Prince Charles not Pratibha Patil to declare Commonwealth Games open

Prince Charles not Pratibha Patil to declare Commonwealth Games open

Prince Charles not Pratibha Patil to declare Commonwealth Games open

Prince Charles will open the Games on Sunday evening, his office confirmed, playing down reports of a row over who would preside.

Queen Elizabeth, 84, who would normally open the Games as head of the Commonwealth, in May said she would not travel to India due to her hectic schedule and instead sent Prince Charles, her son and heir.

The move, which drew criticism in India, had led organisers to discuss whether Indian President Pratibha Patil should instead open the Games.

"Both the Prince of Wales and the President of India will have a prominent role in the opening ceremony in Delhi," a spokeswoman at Clarence House, the prince's official London residence, said.

"The Queen has asked the Prince of Wales to represent her at the opening of the Commonwealth Games."