The Government of India has approved the request to issue visas to the Pakistan cricket team and journalists for the upcoming International Cricket Council (ICC) T20 World Cup, scheduled to take place from October to November this year.
According to details, although visas for the Pakistan cricket team have been sorted, it isn’t clear whether fans can travel across the border to watch the matches.
The Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI’s) apex council has been told by Board secretary Jay Shah following “government assurances”.
Shah informed the council of the same in a video conference meeting held on Friday where it was also decided that the mega-event will be staged across nine venues with Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium hosting the final.
“The visa issue of Pakistan cricket team has been sorted. However, whether the fans can travel across the border to watch matches is still not clear,” an Apex Council member told the Press Trust of India on conditions of anonymity.
“It will be decided in due course of time. However, we had promised ICC that it will be sorted.”
Pakistan and India have not played bilateral cricket for close to a decade now due to political tensions between the two countries.
Pakistan has been demanding assurances from the ICC that visas will be granted to its players for the 16-team extravaganza, which will complete seven editions this year.
It must be noted here that the qualifying round for the mega event will take place firstly with teams divided into two groups. Sri Lanka, Ireland, Papua New Guinea, and Oman are placed in Group A whereas Bangladesh, Holland, Namibia, and Scotland will compete in Group B.
For the main event, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, West Indies, and two qualifying teams are part of Group 1 whereas India, South Africa, Afghanistan, England, and two qualifying teams are placed in Group 2.
Two top teams from each group will qualify for the semi-finals followed by the mega final, scheduled on November 15.
The tournament is most likely to be played with COVID-19 protocols being enforced. The Decision regarding the crowd will be taken after monitoring the situation closer to the time.