- CM Murad, AD Khawaja assure foolproof security
Following meetings with the Sindh Chief Minister and assurances of the provincial government’s full cooperation, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Najam Sethi told journalists on Wednesday that International Cricket Council (ICC) personnel will be arriving in Karachi in four days’ time to oversee the plan for hosting some PSL matches in the metropolis.
Four PSL matches are scheduled to be played in Karachi in February.
Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah assured foolproof security to Pakistan Super League (PSL) players on their visit to Karachi in February, adding that he would personally accompany them, if needed.
Najam Sethi told the chief minister that with National Engineering Services Pakistan’s (NESPAK) help, the national stadium in Karachi was being restored. He discussed the security situation and the coordination between police, Rangers and the army for holding the PSL matches in Karachi.
The chief minister, in turn, expressed his desires to see international cricket return to Karachi as soon as possible.
On his arrival in Karachi on Tuesday night, Sethi told journalists that he was trying to convince all relevant parties to finish the arrangements needed for the matches to be played in February.
Sethi also dismissed rumours that the Sri Lankan team was not coming to Pakistan for the T20 international series’ final to be played on October 29.
“Not only players but SLC officials are also coming,” he said, adding that a meeting with the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) was also scheduled ahead of the match in Lahore, in which delegates from different countries were going to participate.
He added that a video briefing regarding security arrangements was provided by security experts to the International Cricket Council (ICC) in Auckland. “Everyone was impressed to see our arrangements,” he said. He said that the security experts commented that they had never seen such fool-proof security before, which cleared the other board members’ doubts, allowing them to commit to coming to Pakistan.
IGP DIRECTS FOOLPROOF SECURITY PLAN: Sindh Inspector General of Police (IGP) AD Khwaja has directed concerned officials to prepare a fool-proof security plan as international standards for the upcoming PSL matches.
He said this in a meeting held with Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) security chief Col Azam Khan at Central Police Office on Wednesday.
Sindh IGP nominated DIG East as a focal person for PSL cricket matches and directed him to remain in touch with Special Branch AIG and to ensure complete security audit of the National Stadium and prepare a comprehensive report in this regard.
Khawaja said that security of players, other staff from airports, their residential places, routes should also be made the necessary part of the security plan. Khawaja ordered to issue stickers for the VIP parking. He also directed to formulate alternate routes to ensure smooth traffic flow. Karachi AIG will be responsible for overall affairs, Khawaja added.
INFO MINISTER GRATEFUL FOR PSL COMING TO KARACHI: Sindh Minister for Information Syed Nasir Hussain Shah said revival of international cricket in Karachi will help promote a soft image of the country around the world.
Terming arrival of the PSL to Karachi great news, he said it was joint efforts of the people and the Sindh government that international cricket is coming back to the province after a long time. “Efforts of our chief minister have won the hearts of the masses,” said the minister.
He said the government was grateful to Najam Sethi who realised the urge and will of the people and played his role to get it materialised.