Monday, September 27, 2010

What would we get from Commonwealth Games?


( Writer is IIMC alumnus and presently working for CNBC-AAWAAZ)
This is the question which was hovering in my mind since the first news regarding mishandling of the funds for Commonwealth Games came into light. The games are miles behind the Olympics or Asiad so far the level of competitiveness or the participation of countries is concerned. Except a few countries (Canada, UK, Australia and South Africa) the members of commonwealth do not possess any might in sport's world. US, China, Japan, France and Germany like super sports power are not the part of these games and due to this the commonwealth games are loosing its importance. So even if we win, many medals in the games, it would be just an eyewash as the most of the medal winners of the games fail to perform at the sporting events like Olympics or World Championships. So, when Delhi was announced the host for 19th CWG, it was not seen as Indian might in sport's world but an indicator of the respect India can get owing to its economic development in recent years. And, here the question pops up that whether we would be able to do what we are expected to?
courtesy :
      It may seem cynical on my part that I am not very hopeful about the outcomes of the CWG but I have my own reasons to believe so. Just look at some figures; we have spent the whopping 77,000 crores of rupees to host the games and compare this with the amount spent on last CWG held in Melbourne and the amount to be spent in next games in Glasgow, which were less than Rs. 5,000 crores and about Rs. 2500 crores respectively. So was there any need to spent so much of public money on games, which can't give you the return whether on geo-political front or on the international sport's arena? I must say that with this money we can make a well-planned developed city easily. So, even if you decide to splurge so much money on CWG, why did not spend the money to develop a city on the outskirts of Delhi so that the fruits of benefits could reach to the people who have been devoid of these so far.
       I must present some more figures before you to make the picture clear. The budgetary allocation for education in 2010 is Rs. 31,036 crores, for health Rs. 22,300 crores and for ambitious MNREGS Rs. 40,000 crores. It means with the amount spent on CWG, we can provide at least the existing quality of healthcare and educational facility to our people for more than one year. It also means that the Government had opened its coffer for commonwealth games (and consequently allowed the CWG OC to loot it as well). Now, if the money spent here shows desired (and deserved) results in the future, we can console ourselves that this is not wasted. But even after being an optimistic, I have serious doubts that it would happen. At least coming reports regarding CWG solidify my doubts. Am I becoming too cynical, only time will tell. So wait for the Commonwealth games to be finished. 

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