The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) vice-president Rajeev Shukla on Thursday that they will continue to boycott bilateral ties with Pakistan cricket after calls to avoid playing against Men in Green in the ongoing Asia Cup 2023 grew louder following the Anantnag encounter in Jammu & Kashmir.
Bilateral cricket between India and Pakistan stopped after 2012 due to the tense relations between the two nations. The two teams have only met each other at ICC and ACC tournaments since then.
BCCI bosses visit Pakistan
Shukla and BCCI president Roger Binny recently visited Lahore for two days after which they made it clear that bilateral ties will only resume if the board gets approval from the Indian government.
But the latest encounter between the Indian armed forces and Pakistan-based terrorists have added fuel to the already-burning fire again.
Fans furious after Anantnag encounter
Fans have urged the Indian team players to wear black armbands to honour the three martyred soldiers while some are even calling for a complete boycott of Pakistan even at multi-nation tournaments.
India might face Pakistan for the third time on Sunday (Sept 17) in the Asia Cup 2023 after qualifying for the final earlier this week.
Shukla's response on calls for boycott
"We ask for strict action against the terrorists. In the past 20 years, all the government has fought against terrorism...The financial state of Pakistan is very bad and despite that supporting terrorism is neither in their interest nor in the world's interest.
"We salute the army, and police fighting there and it's very sad that three officers lost their lives...Talking about cricket, there's a very clear policy, we don't play any bilateral series with Pakistan," Shukla told ANI.
Details of the Anantnag encounter:
Three members of the Army, including a Battalion Commander Colonel and a Major, as well as a Deputy Superintendent from the Jammu and Kashmir Police, lost their lives during an intense firefight with terrorists in the remote Kokorenag region. Meanwhile, one soldier is currently unaccounted for, raising concerns about their well-being.
On Wednesday morning, Colonel Manpreet Singh, Major Ashish Dhonack, and Deputy Superintendent Humayun Bhat sustained critical injuries during the confrontation in the Garol area of Anantnag district.
Four bravehearts martyred
Tragically, despite receiving medical care, these brave officers could not overcome their injuries and passed away. Additionally, one brave jawan also lost their life during the encounter.
Authorities are currently searching for the missing soldier, but their condition remains uncertain, and there is a growing apprehension that they may have sustained serious injuries during the incident.