It sounds preposterous but that just might be the case. And as far as earlier issues are concerned, there were none. Bangladesh Cricket Board was fully briefed by their Pakistani counterparts that the situation in zones where matches were to be held are secure. Additionally, several Pakistani government officials gave assurances to Bengali cricket players that fool-proof security will be specially tasked for their safety and well-being.
Had Bangladesh not abruptly called off its long-planned tour to Pakistan on the latter’s request, things would have been much different. Not only would Pakistan’s image have improved internationally but furthermore, the guests would have gathered some new match improvement skills since they could really use a warm face-off with Pakistan.
Many have dubbed this a failure of the government machinery to give credence of security assurances. It can be true, but what needs to be noted here are statements by BCB chief Nazmul Hasan at a news conference on December 30, 2012:
“We have made a commitment to travel to Pakistan. But still there are some concerns. We have noticed the security situation in Pakistan has not improved significantly, rather deteriorated. In this circumstance, we think it will not be very wise to tour”.
By 21st December 2012, Chairman PCB Zaka Ashraf repeated that the Bangladesh side had assured of visiting. However, on the 30th of December, it was scrapped to the dustbin during the BCB press conference.
What is interesting to note here is that a Pakistani by the name of Syed Jamaluddin wrote an email to the Bangladesh Cricket Board warning them of ‘dire consequences and regret’ if they came to Pakistan. Jamaluddin is a self-exile in Heidelberg, Germany and who is a strong proponent of ‘The State of Jinnahpur’. This, he claims, is for the protection of the Urdu speaking community. In the past, he has continued to pen propaganda and vice against the state of Pakistan and its institutions in particular the military and intelligence services. Furthermore, he calls ‘Punjabi terrorism’ as the supposed root cause of chaos in Pakistan. In the early 90’s, Jamaluddin was recruited by the Indian intelligence agency RAW after he had differences with some members of a political party. He had escaped before he could be captured by the Military Intelligence which was on the lookout for him owing to the maps and designs in his possession as he was one of the main architects of the Jinnahpur conspiracy, which received massive funding and support from the establishment across our border.
Jamaluddin has been active online for well over a decade now. One can frequently see him writing emails, dispatching letters to international diplomats, government officials, etc. literally begging them to pick up the Jinnahpur cause, while on the other hand he enjoys considerable support from separatist Baloch and Sindhi elements who are increasingly active in social media.
His email to the BCB is as follows (being reproduced in original form):
I hope that you would listen to my appeal and humble request with seriousness. I request you to understand that Pakistan is a failed state and perhaps the most notorious place on earth at the moment. Regardless of the fact that Pakistanis may be great lovers of game of cricket, yet, Pakistan as a state is not worth to be given any importance for so many reasons.
I earnestly request you to kindly CALL OFF BANGLADESH CRICKET TEAM TOUR OF PAKISTAN. This is in the interest of Bangladesh´s cricket future in general and to save the new sporting skills of all players of Bangladesh cricket team in particular. We cannot afford to allow Bangladesh cricket players to risk their lives in Pakistan which is nursery of terrorism. Even senior politicians are not safe in Pakistan. Sri Lankan cricket team was attacked in broad day light in Lahore-Pakistan. Pakistan´s internal security situation is questionable and it would not be prudent on the part of Bangladesh Cricket Board to demonstrate any carelessness simply on the basis of false assurances by Pakistani authorities in the matter of providing security to Bangladesh cricket players and officials. We must decide by analysing ground realities and not emotions.
I pray to ALLAH ALMIGHTY to guide the members of Bangladesh Cricket Board in this matter. Time is running out and it is essential that tour of Pakistan be CALLED OFF as immediately as possible.
Besides a written email, he also sent a voice message [link: http://vocaroo.com/i/s0u3IAV0IILy]
Jamaluddin’s blog has this email posted on December 23, 2012. Ironically, a week later, the Nazmul Hasan announced suspension of the schedule. I have strong reasons to believe the Bangladesh Cricket Board must have paid heed to the lowlife who has a lot of time to write piece upon piece of garbage against the state of Pakistan and its interests. It is also worrying since this is apparently the only reason for the BCB to have considered moving back. After all, if there were other apprehensions, the PCB and officials in Pakistan would not have so confidently pacified the press and the people that they would again see foreign teams on their soil!
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the above article are of the writer’s only and do not necessarily represent Aaj.tv/Aaj News policies.