Govt assures Pakistan cricket team of security

The Centre on Monday assured adequate security to visiting Pakistani cricket team in view of the Shiv Sena’s call for disruption of the cricket series with India.

“We will provide foolproof security to the Pakistan cricket team,” newly appointed Union Minister of State for Home R P N Singh told reporters when asked to comment on the Sena threat.

The UPA government will go for three-layered security at hotels where Pakistani team would be lodged, during their travel and while playing matches.

“The matches will happen as scheduled. Those opposing it should take the game as game only,” Singh quipped.

The two nations would be playing three ODIs in Chennai, Kolkata and New Delhi and two Twenty20 Internationals in Bangalore and Ahmedabad between December 2012 and January 2013.

“Shinde saheb, if you have an iota of shame left, then withdraw this shameless remark of yours,” ailing Shiv Sena chief Bala Thackeray said in his party’s mouthpiece “Saamana”.
“I am bedridden but even in this condition, my blood boils (over Shinde’s statement) and hence I am making this appeal to my Hindu brethren to disrupt these matches,” Thackeray said.

He also asked Shinde: “You say let bygones be bygones. What to forget and how to forget.”

He said this while referring to the Parliament attack and 26/11 Mumbai terror strike.
The Congress criticised Shiv Sena for its hardline stand against Pakistan, despite the UPA government using cricket diplomacy to boost ties between the two hostile countries.

“Shiv Sena can only disrupt and interrupt, but cannot do or contribute anything creative,” Congress spokesperson Renuka Chaudhary hit back.

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