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Dikshit lashes out at Hooper for ‘unkind’ remark on India’s population

New Delhi: Even as CGF President Mike Fennell came out in defense of colleague Mike Hooper, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit lashed out at the CGF CEO saying that the remarks made by him regarding India’s population were totally ‘unkind’ and ‘undiplomatic’.

Hooper, who is the CEO of the Commonwealth Games Federation, allegedly told a New Zealand TV channel that India’s considerable population was to blame for traffic problems in Delhi for the CWG.

Contrary to media reports, Fennell defended Hooper saying neither he nor the CGF ever demand that 24-hour Games lanes be operational on Delhi’s roads during the October 3 to 14 event.

“I spent the entire morning and early afternoon in meetings with Mr Hooper, during which time he allegedly made certain comments, and I can personally attest that at no time did Mr Hooper make any reference at all to the people of India, let alone disparaging ones.

Addressing the reporters here on Monday, Dixit said that the Government and the federations are doing everything they can to make the Games a success, and considering that, an absolutely negative remark coming from the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) CEO Hooper was very disheartening.

“It (the comments by Hopper) were very unkind and undiplomatic to make,” said a visibly miffed Dixit.

Dixit also said that the Organising Committee and the Government had ‘inherited a very situation’, but everyone is working really hard improve the conditions.

“It (the condition) is improving by the hour. We inherited a very difficult situation, but it will improve,” she said.

“Of course, there are some problems with the buildings (in the Games village).. There are seepages and water loggings, etc. We are trying to improve them as it depends entirely on how sunny it is during the day. It depends on how dry the building is, and how quickly the water moves out of basement. Otherwise we hope to finish whatever we can,” she added.

“We are racing against time, of course, but we are working very hard,” she said.

Reports were also out earlier that CWG hoardings at many places were put up to cover up the excess debris. Reacting to it, the chief minister said that they were put up to just give a ‘festive look’ to the city.

“The hoardings have been put up to give the city a festive look. Let us not be that negative, it will be a very good Games,” she said.

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