Ahead of the high-profile Champions Trophy clash between India and Pakistan in Birmingham on Sunday, senior Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) official Rajeev Shukla on Friday claimed that the Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) failure to provide adequate security at their home venues is the reason behind other teams refusing to play bilateral series in Pakistan.
Shukla further reiterated that they would not go ahead with the proposed bilateral series against Pakistan until they get the Indian government’s approval.
“I would like to ask Pakistan that as to why they don’t provide proper security at their home venues. Pakistan must provide security to other nations so that the teams can play on their home soil. They are failing to provide adequate security at their own venues and are rather asking teams to play in Dubai or some other place. So, until we get approval from government, we will not play the bilateral series,” Shukla said in an exclusive conversation with ANI.
When quizzed as to why India is playing against their arch-rivals in ICC Champions Trophy, Shukla said that it is an international commitment and the breach of the same could lead to penalty and other adverse effects.
“This is an ICC tournament. There is an agreement by ICC where every nation has to play as it is an international commitment. The refusal of the same led to fine or penalty and could lead to adverse effects. As far as bilateral series is concerned, we will not go ahead with the series until we get our government’s permission because of the security concerns,” he said.
According to the 2014 agreement, India were scheduled to play six series against Pakistan , four of them were going to be Pakistan’s home series, subject to clearance from the Government of India. The two Asian neighbours have not played a full bilateral series after the Mumbai terror attacks in November 2008.
Meanwhile, Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) had recently cancelled the friendly matches including initially agreed terms of mutual cricketing relationship with Pakistan in light of a truck bombing in Kabul’s diplomatic quarter that killed claimed more than 80 lives and injured hundreds.
No Test side has toured Pakistan since the March 2009 militants attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team bus in Lahore, killing six Pakistani policemen and injuring some of the visiting players. However, low-ranked sides namely Afghanistan and Zimbabwe had toured the country for a limited-over series.