Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has called for a ban in cricket ties with Pakistan in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack which left 40 CRPF soldiers dead. India and Pakistan do not play bilateral cricket but play each other in ICC events.
Last September, India played Pakistan in the Asia Cup twice. In 2017, India and Pakistan had played each other in the Champions Trophy. They are next scheduled to play in the 2019 Cricket World Cup in Manchester on June 16. However, voices in India want BCCI to boycott the match against Pakistan.
India cricketer Harbhajan Singh, speaking to India Today, said India should not play Pakistan in the World Cup after Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad claimed responsibility for the ghastly attack in Pulwama.
“I cannot make any comment [on cricket issues] except to say those who are demanding it have some justification. You can see many films and concerts have been cancelled. Things are not normal. If things are not normal, the jhappiyan-pappiyan (hugs and kisses) issues have always been there,” Prasad told India Today.
“Since it’s an international tournament, the ICC and our Indian cricket board (BCCI) have to take a call after consideration with our security establishment.
“But I don’t wish away their concern. It’s time to say no. Mr Imran Khan had no word of condolence for those who were killed,” he said.
Indian Premier League chairman Rajeev Shukla on Wednesday confirmed that the BCCI will act upon whatever decision the government takes in this matter.
“No bilateral matches happening from the last 10 years between India and Pakistan. India is only playing Pakistan in ICC tournaments. Now, we in the BCCI will follow further government decision on it.
“BCCI CEO will follow government order, whether India has to play ICC matches with Pakistan or not. If government thinks that India should not play vs Pakistan, BCCI will definitely follow the instruction,” former BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla said on Indo-Pak cricket.
“BCCI’s decision on India-Pakistan has always been based on government advise. Any decision that BCCI COA takes should be after calling an SGM and taking into account all the members’ views,” former BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah said.
Meanwhile, ICC CEO Dave Richardson said there was no indication yet that the India-Pakistan match would not go ahead as planned on June 16.
“Our thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by this terrible incident and we will be monitoring the situation with our Members,” Richardson said, offering his condolences on the ghastly terror attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were martyred.
“There is no indication that any (of the) matches at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup will not go ahead as planned,” Richardson said in a statement to PTI.