29 Feb 2004 21:08:02
Pushing back the boundary rope

VISA BE: To provide a level playing field, Pakistan has allowed its
mission in Delhi to entertain visa requests from anyone with a
confirmed match ticket. So long, the criterion for a visa was a
relative on the other side.

Since the Pakistan Cricket Board is selling 35 per cent tickets
online, the PCB’s e-mail confirmation will suffice for applying for
the visa. The processing cost: Rs 15.

If there is a catch, it lies in the limited number of visas available
for each venue. Lahore, where two ODIs will be played, has been
sanctioned 2,500 visas per match. Karachi is next, with 1,500,
followed by Rawalpindi (1,000) and Peshawar (750).

‘‘We are concentrating on the ODIs for the moment,’’ says Munawar
Bhatty, Pakistani deputy high commissioner in New Delhi. ‘‘A three-day
visa will be issued for those going to view the ODI, Test spectators
will get visas for a week. We are being lenient, so as to accommodate
spectators, but it is essential that applicants have confirmed tickets
for the match.’’

More at

at http://www.indianexpress.com/sunday/the_sunday_story.html