Cricket Under Attack

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No one will forget what has ensued in Lahore on 3rd march 2009. Srilankan cricketers were assailed while they were heading towards the ground for the 3rd day’s play of 2nd test. Six Srilankan players were injured, while 5 police men gifted their lives in order to safe the tourists. Thanks a million to Almighty Allah that all players kept out of harm's way and sent back to home safe and sound.

Like many other terrorist acts happened in Pakistan, this has also been entangled with a very familiar word “Na Maloom Afraad”. These “Na Maloom Afraad” will remain “Na Maloom” everlastingly. But this act has not only dented the image of Pakistan cricket Board in front of ICC but also it made all the likelihood of hosting cricket in Pakistan very bleak. Remember according to the program, in 2011 Pakistan has to jointly host the World Cup 2011 along with India, Srilanka and Bangladesh. 

In the press conference done by CEO of ICC Mr. Haroon Lorgart, he mentioned that world cup matches which were planned to be host by Pakistan are likely to shift either in India or Srilanka. In that case Pakistan will loose enough money in account of revenue.

Now just look at this incident in a deeper manner. Lets just mention them in points:
•    Everybody was concerned about the security level provided to the touring sides. But only two police mobile vans were there for escorting the team and that was all the security available.
•    Also there were no security officials in the near by area of Liberty Market, terrorists came quite effortlessly with minimum exertion; they took their positions, targeted the bus and left with no hurries and worries.
•    Most interesting thing is that “PCB” ensured the “Srilankan Cricket Board” that the team will be provided the “Head of the State” level security and according to news few days before the incident, 3000 commando squad was employed to guard the Srilankan Team. Where was that Commando Squad at the time of incident?
•    Normally when there is some VIP movement in a certain area of the city, the movement of routine traffic is stopped in that area for sometime. Why the Liberty Market area was not cleared prior to the arrival of convoy?
•    Yesterday, chairman PCB Mr. Ijaz Butt was asked if the security cover was sufficient, Butt said the government was answerable and not the PCB. "Nowhere in the world does the cricket board interfere in the security matters - it's the sole responsibility of the government," he said. "As far as I know, the security level was the same as it was in the past, when various teams toured Pakistan."

Take this statement of his in consideration, can he explain if the security is not the PCB’s responsibility then why Chairman PCB assured the Srilankan Board that the security will be “fool proof”? Why he took that extremely critical matter as a casual one?

Like every citizen of Pakistan, I am also very gloomy and my heart is soaked in deep grief. I want to say sorry to Srilankan Team players, their families, and Srilankan nation for what they have faced in Lahore on 3-march-2009. Our vocabulary has shrunk and we are unable to answer the statements and comments which are being passed on us by different parts of international fraternities. As a nation we are speechless. All the fears which were raised by Australia, Newzealand, South Africa, England and India have proven true.

Yes! Pakistan is the most unsafe place for the tourists; the reason is, both our Cricket Board Management and our Government are highly incompetent and irresponsible.

We all will support the ideas given by different teams for not touring Pakistan for next few years.

In the end I would like to pay the homage to all the Police men who laid their lives for saving their country’s name and the tourists. Also to the driver of Srilankan Team’s bus Mohammad Khalil, who can run away and left the bus because he was in all danger as he was exposed to the gunfire at the front of the bus. But he was hell-bent on getting the team to safety.

Khalil is neither a high official of Government nor the PCB, but unlike all the Government and PCB IDIOTS, he felt the responsibility and displayed the courage. Ultimately he succeeded in bringing the team safely to the stadium.

Khalil and those martyred police men are the real heroes!

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