Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Saturday assured the International Cricket Council (ICC) of taking adequate security measures for any international cricket event in Bangladesh as it always does so when it comes to security steps.The Prime Minister said this when an ICC delegations, led by Chief Executive David John Richardson, met her at her official residence Ganabhaban.
Other members of the delegation were ICC security consultants Sean Norris and Reg Dickson, and head of events Chris Tetley.
After the meeting, Prime Minister’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters.
Sheikh Hasina said the people of Bangladesh are cricket crazy ones as they love this sport very much.
She mentioned that the upcoming Under-19 World Cup Cricket Tournament to be held in January next in Bangladesh is very important as under-19 teams are the players of future.
Richardson told the Prime Minister that their delegation held talks with the authorities concerned of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), security agencies as well as embassies and high commissions of the participating countries on security issues.
The delegation also visited cricket venues in Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Cox’s Bazar where the matches of the Under-19 World Cup Cricket Tournament will be held, he said.
Expressing satisfaction over the conditions of the stadiums, the ICC CE said the delegation members are highly pleased seeing the standard of the Cox’s Bazar International Stadium.
In reply, the Prime Minister said she was personally looking after the construction works of the stadium.
David Richardson said the delegation will submit a report to the Board of the ICC on their visit.
Prime Minister’s Adviser HT Imam and BCB President Nazmul Hasan Papon was also present.
The Under-19 International Cricket Tournament will begin on January 27, 2016 with the participation of 16 countries.
During the tournament, 48 matches will be held in Dhaka, Chittagong, Sylhet and Cox’s Bazar venues.
Talking to reporters at Ganabhaban after the meeting with the Prime Minister, David Richardson said the delegation will prepare a security plan and submit a confidential report to the Board of the ICC to finalise the plan.
The Chief Executive said the ICC delegation makes inspection visits to the host country before any international event.
He said the aim of their visit is to see the security situation in Bangladesh and to make sure that the security measures taken are adequate to meet any kind of threat or risk.
The purpose of the visit is also to ensure safety and security of the participants, the umpires, officials and of course their friends and families and fans of the cricket, he added.
Talking about Australia’s postponed visit to Bangladesh, Richardson said the Australian team’s visit was postponed because of some security concerns.
Taking this particular case into consideration, the delegation met all the relevant security agencies, some of the high commissions of the member countries to establish the facts around the security situation in the country, he said.
Richardson said security measurers became more challenging in recent times and it does not mean that international events in particular places could not be held, rather it means that security plans need to be strengthened mitigating the risks and threats.
The CE of the ICC said the delegation held talks with the BCB and the government of Bangladesh on the security issues.
They also met the authorities concerned of security agencies, intelligence agencies, police, military and civil administration people who are responsible for developing the plan and implementing it during the tournament.
Richardson said the delegation will take a lot more facts before reviewing the security plan already provided to them. It will submit its confidential report to the ICC board just to pass the facts to them on the overall situation.