Will India-Pakistan bilateral cricket ties resume, answers Dr S Jaishankar: Quite often the cricket-watching population of India and Pakistan indulges themselves in the debate whether the two aforementioned sides will ever reach a position to resume bilateral cricket, which is been suspended since 2012. Recently, the same question was raised to India’s Foreign Minister, Dr S Jaishankar when he was present in Agenda Aaj Tak, to which the minister replied with a clear-cut negative.
Dr S Jaishankar reiterated the Indian government’s stance on cross-border terrorism and dismissed the cricketing ties between India and Pakistan.
“If your neighbour openly promotes terror, will you talk to them? Our aim is to see how they can be brought out of the clutches of terror. It is an exceptional situation on the India-Pakistan border. But we hope they leave the path of terror,” said the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
“Will you talk to your neighbour if he holds a gun to your head?” the minister further asked.
The query was raised as there have been several back-and-forth statements between the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Indian office bearers in the recent past regarding the participation of India in the Asia Cup 2023, which will be held in Pakistan. A couple of months ago, Jay Shah, BCCI secretary and Asian Cricket Council (ACC) chief, said that Asia Cup 2023 will have to be shifted to a neutral venue from Pakistan, then only India will participate in the event.
Ramiz Raja, the Pakistan Cricket Board chairman, soon retaliated by threatening to pull out of the ODI World Cup 2023 which will be hosted by India if the Indians don’t visit Pakistan for the Asia Cup 2023.
Recapitulating the stance of the Indian government the EAM minister added that it won’t allow its players to visit a country that funds terror.
“You know our stand on cricket. We should never accept that a country has the right to sponsor terror. Unless we don’t delegitimize this, it will continue. So, there should be global pressure on Pakistan. The pressure won’t come unless the victims of terror don’t voice themselves. India should, in a way, lead the way because our blood is spilled,” said EAM S Jaishankar.
India faced Pakistan recently in the stage of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia. The two sides produced a thrilling encounter where India thrashed Pakistan by 4 wickets at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).