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Part 3 of Indo-Pak cricket

August 26, 2003 21:00 IST

Parag Samant: The article which you referred to says: Verma said: 'How can we send the cricket team to play in Pakistan, when they are supporting terrorist activities in Kashmir?'

This very much sums it up, doesn't it? Pak is ONE entity, it cannot kill you with the left hand and let the right hand say...hey forget what the left one is doing, that's not me!!!

Imtiaz Nadaf: I think the reason for severing cricketing ties with Pak is very simple - lack of consistent policy. The leaders dont have a clue how to deal with Pak diplomaticaly/militarily, so they use cricketing ties as way to show how tough they are on pak. Not playing cricket is the only consistent policy statement our leaders have come up with regards Pak. Not that Pak gives a fig about it anyway, they infact exploit this policy to play hurt and inturn score some points in International community.

Chirag Patel: First of all i love your columns and your approach to the game of cricket. Now, about the Under-19 cricket team travelling to Pakistan, i think government should not permit them to go pakistan. Mostly due to the security issue, i dont think they are able to provide our cricketers the type of security they need, Yes, as long as playing on neutral venues other than Sharjah is concerned, govt should permit that if it is permitting other sports to be played between the two nations( like hockey). But as a indian, i personally think that we should cutoff each and every relationship (including sport) with that country untill the cross-border terrorism completely stop, or at least they admit that the killing going on at LoC is not a "Jihad" but it's 100% pure terrorism and until they give up their 100% pure anti-india attitude.

Sampath: I've long been ur fan.since we all know how soft n pussy footed the govt is when dealing with the jehadis frm pakistan, we all hafta appreciate the stand of no cricket with them damn pakis. besides it wud also serve to ruin the finances of pcb.y play n y this sports n politics r separate trash talk.does anyone really believe sports n politics dont mix after olympics bans apartheid even the recent world cup fiasco.ofcourse the whole attitude of our ppl has to change frm being suckers of peace to pursuing a tough as nails practical and strategic interest oriented policy towards anyone- not just the lousy neighbor on our immediate west. hope u keep writing stuff.

Subra Srinivasan: Read your most recent column, and in the footnote asking for responses about the India U-19 tour to Pakistan being called off.

First off, I wonder why this is even an issue. When there was a diplomatic embargo against South Africa, didn't we refuse to play the Davis Cup final against them. There are many more instances like this.

There are some things that are way more important that pieces of sporting events. We may consider the cricketing ethos to be a very important part of our national psyche. But, it just doesn't make sense, for us to, on the one hand, accuse a country of crime after crime, of the worst nature, and then turn around, and play sporting events with them, on the some silly pretext like separating politics from sports.

This is all about money. BCCI wants to make a killing on an India-Pak series. The Pak cricket board despartely needs money, and credibility. Only playing India could give them both.

I guess the point that most people miss is that, BCCI is really not the Indian Govt. Playing for BCCI is not, in technical terms, playing for the country. It is not like playing for the Indian Olympic Association, a Govt. mandated organization. The BCCI is a law unto itself, never has subjected itself to proper working methods, that most other organizations are supposed to adhere to.

Only in the BCCI, can we have secretaries bask in five-star hotels and enjoy first-class airfares and a five-day vacation for a one-day meeting. Excess and waste are terms that could easily apply in any combination to BCCI. In contrast, the players playing domestic cricket are paid a pittance, made to travel sleeper class in trains, and so on. The BCCI  is a disgrace, and to hear it talk about the necessity of playing Pakistan, at whatever level, when the armies of India and Pak, stand toe to toe, gun barrel to gun barrel, is a classic case of misplaced priorities.

I think it is time, Indian Cricket rid itself of the BCCI, and it is absolutely the ripe time, for a professional domestic cricket league, that will be run on the model of the NBA. There is so much talent in India for cricket, and the money needs to go where it belongs : the majority of the players. It is time for the spectators to have enjoyable experiences when they go to a game, instead of having to suffer inhumanly in sweltering heat in overcrowded and outdated stadiums.

This is just the absolute right time. There is money in the game, we have the players, television can fuel popularity and revenues, the standard of our domestic game can elevate to a much higher level than the rest of the national teams. In short, we can a cricket version of the NBA. That is, if we stop hanging on to this mindless obsession to play Pakistan, and start planning for a cricketing life without the BCCI...

Saimad Narayan: Has it really been 6 months since the World Cup? Time flies. Living outside a cricket playing nation and being able to watch every ball of the World Cup with enthusiatic supporters(friends), it was just awesome!!!

Now, back to reality.

Yes, I do agree with the government for once. I dont think we should play any sport with Pakistan until cross border terrorism stops completely. Maintaining cricketing relations or any other sporting relations is a farce when you cannot guarantee safety of hundreds of civilians within your own border. And its actually playing into the hands of Pakistan - there is no clear separation b/w cricket(sports), politics and pro-Kashmir militants. Mind you, we are not the only country to not play in Pakistan in the last few years.

Today's Blog: Gentlemen, Play? Not!

Previous Blog: In Praise of Sourav


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