KOCHI: The Jawaharlal Nehru International Stadium is a venue for the Indian Super League (ISL) matches beginning early October, but its owners Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) is yet to complete firefighting, electrical and interior works. Tenders for firefighting and electrical works were floated only last week, and it will take at least two months to complete the works. Sources at the GCDA said it would be handing over the stadium to Kerala Blasters without completing works.
As per the schedule, Kerala Blasters play their first home match against Atletico de Kolkata on October 5. GCDA superintending engineer said the state government had asked them to get the stadium ready for FIFA 2017 and was not responsible for ISL matches. “Preparation of the turf, renovation works of players’ room plumbing and toilet works are on. Electrical, firefighting, sewage and other works are yet to start. But all works can be completed before the deadline,” the official said.
Mohammed Haneesh, the nodal officer for FIFA – 2017, said the sports minister and minister for local self-governments (LSG) would visit the stadium on October 10. “The FIFA inspection team will inspect the ground on October 18,” he told DC. It is reliably learnt that Mr Haneesh had taken up the issue of slow pace of works with LSG principal secretary T.K. Jose. “There have been widespread complaints about the slow pace of preparatory works at JN Stadium after the exit of chairman N. Venugopal and secretary R. Lalu," GCDA sources said.
"The employees’ union has submitted a complaint to the LSGD secretary, who is the acting chairperson, against the lackadaisical approach in inviting tenders and completing works on time.” Earlier, Mr Venugopal had urged the state government to appoint a chief engineer to carry out and monitor the renovation works for the World Cup....