Commonwealth Games

ROBBER BARONS OF YAMUNA

When the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III died in 1250 without an agreed successor, his empire went into turmoil. Among the first administrative casualties of the flux were the toll collectors on the river Rhine, which for a thousand years had been the commercial heart of Europe and its principal economic highway. With the government […..]

GAMES OVER, LET THE PROBE BEGIN

The Games are over, they have been declared a success, our athletes have done us proud and all is well. If you were only reading the Indian press this week then you could be pardoned for thinking that India has just delivered the greatest event in the world. The despair and hand-wringing that we saw […..]

A tale of two Indias

Shortly before India began its economic reforms in the early-1990s, Shashi Tharoor, a former junior foreign minister, published The Great Indian Novel, a somewhat immodestly named but sharply written allegory on modern Indian politics and the ancient Mahabharat, where he famously argued that India is not “an underdeveloped country” but “a highly developed one in […..]

COUNTING THE COST OF PM’S GAMES

The comment of the week: Commonwealth Games Organising Committee Secretary General Lalit Bhanot saying in all seriousness that foreign standards of cleanliness may be different from ours, when accosted by the filth of the Games Village. If this had come from a Westerner we would have pilloried him for racism and for besmirching the name […..]

A VILLAGE BUILT ON FALLACIES

As the Prime Minister inspected Commonwealth Games sites on Sunday and Sheila Dixit extended the deadline for the venues yet another time, the last-gasp dash to the finish line has overtaken the deeper questions at the heart of these Games. There are structural reasons for the quagmire Delhi finds itself in. The story of the […..]

IS KALMADI THE ONLY ONE AT FAULT?

In 1991, jewellery tycoon Gerald Ratner, who successfully turned his family jewellery business into billion-dollar public enterprise, made a speech where he called his products “total crap” and boasted that some of his earrings were “cheaper than a prawn sandwich”. It immediately wiped off much of his fortune and Ratner lost his job. It was […..]

MISSING OUT ON A COMMON GOAL

Long before he became a politician, Suresh Kalmadi was an Air Force pilot. Among his favourite memories, he has said in the past, was landing planes in Leh when there were no proper runways. The big question now is can he deliver the Commonwealth Games with what looks like poorly finished stadiums? Responding to such […..]