Pulwama attack: Cancelling World cup match against Pak would be defeat without a fight, says Shashi Tharoor


Congress leader Shashi Tharoor commented on reports of boycott of India’s match against Pakistan at the ICC World Cup in Manchester on June 16 over the February 14 attack on a CRPF convoy in Lethpora area along the Srinagar-Jammu highway in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district which killed 49 CRPF personnel, stating the ‘government did not even declare national mourning (after the attack), but wants to cancel a match three months from now?”

Tharoor tweeted, “Our government did not even declare national mourning wants to cancel a match three months from now? Is that a serious response to 40 lives taken in cold blood? BJP wants to divert attention from its inept handling of the crisis. We need effective action, not gesture politics.”

Citing the 1999 World Cup which took place during the Kargil War, Tharoor said that India had won the match in that edition of the World Cup against Pakistan. He said, “To forfeit the match this year would not just cost two points: it would be worse than surrender since it would be defeat without a fight.”

Union Minister of India Ravi Shankar Prasad had on Wednesday called for a complete ban on cricketing ties with Pakistan. “I cannot make any comment [on cricket issues] except to say those who are demanding it has some justification. You can see many films and concerts have been cancelled. Things are not normal,” Prasad was quoted as saying by PTI.

“Since it’s an international tournament, the ICC and our Indian cricket board (BCCI) have to take a call after consideration with our security establishment,” he added.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) Chief Executive Dave Richardson on Tuesday clarified that there “no indication” that any of the matches will not go ahead as planned. “Our thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by this terrible incident… There is no indication that any (of the) matches at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup will not go ahead as planned,” Richardson is quoted as saying by PTI.

Meanwhile, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Friday decided to “suspend all discussions” with India regarding the hosting of global sporting events in the future. This occurred after Pakistani shooters who were scheduled to arrive in India for the ISSF World Cup in New Delhi were not issued visa.

To this effect, a statement was issued by the IOC after its executive board meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland Thursday, saying: “The IOC restricted the withdrawal of recognition as an Olympic qualification event to the 25m rapid fire pistol competition in which the two Pakistani athletes were supposed to participate. This happened in the interest of the other 500 athletes from 61 countries participating in the other events who are already in India for their competition.”

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