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Updated: January 3, 2013 02:10 IST

Visa to Javed Miandad triggers controversy

Sandeep Joshi
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Javed Miandad
AP Javed Miandad

Issuing of visa to the former Pakistan cricketer and senior Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official, Javed Miandad, to visit India for the one-day match series is mired in controversy over the links of the flamboyant batsman’s family to India’s most-wanted terrorist Dawood Ibrahim.

“My visa and tickets are ready and I shall be in Delhi for the third ODI match scheduled for January 6… I faced absolutely no problem in getting the visa and am quite excited about travelling to Delhi for the game,” Mr. Miandad told journalists in Pakistan.

But questions are being raised in official and political circles over the granting of visa to Mr. Miandad who holds the important position of Director-General in the PCB. The former Pakistan captain’s son, Junaid, is married to Dawood’s daughter Mahrukh. India has been asking Pakistan to extradite Dawood, whose name also figures in the U.S.’ most wanted list in connection with the 1993 Mumbai blasts.

However, sources in the Ministry of Home Affairs said it was not looking into individual requests, while elaborate guidelines were given to the Indian High Commission in Pakistan for issuing of visas.

“Visas are being given to the team, coaches and PCB officials. Individuals who have return tickets and proper bookings in India were given visas… the MHA did not look into individual cases,” a senior MHA official said. Meanwhile, Pakistan World Cup winning captain Imran Khan will not be able to travel to India owing to political commitments back home.

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