Chennai:The International Cricket Council (ICC) cannot force India to tour Pakistan if the Indian government does not clear the tour, world cricket's chief executive Haroon Lorgat said on Thursday.
"The ICC can only encourage its member countries to tour Pakistan, but if the governments decide otherwise, then there is nothing that we can do," said Lorgat.
India's scheduled tour of Pakistan in January this year is still to be cleared by the government. And many believe that the tour might not take place in the wake of last month's terrorist attacks in Mumbai.
Responding to Pakistan's charge of "double standards" with teams touring India despite acts of terrorism but not Pakistan for the Champions Trophy, Lorgat said: "I think, the two situations are to be viewed in different context."
"Champions Trophy is a multi-nation event while in the present case (England vs India), it is a bilateral series. There is nothing that the ICC can do if players and teams refuse to travel to a particular country."
Lorgat felt that the decision to play India-Pakistan series at a neutral venue was up to the respective authorities.
"Rather than not having the two countries play each other at all, they can consider venues such as Abu Dhabi which has excellent facilities," he said.