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Bilawal-led panel to discuss Pakistan’s World Cup participation in India

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan celebrate their win against India in a World Cup match on October 24, 2021. — Reuters/File
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan celebrate their win against India in a World Cup match on October 24, 2021. — Reuters/File

KARACHI: A panel formed by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to decide on the matter related to Pakistan’s participation in World Cup in India will take place on Thursday for the first time. 

The meeting — chaired by Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari — will be attended by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee Chairman Zaka Ashraf, sources said. 

In the huddle, Pakistan’s participation in the World Cup in India would be discussed. The members will also review Ahmedabad as the venue for the high-octane Pakistan vs India clash.

The 14-member committee, headed by FM Bilawal, comprises Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, Law Minister Azam Nazeer Tarar, Information Minister Marriyum Aurangzeb, Minister of Inter-Provincial Coordination Ehsan-ur-Rehman Mazari, chiefs of the national security institutions, and foreign secretary.

The high-powered panel will send its recommendations to the prime minister who will make the final call on the country’s participation in the mega event.

India, the host of the World Cup in October-November this year, has already refused to cross the border to participate in the Asia Cup, depriving Pakistan of its genuine right to host all matches. 

Now Pakistan will host only four matches while the rest of the Asia Cup matches will be played in Sri Lanka.

Following the situation, PCB Chief Operating Officer Salman Naseer wrote a letter to the premier, seeking the government’s permission for the Pakistan cricket team’s participation in the multi-nation event. 

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