NA committee meet with President of Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: Members of the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Sports want direct audience with President Asif Ali Zardari to brief him about the recommendations for the betterment of Pakistan cricket.

The committee that met for the second consecutive day at the Parliament House on Thursday under the chairmanship of Jamshaid Dasti was upset for failing to get their recommendation approved by the highest authorities on the cricket front. First they decided not to hold the committee meeting again as it was fast becoming a useless exercise. However, sanity prevailed as the members decided to meet Zardari instead.

“We would soon be sending a request to the President for a meeting. We want to brief the president, who is also the patron of the Board, regarding all prevailing ills in the PCB. We have already forwarded recommendations to the president. We want to meet him to apprise him on these recommendations,” Dasti said during the meeting.

The committee members also called on the Sports Minister Aijaz Jakhrani to get their recommendation approved.

“I have already taken up the matter with the president during my meeting last Thursday and hopefully something positive would come up in a few days times. It is entirely up to the president to decide on the issue and I cannot give any deadline for changes or changes,” Jakhrani said.

He, however, confirmed that the draft constitution is already with the Law Ministry. “We have the president’s backing on the matter.”

Meanwhile, former chief selector Iqbal Qasim who also appeared before the committee was very blunt on the ills prevailing in Pakistan cricket. “There is absolutely no discipline in the team and in the PCB ranks and that is one of the reasons of our disastrous results Down Under. I had selected the team to win but since there was no discipline we suffered from a whitewash. I cannot tolerate such humiliation and accepting the responsibilities I decided to resign. I was serving in an honorary capacity and am in no mood to continue as chairman selection committee.”

Iqbal warned that time was running out for Pakistan cricket. “We need to get our acts together as such indiscipline could further damage the team administration and discipline.”

Shakil Sheikh, a member Governing Board PCB requested the committee to get waiver for Wapda from the electricity bills of for all the sports venues in the country. Dasti also called on the departments to hire fresh blood and make more efforts to help Pakistan sports.

Earlier, Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) Senior Vice President (SVP) Air Vice Marshal Asem Suleman gave a briefing on steps being taken to promote squash.

“We are putting in every effort to groom the talent. It is up to the every individual to cash on these steps. Sadly some of the leading players are not showing maturity and progress. Aamir Atlas is one of them.”

Dasti made it clear that there should be no compromise on discipline. “Players should be barred from making public statements and strict code should be enforced. I am impressed with the PSF briefing and am hopeful that the best results would come in near future.”

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