News / Asia

World Hockey Cup to Test India's Security for Big Sports Events

Pakistan's field hockey team has arrived in India for the sport's World Cup that begins Sunday (Feb. 28).   The team bus crossed the border amid security concerns for major athletic events in India.

Just after the 18-man team crossed the border on its way to the Indian capital, Pakistani squad manager Muhammad Asif Bajwa told reporters New Delhi is a safe place to compete.  He said terrorism is not just an issue for India and Pakistan.

Bajwa says the Delhi police chief and the India Hockey Federation addressed all security concerns.  Thus Pakistan, he points out, was the first to decide to participate in the tournament.

The Pakistani team, along with Australia and New Zealand, had reassessed the trip to India following a purported threat by a Pakistan-based terror group.   

An e-mail to Asia Times Online, said to be from the 313 brigade, linked to the militant Laskhar-e-Taiba and al-Qaida, warned foreign athletes not to compete in the hockey tournament, next month's India Premier League cricket or the Commonwealth Games, scheduled for October.

Australia's hockey team arrived early Monday.  Canada and New Zealand are expected within the next day.  But one of the top players from New Zealand, Simon Child, is not coming, complaining the heavy security is not the "ideal environment" for competing.

India Home Secretary Gopal Krishna Pillai says there is "no credible threat" against any sporting events in the country.  He terms the Hockey World Cup a test run for the type of security that will be implemented at the Commonwealth Games - the largest multi-sport event India will have ever hosted.

Pillai did not rule out the possibility that terror elements, during a high-profile athletic competition, might attempt to cause distraction by carrying out an attack similar to the February 13th bombing at a bakery in Pune that led to 15 deaths.

"They can have a nuisance value by doing something like the Pune blast and try to put something somewhere and try to create a scare, as such," said Pillai.
 
Placing special emphasis on security arrangements for October's Commonwealth Games, the home secretary, flanked by top police officials, spoke of India's long experience with ensuring the safety of visitors, noting religious gatherings that regularly attract millions of people.

But Indian government officials acknowledge competitions such as the Commonwealth Games' marathon and cycling events will be a special challenge because they will not take place in closed, controlled spaces.

Officials are declining to disclose the size of their security force for the Commonwealth Games, but revealed it will range from the Indian Air Force protecting the capital's aviation flight corridors to food tasters for athletes' meals.

The Games' are expected to attract 8,000 athletes from nearly all the British Commonwealth countries, as well as at least 100,000 visitors.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama Defends Immigration Action

Obama says with his executive action on immigration, enforcement resources will be focused on 'felons, not families; criminals, not children' More

US-Led Airstrikes in Syria Kill Over 900: Monitoring Group

British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the toll includes more than 50 civilians, five of them women and eight of them children More

Report: Obama Broadens US Combat Role in Afghanistan

The New York Times says resident Barack Obama has signed a classified order extending the role of US troops in Afghanistan for another year More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid