Image Source : Pakistan skipper Babar Azam plays a shot during the ICC men’s Twenty20 World Cup cricket match between India and Pakistan at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai on October 24. — AFP/File

India denies visa, Pakistan in trouble for T20 Blind World Cup

Is politics above sports? Visa is a prime issue for Pakistan to participate in the third T20 Blind World Cup starting from December 6, in India.

The Pakistan Blind Cricket Council (PBCC) has drawn a strong statement regarding the denial of visas which said that India’s decision was based on ‘political grounds’ saying, “this unfortunate incident has left the Pakistan blind cricket team in the lurch.” Pakistan’s blind cricket team had been runners-up in 2012 and 2017.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan said, “As a result of the Indian decision, Pakistani players would be deprived of the opportunity to participate in an international sporting event of special significance. The sports events must not be politicised.” The ministry again added that Islamabad had expressed ‘disappointment’ over the issue to the Indian side.

The PBCC declared that, “The PBCC strongly condemns this discriminating act of India as sports should be above regional politics…Our counterpart Blind Cricket Association in India pleaded (with) their government for Pakistan’s clearance but nothing was heard.” The latter accused the Indian government of violating the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

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