Karachi:Sports Minister Ijaz Hussain Jakhrani on Monday said that Pakistan and India should resume bilateral cricketing ties and give their relationship a fresh start by playing at neutral venues.
"Cricket is a sport that has millions of people from both countries following it with keen interest. It would be a good idea to resume bilateral ties by playing at neutral venues.
"By not playing bilateral cricket matches it is obvious that Pakistan cricket suffers financially," Jakhrani said.
He said the Pakistan government does not believe in mixing sports with politics and would reciprocate if India resume bilateral sporting ties.
The Indian cricket board (BCCI) had cancelled the Test tour to Pakistan in early 2009 shortly after the Mumbai attacks in November, 2008.
The cancellation of the tour cost the Pakistan cricket board a loss of an estimated earnings of around USD 25 million according to a rough estimate.
The Pakistan board had constantly tried to convince the Indian counterparts to play at bilateral venues but they had maintained that any such move could be initiated only after getting due clearance from the government.
Jakhrani said that Pakistan have no issues sending its athletes to India for international events and in recent months, number of teams from Pakistan including the national hockey side had gone to India.
Meanwhile, asked about team's performance in the ongoing Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies, the minister said he did not find any problems with the players and the officials.
"There is no problem with the team. I think the problem lies in lack of consistency. We have always faced problems being non consistent in our performances. At times we can chase 191 and at times can't chase 130 runs," he said.
Jakhrani said if the Senate and National Assembly standing committee on sports want to inquire into the team's shabby performances in the World Cup, the ministry of sports would facilitate them in their working.
"These committees include elected members and they have every right to inquire into these things we will support them."