Source AP ©

Pakistan government refuses its minister Indian visa

Pakistan minister didn't get permission to travel to India and watch second limited-overs cricket match between the two countries.

Railways minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed intended to watch Thursday's one-day international cricket match between Pakistan and India at Mohali, but was informed by Indian High Commission in Islamabad that he could not be issued the required visa.

"I was planning to travel on Wednesday, but they left me disappointed," Ahmed told AP.

"They didn't give any reason for not granting me the visa," he added.

This is for the second time in the last three years that Ahmed had been denied Indian visa. During Pakistan cricket team's tour to the neighboring country in 2005, Ahmed could not get the required visa.

"This time I had got invitation from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and even then they did not give me the visa at the eleventh hour," Ahmed said.

No official from the Indian High Commission was available for comment.

Ahmed said that he had got the permission from the Pakistan government to travel to India and watch the cricket match.

"I have informed the prime minister (Shaukat Aziz) about what they have done and I strongly protest," Ahmed said.

The minister said he was a strong supporter of people to people contact between Pakistan and India. "I firmly believe that there should be people to people contact between the two countries," Ahmed said."

India leads the five-match limited-overs series 1-0 after defeating Pakistan by five wickets in the first game at Gauhati on Monday.

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