NEW DELHI (AFP) The example of Vikas Kumar might explain why many Commonwealth Games athletes have been competing in near-empty stadiums in the Indian capital this week. The 25-year-old construction foreman says he would be interested in seeing some of the sporting events on offer, but has no idea how much tickets cost. No one knows what the prices are. Everyone thinks its too expensive. If it was properly advertised, the Games would get a big crowd, Kumar told AFP on the streets of central New Delhi. In fact tickets to several Games events begin at 100 rupees (2.25 dollars), which should be within reach of even lower-middle-class Delhiites. The low attendance for even some of the major sports so far barely 100 people were at the 16,000-capacity hockey stadium for one match on Tuesday has again focused attention on the events controversial organisation. There has been almost no advertising to promote the Games, while few in India play or have even heard of some of the disciplines, such as lawn bowls. The ticket sales network was put in place at the last minute, with the main points of sale branches of the state-run Central Bank of India, railway and official tourism offices, as well as some motorcycle showrooms. Braving the slow-moving queues and paperwork in the state-run offices requires patience even in a country accustomed to bureaucracy. A bystander who stood in line for an hour outside a branch of the Central Bank of India described a chaotic scene on Tuesday as at least 140 people waited to get tickets. Tempers began running high as people kept waiting. It was complete chaos, with no one there to guide us, she said, adding she finally left without buying. Ticket costs range from 100 rupees up to 750 rupees, but many locals appeared to have been confused by some of the high prices quoted for the sell-out opening ceremony, where some tickets were on sale for 50,000 rupees. The slickly designed official Games website sales channel, which is limited to those with regular access to the Internet and credit cards, still has tickets available for most events up to the last day on October 14. Other residents interviewed by AFP said they were also worried about tight security at venues, which has led to long queues. Police are confiscating many items from spectators, including coins. The slow ticket take-up could also reflect the absence of major crowd-pulling stars such as Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt or marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe. Equally, the first few days of the Games have clashed with the countrys main sporting passion, cricket. Many Indians have been glued to the television watching the nail-biting finish to the first test match between India and Australia, which concluded Tuesday with an Indian victory. Sports marketing consultant Indranil Das Blah of Kwan, a consultancy, criticised the last-minute preparations. Kiosks are being set up at stadiums today (Tuesday). If they had done this two weeks ago, the response would be much better, he said. He said that for most global sporting events a ticketing plan was announced three months in advance, with a lot of outdoor advertising. The sluggish sales come in the wake of corruption scandals and concerns about poor security and shoddy construction at the Games venues. Embattled Games supremo Suresh Kalmadi on Tuesday blamed empty venues on ticket booths not being set up outside stadiums in time, but insisted the blunder had been fixed. Commonwealth Games Federation president Mike Fennell admitted that the lack of spectators was one of the issues causing concern. The last edition of the Games, held in Melbourne in 2006, had an all-time high in ticket sales of 1.6 million, according to Australias foreign office. Kalmadi said that so far 600,000 tickets had been sold out of a total of more than two million for the Delhi Games. He promised an impressive turnout and said organisers were looking at giving away tickets to schoolchildren and people from the lower level of society to help fill stadiums. Housewife Nidhu Khanna told AFP that her teenage children were keen to attend the Games, but said she worried for their safety amid unruly crowds. Businessman Rajeev Bagga said he had planned to attend the Games before a terrifying experience at the World Cup hockey finals in New Delhi in March led him to change his mind. While we were coming out, there was a stampede-like situation at the exit there was this big iron gate that was closed and people were getting crushed, he recalled.