In which Team India at Commonwealth Games

There has been enough written, enough read, enough said and more than enough shown about the Commonwealth Games to held in Delhi, October 2010. They have thrown out numbers that went into the brining to life of this mega event which has taken 7 years of planning and yet till 7 days before the games are to commence, tasks are incomplete, and every sense of IST – Indian Sluggish Time, things have been delayed. The media has raped the organisers to  their bare minimal, the social enthusiasts have linguified and coined various other abbreviated meaning for “CWG” – like “Corruption Wala Games” or “Crore Wala Games”, television and twitter timelines are widely spread covering incidents of stray dogs, poo in beds and beetel nut aided modern art all around the games vicinity. A record number of times Suresh Kalmadi, Olympic/ Organising Committe, Games Committee and 76,000 crores must have flashed across television channels. The Games which were touted to be India Shining contenders, in the last 2 months have been knighted as India Shaming winners. There probably is not another scam uncovered so vividly by the (morally correct, politically questioned) Indian media, like they have unraveled the Delhi Commonwealth Games.

But while all this is happening, buck is passed on, conspiracies are blamed on, where we question the ability of Indians to organise International events, there are those who in the wings go on with their tasks, continue with the practice, still pursue their dreams and hope to win medals and make their country proud;the Indian athletes and sports persons who will be representing India. Spend a few minutes to get to know them, see their faces because amongst all that we have seen on television this is something we may never find out. While there are those administrative authorities who were responsible to put up infrastructure to host games who are hogging all the limelight now, these are the people responsible for winning us accolades and medals. Under the debris of the colossal mess that CWG has turned up today, let us not forget these sporting men and women who will bear the Indian flag .


As a citizen, I am disappointed. I am disappointed at the manner in which media has dealt and portrayed the inconsistencies of the Commonwealth Games. I am disappointed at OC because of the slack job they have done. I am upset that our own athletes did not get the edge of using world class facilities long enough to prepare for the this meet. I am disappointed at the politicians who have made this whole issue a political one with the blame game and mud slinging that went on. I am disappointed that the PM could not do the necessary and get situation under control much earlier, and for the fact that members of his cabinet are under performers. I am disappointed that the mishap of the bridge cost lives and safety measures are taken for granted, when it comes to unskilled labourers. I am disappointed that we have given the world another opportunity to be critical of our country and I am disappointed that in the light of current events we fail to see the bigger picture.

In India we always complain about people in power not having foresight and doing things for the moment. So we laud the advertisements of TOI where road is dug, filled, dug up again that mocks the public administration. But when world class construction that will last us decades,  sports facilities of international standards that may sometime in the future nurture an Olympian for India are being built, we need to be patient. The benefits of all infrastructure that is being put up in place may not be a very obvious immediately, but we have to give up the habit of being over critical and hasty in forming opinions. I say give it a chance. I dont defend the errs that have happened, but I sure do hope that someone is taking a good stock of this and compiling an amendment of things not to do in some constitutional document.

I was surprised when seasoned news anchors ask questions like “Do you think the games will be successful?”. How can anyone predict an answer for that, what are the measures one considers to judge the success and failure? The village opened in time, and no dog poo or snake was found, and the caterers were able to serve International cuisine food to guests – will that make games successful, whether Rahman’s composition for Commonwealth  games is as good as “Waka Waka” or “Freedom” song of the Fifa World cup or the performances of Indian athletes? As citizens, we too are part of Team India. We cannot simply be bystanders and judges of whether the Games are successful or not, but we have to be actively involved and be responsible for shaping the guaranteed success. Events such as this also intend to bring the country together, to buck up the athletes and cheer them, but sadly what we are focusing on at the moment are on things that have already gone wrong and little can be done to mend them. We need to see beyond these shortfalls. What we can see now, are only grim pictures of an opportunity gone sour for India, but as a sports enthusiast I sincerely hope that these pictures are soon replaced by some glorious sporting moments and some record breaking feats by Indian athletes. These should be the real reason why the Commonwealth games 2010 are remembered, and they must lay a foundation for a huge leap ahead in Indian sports, and our efforts should be channeled in that direction.

Chak De India!!

** photographs are only of some members of the Indian squad at Commonwealth Games 2010, Will post a link to names of entire squad as soon as announced by authorities

10 thoughts on “ In which Team India at Commonwealth Games

  1. One big lie the media has been telling is that 70, 000 crore is “spent” on games. The games cost about 1500 crore. So where is the discrepancy ? Rest has been spent on building the 200Km Metro, Roads, Flyovers, the new airport with whom everybody has been awed about, world class stadiums and other such infrastructure. This will make Delhi, our capital, one the most developed cities in the world.

