Modi Says No ‘Conspiracy’ against Pak Players in IPL Auction

Indian Premier League (IPL) commissioner Lalit Modi has dismissed allegations of any ‘conspiracy’ in Pakistani cricketers not being picked up for the event, said media reports.

“There is no conspiracy theory that is going on – as is being reported in media. The media is biased at times,” he was quoted as saying at a press conference in Mumbai.

After Tuesday’s auction for IPL3 in which none of 11 Pakistani players were picked up by franchises, Pakistan put up a strong protest against it, terming it as humiliating and alleging conspiracy.

However, actress Shilpa Shetty, who co-owns the Rajasthan Royals IPL team, said that franchisees did not have to explain why they didn’t pick up Pakistani cricketers.

“We don’t owe an explanation on our decision on Pakistani players. The reasons for dropping are understandable in the current scenario,” she was quoted as saying.

Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Malik had reportedly said on Wednesday that India could expect similar behaviour from his country for snubbing his country’s cricketers.

“I want to make it clear that whether it is India or any other country in the world, their citizens would have to face (the) same behaviour as meted out to our people,” Malik was quoted as saying by Pakistan’s state-run APP news agency.

But India rejected Pakistan’s concerns, saying that it issued visas to 17 Pakistani players.

“Pakistan should introspect on the reasons which have put a strain on relations between India and Pakistan, and have adversely impacted on peace, stability and prosperity in the region,” said an External Affairs Ministry on Thursday.

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