In the wake of the Pulwama terror attack, IMG Reliance, the official production company of Pakistan Super League (PSL), has withdrawn its agreement with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to live-produce the ongoing tournament. PCB released a statement saying, “We have been informed by IMG Reliance that they will be unable to partner with us for the remaining HBL PSL 2019 and PCB has reserved all its rights. The PCB always had a contingency plan in place, and we are confident we will be in a position to announce the new partner on Monday after the completion of the formalities.”

Following the development, PCB managing director Wasim Khan said that they are “extremely disappointed” with the “recent turn of events” and asserted that sports and politics should be kept separate.

“The PCB has also noted the recent turn of events and expresses its extreme disappointment as we have always believed and emphasised that sports and politics should be kept separate,” Wasim said.

“History tells us that sports, particularly cricket, have always played a key role in building bridges between people and countries,” he added.

As many as 40 CRPF personnel were killed when a CRPF convoy, while moving from Jammu to Srinagar, was attacked by a suicide bomber in Lethpora area on the national highway at around 3.15 pm on February 14.

Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) claimed responsibility for the attack.

Earlier, The Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) removed the photographs of Pakistani cricketers from various points inside the Mohali stadium as a “humble step” to show solidarity with the families of martyrs of the Pulwama terror attack. The decision was taken at a meeting of the cricket body’s office bearers here, PCA treasurer Ajay Tyagi told PTI.

“As a humble step, the PCA has decided to show its solidarity with the families of martyrs of the Pulwama attack. There is so much anger in the nation against the heinous attack and PCA is no different in this,” Tyagi said.

He said there are nearly 15 photos of Pakistani cricketers, which were kept inside the stadium at various points including in the galleries, long room, reception and ‘hall of fame’ area. The Shahid Afridi-led Pakistani side had faced a 29-run defeat at India’s hands in the 2011 World Cup cricket semi-finals which was played here in March. Tyagi said among the Pakistani cricketers whose photographs have been removed from the PCA include that of present Prime Minister Imran Khan.

(With Agency Inputs)