Pak interior minister calls for cricket boycott against India

  • Imtiaz Ahmad, Hindustan Times, Islamabad
  • Updated: Nov 17, 2015 18:14 IST
(AFP File Photo)

A top Pakistani minister has advocated a cricket boycott against India, saying the country will not pursue talks with New Delhi “until it behaves responsibly”.

Interior minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, a close aide of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, further said Pakistan will push the UN to declare the Shiv Sena a “terrorist organisation” because of its alleged activities against India’s religious minorities.

“We will not play cricket in India. I will personally oppose it. I will take up this issue in the upcoming meeting of the federal cabinet. And the Prime Minister will take the final decision,” he told reporters in Islamabad late on Monday.

“Islamabad should not engage in talks with India until New Delhi behaves responsibly,” he said.

Khan’s remarks came against the backdrop of contacts between the cricket boards of India and Pakistan for playing a bilateral series in December. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had invited the Pakistan Cricket Board to play in India instead of the UAE but PCB chief Shahryar Khan said this was out of the question.

The interior minister also said Pakistan wants a “ban” on the Shiv Sena, an ally of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

“We want (an international) ban on Shiv Sena. They (Shiv Sena members) smear black ink on other’s faces, but their own hearts are black. Pakistan should boycott (India) not only at cricket but at diplomatic levels,” Khan told the journalists during an informal gathering.

Pakistan, he said, will push the UN to take note of Shiv Sena’s activities and declare it a “global terrorist organisation”.

“All forms of terrorism are breeding in India, but it goes under the carpet there,” he said.

Khan further said his ministry had cancelled the passport of Adnan Sami Khan, the Pakistani singer who renounced his nationality to take up residence in India. “We will not issue an NoC to him,” he said, referring to a basic requirement for Sami to acquire the citizenship of any other country.

Pakistan has already refused to issue Sami a “citizenship renunciation certificate”.

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