Commonwealth Games in trouble

ALTHIA RAJ, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:13 AM ET

OTTAWA -- The upcoming Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India, could be in jeopardy after international delegations expressed shock at the "inhabitable" conditions of the athletes' village.

"The condition of the residence facilities is not at all what we expected, nor anything like what was promised," said Scott Stevenson, Commonwealth Games Canada's (CGC) director of sport who arrived in Delhi ahead of the Oct. 3 competition.

The accommodations need "an extreme and deep cleaning," toilets are backed-up and there are feces everywhere left by workers, Thomas Jones, CGC's chief executive officer, told QMI Agency.

Electrical outlets also need be completed, he said, and some doors and windows do not shut properly -- this during a dengue fever outbreak.

"We are taking about athletes who are coming to perform and do their very best and are used to quality sleep and clean and hygienic circumstances," he said.

Organizers have been asked to clean up the mess before athletes begin to arrive Friday but, so far, concerns have fallen on deaf ears, Jones said.

The Times of India reported Tuesday the head of the organizing committee, Lalit Bhanot, had dismissed complaints coming from Canada, New Zealand, Ireland and Scotland as a matter of "perception."

"For us and for you, it is clean. But [the foreign countries] have a different standard of cleanliness… It is not such a big issue which we should be ashamed of. This will not affect the Games," he said.

International associations have also raised safety concerns after a footbridge collapsed outside the main stadium injuring 27 workers, and two foreigners were shot by gunmen.

But it's really concerns about cleanliness that could delay the arrival of athletes, Jones said, adding no Canadian athlete had yet pulled out.

"Hopefully, this will be rectified in the coming days and our athletes will have an amazing game," Canada's Sports Minister Gary Lunn said.

In 2003, Delhi beat out Hamilton, Ont., to host the 2010 Games, winning the vote 46 to 22 out of a possible 72 votes.

Lunn said Canada had an "international reputation for hosting games is nothing short of outstanding."


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