India’’s cricket fraternity condemns attack on Lankan cricketers

March 4th, 2009 - 2:29 pm ICT by ANI  


Mumbai/Jammu/Bhubaneshwar, Mar 4 (ANI): India’’s cricket fraternity and political leaders condemned the terror attack on Sri Lanka team in Lahore saying the incident threw a question mark on the future of the game which has maximum followers in the subcontinent.
Indian Cricket League Executive Board member Kiran More pointed an accusing finger at the International Cricket Council (ICC) for clearing the trip despite the security risks involved.
“I would like to appreciate Sri Lankan team and government that they tried to support Pakistan and gave them a chance. They wanted to show the world that Pakistan is a safe place. But after today’’s incident, I don”t think any team would like to go there. But ICC should also be blamed here because they go and assess the security situation there. ICC really needs to think over it now,” More said in Mumbai.
Sharad Pawar, former president of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said he was worried about the future of international cricket in the subcontinent.
“This attack or this assault on Lankan team will send a signal to global community particularly cricketing community that players” life is not safe. I am worried that we might get communication from many countries, participants whether they will play here or not. They may not play also. And that will affect our entire programme,” Pawar said. Earlier, ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat said that Pakistan is unlikely to host international cricket in the immediate future following Tuesday’’s terror attack. Lorgat added that the ICC would review whether Pakistan could co-host the 2011 World Cup as planned at their next board meeting in April. Meanwhile, politicians also expressed solidarity with the Sri Lankan team, saying sportspersons should not become targets of militants.
“It’’s highly condemnable that sports people were targeted. Sports and politics have to be separated. I don”t think any cause should allow sportsmen to be targeted. It is the first time after the Munich Olympics that sportsmen were targeted. It’’s unfortunate for the entire sub-continent. We only hope that in future more efforts are made to protect our sports people, ” Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said in Jammu.
Congress party leader Ghulam Nabi Azad blamed Pakistan’’s Inter Service Intelligence (ISI) for the attack.
“We have been shouting from many years that terrorism is increasing in Pakistan. And Pakistan’’s ISI itself is responsible for it. ISI encouraged terrorism and sent terrorists toKashmir as well. They provided them with arms and ammunition, got them trained and killed thousands of innocent Kashmiri men and women in last twenty years,” Azad said. It was the first major attack on an international sporting team since Palestinian militants attacked Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics in Munich.
The attack highlights Pakistan’’s seeming inability to suppress militancy inside the country and comes at a time when the United States is putting pressure on the government to do more to fight the Taliban and al Qaeda. (ANI)

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