Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Four Countries Complain About Unliveable Conditions in Games Village

Amid all the gloom about chaotic preparations for the Commonwealth Games, there was at least one silver lining: the widespread applause for the ‘‘world class’’ Games Village at its soft launch on September 16. Unfortunately, the Organizing Committee has run into a rude reality check even on this front.

Advance teams from New Zealand, Canada, Scotland and Ireland have objected strongly to the condition of the accommodation, say highly placed sources. The reason lack of maintenance of apartments in the towers allotted to these contingents and their abysmal, ‘‘unliveable’’ condition, say team delegates. Toilets in particular are said to be in a “mess”.

Sources said the apartments, which are left unlocked through the day and night, were found to be dirty. In some flats, labourers had defecated. In others, fixtures and other facilities were still to be provided or weren’t working. Though athletes are to start moving in after September 23, work in just 18 of the 34 towers is said to be complete. The advance teams believe the remaining work is unlikely to be completed for weeks.

The delegates are learnt to have told the OC that unless the apartments are set right, their teams should be put up in a Games Family hotel the Ashok or Janpath or some other accommodation. This could add to the OC’s logistical problems.

‘Fixtures Don’t Work, Toilets A Mess’

Condition of Games Village has prompted delegates from New Zealand, Canada, Scotland and Ireland to issue ultimatum to OC

Apartments in towers allotted to these countries, especially Kiwis, abysmal. Site workers have been using the unlocked flats. Toilets are stained. Fixtures haven’t been installed, don’t work or are broken

Size of contingent | Canada 400, New Zealand 325, Scotland 300

Those happy with Village | Australia, England

Welsh official had said more work needed in apartments

Several Commonwealth countries have raised concern over the facilities at the Games Village. Mike Hooper, CEO of the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), confirmed,’ There have been issues about the lack of maintenance in the towers, which is being addressed by the OC.’’

Hooper admitted that it was a serious issue, but claimed, ‘‘The OC is working right now to ensure that conditions are improved. The issue should be resolved before the athletes arrive.’’OC secretary-general Lalit Bhanot refused to comment.

Sources, however, admitted that ‘‘objections’’ had been lodged with the OC for the past several days, in fact, ever since the soft launch of the Village.

While the teams from Australia, Wales and England expressed satisfaction, the towers shown to the delegates from New Zealand, Canada, Scotland and Ireland failed to impress the visiting delegates.

Though the Welsh have not complained, Chris Jenkins, chef de mission of the Wales team, had admitted at the soft launch that several improvements needed to be made in the apartments given to the team.

Jenkins had said, ‘‘Though the apartments are very nice, some work still needs to be completed like fixtures and other minor details. We are going through all the apartments to ensure that everything is ready for the athletes when they arrive.’’

The Kiwis, with a 300-plus strong contingent, have been provided an entire tower in the Village, say sources.

‘‘While the towers numbered 1-15 are in good condition, the towers numbered higher are not fully ready. These are some of the towers that were allotted to the Kiwis, Canadians and the other two teams,’’ explained an official.


suresh said...

What a shame.We are the 3rd amongst the powerful nations,but our toilets/fixtures don't work and other infra. not yet complete.The bosses running the show has the audacity to take it lightly the serious charges levelled against them as happened in the debate on Times Now channel yesterday.Every Individual in the country has been shamed for no fault of theirs.