What a spectacular event we just concluded today! What a celebration of sport we have witnessed over the last fortnight. The XIX Commonwealth Games 2010 at Delhi has proven beyond even a fig of doubt that our Republic, our India, is truly incredible and truly rising!
During the celebration of excellent sports over the last 12 days, the entire Commonwealth witnessed records made and records shattered, achievements surpassing expectations and failures crushing hopes. But today, there is only one winner, Sports.
Personally, its a moment of rejoice for me too, as K. Ravi Kumar from my city, Brahmapur, created a new Commonwealth Games record with a total lift of 321kgs as he grabbed gold in the 69-kg category in the weightlifting competition in New Delhi.
The XIX Commonwealth Games Delhi, 2010, has left behind a legacy which few men will be able to forget. Being an Indian its an Honour beyond expressible words to have been given the chance by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Commonwealth Federation, to host such a magnanimous and stupendous celebration of multi-disciplinary games in these 12 days.
Now, the Games leave us with state-of-the-art infrastructure to train and improvise our sporting talent, because the amount of shine our lads and ladies have shown in these games have proven beyond doubt that given the right amount of training and the right amount of scope, we Indians can outshine any country in any sporting clashes, at any level. The amount of pride it has renewed, the amount of patriotism it has infused in us, its of intoxicating proportions. The spectacle of India’s rich cultural heritage which the opening and closing ceremonies have projected to the world has truly shown that India is more than just about Bollywood. It has shown to the world that India is not a country of snake-charmers, rather its a country whose rich cultural diversity has no match in the entire world. The amount of advertisement brand India got from this games will ensure our inflow of visitors keep piling on, day in and day out. The economic revolutions it has spurted is positive to say the least. Today, the end of the Games marks the beginning of new era for the sporting world, and era marking the rise of a new Sporting Superpower— India.
But, it also leaves many questions behind. The primary being, “Can we convert the opportunity in hand here to really ensure our might in sporting excellence keeps rising, or is it the end of everything?” Will these world-class stadiums and training centre’s be accessible by our poor yet talented athletes, or will it end up as one of our posh neta’s-beta’s (children of our politicians) flaunting zones? Will the revolution it generated, end, or will the lamp just grow brighter and thicker? Excuse me for being so obnoxious here, but I have obvious reasons to be so. Because its India, things made for the greater good of deserving consumer usually end up with the wrong people’s footsteps, and we all know how I am right here. What benefit our largely poor yet talented pool of athletes get after this is something we all should have a close look at.
Secondly, it leaves behind Suresh Kalmadi (well, XIX CWG isn’t anything but over without a discussion about him). It also leaves behind a question, “Who was the villain in the XIX Commonwealth Games?”.
I don’t know whether it was the Indian media who over-hyped the scene (as they always do) or was situation really that grim few months back (because you don’t get smoke without fire right?), but if the second point is correct, then we must all hail people I will mention after a few lines for their tireless effort in saving Shera from being gobbled up. Now, that the games have finished, they will have a peaceful night’s sleep, perhaps after many weeks. But, few thing's are still left to be done. There must be a thorough and independent investigation regarding what the hell happened in the months leading upto the games that it led to so much mess, much to the chagrin of the Country’s public and Government. Mr. Mike Fennel might have laid heaps of praises on Shri Kalmadi in today’s closing ceremony but the boos he got in both his opening and closing ceremony speeches cannot be left unheard (even if he says he didn’t hear it). We have to admit, something went wrong with the system, somewhere. The Government’s job, now, is to to find out the mole(s) and reprimand them befitting to the magnitude of their follies. Even if the mole hides in the contractors who took up the tasks, OC or even in the Government of India itself. If our Hon’ble PM wishes to set any example of his honesty, now is the moment. Lets hope that my thoughts matches with the EGOM’s thoughts at this point of time.
But, forget all that pre-games controversies. I would like to take this moment in sincerely thank the Kalmadi-led CWG OC, Delhi CM Smt. Sheila Dikshit (yeah Paul Henry, its not “Dick Shit”), our E-GOMs, Cabinet Secretary Shri K. M. Chandrasekhar, Prime Minister Shri Manmohan Singh (also thanks to Smt. Gursharan Kaur (Mrs. Singh) for adding grace to the opening and the closing ceremonies) and the Chairperson of the National Advisory Council Smt. Sonia Gandhi (also to Shri Rahul Gandhi and Smt. Priyanka Vadra for reasons unknown yet obvious to Congress Party workers), for literally saving our games and our face in front of the entire World, especially in the Commonwealth.
Nevertheless, controversy or no controversy, the fact is that Delhi and India have given the World a loud roar, saying with pride that “India is coming”. India has proved that its ready to host games of enough magnitude to capture the World’s attention. The XIX Commonwealth Games show that India is quite ready to host even the Olympics. And if all goes well from now, we might see sports taking an evolutionary stride ahead, and India might getting the Olympics bid some day. With an Amen to that, I congratulate my fellow Indians for a successful Commonwealth Games.
I hope our athletes live upto their newly achieved distinction in future.