New Delhi: The participation of Pakistan cricketers in the IPL is dependent on the resumption of India-Pakistan cricket ties, according to the IPL chairman and BCCI vice-president Rajiv Shukla. He was speaking to Geo News channel on Sunday, the day Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari and Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh held talks in New Delhi.
"No one is against Pakistan or Pakistani players in India, or else we would not have allowed Pakistani commentators or umpires in IPL 5," Shukla said. "Everything is tied to the resumption of bilateral cricket ties between the two countries. Once that happens, I think everything will happen automatically. The IPL functions under the BCCI and when bilateral relations resume between the two boards, the IPL will also not be a problem for Pakistani players."
Cricket relations between India and Pakistan are deadlocked at the moment, with the BCCI generally shifting the onus of resuming bilateral ties to the government. However, several reports following the meeting between the countries' political leaders suggest that progress in cricketing relations depends on the two boards. The Telegraph said that an "almost certain" November visit by the Indian prime minister to Pakistan would be the barometer of ties between the two countries.