Australia Seeks Answers from India Over Games Village

Canberra, Sep 22 (IANS) Concerned over the adverse reports on the Commonwealth Games Village in Delhi, the Australian government is seeking answers from India and Commonwealth Games officials over security and hygiene issues.

The Australian government is concerned over dengue outbreak, the shooting of two men on a tourist bus and the collapse of a new footbridge that injured 23 people.

Australian Sports Minister Mark Arbib said that team officials, who are in Delhi, have raised "grave concerns" about hygiene and cleanliness in the Commonwealth Games Village where the athletes are to stay.

"We are concerned and we are seeking more information from the high commission and asking them to have discussions with their Indian counterparts," Arbib was quoted as saying by ABC Sport.

"The Commonwealth Games Federation has written to the Indian government regarding the village and also regarding preparations for the Games, so obviously we await further information from the federation."

Australia's discus world champion Dani Samuels, and three top British athletes have pulled out over security and health concerns.

Australian Commonwealth Games Association chief executive Perry Crosswhite says he would support any athlete who withdraws from the Games.

"We have said all along ... it's a decision of each of the athletes whether they come to the Games or not," he said.

"I think I understand why Dani Samuels decided not to go. She contacted us and told us and we accept that, and (she) probably will not be the last one. I'm sure we'll potentially get others that decide for the same reasons."

But Crosswhite says the Games should not be called off.

"We should be thinking about the athletes. If you call a Games off, the athletes never get to compete," he said.




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