Board of Control for Cricket in India’s (BCCI) senior most official and Indian Premier League Chairman Rajeev Shukla put on a straight forward answer by stating owing to security concerns Team India will not visit Pakistan until and unless conditions will normalise in the country.
“They have sent a notice and we will give appropriate response. We have had a consistent policy that we will play on each other’s soil. Pakistan’s security situation is not such where you can have a series on their soil,” Shukla was quoted as saying by PTI.
The 57-year-old Shukla added other cricket boards have raised a question over the security concerns in the recent past before considering to play a bilateral series in Pakistan.
“Only Zimbabwe has played a series and no other countries are touring Pakistan because they are not being able to provide adequate security,” Shukla said.
It becomes pertinent here that both the neighbouring countries are facing the escalating political tensions.
Earlier, Pakistan Cricket Board under the tutelage of its Chairman Shaharyar Khan has sent a legal complaint to BCCI while alleging that Indian cricket board has not honoured the Memorandum of Understanding which was signed by both the boards in 2014.
PCB in its fresh notice to PCB has asked its Indian counterpart BCCI for the compensation of USD 6.9 million.
Shukla, who is the Member of Parliament (MP), further stated has advised Pakistan to provide ‘foolproof security’ particularly for Indian players while adding the board would not like to put the life in danger of players.
“First you make your venues such where you can provide foolproof security. And for India, the security concerns are even more. How can we risk our players,” Shukla asserted.
The former BCCI vice-president Shukla, who has played a significant role for BCCI in the past, is further of the view that government has a final say in this regard.
“Also BCCI’s stated position is that we need government permission. How can we proceed till we get government permission?,” Shukla further added.
As there are neutral venues available as an option while setting an example in India can play in the United States against the West Indies Shukla adding the agreement was signed to play bilateral series in both the countries.
On the other side, BCCI’s joint secretary Amitabh Choudhary dictated that to discuss Pakistan series government is there to take a call in this regard.
“I can assure you this is a subject on which government has to accord permission. BCCI has already written to government in March regarding out Futures Tours & Programmes (FTP),” Choudhary said.
Choudhary further added one has to honour the commitments regarding Futures Tours and Programmes (FTP) which is further subject to government clearance.
“Where it’s FTP between two countries, it’s a contract both will try to honour. So unless we get permission from them, I can’t make a comment,” Choudhary concluded.
Interestingly, India-Pakistan played their last bilateral One-day International series in 2013, which hosts India won by 2-1.