By Duncan Mackay


November 25 - India is not ready to bid to launch a bid for the Olympics and most people in the country do not want to host it, Sports Minister M.S. Gill claimed today.


His comments appear to dash the hopes of New Delhi bidding for the 2020 Olympics, which they had been expected to do if they staged a successful Commonwealth Games next year. 


Gill's remarks came in response to a statement made by actor-turned-politician of Samajwadi Party (SP) Jaya Bachchan, who reportedly said that the Commonwealth Games gives an opportunity to bid for the Olympics.


Gill said: "I have heard it before and I heard my distinguished colleagues say that India should be thinking of the Olympics.


"But, I am not sure whether India should.


"Look at the poverty in this country, look at its size, look at your urban problem.


"There is a certain class among us who want these great events because it's a good entertainment and good fun for that time.


"But, I do not think that the common man wants an Olympic Games.


"China spent $50 billion (£30 billion) to stage the event.


"If you are ready and if you think you can take care, think of it."


Gill said that the country's focus at the moment was on ensuring that the Commonwealth Games are a success amid mounting international fears that New Delhi will not be ready in time for the event which opens on October 3, 2010.


He said: "Let's come out of it [the Commonwealth Games] with dignity and honour so we do not have to face an embarrassment."


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