ad info




TIME Asia
TIME Asia Home
Current Issue
Magazine Archive
Asia Buzz
Travel Watch
Web Features
  Entertainment
  Photo Essays

Subscribe to TIME
Customer Services
About Us
Write to TIME Asia

TIME.com
TIME Canada
TIME Europe
TIME Pacific
TIME Digital
Asiaweek
Latest CNN News

Young China
Olympics 2000
On The Road

 ASIAWEEK.COM
 CNN.COM
  east asia
  southeast asia
  south asia
  central asia
  australasia
 BUSINESS
 SPORTS
 SHOWBIZ
 ASIA WEATHER
 ASIA TRAVEL


Other News
From TIME Asia

Culture on Demand: Black is Beautiful
The American Express black card is the ultimate status symbol

Asia Buzz: Should the Net Be Free?
Web heads want it all -- for nothing

JAPAN: Failed Revolution
Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori clings to power as dissidents in his party finally decide not to back a no-confidence motion

Cover: Endgame?
After Florida's controversial ballot recount, Bush holds a 537-vote lead in the state, which could give him the election

TIME Digest
FORTUNE.com
FORTUNE China
MONEY.com

TIME Asia Services
Subscribe
Subscribe to TIME! Get up to 3 MONTHS FREE!

Bookmark TIME
TIME Media Kit
Recent awards

TIME ASIAWEEK ASIANOW TIME
SEARCH  GO

about Asia Buzz  |  more Asia Buzz

Subcontinental Drift: Queering the Pitch
Ending Indo-Pakistani cricketing ties is a mistake
By APARISIM GHOSH

November 22, 2000
Web posted at 2:15 p.m. Hong Kong time, 1:15 a.m. EDT

The cancellation last week of India's scheduled December cricket tour of Pakistan was a bad idea for a number of reasons. None bigger than the fact the ban was imposed by the Indian government.

    ASIA BUZZ
Subcontinental Drift: Musharraf's Mind
The General has some pretty strange -- and dangerous -- notions
- Wednesday, October 25, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Year of the General, Part Two
In which I offer (faint) praise of Pakistan's dictator
- Wednesday, October 18, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Year of the General, Part One
Musharraf began with promise: he hasn't kept it
- Thursday, October 12, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Games Plan
How to improve South Asia's Olympic medal haul
- Thursday, September 28, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Bronze Goddess
An Indian athlete lifts the Olympic gloom
- Thursday, September 21, 2000

Subcontinental Drift: Wooden Spoons
More Olympic views from our readers
- Thursday, September 14, 2000

  ASIAWEEK
Intelligence
The story behind today's news from the editors of Asiaweek

From Our Correspondent
Personal perspectives on the news
The proffered excuse -- that Indian players would not be safe in Pakistan -- is patently hogwash. The cancellation was plainly calculated to please Hindu- fundamentalist groups that support the government of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. In their deep hatred of Pakistan, these groups have long resented cross-border cricketing ties and have been pressuring Delhi to issue a ban. Sadly, it looks like they've won.

 INTERACTIVE  
The Subcontinental Drift message board -- sound-off about the news in South Asia to TIME
 
I'll spare you the usual bromides about the danger of mixing politics and sport. In South Asia, that mixture is a fact of life -- and one of the main reasons why we fare so poorly at sports. But if, as the Hindu hard-liners posit, Pakistan's funding of Kashmiri separatists is reason enough to cancel the cricket tour, then surely a ban should have been imposed over a decade ago, when the insurgency began. Successive Indian governments (including this one) allowed cricketing ties to continue this far. Why stop now?

Ironically, cricket is probably the only sport in India that has escaped the direct control of the government. Heaven knows India's cricket board is not perfect; indeed, the Central Bureau of Investigation has suggested the body is rife with corruption. But allowing the government to call the shots would be akin to saving the lamb from the wolves only to throw it to the lions.

But there's much more at stake here than the future of a sport in South Asia. For years, subcontinental cricket has been a substitute for diplomacy. Since the two governments seem unable or unwilling to talk to each other, Indians and Pakistanis can only communicate through cultural and sporting exchanges. To cut off even these channels would not just be sad, it would be detrimental to any future prospects of amity between the neighbors.

The vast majority of cricket fans relish Indo-Pakistani encounters. So do the players. Over the years, I've quizzed many Indian cricketers about their experiences playing in Pakistan. Every one has only the fondest memories -- of organizers going out of their way to make the visiting team happy, throngs of fans wishing the squad well, and of shopkeepers refusing to accept money from players. Pakistani cricketers undoubtedly have similar stories to recount.

The most distasteful aspect of the cancelled tour is that it was instigated by Uma Bharti, the new Indian Sports Minister. To refresh your memory, this woman was instrumental in rallying hordes of Hindu fanatics to demolish the Ayodhya mosque in 1992, a seminal event in Indian politics and the lowest point in Indian secular tradition. That this barefaced bigot should be given charge of sport, the purest of human endeavor, is a travesty.

The Subcontinental Drift message board -- sound-off about the news in South Asia to TIME
Write to TIME at mail@web.timeasia.com
Search for recent Asia Buzz

TIME Asia home

AsiaNow


   LATEST HEADLINES:

WASHINGTON
U.S. secretary of state says China should be 'tolerant'

MANILA
Philippine government denies Estrada's claim to presidency

ALLAHABAD
Faith, madness, magic mix at sacred Hindu festival

COLOMBO
Land mine explosion kills 11 Sri Lankan soldiers

TOKYO
Japan claims StarLink found in U.S. corn sample

BANGKOK
Thai party announces first coalition partner



TIME:

COVER: President Joseph Estrada gives in to the chanting crowds on the streets of Manila and agrees to make room for his Vice President

THAILAND: Twin teenage warriors turn themselves in to Bangkok officials

CHINA: Despite official vilification, hip Chinese dig Lamaist culture

PHOTO ESSAY: Estrada Calls Snap Election

WEB-ONLY INTERVIEW: Jimmy Lai on feeling lucky -- and why he's committed to the island state



ASIAWEEK:

COVER: The DoCoMo generation - Japan's leading mobile phone company goes global

Bandwidth Boom: Racing to wire - how underseas cable systems may yet fall short

TAIWAN: Party intrigues add to Chen Shui-bian's woes

JAPAN: Japan's ruling party crushes a rebel at a cost

SINGAPORE: Singaporeans need to have more babies. But success breeds selfishness


Launch CNN's Desktop Ticker and get the latest news, delivered right on your desktop!

Today on CNN

 Search

Back to the top   © 2000 Time Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.