Confusion over Pakistan’s departure for India, no decision yet on Dharamsala

first_imgIn a late night development on Tuesday, Pakistan has asked the International Cricket Council (ICC) and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to shift the March 19 World Twenty20 match against India from Dharamsala to a different location due to security concerns. However, NDTV reported that Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has allowed the men and women’s teams to depart for India to play the World T20 .As far as Himachal is concerned, no matter which team plays, we’ll provide them safety- Virbhadra Singh #Dharamshala ANI (@ANI_news) March 9, 2016But India Today understands that the Pakistan team won’t travel to India today. The Pakistan cricketers were due to depart at noon on Wednesday from Lahore for New Delhi, according to original plans. Meanwhile, reports suggested that the India-Pakistan match is likely to be shifted to Eden Garden in Kolkata.”If the organisers decide to shift the Pakistan match out of Dharamsala, the likely venue will be Kolkata,” India Today consulting editor Boria Majumdar said on Wednesday. “Mohali already has a couple of Pakistan games and an India game. Cricket Association of Bengal President Sourav Ganguly has also expressed his willingness to host the match. West Bengal Chief Mamata Banerjee will extend full support,” he said.  BCCI sources also said Kolkata was the ideal alternate venue for the India-Pakistan clash. “Logistically, and from security point of view, Kolkata is the ideal place for the match as they would not have to travel to Dharamsala… It’s feasible from broadcasting point of view as they would not have to the cost for taking the expensive broadcasting kit to another venue,” a BCCI official told PTI.advertisementAs per the ICC itinerary, the Pakistan team is slated to camp in Kolkata where they will play two warm-up games (against Bengal, March 12 and Sri Lanka, March 14) and one in the main round against Group A qualifier March 16.As per the schedule, Pakistan were to arrive late Wednesday evening and fly out to Dharamsala on March 17 but if the match is shifted they will remain in Kolkata till March 20 before heading to Mohali where they face New Zealand March 22.After a recce of Dharamsala, the PCB were reluctant to play there citing security concerns.”The Himachal Pradesh chief minister has not committed full security for the match and the Indian government has also not come up with any assuring statement… Under the prevailing circumstances how can we allow our team to play there?” PCB chairman Shahryar Khan said on Tuesday.(With inputs from PTI)last_img read more