Tuesday, June 18, 2019

My Dear Politicians of my Country and ICC

As a person who wished to visit UK to watch the cricket worldcup and has been rejected the UK visa twice, I would like to ask my country's politicians: what's your secret of obtaining the visa for such countries ?

I cannot obtain a visa of any decent country without declaring all known and un-known assets and liabilities and tax payments and family and business details.

While I am paying more taxes than most of my country's politicians and parliamentarians, the visa officer still cannot be satisfied by my financial position and will question my willingness to comeback to my home country ?

My chances of getting a visa are seriously dented if I have a traffic offence, a criminal offence or even an under trial case in court.  While you have been facing all these charges in Pakistan but still you are able to get the visa and visit these countries at your free will.

I still have to prove my roots to my home country and fair reason that I will return back home while you have enjoyed living in self exile for years in the most posh locations of the first world countries. How have you managed to live like a peaceful person in self exile in world's most peaceful of countries.

You can be in jail on one day, released on interim bail on the second day and fly out to any of these countries on the third day.

No visa officer questions your intentions to leave or your criminal cases and charges and source of funds ?

As a person who was having match tickets to two of the matches of the icc cricket worldcup and who have been rejected the UK visa twice, i would like to know your secrets so i can make use of the same in my scenario.

I would also like to request ICC that when allocating a major tournament to a host country, the host country should ease up the visa requirement for the fans. Considering that 5 of the 10 teams in the world cup are from a third world country. For many of us its a once in a lifetime opportunity to be a part of the biggest cricketing event.

My finances should not be made directly associated to be eligible to travel to a particular country to watch my favourite game.

We live in a digital age of gig economy, where with the help of internet and a mobile phone app, we can travel in any one's car (uber), can stay in any one's home (airbnb)

Even in 2014 when India toured Pakistan for a cricket series,  Pakistani government offered visa to fans holding a match ticket and many Indians made use of that relax visa option and visited Pakistan in numbers,  making it a landmark cricket series between Pakistan and India.

When football worldcup was held in Russia in 2018 the Russian government announced visa on arrival for football fans around the world.

Any fan having a match ticket was entitled for a visa on arrival irrespective of his nationality and irrespective if his country's team was playing in the worldcup or not.

Many fans from non worldcup participating countries like Pakistan,  India, Bangladesh,  China etc made use of this attractive visa policy and made their travels to Russia which proved to be the most successful football worldcup ever.

With the next t20 world cup in 2020 being held in Australia I am already shrugging of my chances due to fear of being rejected visa for similar reasons and the 2023 world cup to take place in India and looking at the political tension between the two countries I am not very optimistic about going there either.

With Pakistan already playing its home matches to foreign soil, I am putting my desire to watch a worldcup match at a stadium in comma, and may come out of comma when the world cup match is held in a less strict visa country which at present for us pakistanis, looks only srilanka.

A disgruntlled fan,

ICC vs FIFA. Football World Cup Russia 2018 vs Cricket World Cup England 2019.

When football worldcup was held in Russia in 2018 the Russian government announced visa on arrival for football fans around the world.

Any fan having a match ticket was entitled for a visa on arrival irrespective of his nationality and irrespective if his country's team was playing in the worldcup or not.

Many fans from non worldcup participating countries like Pakistan,  India, Bangladesh,  China etc made use of this attractive visa policy and made their travels to Russia which proved to be the most successful football worldcup ever.

It was expected that other world sporting bodies and host countries will take inspiration from Russia and will facilitate fans in similar manner.

Now coming forward to the cricket world cup in the UK in 2019.

Getting the visa to the UK is one of the most difficult thing.

No relaxation of visa was offered for the fans who wished to visit UK to watch the cricket worldcup.

The visa officer as usualy, will inspect and suspect the usual availability of finances and probabilities  of returning back to the home country.

Considering that 5 of the 10  participating nations are from the third world country, the chances of securing the visa for the purpose of watching cricket matches gets very tricky.

For many it's one of a life time experience,  a pilgrimage, saving money for several years, to watch the cricket world cup match.

One's finances should not be made directly associated to be eligible to travel to a particular country to watch his favourite game.

We live in a digital age of gig economy, where with the help of internet and a mobile phone app, we can travel in any one's car (uber), can stay in any one's home (airbnb) and order food from any where, send and receive money with a snap of the finger thru the help of the mobile app.

Even in 2014 when India toured Pakistan for a cricket series,  Pakistani government offered visa to fans holding a match ticket and many Indians made use of that relax visa option and visited Pakistan in numbers, making it a landmark cricket series between Pakistan and India.

With the next T20 world cup in 2020 being held in Australia I am already shrugging of my chances due to fear of being rejected visa for similar reasons and the 2023 world cup to take place in India and looking at the political tension between the two countries I am not very optimistic about going there either.

With Pakistan already playing its home matches on foreign soil, I am putting my desire to watch a worldcup match at a stadium, and may come out of my comma when the world cup match is held in a less strict visa country which at present for us pakistanis, looks only srilanka.