Souvenirs being preserved, mural will be back, PCA tells Kapil
Seeking to sooth Kapil Dev's hurt sentiments, the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) on Wednesday assured the World Cup winning captain that his memorabilia is being preserved "in the most befitting manner" and his mural, which was removed due to construction work, would soon grace the Mohali stadium again.
Miffed after his mural was brought down two weeks back, Kapil shot off an e-mail to the PCA, asking them to return him all his memorabilia if they cannot preserve them.
PCA secretary MP Pandove, however, told PTI that the association, in its reply to the sulking former captain, had assured Kapil that all his memorabilia and gifts were being "properly preserved in most befitting manner."
"We have full respect for Kapil Dev and all his memorabilia and gifts are well preserved," Pandove said, insisting "it has nothing to do with Kapil joining the (rebel) Indian Cricket League."
Pandove also said that Kapil's mural would soon be back where it was.
"It was removed as the construction work is going on and after the rainy season Kapil's cut out will be back at its original place," Pandove said.
And to clear the air, Pandove, also the BCCI joint secretary, said he would talk to the legendary all-rounder.
"I will speak to Kapil as well and remove all apprehensions in his mind. We have full respect for him," he said.
Kapil also appeared satisfied with the PCA's explanation and said the purpose of sending the e-mail was to clear certain doubts in his mind.
Earlier, Kapil had written an e-mail saying that "if the PCA is not willing to preserve and finds it difficult to keep those items or ever think of throwing them out in that case I can preserve them," Kapil said in his letter.
"I came to know through media reports that PCA has removed my portrait from the PCA ground at Mohali. I am concerned about the personal gifts and memorabilia of my cricketing years and also that of 1983 World Cup cricket tournament given to me by the PCA which are kept at various places at the Mohali stadium.
"I apprehend that now the PCA may not like to preserve the memorablia...I will be grateful if the same is returned to me so that I can preserve them," he said.
Kapil, however, sounded mellowed down later and said all he wanted was to preserve the memorabilia and PCA can keep the memorabilia if they want to preserve them.
"I never asked them to return (those memorabilia). I said 'if you wish not to keep my stuff, give it back to me, rather than throwing it into the dustbin', so that I can preserve those," Kapil told NDTV.
"I had no intention to have my things back but (wanted it back) if they wish not to keep it. As the media reported, they removed my poster, so I felt little uneasy because I had given a few very important things to them," said the legendary all-rounder who incurred BCCI's wrath after joining the ICL.
And he would have no problem at all if PCA decides to preserve the souvenirs, Kapil said.
"If they want to keep, I'll be very happy and delighted... I'm not trying to say give me my things back. Please keep it, if you want," he said.
Kapil, who would be felicitated by the BCCI along with his 1983 World Cup winning teammates in Delhi on June 22, said he did not have any grudge against PCA, even though he has joined the 'rebel' league.
"I respect the Punjab Cricket Association because they are doing a great job to look after cricket in this part of the country, in my home town.
"I hope we all are working for cricket. There is difference of opinion but that does not mean one can say the other is wrong. I have an opinion which is different from theirs. I respect them and I want them to respect me all in the same way," Kapil said.