[Assam] Aftermath of CWG
dasmk2k at gmail.com
Tue Sep 28 07:31:10 IST 2010
Hi Ram! I'll do!
This article is by Vir Sangvi, one of India's most respected mediapersons.
On 9/28/10, Ram Dhar <ramdhar at hotmail.com> wrote:
>>>>*India is very angry. Bharat couldn't care less!*>>
> Good to hear from you, you can act as assmm net freelance reporter on the
> opening ceremony !
> some excerpts from an article i read recently in HT ----
> When Indians talk about ourselves these days, it is this new India we allude
> to. It is the new India that is an emerging superpower. It is the new India
> that is the rival of a resurgent China. It is the new India that the world
> is rushing to befriend and to invest in.
> But just as we begin to believe the hype about the new India, the old India
> comes back and bites us in the arse.
> One reason why there is so much public outrage over the CWG mess is because
> we perceive the old India as having failed the new India. On the one hand,
> we talk about competing with China. On the other, we can never ever dream of
> matching up to the standard of the spectacular Chinese Olympics. In fact, as
> long as the old India types are in charge, we can’t even organise the
> Commonwealth Games, a relatively minor league event.
> In the eyes of the world, we are now a laughing stock. We can brag as much
> as we like about the new India. But when it comes to delivering on an
> international commitment, we are no China. We are still corrupt, slothful
> old India.
> The most horrifying aspect of the CWG fiasco is that the guys at the top
> still don’t get it. You and I may think we are building a new India. But the
> old geezers who are still in charge are content to live in the old India.
> Take sports minister, M.S. Gill (age: 74), a retired babu and the man who
> must take the rap for many of the screw-ups. Gill’s view is that the
> Commonwealth Games are like an Indian wedding. There will be disasters.
> There will be chaos. There will be confusion. But somehow, it will work out
> in the end. This is India, yaar, he suggested, this is our way of doing
> It is hard to think of an attitude that is more out of tune with today’s
> times. Forget about systems, forget about delivery dates and forget about
> accountability. It’s like a shaadi, yaar. Ho jayega. Somehow!
> Or take Jaipal Reddy (at only 68, the baby of this Cabinet). After Suresh
> Kalmadi fell into disrepute, Reddy was moved in by the government to keep an
> eye on things. Much of the faulty construction is the responsibility of his
> What do you suppose Reddy’s attitude to the recent foul-ups is? The collapse
> of the overbridge that injured several workmen. The false ceiling that caved
> in, etc.
> These are minor matters, he says. Why focus so much on them? These things
> happen, he suggests. And finally, there is the inevitable appeal to
> patriotism, always the last refuge of the politician. All of us should focus
> on the positive aspects of the Games and not draw attention to the
> disasters. Because India’s prestige is at stake.
> And who do you suppose put our prestige at stake? The people who oversaw the
> collapsing bridges? Or you and I who worry about this disaster in the
> When the Cabinet is full of people who operate in a chalta hai environment,
> can you be surprised by the attitude of the organising committee?
> Every Indian I know was deeply ashamed to see the pictures of the filth in
> the Games Village and to read the reports about the state of the athletes’
> accommodation: human crap on the floor, paan stains on the wall, dirty loos,
> and animal footprints on the beds.
> And yet, how did the organising committee react? According to Lalit Bhanot,
> the problem was merely one of the differing standards of western hygiene and
> Indian hygiene.
> With that single response, Bhanot summed up the difference between his India
> and ours. In his India, it’s all right if people crap on the floors of
> bedrooms meant for athletes. If anybody complains, then they are just using
> western standards of cleanliness.
> This clash between the two Indias runs through almost every aspect of the
> CWG fiasco. In the old India, it is unthinkable for officials to disperse
> hundreds of crores of rupees without pocketing substantial kickbacks for
> So it is with the CWG organisers. Forget about the over-priced equipment
> purchased for the Games or the dodgy companies hired at huge cost to perform
> meaningless tasks. Even the contracts for constructing buildings and roads
> have been awarded on the kickback principle. Why else do you suppose the
> infrastructure is so shoddy? Why else would bridges fall, buildings remain
> incomplete and ceilings cave in?
> The tragedy of the Commonwealth Games is that it did not have to turn out
> like this. If we had assigned the Games preparations to the private sector —
> to any of the infrastructural companies that run airports, build hotels etc
> — budgets would have been adhered to, deadlines would have been kept and the
> construction wouldn’t have been sub-standard. Moreover, there would have
> been accountability. If the private sector fails, then it doesn’t get paid.
