Once bitten, twice shy! It seems this idiom is not applicable to Indians.
Or how else would you explain Indian sporting authorities not learning lessons from the recent CWG fiasco? None of us can forget the collapse of the foot over-bridge outside Jawahar Lal Nehru stadium and fall of ceiling incidents during the Commonwealth Games.
However, CWG organization was associated with India’s one of the top scams. So, on hindsight it comes as no surprise that the infrastructure was fraught with red-tapism.
But, this time around it is the world’s richest cricket association, BCCI, which is under the flak for lack of preparedness in venue construction at Kolkata’s historic Eden Gardens ahead of the crucial India-England match (February 27) and three other games to be held during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011.
In its latest decision, the ICC has ruled out the giant Eden Gardens from organizing the World Cup matches being unfit at the time of final round of inspection on January 25. The iconic venue had already missed initial two deadlines for completion of renovation work.
As things stand now, ICC officials have cleared Mumbai’s Wankhede stadium to host World Cup matches including the grand finale and needs to be handed over to ICC officials by Jan 31. But, the matter of the fact remains that even MCA has missed its share of deadlines; with finishing touches still to be carried out across the stadium during the 14-day extension period.
Coming back to Eden Gardens fiasco, BCCI has requested ICC to reconsider its decision and provide for a 10-day extension up to February 7. In my opinion, what Cricket Association of Bengal could not achieve until last couple of deadlines, how is it possible to meet the criteria in another 10 days?
This is a critical stage putting to test India’s prowess to host grand sporting events. The stadiums which should have been match-ready by December 31 are still posing “under-construction” tag; leave alone finishing touches.
Hopefully, it doesn’t drill down to a stage where Indian venues compromises on safety standards in a bid to complete construction on last minute count and without major checks release the grounds for play and pose a risk of accident.
Could this be yet another scam in the making?