Kalmadi brushes concerns aside

Addressing the media after inaugurating the Main Press Center of the Games along with Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni, Kalmadi assured the Commonwealth countries that India will ensure safety of all athletes and officials.

“I have not got a single call from any Commonwealth country expressing apprehensions about security (of the athletes after Sunday’s firing). This (firing) was not a Games related incident. It happened in Jama Masjid and the police are looking into it. It’s not a major incident.

“As of today all the 71 Commonwealth countries are coming for the Games,” he added. Asked about United Kingdom and Australia issuing advisory about high security risk during the CWG, Kalmadi said their respective Commonwealth Games associations have committed to participating in the multi-sporting event.

“Many countries have issued travel advisories earlier also. Australia had earlier issued an advisory but its Commonwealth Games chief Perry Crosswhite said its athletes are coming. So what is important is that the Commonwealth Games bodies of the respective countries have committed to participation in the Games,” he said.

The Main Press Center, to be run by Press Information Bureau, will be opened on September 23. Spread across 6,700 sq mts, the PIB claimed that it is the biggest press center in the history of Commonwealth Games. It can accommodate 600 journalists at a time. A workforce of around 1,000 people, including 236 professionals, will run the press operations at the MPC and across 17 venues.

The MPC has a 300-seat press conference room and a press briefing room which can accommodate 100 people. It will also have High Definition CATVs in eight live viewing rooms as well as the work area for journalists. It will also have facilities like a post office, pharmacy, convenience store, mobile store and a bank with foreign exchange service and ATM.

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