Commonwealth Games: Corruption and Pride, a debate

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After seeing the pictures of the dirty toilets of commonwealth games village in Delhi this month, the feeling of pride which Indians had in their mind turned somewhat into a feeling of shame. And the only thing the media and people could blame on were  corrupted organizers, lack of inter department coordination and at some point of time people themselves and media for only covering and reporting the negative aspect of the games. Just to make our discussion easily readable we are classifying two sides as Panel I and Panel II.

[Panel I] “Why would you want to add fuel to fire!!!!!! please delete this post!!!” A person said that  on our discussion board on the shared pictures of filthy commonwealth village.

Making into the front-page and ticker of every newspaper and news channel in India, the games were defamed and termed flop and criticized internationally before even they could take off. When asked various people in India they said now they have a mixed feeling of proud and shame. But still hoping it will be a successful event.

[Panel II] “It’s good to share such news[criticizing] let everyone know… where our TAX money goes!!” She further added, “I am afraid nobody has an answer for this question.”

[Panel I] “our tax money is going to the right place atleast they did a good job in a very short time.. It’s easy to point out some thing have you done anything to make it right????” Was a reply from the crowd

[Panel II] “Given a chance i would ! what have you done???” She retorted.
Later on the debate, we saw a perfect balance between “for” and “against” side. It’s left to you which side you choose. No side is wrong, only the perception is different.

[Panel I] “i didn’t add fuel to fire…. if u cant do anything then we have to shut our mouth… u can do one thing u can thank those people who have been working day and night to make it possible”

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[Panel I] I know the preparations have missed some deadlines. All the college students have been working there as volunteers and my friends say they have never seen such a mess anywhere in the village.”
he Further added, “Feel proud that India was able to defeat the developed nations, Canada in particular, in the bidding. After all this mess, All the major participating countries have given thumbs up to the village. You should see the picture of the commonwealth games venues here: You will be really amazed that such infrastructure exists in India. India has been working since 2004 on this, and deadlines were missed due to corruption. Which is a global problem. Even in Melbourne commonwealth, players were forced to live in hotels as their village was not ready. XIX Commonwealth games is the wealthiest game and greenest as well. Many earlier commonwealth games ran out of money during preparations.”

[Panel II] “It is this callous ‘chalta hai’ attitude / ‘let us be happy with what we have’ or what people proudly call ‘jugaad’ is the bane of India. 60% of all agricultural produce in India is wasted before it reaches consumers, India tops the list in everything from poverty, AIDS, Cancer, et al. Farmers who provide food to the whole nation die without food. But we still want to appreciate very few good things the Government does, which as a matter of fact is their job! Yes, I am a capitalist. I believe only capitalism and market oriented policies will bring change. And for that we need such attractions as games. Those are signs of a maturing economy. But that was not the intention or not even developing local talent. Many proposals were made to build national level and state level competitions aka NBA and so on. But it was ignored, less scope for large scale corruption there. Politicians won by this games bribing (or openly gifting) and using the diplomatic clout. It was not awarded on merits. It was so badly managed and the cost overshot by many multiples. It’s a national shame, but few people want to celebrate it. We should mourn it so that there will be a change, there is a realisation. Unless we Indians don’t accept we suck at choosing politicians, or participating in politics, India will remain a land of miseries and contradictions.

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Above all everybody has their right to their opinion, if one has read the very first chapter in Civics in middle school. Nobody can ask anybody to shut their mouth. It’s called Right to Speech. ‘What have you done?’ is an irrelevant question, rather a nonsensical defence. I voted for him to do that job. Now I will go ahead and fire him by not casting my vote. I have my job to focus. Each minute of every Citizen adds to building the nation!”

Sucking at choosing politicians, that’s what people think now. I have myself heard and read on several other blogs and forums. “India is a nice country with Strong economy and military, but ugly government.” Despite having a huge number of political parties, Indians are unsatisfied with options available to them for choosing a government. Some don’t cast their vote and some do caste paid votes.

[Panel I] Continuing the discussion, one person said: “I have read the report showing that India bribed other commonwealth nations to win the bid. But the report also said that our main competitor Canada was not so innocent as well, they offered bribe of 70K where as India offered bribe of 100K. Nobody then talked about that report again. So I feel it may be a fake too. But I won’t be surprised if it is true because I acknowledge the problem of corruption.

In 1947 English left us wiping and sucking everything from this rich land with a gift of Pakistan. We had to start from the scratch. And we are at good position now, though we are nowhere in comparison with Japan, China and Singapore which also had tough times in 1940s. But during recession, when America and other markets were down, companies were getting bankrupt and people were loosing jobs. India launched its mission to moon worth 384 crore with a GDP of 7+. It is not so easy maintaining such a big nation with various religions and ethnicity. Even America is having problems where central states and native Americans time to time comes up with a demand for independence. But American media doesn’t show all that negative things. But we are trying that’s a good thing. With so many evils in our societies still if we are able to make in the list of top five superpowers and top fifteen economy, I can’t just imagine what will be our position if we just normalize our condition, if not excellent. I hope they will learn from commonwealth mistakes.”

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Public Link to the photos of completed World Class venues of the games, which media never showed to you

Difficulties and hurdles did come in the way of preparations. But India at the end has done its job completely, earning the thumbs up and praise from those who strongly blamed the organizers is a big achievement. It’s one opportunity which India wouldn’t like to lose to project its power to the world. Unsuccessful games will add to the long list of failed games earning a mark of failure forever.

View the latest XIX Commonwealth Games 2010, Delhi, Medal Tally:  CWG 2010 Medal Tally

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Sanskar Shrivastava is the founder of international students' journal, The World Reporter. Passionate about dynamic occurrence in geopolitics, Sanskar has been studying and analyzing geopolitcal events from early life. At present, Sanskar is a student at the Russian Centre of Science and Culture and will be moving to Duke University.