"India has arrived" this summed up the international media comments on the dazzling opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi on Sunday.
Newspapers in two major Commonwealth countries, Australia and Great Britain, used terms like 'An ancient land opens its heart to the world', 'India opens doors to the world at opening ceremony' and 'India sweeps aside Games shame' to describe the two-hour cultural extravaganza that unfolded at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium last night.
People across Britain watched the ceremony live on BBC and were all praise for it with NRI Industrialist Lord Swraj Paul summing up the public reaction by stating, "India has done itself proud. It was a great show."
The Guardian newspaper said it was a moment of national pride for India, which had drawn flak for the troubled build-up to the Games.
"'India has arrived': spectacular ceremony opens Commonwealth Games," read the newspaper's headline.
"Concerns of recent weeks forgotten as dazzling event launches games amid atmosphere of national pride and celebrations," it said.
The little known facts of the CWG Opening Ceremony
About 1,200 moving lights, 25 stacks of speakers and about 2,700 shots of fireworks spread across the roof of the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium combined with a stage weighing 500 tonnes to create a spectacular opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games here today. The gigantic main stage, inspired by the ''mandala'', a sanskrit word for the geometric designs symbolic of the universe in Hinduism and Buddhism, which is one of the largest built for an opening and closing ceremony.The stage was built within seven days by about 500 workers. Weighing an approximately 500 tonnes.
The stage is large enough to hold 500 people under it. The opening ceremony would have never been that spectacular had it not been for the lighting arrangements.
1,200 moving lights, 120 space cannons and 16 follow spots weighing approximately 75 tonnes was what it took to enchant the about 60,000 spectators. The 25 stacks of speakers produced 500,000 Watts of sound.
If one was impressed by the fireworks, it was because of the 2,700 shots spread over 88 locations on the roof of the stadium. The crowd had erupted in joy as the firecrackers went up in air heralding the beginning of the Games.
The entire system was supported by over 50 km of power cables that were used to provide constant power for the opening ceremony.