Kalmadi, Fennell to talk it out

Kalmadi, Fennell to talk it out

Queens Baton relay launch today

Kalmadi and Fennell met on the eve of the Queen’s Baton Relay even though the “formal” meeting between the duo is likely to take place on Thursday after the Relay is launched by Queen Elizabeth II.

Asked if the CGF and OC had resolved issues that had them at the loggerheads, Fennell said, “We always have issues to resolve but we are talking.”

CGF and OC have been waging a public battle over Delhi’s preparation for the 2010 Games with the organisers drawing flak for lagging behind schedule.

Fennell, who was in Delhi earlier this month for CGF General Assembly, had flayed the OC for lagging behind schedule and had announced that an independent Technical Review Panel would be set up to monitor Delhi’s progress.

The OC, however, was not happy with the proposal and Kalmadi bluntly shot down the idea, saying there was no need for another monitoring panel since the CGF Coordination Commission was already there to periodically assess the progress.

Kalmadi was also unhappy with the role of CGF Chief Executive Mike Hooper, whom he described as an “impediment” to the organisation of the event and wrote to Fennell, asking him to remove the New Zealander from the Organising Committee’s headquarters.
Kalmadi in fact asked Hooper not to come to the OC headquarters, claiming the CGF official had misbehaved with a member of the staff there.

Fennell, however, threw his weight behind Hooper and also made it clear that he would go ahead with the Technical Review Panel as well.

Fennell said right now, the focus, however, was on the Queen’s Baton Relay.
“The baton and its journey are not only symbolic in many ways but is also more than that as it enables so many more people to be a part of the Games (even before it begins). It is very important for all of us,” he said.