Wednesday, September 22, 2010

COMMONWEALTH GAMES: SALVAGING NATIONAL HONOUR

B.RAMAN


Our hopes and wishes for a spectacular CWG have been dashed to the ground due to alleged mismanagement by the organising committee headed by Mr.Suresh Kalmadi. A relentless monsoon, the like of which New Delhi has not seen before, has added to our woes.


2.One is helpless before the monsoon, but one was not before the alleged mismanagement of the Organising Committee. If one had acted in time against the Organising Committee-----if necessary, by having it replaced---- when the initial signs of the accumulating mess appeared three months ago, one might have saved our national honour.


3. The Prime Minister, Dr.Manmohan Singh, whose responsibility it was to assert his captaincy of a sinking ship and stop it from sinking, dithered as he generally does when faced with a crisis----hoping that somehow things will turn out to be all right.


4.He did take some corrective steps like asking a group of senior officials enjoying his confidence to do a day-to-day monitoring of the preparations for the Games and make sure that the mismanagement was rectified. The group has not been able to assert itself effectively against an over-confident Organising Committee.


5. The result----12 days before the Games, renowned athletes whom we were hoping to see in action in New Delhi have started deserting the Games.The sports federations of some of the member-countries are under pressure to desert the Games too, but their Governments, which have considerable goodwill for India and its Prime Minister, have been urging them to stay on board.


6. A disastrous failure of the Games would not be just a failure of an incompetent India. We as a nation are not incompetent.It would be the failure of an emerging India and the damaging of its image as a democratic nation worthy of emulation due to the alleged incompetence of a small group of people who had the control of the Organising Committee. The world would not want India to be seen as a bungler in the face of an authoritarian China which made a spectacular success of the Olympics of August 2008.


7. Thanks to the dithering by the Prime Minister, we seem to be left with no other option but to sink or swim with Mr.Kalmadi and his Organising Committee. Swim we must and swim we can, if the Prime Minister gives up his bureaucratic ways of dealing with a crisis, steps on to the deck and takes control of the damaged ship. Only he can save the ship of our national honour at this late hour. No one else can. He has to take control now without further delay.


8. India is not bereft of managerial wizards in the Government and the private sector. The Prime Minister should set up a committee of consequence managers chaired by him to mount an exercise for the salvage of the national honour. Specific responsibilities should be allotted to the members of the committee relating to the venues of the games, the maintenance of the Games Village, the welfare of the participants, the physical security and public relations. The Organising Committee should be told to carry out its instructions. Any attempt by the Organising Committee to undermine or sabotage its functioning should be ruthlessly put down. The Committee should be given all the powers and resources it needs. The young and enthusiastic officers of the police and the Armed Forces, who passed out last year, should be placed at the disposal of the Committee to have its instructions carried out. The Prime Minister should hold meetings of the Committee every evening to review its work and give appropriate follow-up directions. The Prime Minister should make himself available for instant meetings with the members of the Committee.


9. It is too late for us to hope for a spectacular CWG, which could compare with the spectacular Beijing Olympics. We could even now make it a decent CWG and salvage our national honour if the Prime Minister acts and acts decisively and makes it clear that hereafter he will be in charge till the Games are over.


10. The salvaging of our national honour depends on one man, the Prime Minister. Will he step onto the deck?


11. This may please be read in continuation of my earlier article of August 6 titled "Olympics—2008, C’wealth Games 2010 & Asian Games—2010 " at http://www.southasiaanalysis.org/%5Cpapers40%5Cpaper3969.html (23-9-10)


( The writer is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai, and Associate of the Chennai Centre for China Studies. E-mail: seventyone2@gmail.com )

8 comments:

ravinder said...

Re. Raman - "10. The salvaging of our national honour depends on one man, the Prime Minister. Will he step onto the deck?"

- Dear sir, you have such a knack for sounding like you are searching for a Paigamber/Messiah.

There are 1,50,00,000 people in Delhi NCR. If the dumb Congressis leadership can come up with a coordination mechanism then at least 80% of these 1,50,00,000 can be counted on for a Karseva.

But obviously that would force these 1,50,00,000 people to think for themselves and then this unique combination of heropanthi/messiahhood and money minting will not run.

Please feel free to delete my comment if you dont want to be bothered.

ambi said...

Sir, of course there are some problems in the management, but I am really surprised with the attitude of some of the common wealth govts & some athletes. That is sheer smugness. When govt of India has promised them that no harm will come to their athletes, still some countries are talking of sending their own security personnel.

Now that Congress has already humiliated the country, I wish to request Sonia Gandhi that pls tell this govt to tell in simple but firm words to all those govts like Malaysia , Australia & others who wish to send their own security personnel that if they don’t trust our promise, then its their personal decision whether to send their athletes to India or not. Its better they do not send them. But we are not going to allow such foolish activities here. In that case even if only one foreign player comes we ll host & serve him in our best capacity & ll endeavor to make him happy.

Saale do take ke players, aukkat to kuch nahin, akad aisi dikha rahe hain, orders aise chodte hain jaise mahlon mein palte hain.Yeh sab faaltu dhandhe karne hain to abhi G**nd pe laath maro aur chalta karo. Kisi ko padi nahin.

But the funniest reason for the withdrawal of the name was from one black athlete (not being racist here, just that don’t remember his name) from England. His wife & children were worried about his security situation in India. Ha ha ha. Does that clown even know whats going to hit UK? Worried about security situation. Ha ha ha! Idiot!

Broadway said...

Oh please raman sir. Stop it. The boat has already sunk. So no more lies.

Don't accuse me of playing a blame game. It's the tax payers money. And i want the congress to take it on their conscience.

What a disaster. Acknowledge it for what it is and don't embarrass us further by dusting it under the rug with calls to save whatever that is left.

shaan said...

It IS mismanagement. Why 'alleged'? This flop show has clearly showcased to the world what a corrupt and inefficient administration we have. As per my analysis of the comments on the web, today the world is sympathetic to India not because we are poor, but because we have to put up with these politician leeches. We are well on the way to 2020. We'll reach there in 2120.

Ashok said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ambi said...

i have posted my view here but they are getting deleted why i dont know?

by the way, mr. ashok, keep it coming sir, keep it coming. we are listening. thanks for this unsolicited advice.

i ve posted my comments to your post thrice but they are getting deleted. what to do. as my brother in law who had stayed US for some years, has nformed Indian Americans are more americans then original americans. your comment reflects that.

dont know whether this comment ll be accepted or not still trying.

ambi said...

i am really sick with Indian media's attitude & coverage of CWG. OYe besharmon, paise ke liye kitna niche giroge. Apni hi country ki sabke saamne maar rahe ho. Agar aapki maa ki saadi kahin pe thodi fati hain to sabke saamne usse aise nanga ghumaoge? ke usko cover karoge?

dilip-iyer said...

Just like every Indian even i am heavily disappointed to say the least with the status quo of CWG preparation. This was a excellent opportunity for budding India to show the world that we have come off age and prove the odds wrong who still believe we are a developing nation. Even though we can make the show a success not a grand success the way that we have displayed the preparation with so much fiasco and confusion has proved that we will be a developing nation ages to come. PM should have stepped on the mantle and should have accelerated the organization even before. He should bore responsibility for the status quo, no passing of buck in this case. As Mr Raman says still clock is waiting for us to do the catch up and make a meager performance.