Govt rules out bilateral series with Pakistan

Minister of Sports, Vijay Goel, has played down the possibility of a potential India-Pakistan bilateral cricket series in near future. Cricket and terrorism cannot go simultaneously.

Officials on India and Pakistan cricket board had met in Dubai on Monday. According to Pakistan media reports, PCB executive committee chairman Najam Sethi has said that the second round of the meeting, if the first fails to produce any result, will be held in the presence of ICC chief executive officer Dave Richardson.

India has not played a bilateral series with Pakistan since 2007. Even though Pakistan had toured India in 2012-2013 for a short goodwill limited overs series. Pakistan Cricket Board has claimed to suffer $200million (Rs 1,300 crore) losses due to India’s refusal to play bilateral series.

Over the last couple of years, there have been multiple efforts from cricket boards of both countries to organize a cricket series between India and Pakistan, but political tensions have not allowed it to take place. And now amidst the Dubai meeting between the top officials from the BCCI and PCB in order to discuss the MoU signed between the two countries in 2014, Goel’s statement adds to it a further layer of uncertainty.

“India and Pakistan can’t play bilateral series till the terror from Pakistan remains,” Goel told reporters in New Delhi. “BCCI should speak to the government before giving any proposal to Pakistan. I have made it clear that bilateral cricket with Pakistan is not possible till the time there is cross-border terror. We have, however, no say on multilateral events (ICC tournaments).”