Sport in India

Chaotic CWG run-up hitting India's global image: Moody's
TNN, Sep 25, 2010, 12.15am IST
NEW DELHI: Two days ago, in an online poll run by TOI, 97% of respondents said they strongly believed that the Commonwealth Games organizers had tarnished India's image. While the poll had generated 17,500 responses at the time of going to press, the total number of participants grew to 34,000 the next day. Now, there's proof that it wasn't just an outpouring of sentiment.

Shoddy, chaotic preparations for the Games and concerns over security have tarnished India's image and may hurt its reputation as an investment and tourist destination, global rating agency Moody's has said.

"Concerns regarding safety, security and site preparedness are tarnishing the country's global image... India's reputation as a tourist and investment destination could be damaged," Moody's Analytics, a unit of the rating agency, said in a note written by Sydney-based economist Matt Robinson.

"Confidence in India's infrastructure, its capacity to organize large events, and its reputation as a tourist destination have all been brought into question... The negative publicity could deter foreign investment and give multinational businesses considering expanding in India reason to think twice," it said.

The report confirms the fear that the damage caused by the Games organizers will stretch far beyond what happens during the event itself.

The note said the controversies over management of preparations for the Games will negate the benefits of the multi-billion dollar investment.

The construction of new facilites and infrastructure was expected to spur economic activity in 2010. "Benefits were expected to continue after the closing ceremony through increased global exposure and an improved international image,'' it said. However, "the fiasco is undermining the anticipated benefits of hosting a major international sports event".

"Fears regarding safety and security have been...