Friday, July 2

Wrestling venue ready, shooting Venue by Next Sunday

It seems the nervous delays about Games venues is now a thing of the past. Five days after the first venue, Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, was officially opened, Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit and organizing committee chairman Suresh Kalmadi on Friday inaugurated the Ludlow Castle wrestling training centre.

Next Sunday, Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range, the venue for shooting events, is scheduled to be officially completed. Two more stadia, Thyagraj and Chhatarsal would also be ready by March. PWD announced that it will also complete two infrastructure projects related to the Games every month.

Ludlow Castle wrestling training centre is the first venue built by Delhi government. ‘‘The wrestlers of the capital now have a great training facility. Once the Games are over, it will be very useful for children too,’’ Dikshit said.

Though the government had sanctioned Rs 20 crore, the project was completed at a cost of Rs 13 crore in 11 months. The venue was built after demolishing the badminton hall. The ground floor has various facilities such as restrooms, gym, cafeteria, physiotherapy centers, doping control centre, changing rooms, sauna bath and a medical centre. The first floor has a training hall, which can accommodate six wrestling mats at a time.

Last Sunday, the revamped Dhyan Chand Stadium was opened by Union sports minister M S Gill while both Dikshit and Kalmadi were reportedly not invited. However, on Friday, while both Dikshit and Kalmadi were present, Gill was missing. ‘‘This is a minor issue,’’ Dikshit told reporters.

Despite the progress, the CM said that it would be difficult to complete all projects related to the Commonwealth Games 2010 in the next eight months. ‘‘We need to work hard. There will be no excuse of rain or heat for delay in completing all projects. But I believe we will complete the work,’’ she said.

The CM also asked school students to be prepared to work as volunteers during the Games. Delhi government would provide 10,000 school guides for the inaugural function.

Praising Dikshit for her wholehearted support, Kalmadi claimed that the Games would be the best one so far. ‘‘It will be better than the Melbourne Games. We will try to bring the Olympics in 2020,’’ he added.