Former Pakistan cricketer Rashid Latif has come down hard on the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the delay in visas for the men's national team ahead of the ICC World Cup 2023.
Pakistani players and support staff are yet to get their visas from the Indian High Commission in Islamabad. They were supposed to go to Dubai for a two-day team bonding camp before leaving for India on September 27.
But the PCB has cancelled the trip to Dubai due to the visa delay. The Indian High Commission in Islamabad has not yet released the visas.
PCB has raised the issue with the International Cricket Council (ICC) as Pakistan is supposed to play a warm-up game against New Zealand in Hyderabad on September 29.
"BCCI’s Anti Pakistan narrative all have been relevant to cricket during BJP’s times.
"Home Ministry (Interior) headed by Amit Shah hasn’t so far issued NOC for the release of visas for the Pakistan team.
"Jay Shah, Amit Shah’s son is BCCI’s Secretary. India is the board having signed host agreement with the ICC. They can’t stop visas.
"Should Pakistan lodge a complaint to ICC for BCCI playing politics? Should they refuse going to India," Latif tweeted on X.
Pakistan's itinerary for World Cup 2023
When it comes to issuing an Indian visa to a Pakistan passport holder, clearances need to come from three ministries home, external affairs and sports.
The process takes time which explains the delay in issuing visas to the 33-member Pakistani contingent which will come to India for the World Cup starting October 5.
Pakistan are scheduled to play their second warm-up match against Australia on October 3 in Hyderabad.
They will remain in the city for their opening two World Cup games against Netherlands and Sri Lanka on October 6 and 10 respectively before flying to Ahmedabad for the marquee clash against hosts India on October 14.