  2. Hi piyush, I do agree, that no one really has bothered to check what total expenditure etc has been on the games, and would say media is hugely responsible for influencing public opinion in wrong way.

  3. Despite all the mishaps and bungling it was really incredible that our sportsmen / women kept their cool and brought laurels to our country. Lack of proper facilities did not deter their strong will and ambition.

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  5. Actually cost of infrastructure erected in Delhi is also not 70, 000 crores. (Referring to the first comment here.) Nothing done so far justifies the cost. The awesome opening ceremony cost us 5 times over the budget. There is link in Times blogs about that.

    I appreciated and followed the games with equal enthusiasm. But that said, I am not going to angry about media coverage. They may be guilty of sensationalism and there might be colonial hangover in foreign press coverage (read aussie coverage specifically) , but those bitter observations were truth as well. As you said, I am angry why did we hand it to them? I am not going to make this a misguided issue of patriotism and keep quiet. Guess we must look into entire corruption process more deeply now that games are over. My grouse is more clearly stated here:

    If I were not in hurry I’d also have added link to a cynic (I don’t agree completely but it had a point) piece by Nisha Susan in Tehelka on CWG.

    1. hi Poonam thanks for sharing your blog post. I agree to the fact that corrupt must be brought to justice and we definitely must ensure that guilty must be booked. But all the hoopla and name calling and was most definitely taking the focus shift off from the Games. It was too some extent to overtly exhaustive coverage Indian media gave that got the tongues wagging. I am sure they have an ethical policy of unraveling all truth and unearthing the facts, but they should have been doing this since last 3 years and not 3 months before. That said Mr Mani Shankar Aiyar (he is another blog post altogether), his theatrics as well as those of the other parliamentarians were questionable. This lapse of waking up last minute and then churning up a chaos about everything is becoming a habit for us. Added to that public opinion swings like a pendulum waiting to kicked around ……There has to be a more knowledgeable audience ….. what happens to all the scams, where are the ones who were guilty there, that whole Mayawati fiasco with crores hung in her garland – there needs to be fairplay. Inspite of the corruption and mismanagement atleast something good came out of it – and definitely athletes were the reason for that and to some extent Mr.Kalmadi also.

  6. I agree with you when you say that why bring it up at last moment. I have always complained why did Mr. Mani Shankar Aiyar wake up at last minute, what was he doing for last 7 years.

    But am not going to castigate media for reporting flaws. What should they do – keep silent about it?? To keep up our false pride. No. Don’t they say, better late than never?

    We are taken as lallus because these politicians can manage to swindle such big amounts. I am not even willing to giving Kalmadi an iota of credit. Its is not him thousands of other personnel who held the fort for us. Tho Kalmadi alone isn’t the culprit, but big part of it and its not his first instance of corruption.

    I agree public is like pendulum. I am glad games went well, but hello, did you notice there was still a lot that was wrong, when would you address that, or you prefer to turn a blind eye. 😦 We had empty stands for first few days even though crowd went back without tickets only because we had huge ticketing issues. Hell, how could they, these games are supposed to earn us money. 😦 So far, they have only meant burgeoning costs.

    The only reason I support these games is because they gave an opportunity for those wonderful athletes. Three cheers to them! May they go long way head! I am proud of them.

    1. yes i agree with you – i support the games only for the athletes, i do believe them to be unadulterated patriots – being a sports person myself i cant help but feel for them, to keep up motivation when so much negativity is around you and pressure the to perform in your own country!!
      Many have criticized the games for the prejudice of upholding colonial practices, which to some extent is true, but all forms of competition should be without this prejudice. Many of the athletes we saw at the CWG may not qualify for the bigger events like Olympics. This may be their moment of glory and no sham, or folks like Organising Committee etc should take that away from them. There are multifold issues here which will slowly unravel, i only hope that the Govt takes it to end, whatever investigations that have begun ….. If you have seen Invictus – sports brought an entire country together, that is what we have to aim for also …. but i am saddened by the capitalist minded who cannot see beyond the Dollars and Rupees.

  7. Yes, our athletes came out with flying colours. You are right, some of them may not qualify at Olympics. Yet they had worked hard to debut here. Really hope we see more of them go further.

    I still am to watch Invictus, though I have heard enough about it.

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