Tuesday May 24, 2022

Players to submit Rs5m surety bond for Canadian, US Open

December 07, 2021
Players to submit Rs5m surety bond for Canadian, US Open

KARACHI: The 32 junior squash players participating in Canadian Junior Open and US Junior Open have to submit surety bond of Rs5 million to Pakistan Squash Federation (PSF) before leaving for the championships.

The decision was taken in the latest annual general meeting of the federation in order to stop players from using the sport for going abroad and settle there illegally. According to details, the house in the AGM decided that every player and official should submit a surety bond of Rs5 million to PSF on a stamp paper duly signed by their parents and endorsed by their association.

“The nominated officials should be responsible for bringing the players back to Pakistan immediately after the tournaments,” stated the house.

It was decided that associations must take responsibility that their nominated officials properly look after their contingent and bring them back to Pakistan.

It is to be noted that six players are playing in Ontario, Canada, from December 11-14 and 26 players have been guaranteed entry in the main draw of the US Junior Open. It has become a common practice for players from Pakistan to get the visas of different European and American countries to play international events there and not come back.

In 2015, four players went to Australia after getting visas to play squash but they never came back.

Two players from Peshawar went missing in Japan in the same period. This was the reason Milo’s sport organisers launched an official complaint with PSF former secretary Abdul Wahab Marwat that five junior players from Pakistan entered their names in the event by using Marwat’s forged signatures.

A case of getting entry on forged signatures was nabbed by former PSF secretary Amir Nawaz when a player entered his name in an event in Kuwait by using the forged signatures of Pakistan Sports Board’s Director of Peshawar Centre Mohibullah Junior.

In 2012, New Zealand authorities virtually put a ban on issuing visas to Pakistani players because one Adnan Khan stayed there illegally after taking part in a squash event as a coach.

This scribe reported at that time that SquashGym in Palmerston North, New Zealand, hosted a $5000 Manawatu Classic event from July 26-29, 2012, in which two Pakistani squash players, Suleman Khan and Naseem Khan, participated, accompanied by Suleman’s brother Adnan, who acted as their manager and coach.

Adnan did not return and stayed in New Zealand illegally. The immigration authorities told their squash authorities that Adnan had not left New Zealand.

New Zealand’s immigration authorities were reluctant to issue visas to Suleman, Adnan, and Naseem as they did not have much travel history but the tournament organiser Grant Smith gave his personal guarantee to the embassy in Dubai for these players to get visas.

The same year, a player from Peshawar, Asif Khan, faced deportation from Canadian authorities as he was an illegal immigrant demanding asylum.

Former world champion Qamar Zaman told ‘The News’ that Asif was among a group of players in Peshawar who created a fake email in his name and wrote to different associations of the world that Qamar wanted to send these players for training to their countries.

“My son Mansoor Zaman was told by an official of Denmark Squash Association during a tour that he was sending visas to a group of players in Peshawar who were recommended by me. He (Mansoor) saw the emails and told the official that I didn’t use the account he received emails from,” he added.

Qamar said the development shocked him and he consulted with FIA. “Later I withdrew this case on humanitarian grounds. But this has been a practice here in Pakistan for quite some time that people get the membership of Professionals Squash Association (PSA) for around 400 pounds, get visas and then never come back,” said Qamar.

“I wrote to a director of PSA stating they have made PSA a shop. A big number of people have gone to foreign countries on the basis of this PSA membership because they easily get visas on the basis of their letter. This has become a big business here,” he added.

Qamar suggested that foreign countries should not issue visas to squash players without seeing PSF’s endorsement.