Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee Chairman Zaka Ashraf has raised concerns with Foreign Secretary Syrus Sajjad Qazi over the delay in issuing India visas to fans and journalists who want to cover the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.

The chairman also requested the Foreign Secretary to take up the issue with Indian Home Ministry through Pakistan High Commission Office in New Delhi. The PCB has also taken serious notice of security threats being reported in Indian media and requested the government to evaluate players security in India. He emphasised that the well-being and safety of the Pakistan squad was of paramount importance.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.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.Meanwhile, World Cup 2023 presenter Zainab Abbas has left India after an Indian lawyer filed a complaint against her over alleged “anti-Hindu” statements.A spokesperson for the International Cricket Council (ICC) confirmed to Geo News that the presenter had left the country due to “personal reasons” and dismissed deportation reports. An Indian lawyer had reportedly approached the police for the registration of a complaint against Abbas for allegedly issuing statements against India and Hinduism.The presenter said she was always intrigued to discover what lies in India. India and Pakistan are neighbours but not many cultural exchanges take place due to strained ties between the two countries.“There was always intrigue on what lies on the other side, more cultural similarities than differences, rivals on the field but camaraderie off the field, the same language and love for art and a country with a billion people, here to represent, to create content & bring in expertise from the best in the business,” said Zainab.The presenter added that she was humbled to present in India during the World Cup for the ICC again. “A journey away from home of 6 weeks starts now,” she said. It is important to note that India has yet to grant visas to Pakistani fans and journalists despite many reminders by the Pakistan Cricket Board.Abbas was announced as one of the presenters for this year’s World Cup earlier this month. The presenter was really excited about the opportunity to travel to India when the announcement was made. Taking to X, formerly known as Twitter, the presenter had said that she was “humbled” by the idea of joining the star-studded line-up of commentators and presenters for the mega event.


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2023-10-10

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