‘Commonwealth Games projects will be on time’

May 1st, 2008 - 10:18 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Shivraj Patil
By Rajeev Ranjan Roy
New Delhi, May 1 (IANS) With 30 months to go for the Commonwealth Games in October 2010, the government is working towards completing all its projects, including the Games village and the various venues, by June 2010 - three months before D-Day. The most important project, the state-of-the-art Games Village that is being built by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) on the east bank of the river Yamuna, will be handed over to the games organising committee in June 2010, promise officials.

“By June 2010, all the venues of the Games will be handed over to the organising committee. It will enable them to carry out the trial runs much in advance. Given the pace of work, there will not be any need to advance the deadline,” said Rakesh Mehta, chairperson of the empowered committee on the Commonwealth Games and Delhi’s chief secretary.

The Games Village is being developed at an estimated cost of Rs.12 billion ($300 million) and will be spread over an area of 63.5 hectares.

“Many works are scheduled to be completed by early 2009 including the upgradation and renovation of major venues like the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium, the Indira Gandhi indoor stadium and the Major Dhyan Chand national stadium,” Mehta told IANS.

Since various agencies are engaged in preparing the city for the 2010 event, the government has set up different committees at various levels to assess the progress of all projects.

There is a core group of ministers jointly headed by Home Minister Shivraj Patil and Human Resource Development Minister Arjun Singh to ensure proper planning and timely completion of the Games related projects.

Apart from the DDA and the city government, the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) has been entrusted with the task of renovating and repairing all the big stadiums.

“The work progress is satisfactory. We hope to meet the deadline of December 2009 to complete all works and hand over the stadiums to the organising committee. It can take a couple of months more for the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium and the Indira Gandhi indoor stadium,” a senior CPWD official said, requesting anonymity.

The government has earmarked Rs.11 billion towards the renovation and upgradation of the Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Dhyan Chand stadiums where the events scheduled to be held include athletics, lawn bowls and weightlifting, wrestling, gymnastics, cycling, archery and hockey.

Another Rs.3.50 billion is slated to be spent on upgrading the multipurpose Thyagaraj Sports Complex (TSC) and the Talkatora stadium. Over Rs.2 billion will go towards revamping facilities at the Yamuna sports complex, where a new air-conditioned stadium to accommodate 5,000 people is being built.

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