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Page last updated at 14:00 GMT, Tuesday, 7 September 2010 15:00 UK

Commonwealth Games venues declared fit for use

Shivaji Stadium, Delhi
Construction work at the Shivaji Stadium, pictured on 17 August

All of the venues to be used at this year's Commonwealth Games in Delhi have been passed as fit for use.

It was feared that some events at the Games, which run from 3-14 October, may have to be cancelled after organisers missed a 31 August completion deadline.

But the Commonwealth Games Federation received safety certificates for all venues on 6 September.

"We can now focus with getting the overlay in place for the Games," said CGF chief executive Mike Hooper.

India's Development Minister Jaipal Reddy last month played down the significance of the hold-up, blaming monsoon rains in the Indian capital and a delay in the "delivery of containers".

Aside from the construction problems, the 19th Commonwealth Games has also been dogged by controversy over security and allegations of corruption.

Safety remains a major concern following a bomb blast at an Indian Premier League cricket match in Bangalore in April which injured 14 people.

And following a report by India's Central Vigilance Commission on financial irregularities concerning the construction of Games sites, the Indian government transferred the responsibility of venues from the organising committee to a group of ministers, headed by Reddy.

"We were very concerned because of what was in that the report which was why we needed those safety certificates to provide us with reassurances that the venues complied with all the requirements and were fit for purpose," added Hooper.

In addition, a recent dengue fever outbreak in Delhi has caused a degree of alarm among the 71 nations taking part.

Up to 600 cases have been diagnosed, with two deaths reported, but Reddy added: "I do not think the situation is that alarming and by raising an alarm we will discourage the athletes."

Athletes are expected to start arriving in Delhi from 20 September for the Games which will be the biggest sporting event, with the exception of cricket, India has hosted since the Asian Games in 1982.

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