Javed Miandad, whose son is married to underworld don Dawood Ibrahim's daughter, on Friday cancelled his visit to Delhi in the wake of a raging controversy in India over giving him visa for the trip.
Former Pakistan captain Miandad, who was to watch the third and final ODI in Delhi, cancelled his visit to avoid a controversy, a PCB official said on condition of anonymity. The official said the PCB did not want the focus to move away from cricket to other matters.
Ever since news came out that Miandad, whose son Junaid married the fugitive Mumbai don's daughter Mahrukh in Dubai in 2005, a controversy broke out in India over government giving him visa for the visit.
The Indian government, however, justified the decision saying Miandad was not on the 'negative list' of those not to be given visas. BJP and Shiv Sena had on Thursday lashed out at the Government for granting visa to Miandad, asking how allowing a person related to Dawood would help improve bilateral ties.
External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Friday said there are four categories of people who have been given visas. "People who have return ticket and want to watch the match. People who are players. People who are on (Pakistan Cricket) Board," he said.
Khurshid had on Thursday said, "It's a decision that has been taken by the Home Ministry. And I am sure they would have taken inputs from all concerned agencies and from our mission in Pakistan. I am sure they would have followed all procedures."
Minister of State for Home R P N Singh had said, "He is a well known cricketer. His visa application papers were in order and valid and that is why the government has decided to give him visa."
There had been reports before a series in 2005 that a request for a visa by the batting great was turned down by the Indian government.
The former captain was also granted visa to visit India in March, 2011 to witness the World Cup semifinal match between the arch-rivals at Mohali but he cancelled it due to some personal commitments.
Interestingly, the PCB had not included Miandad's name in a list of former captains and greats it had prepared for a felicitation in Kolkata during the second ODI. The list included Intikhab Alam, Imtiaz Ahmed, Hanif Muhammad, Wasim Bari and Sadiq Muhammad. Former Pakistan captain, Imran Khan and his cousins, Majid Khan and Javed Burki had declined invitations from the PCB to go to India for the series.