Suddenly, it is not cool to be against the scandal-plagued Commonwealth Games.
The CWG was meant to be Delhi’s big coming-out party, India’s assertion that it is a global powerhouse capable of doing what China did with the Beijing Summer Olympics two years ago.
Instead, the Games, scheduled for October, are turning out to be a costly embarrassment, with daily revelations of corruption, fraud and political wrongdoing that has triggered big headlines and much hand wringing by outraged citizens, sportsmen and even politicians.
But suddenly, being against the CWG is almost unpatriotic.
In an “emotional appeal” with a visual of the Indian tricolour published in all leading newspapers on the weekend, industrialist Subrata Roy flayed the “recent continuous and negative media coverage” that has left organisers and volunteers feeling “totally demoralised and dejected”.
The media, Roy said, has overdone it, “causing very big damage in maligning the image of our country”.
The media should now postpone its campaign until after the Games, Roy exhorted, and an audit of the culprits and their punishment must be done “after our country’s greatest ever sporting event is over”.