Cricket

Rajeev Shukla: 'If Lahore is made a safe venue then India will play Pakistan there'

In a new development, it was known that BCCI has asked the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to start developing a safe venue at home instead of continuing play at adopted “home” in UAE.

Rajeev Shukla, the chairman of the IPL, said that Pakistan needed to assure India safe venues instead of playing in UAE. 

Shukla maintained that the PCB and Pakistan government should sit together and make Lahore a safe venue and invite teams play there.

“If one incident happened does it mean there should no cricket in Pakistan,” he said referring to the militants attack on the Sri Lankan team in March 2009 after which top test teams have refused to tour Pakistan because of security concerns.

“I would say build on the success of the tour by Zimbabwe to Lahore,” he added.

“If Pakistan continues to play in UAE its cricket will slowly slowly suffer. Lahore can easily be made into a safe venue,” Shukla said on Geo News channel.

“If PCB makes Lahore a safe venue by constructing a team hotel near it and by providing adequate security than India will have no objection to playing in Lahore,” he said.

But Shukla made it clear that India would be willing to play in Lahore if Pakistan gave the International Cricket Council proper security assurance and other member boards also had no objection to playing there.

“If Lahore is made a safe venue than everyone will come and play there.”

Shukla was reminded about the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) the two boards signed, But Shukla said it was signed when someone else head the ICC  and BCCI.

“Now our current President wants Pakistan and India to play against each other but in each other’s countries,” he added.

 

 

“We are saying this time come and play in India we are ready to compensate for the home series losses we will give bigger participation fees and when things improve in Pakistan we will go there and play one or two series. We have no issues,” he said.

Shukla also said India will cater adequate security for Pakistan if they visit India in December and also compensate the PCB well.

“I don’t think this is such a big issue … why to make an ego issue of it and insist on playing in Dubai only,” he stated.

Shukla, however, was asked why did India not agree to play in UAE when it had held a leg of the IPL in Dubai this year. He gave a direct reply and said Pakistan should stop making it big issue. Shukla said other teams can have no objection in playing in UAE, but BCCI has its own policies.

“We have our own policy. We don’t care about what other countries do and what is their policy,” he said.

“We want resumption of cricket ties with Pakistan.”

Shukla also insisted that when the PCB delegation visited Mumbai the Shiv Sena activists had not bothered or touched them.

“They came to the Wankhede stadium and spoke to the BCCI President and they raised slogans, but they didn’t bother the PCB officials.”

 

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