolute lack of information about the players and other things related to it. There’s no clarity on the part of the organisers when it comes to digging out information from them. Surely, the right people are not in the right place or it could be the either way; the wrong people are at the wrong place.
How can one miss out on a word about the ‘volunteers’. Most of them don’t seem to be avid lovers of sports and only seem to be going through their motions. All their energies were channelised in not ‘letting in’ anyone leading to numerous unwanted situations when the entry-seeker happened to be a competitor. It’s better off ending it there itself as tiredness overwhelms taking a dig at them.
Let’s live on the hope that the organisers would take drastic measures to pull up their socks, even their shirts and trousers and ensure India’s image as hosts of a big-ticket event is not sullied.