Commonwealth Games Village luxury flats unsold; undergoing repair work within year of inauguration
Vol 2 | Issue 38
It was supposed to be one of the showpieces of the 19th Commonwealth Games, an example of how hosting international sports meets can spur infrastructure growth. But with just days to go before the first anniversary of the event, the luxurious flats at the Games Village, which hosted the athletes and officials, are in a state of disrepair.
Constructed on the banks of the Yamuna, the two- to five- bedroom flats were meant to be sold just after the Oct 3-14 extravaganza. And with a price tag of Rs.1-5 crore, the prospective buyers were promised a host of world-class amenities and luxury.
The state of a 'fully furnished' flat in the CWG Village (Photos: IANS)
Under the guise of one such prospective buyer, this correspondent entered the heavily manned CWG village premises to find out the status of these apartments.
Labourers could be seen working round-the-clock to finish uncompleted work in these flats, the auction of which has been hanging fire for a long time.
"There are many things which need to be done like flooring, polishing and repairing of electrical appliances. The work done earlier was shoddy due to time constraint," said a mason from Jharkhand.
"In some flats, we are re-laying the tiles in bathrooms that were not fitted properly. It will take at least six months to finish the work," he added.
This correspondent managed to enter Towers 11, 14, 16 and 17 to gauge the situation. While some lobbies were strewn with cement bags, sacks and hardware, washrooms and kitchens were in a bad shape in many flats.
Near the Club House, the swimming pool is being reconstructed in view of "loopholes in the earlier construction".
"Had it (swimming pool) been constructed properly, it would not have to be reconstructed. In fact, repair work is on in almost all the flats," said a construction worker on the condition of anonymity.
Look at the bad room, sorry bed room!
"The work still needs to be done in the basement. And it's not a short-term affair. We are under pressure to complete the work. Why did they let the flats remain locked up for a long time after the Games concluded?" asked one of the supervisors.
Around 5,000 athletes and officials stayed in these apartments during the Games.
Of 1,168 flats constructed in the village, 723 flats are owned by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA). Initially, DDA planned to auction 100 of them to ascertain the market value of these flats.
However, the Delhi Urban Arts Commission (DUAC) in August refused to give completion certificate to the village, thus tripping the DDA plan.
"We were supposed to auction the flats in the Games Village, but DUAC has refused to give us the completion certificate. The issue lies with the competent authority," said DDA spokesperson Nimo Dhar.
Asked about the time-frame for auctioning, Dhar said: "I cannot give you the exact time-frame. However, the flats in our custody are complete and they are being refurbished."
Apart from auctioning 100 flats, DDA plans to auction the remaining flats to government departments and public sector undertakings.
But as things stand currently, a lot of water might flow down the Yamuna before the process is completed. - IANS