Saturday Jul 31, 2021
Former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi on Saturday lambasted the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for attempting to influence the Kashmir Premier League (KPL).
The star cricketer, in a tweet, said: "Really disappointing that BCCI is once again mixing cricket and politics!"
"KPL is a league for Kashmir, Pakistan and cricket fans around the world. We will put up a wonderful show and won't be deterred with such behaviour," he added.
Afridi's statement came after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Foreign Office, and Federal Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry had also condemned the BCCI's moves.
The PCB expressed displeasure over reports of multiple ICC members being called and forced to withdraw their retired cricketers from the KPL.
The PCB said it believes the BCCI has once again breached international norms and the spirit of the gentleman’s game by interfering in the internal affairs of the ICC members as the KPL has been approved by the PCB.
“PCB considers the BCCI has brought the game into disrepute by issuing warnings to multiple ICC members to stop their retired cricketers from featuring in the Kashmir Premier League, further threatening they will not be allowed entry into India for cricket-related work."
Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said the country condemns the “politicisation” of cricket by India and termed it an “unfortunate and regrettable” development.
In a statement on Twitter after the BCCI threatened foreign players for choosing to play in KPL, Chaudhri said depriving young Kashmiri players of the opportunity to share the dressing room with big names in cricket is "unfortunate and regrettable”.
“India’s politicisation of cricket cannot be condemned enough,” he added.
Federal minister Chaudhry, slamming the Narendra Modi government on the move, said: “This isn't the first time Modi has put cricket on the line to achieve his nefarious aims. Pressuring Herschelle Gibbs not to participate in the KPL is a continuation of this old practice."
“We strongly condemn such measures and these will only benefit the Kashmir cause, not harm it,” the minister added.