CWG Delhi for the Halal Concious Travellers

Third world largest sport event, Commonwealth Games, is going to be held in the capital of India Delhi during 3-14 October 2010. It is a unique, world class, multi sport event held once every four years, started as the British Empire Games in 1930 and last was held in Melbourne Australia in 2006. Commonwealth games would be continued for 12 days, represented by 71 countries and participated by 8000 athletes and team officials. Delhi will defiantly find the distinctive image in the world after successful completing of the event. More than 1, 00,000 tourists are expected to visit the city during the game. Likely benefits of games are creation of 2.5 million jobs and approximately US$ 4500 million economic impact for India over a period from 2008 to 2012.

The Commonwealth is a voluntary association of 54 countries that support each other and work together towards shared goals in democracy and development under the leadership of Queen Elizabeth II. The world’s largest and smallest, richest and poorest countries make up the Commonwealth and are home to two billion citizens of all faiths and ethnicities – over half of whom are 25 or under. Member countries span six continents and oceans from Africa (19) to Asia (8), the Americas (2), the Caribbean (12), Europe (3) and the South Pacific (10). Member countries of Organization of the Islamic conference (OIC) constitute approximately one fourth of the whole population of commonwealth nations while the Muslims population including non OIC countries are around fifty percent of whole nation. Muslim athletes represent major countries for various events but the Malaysia is lone Muslim country have the active participation in all events with 128 medals clinched so far. Highest group of 450 personnel and athletes participating in commonwealth games among Muslim countries are coming from Malaysia. Next prominent are Nigeria, Cameron, Bangladesh and Pakistan but the performances are negligible by these countries. Beside UK, Australia, New Zeeland and Canada, major expected foreign tourist influx in Delhi commonwealth would be from Bangladesh, Malaysia and Pakistan. Share of Muslim tourist among total one Lakh expected tourist during the games would be notable.

Keeping the needs of Muslim athletes and other ethnic group, games organizing committee is committed to provide an appropriate range of catering services to meet ethnic, religious and dietary requirement while also showcasing Delhi’s local cuisine and enabling athletes to perform at their best; deliver the highest quality standards of food, service and hospitality that is consistent with client expectations; and contribute to the achievement of environmental and sustainability objectives. Meat served during the game to athelets would be Halal as per the statement of Organizing committee consultant (catering). Regarding the hospitality, there are no such Halal standards for hotels and restaurants in India. However, all hotels have the good taste dishes of vegetarian foods which can be used to avoid the eating of possible Haram non vegetarian foods. Other Muslim favorable facilities like timing of Salah Schedule, indication of Masjids, space for Salah and availability of Quran are not available with any prominent starred hotels in Delhi. All are more leaned to Indian or western culture. Even game village which located off the National Highways 24 at the Noida intersection doesn’t have the easy access of Masjid. In the selection of restaurants, Halal lovers have multiple options in Delhi. Karim’s Hotels ranked amongst top restaurants in Asia by Time magazine have the unique test of Mughlai dishes located in Muslim populated areas of old Delhi near Jama Masjid and Nizamuddin near Dargah. Fasttrax are another chain of restaurants serving the pure Halal mead products in India taste like burger, samosas, rolls and sandwiches etc located at New friend colony. New friends colony near Jamia Millia Islamia area, Nizamuddin, Old Delhi are the major hubs for Halal restaurants offering the delicious Indian taste. MacDonald’s and KFC provide the Halal products but the standard not authenticated by any authority.

Muslim heritage monuments to visit in Delhi are Rahim-Khane-Khanam Tomb Delhi, Purana Quila, Sultangahri Tomb, Tughluqabad Fort, Kotla Feroz Shah, Safdarjung Tomb, Red Fort, Humayun Tomb and Qutab Minar while Jama Masjid, Fatahpuri Masjid and Nizamuddin Dargah are the other important religious places. During the game month, various Muslim cultural programs would be held at Ansari Auditorium, Jamia Millia Islamia like Ghalib (play on great Urdu poet) on 18-19th September, Kaifi aur Main (play on noted poet and activist Kaifi Azmi) on 20-21 September, Eidgah (play based on Prem Chand’s short story on the life of poor child celebrating Eid) on 22-23 September, Jashne Dilli Ghazal on 5th October at Town hall, Mushaira 4th October at Town hall and Qawwali 6-7 October at Town hall. Business meet would also be held at Taj palace on luxury goods, green manufacturing, water technology, infrastructure, mining, tourism and food etc.

Medical tourism especially ayurvedic and Unani would be flourish during the game. According to ASSOCHAM estimates, it would fetch over Rs. 800 crore of revenue during the glaring event and ayurvedic industry would alone earn a business of Rs. 500 crore. Unani is a part of ayurvedic industry, which is completely Halal prepared by halal ingredients and dominated by religious Muslim owners like Hamdard, Rex, Dehelvi, Shama etc. that have the distinctive verities of medicine on different diseases.

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