Yikes....and these clowns have nukes !
The Incredible India mood, briefly generated by the spectacular opening ceremony, has evaporated as far as the world media is concerned. In a scathing article, headlined, ‘Games are running on empty’, The Australian newspaper says, “Delhi has been blighted by so many bizarre mishaps that incredulity has started to give way to ennui.” The Daily Telegraph, London is running a mocking series, “What’s wrong in Delhi today?” The strapline says, “Empty stands, blocked lavatories, collapsing scoreboards, vomiting swimmers and striking officials, it’s been a shocking few days for CWG organizers”. Johannesburg daily, Mail and Guardian, has published an AFP story headlined, “Commonwealth gaffes embarrass India”. And Canada’s highest circulation newspaper, Toronto Star, has a report saying, “Commonwealth Games’ latest bug: Concerns pool making swimmers sick”. Two comments published in Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper’s website best sum up the mood abroad. One of them says, “ We should leave this toilet bowl and come home!” Another one goes, “Yikes...And these clowns have nukes!.” The Australian, report further says, “The Delhi Games are barely being watched. So empty are the grandstands at most venues that the Indian government has written to the organising committee ordering it to throw the event open, free, to schoolchildren. Even those few Delhites willing to pay for tickets are being thwarted. If it’s not the lack of transport or overly zealous security deterring them from going to the Games (even house keys are being confiscated), it’s the fact that when they queue for tickets, the venue box offices aren’t working. This lack of enthusiasm is seeping through to every corner of the Commonwealth,” the report says. It adds, “Fiascos occur at every Games. But the unrelenting torrent of them in Delhi is wearing down even the hardiest and most enthusiastic of Games athletes and officials - and, dare it be said, journalists - all of whom are asking themselves whether this is still fun any more.” The Mail and Guardian report says, “From a ‘toxic’ pool to empty stadiums and faulty boxing scales, the first week of the New Delhi Commonwealth Games has served up daily blunders that have deepened India’s embarrassment.” It quotes Australia’s chef de mission Steve Moneghetti complaining about the opening ceremony. “We were treated like cattle. It was disgraceful,” he said adding that his athletes were forced to wait in searing heat before they appeared. As for the comments, just sample these from Globe and Mail. One reader writes, “If you hold the Games in a cesspool, what do you expect? One reader suggests that the entire Games should have been cancelled on lack of cleanliness. The Australian has also published a speculative story wondering if pigeons should be blamed for Delhi belly in the pool. It says, “The England team has also sought reassurances on the water quality, amid speculation that pigeon droppings may have contaminated the water. Pigeons are roosting in the rafters of the building and their droppings are visible in the grandstands. “Insiders estimate that 40 of the 66 British swimmers competing in Delhi (representing, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) have had stomach upsets, with varying degrees of severity. Top sprinter Fran Halsall appears the most affected.” In a statement, Team England said eight per cent of its team (about 50 people) had had “some kind of mild stomach conditions” in the past month. Interestingly, Globe and Mail’s AP report also quotes five-time Olympic champion Ian Thorpe saying he didn’t think the swimming pool was the cause of the illness.