Salman Khurshid defended India’s refusal to play bilateral series against Pakistan
By Sandy - Oct 3, 2018 4:12 pm
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During the ICC’s Disputes Resolution Committee hearing on Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) compensation claim against the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Tuesday, former external affairs minister Salman Khurshid defended India’s refusal to play bilateral series against Pakistan.

Salman Khurshid

Due to cancelling back-to-back two bilateral series that have led massive losses for PCB, they took the legal action to ICC against BCCI where they have claimed around $70 million in compensation. According to the ICC’s Future Tours Programme (FTP) that had been agreed by both the boards in 2014, India and Pakistan had to play two bilateral series in November 2014 and December 2015.

A BCCI official told PTI, “Khurshid’s presence definitely took the PCB by surprise. They were not expecting a former MEA to come in for cross-examination. Also a legal expert. He gave UPA II’s stand on why India didn’t tour Pakistan post the Mumbai terror attacks in 2008.”

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The official said that Khurshid explained the reason why India refused to play in Pakistan as they felt it would be unsafe for the Indian cricket team.

The official said, “During the cross-examination Khurshid told the ICC’s Dispute Resolution Forum that the erstwhile UPA government acted on various world intelligence agencies’ reports on threat perception of playing cricket in Pakistan. He explained why it was impossible to send Indian cricket team to Pakistan after terror attacks.”

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The official further added that Khurshid clearly mentioned that the Indian government has no wished to resume the bilateral cricketing ties with Pakistan unless the cross-border terrorism stopped.

India and Pakistan

The official said, “Khurshid also clearly said that time and again the Indian government had made it clear that unless cross-border terrorism stopped, it would be difficult to resume bilateral cricketing ties.”

During the ongoing hearing, former IPL CEO Sundar Raman, former BCCI GM (Game development) Prof Ratnakar Shetty, present ICC chairman Shashank Manohar, and former BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel will also be cross-examined. BCCI is confident to win this case.

The official said, “We are confident that we will win the case. PCB’s bone of contention is a one-page email which doesn’t count as MoU. It was an email sent by Patel as a part of quid pro quo deal with PCB. They didn’t support our revenue model and the deal to play six bilaterals fell through.”