> Alternatively, the government could have displayed some leadership. In 1980,
> Indira Gandhi recognised that the Asian Games would be a fiasco unless the
> government got involved at the highest level. Rajiv Gandhi oversaw the
> preparations, deadlines were kept, the infrastructure survives till today
> and the Games served as an advertisement for India.
> But what this government has given us is a complete repudiation of Rajiv’s
> legacy. The preparations have been handed over to people like Suresh Kalmadi
> and when ministers have got involved, the task has been left to incompetent
> windbags. Nor has there been any attempt to find an alternative private
> sector model.
> Is it any wonder that we are all so angry? As hard as we try to build a new
> India, this fiasco reminds us that old India still has the power to
> humiliate and embarrass us.
>> Date: Mon, 27 Sep 2010 09:39:18 +0530
>> From: dasmk2k at gmail.com
>> To: assam at assamnet.org
>> Subject: Re: [Assam] Aftermath of CWG
>> Dear D'da
>> I took a tour of the facilities and the city yesterday by road to reaasure
>> 1. The village looks awesome from outside. Things inside are now less
>> worrisome. Food is fantastic, cleanliness is upto the mark, view near the
>> Akshardham temple backdrop is very nice;
>> 2. Yamuna is full is fresh flood water, dirty filthy stinky pollutants
>> 3. Stadias are games ready;
>> 4. Delhi eye opened today at Kalindi Kunj, Metro lines linking Connaught
>> Place to NOIDA, Badarpur (Faridabad), Gurgaon is ready;
>> 5, New Airport T3 with 74 aerobridges is great;
>> 6. Airport Metro line will open in a day or two;
>> 7. Nearly 25000 volunteers are ready;
>> 8. 1000 AC low floor red lone buses are ready at the world's largest bus
>> depot at Yamuna bank;
>> 9. Security is at full gear;
>> 10. Rehearsal for Opening ceremony has started 1month back, we also bought
>> tickets for our family @Rs 5000 each to witness the event;
>> 11. 2000 Blueline ordinary buses are packed off the roads from today;
>> 12. This will be a world class game no doubt..you can say JIT (Just In
>> Indian economy started performing when gold was taken out of the country
>> planeload in 1991. I think this CWG shame will act as a catalyst to clean
>> our public space of corruption.
>> Yes some heads will roll after the games. I think MS Gill, Jaipal Reddy,
>> Suresh Kalmadi will go soon after.
>> *India is very angry. Bharat couldn't care less!*
>> *BTW, *Commonwealth Games Chief Mike Fennel himself is embroiled in many
>> controversial contracts related to the CWG preparations. Kalmadi was smart
>> to rope all in the loot. Rs. 70000 crore spent on the games included the
>> airport, metro, water treatment plants, stadias, roads, streetscaping,
>> AC Buses
>> *Jay ho!*
>> On Mon, Sep 27, 2010 at 8:51 AM, Chan Mahanta <cmahanta at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > On Sep 26, 2010, at 9:43 PM, Dilip Deka wrote:
>> > > I see two scenarios coming out of the CWG fiasco.
>> > > 1. India pulls it off at the last minute. CWG goes on and has a happy
>> > ending
>> > > despite some minor mishaps. India claims a big success and brags about
>> > it, "See,
>> > > we told you. It could be done. DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE INDIA".
>> > **** First off: Define success. What will constitute a success, let
>> > alone a
>> > BIG one?
>> > > 2. The CWG is a flop with major disasters and it starts major reform
>> > > in
>> > India in
>> > > terms of corruption. This happens because the middle class Indians get
>> > insulted
>> > > and upset. It always takes a big event to make big changes.
>> > **** Similarly, WHAT would determine if it was a flop?
>> > Only then one can delve into your question. Speaking of which, why do
>> > you
>> > assume that
>> > in case of a FLOP, Indians would consider it an insult and demand
>> > reforms
>> > to eradicate corruption.
>> > Is it CORRUPTION that is at the root of a possible flop? Why could it
>> > not
>> > be corrupt yet successful?
>> > I see a problem with the assumption that corruption is the cause for a
>> > possible flop. Does
>> > competence not have a place in the equation? Nobody has accused China of
>> > being free of corruption, but they
>> > proved how COMPETENT they are. In other words competence and corruption
>> > are NOT mutually exclusive.
>> > Few would complain IF competence could be demonstrated, would they?
>> > >
>> > > What do you see? Alternate scenarios?
>> > > Dilip Deka
>> > > _______________________________________________
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