B2 visas will see foreign players join IPL after April 15: CSK CEO

Chennai Super Kings CEO Kasi Vishwanathan has made it clear that the fresh visa advisory from the Indian government has made it almost impossible for foreign players to join their respective teams in the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) before April 15 unless the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) gets special permission.

Speaking to IANS, the CSK CEO said that most of the foreign players are booked on business visas and in such a scenario the fresh advisory sent out by the government on Wednesday says that they won't be allowed entry till April 15.

"Most of the players are travelling with business visas and that is how they come and play in the IPL. So, it will be impossible for them to join the teams unless the BCCI gets special permission. As of now, it is not possible as the diktat is pretty clear and we cannot go against the government," he said.

Asked what could be the best way forward, he said: "The BCCI needs to sit down with the government and I mean both the central and the state governments across the board and get to some understanding on how they need to go forward. Unless special permission is given, it will not be possible for foreign players to join the teams."

A second meeting of the Group of Ministers on Wednesday cancelled all visas, except for a few official categories, till April 15 in the wake of the growing coronavirus scare.

In the meeting held at Nirman Bhavan in the national capital, it was decided that all existing visas, except diplomatic, official, UN/international organisations, employment and project visas, stand suspended till April 15 as the coronavirus outbreak has already seen over 60 positive cases in India.

The coronavirus outbreak was on Wednesday declared a "pandemic" by the World Health Organisation (WHO), whose chief expressed his "deep concern" over the "alarming levels of inaction" in combating the virus spread.    - IANS