Pakistan sports minister demands inquiry into IPL snub
After suggesting that the Pakistan cricketers boycott this year's Champions League Twenty20 and the 2011 edition of the IPL, the country's sports minister Ijaz Jhakrani has asked the Indian government to start an inquiry into why not a single Pakistan player was bid for in the IPL auction on January 19.
"We want the government of India to intervene in this issue and let us know who was responsible in keeping Pakistan cricketers away from the IPL," Jhakrani told AP. "From day one our stance is that the IPL decision was an influenced one."
The eight IPL franchises did not consider buying anyone from Pakistan because they were uncertain of their availability, despite all 11 players obtaining the necessary clearances from their government and the Pakistan Cricket Board. India's home minister P Chidambaram sympathised with the players, saying their non-selection was a disservice to cricket. Shah Rukh Khan, the co-owner of the Kolkata Knight Riders, said their exclusion was humiliating.
"His [Chidambaram's] statement is a positive sign and it vindicates our stance, and I would appreciate if the government of India interferes in this [IPL] issue," Jhakrani said. "Their statements make it crystal clear that there was involvement of a third player in influencing the IPL auction."
Both the Indian government and the BCCI were quick to distance themselves from the results of the auction after Pakistan players reacted with anger. Jhakrani had also complained to his Indian counterpart and the PCB raised the issue with the ICC. There were calls for the Pakistan hockey team to pull out of next month's World Cup in India, and a parliamentary committee canceled a trip to India in protest. Jhakrani added that a Pakistan golf team's tour of India had also been put on hold.