Two deadly Cobra snakes have been found in the Commonwealth Games 2010 venue in Delhi. A three and half foot snake was found along the drain of the tennis stadium, while another snake scared a South African athlete in his room resulting in a warning from the South African High Commissioner that their athletes may pull out due to safety concerns.
The Indian Cobra is highly venomous and can attack or defend itself from a distance by “spitting” out venom in two jets for over two metres, which if it enters the eyes or cut skin causes severe pain, damage and can also be fatal. It is an endangered species with its skin popular for making handbags due to its distinct markings.
Heavy monsoons have caused near flooding situation in the Yamuna river flowing through Delhi and the swollen river banks near the Games Village are believed to have caused many of the snakes to seek refuge in the games venue stadiums and the athlete’s village.
About a week remain into the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games and the scares are a source of constant embarassment to the Indian organisers of the Commonwealth Games. London 2012 Chief, Sebastian Coe, is slated to visit Delhi as an observer ahead of the opening ceremony this sunday. Meanwhile, Australian cyclist Travis Meyer and table tennis player Stephanie Sang announced their absence from the games. Another Indian Boxing participant Akhil Kumar expressed his dissatisfaction with the accommodation saying that his bed collapsed as he sat to take rest. Apparently, his mattress was placed on the bed frame without a support underneath.
Around 7000 athletes are expected to participate in the 2010 Commonwealth Games from the 71 countries that once formed the British Empire. The Indian Commonwealth Games organisers are battling construction and preparation delays, unfinished sub-standard and unhygenic accommodation at the venue.
While some countries initially expressed their intention of pulling out, recent reports suggest that conditions have improved greatly during the past few days. While snakes have failed to charm the participant teams, the video below shows the attitude required to tackle them.