Khurshid backs visa for Miandad, says 'Govt. followed due procedures'

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 03, 2013 11:30 hrs

External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Thursday backed the visa given to former Pakistan cricket skipper Javed Miandad to visit India for the ongoing one-day series, saying the Indian Government has followed proper procedures.

"It's a decision that has been taken by the government. I can't blame the MHA, I cannot blame ourselves; it's a decision taken by the government. What are the circumstances, what is considered, when is the approval given, what goes into it is something that is an internal government matter," Khurshid told mediapersons here

"It's not your (media) job to ask these questions. It is a job that the MHA has to ask and answer itself and they have taken a decision. No Pakistani visa gets cleared without MHA clearance and MHA would take inputs from all agencies, including from our missions abroad. And, I think that's an internal procedure," he added.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) earlier today said the government and security agencies should be alert about visitors so that the spirit of the game of cricket between the two Asian neighbours is not crushed.

BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said people enjoy matches between India and Pakistan, and added that it doesn't matter which side wins or loses.

"It should be ensured that the spirit of the game should not be crashed. The government and the security agencies should be alert as to who is coming or not so that the game should be played in a sportsmanship and a good environment," he added, while commenting on the visa row.

Miandad would arrive in India on January 5 to watch the third and final ODI between the two Asian neighbours neighbours in New Delhi the next day. Miandad, who is now a senior Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official, would also be honoured during that match.

Miandad's son Junaid Miandad is married to Dawood's daughter Mahrukh Ibrahim.

Dawood is still wanted in India in connection with the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts case. He was charged by India for masterminding the 1993 serials blasts in Mumbai that claimed around 260 lives. (ANI)

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