World T20 2016 news March 5, 2016

Pakistan delegation to assess security arrangements in India

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Bazid: 'Pakistan could refuse to play in Dharamsala'

The Pakistan government has constituted a three-member security delegation, headed by a senior director of the Federal Investigation Agency, to assess the security arrangements for the Pakistan men and women's team in India for the upcoming World T20. The security team left for India on Monday and will take a final call by Wednesday.*

The government had initially granted the PCB permission to play in India, but the board has decided to put the visit on hold until they are guaranteed foolproof security. The PCB's move was prompted after the Himachal Pradesh chief minister Virbhadra Singh had expressed his state government's difficulty in providing security for the India-Pakistan match in Dharamsala, scheduled for March 19.

Chaudhry Nisar Khan, Pakistan's interior minister, told a press gathering in Islamabad that the three-member team comprises Usman Anwar of the FIA, a PCB official and an official from the Pakistan High Commission in India. He said that it is the responsibility of the Indian government to ensure security of the Pakistan team, as the World T20 is an international tournament.

"I have asked the PCB chairman to wait, and the team can wait until the security clearance is assured," Nisar Khan said. "We can delay our team's departure till we are sure that they will be safe in India.

"If the security team's initial report is positive, our cricket team will leave for India as per schedule on Wednesday otherwise we may delay the team's departure. We not only want our team's security in hotels and on routes, but want our players to play cricket without any worries in grounds where thousands of people will accumulate for the match. We will only give a green signal for the team to go to India once we get security clearance."

The PCB has adopted a cautious approach regarding the security situation. PCB chairman, Shaharyar Khan, has said that the threats against the Pakistan team are specific and threatened to pull out of the tournament unless the PCB gets a clear message about the security situation from the Indian government. He also called for India to publicly acknowledge Pakistan's participation in the tournament and to also promise full security to their cricket team.

Pakistan have returned from Bangladesh, where they failed to qualify for the final of the ongoing Asia Cup. Both the men's and women's teams are scheduled to depart from Lahore on Wednesday for India, subject to the security clearance.

*07.00GMT, March 7: This article was updated after Pakistan's security delegation arrived in India.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalson

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Farhan020328 on March 8, 2016, 5:20 GMT

    One of the most amusing matters of Cricket, ever. A hosting country is not giving any assurance (or may not interested to host) on security for another team (traditional rivals) and the Dad of the game is silent as if nothing has happened. Pak should not visit India and if possible, look to participate another game which is not dominated by India

  • siddiqimali on March 8, 2016, 5:00 GMT

    I fail to understand why Indian govt cannot give assurance. Indian govt and thier allys previously made sure the tour to Pakistan doesn't go through and they want the same in the T20 WC. Pakistan will be at loss if they do not play in the tournament. And who will be the winner of this situation, please read between the lines. So buckle up Pakistan team, go there any win for the people of Pakistan.

  • cricfan82557996 on March 8, 2016, 4:05 GMT

    Is it a case of can't provide security. Or a simple ignorance.. Won't provide security.. Every self respecting nation would ensure safety to individuals who visit their country.. I really feel this a shame for India and the great people who live there.. Very bad day for cricket ..where politics should have no place..

  • Jose...P on March 8, 2016, 3:35 GMT

    @KHURRAM S CHAUDHRY ON MARCH 6, 2016, 21:32 GMT:

    Your comments always had been balanced and serious. But this time....

    On the one hand, you say,

    "BCCI isn't a security service. they will be dependent on state govt to provide security"

    On the other hand, you ended up saying that,

    "it shouldn't be a problem if Indian govt and bcci is serious".

    I can understand the Indian Govt part. But comment on the BCCI in the same breath seems to be inconsistent with what you said in the beginning

    The problem stems from the local politics of the sate of Himachal Pradesh (HP). The BCCI Secretary & the local CM belong to two different political parties who are at loggerheads at each other, all the time. The Govt in Delhi & HP also belong to opposing political parties. The Dharamsala match is getting caught in the crossfire. This has nothing to do with the overall safety for international cricketers playing in India.

  • FrostD on March 7, 2016, 18:01 GMT

    Simple solution is to give Pakistan and India 1 point each. Or if you really want them to face each other, play the match in Kolkata. I'm sure Mamta Banerjee will provide full security. C'mon, it will be the most revenue generating match of the tournament. I'm certain, it will generate 50% of the entire tournament's revenue. You gotta spend a little to gain a little, so spend well on security and gain a lot more.

  • lovemybharath on March 7, 2016, 13:16 GMT

    India atleast saying it can't assure safety. What happened to SL when they toured. Sorry mates one should not throw stones at others sitting in a glass house

  • nasir uddin on March 7, 2016, 8:42 GMT

    pak should not go in india...

  • CanadianSport on March 7, 2016, 8:21 GMT

    Honestly the Icc should step in. If India can't even give a public statement that Pakistan is safe in their country, then it shouldn't be hosting a world event like the World cup.

  • forExcelienceInCricket on March 7, 2016, 8:18 GMT

    IPL is the best cricketing event in yearly calendar of world cricket. IND hosts top & upcoming cricketers from many nations in IPL and provides adequate security to all. IND has great admiration for cricketers from all countries including PAK. There is no merit in arguments that PAK should not participate in T20WC 2016. At the same time BCCI needs to interact with PCB to address their concerns. The derogatory references by some posters against IND political parties are in poor taste.

  •   JM Miller on March 7, 2016, 5:40 GMT

    Pakistan is big country of world cricket .i am confused why other boards and ICC are silent on this issue.and also its give bad of image of India to world.i hope Pakistan will be play the t20 world cup and India should take the responsibility of security

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