New Delhi: Refuting reports of his wings being clipped by the government, Commonwealth Games organizing committee chief Suresh Kalmadi on Thursday said that the government officers have been sent at the request of the OC and were in Delhi simply to coordinate and not to take over control of the games.
"There have been news reports that 10 government officers
have come but they have been appointed at our request. The OC
requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh that the final stage
of the Games has come and we need government officers,"
Kalmadi told reporters.
"They have come to coordinate, they are going to support
us. Everytime you say Kalmadi`s wings are being clipped. Let
me tell you I am a former pilot," the Indian Olympic
Association chief remarked sarcastically.
"To put the finishing touches to the arrangement, we need
the support of the government. At this stage, it is very
crucial that we get all the work done in time and therefore we
need senior officers from the government so that the
coordination work is done quickly. This arrangement will only
help us complete the task," he added.
Kalmadi, however, acknowledged the Games preparations
remain a work in progress with just 45 days to go.
"We are in the final lap in the run up to the Games.
There are just 27 days left for athletes to arrive at the
Games Village and 45 days left for the opening ceremony," he
said in a press conference alongside Commonwealth Games
Federation chief Mike Fennel;l, who was here on an inspection
"This is short time and we have to do a lot of work.
Prime Minister has said in his speech that we have to
celebrate the Games as a national festival and I want to
assure that the OC is going to do it`s best to live up to this
dream," he said.
"I would like to thank Mr Fennell and the CGF for all the
support he has been giving since the beginning of the Games.
They have given us full support. We promise to give a good
"We have taken over the venues and all are venue teams
have gone to the venues. We have got venue commanders in place
I will be going to see the venues after two days," he said.
Kalmadi said the catering contract has been finalised and
the details would be out within a few days.
"The catering contract has been finalised and the final
look has also been finalised," he said.