Pakistan cricket fans and journalists are furious with the Board of Control for Cricket in India and the Indian government after being unable to acquire Indian visas to watch and cover the ongoing ICC World Cup 2023.
There has been a massive hue and cry over the rejection and delay in issuance of Indian visas to Pakistani nationals who want to come here and attend the prestigious ODI tournament.
Nearly 60 Pakistani journalists are waiting to get their Indian visas so that they can cover the World Cup. The visa application needed to be vetted by home, external affairs and sports ministries as Pakistan is on India's prior reference category (PRC) list.
PCB chief urges Pak Foreign Secretary to solve the issue
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief Zaka Ashraf even met with the Foreign Secretary Syrus Sajjad Qazi on Monday to discuss the delay in visa issuance to Pakistani fans and journalists.
Ashraf has urged Qazi to step in and solve the issue at the earliest by taking it up with the Indian Home Ministry and Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi.
"PCB is extremely disappointed to see that journalists from Pakistan and fans are still facing uncertainty about obtaining an Indian visa to cover Pakistan games in ICC World Cup 2023.
"In the meantime, PCB has again reminded ICC and BCCI of their respective obligations and terms and conditions stipulated in the Host agreement to guarantee visas for fans and journalists of participating teams," the statement said.
Pak fan goes on a rant against BCCI & ICC
Meanwhile, die-hard Pakistani cricket fan Farid Khan shared a video on social media in which he slammed the BCCI and ICC for the visa issue.
Khan, who was a massive following on X (formerly Twitter), also urged the Pakistan men's team to return from the World Cup and his country's media to boycott the tournament in India.
"14,000 tickets were released for India vs Pakistan and none of them available for citizens outside India. Hum nahin rukenge sach bolne se. We'll keep on raising our voice," Khan tweeted.
India vs Pakistan on Oct 14
Pakistan opened their World Cup campaign against the Netherlands in Hyderabad and won the match by 81 runs and are currently playing against Sri Lanka at the same venue in their second game.
India meanwhile, crushed Australia in their opening encounter and will next face Afghanistan in Delhi on October 11.
India and Pakistan will then lock horns in the biggest match of the World Cup at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on October 14.