Why no 'cricket diplomacy' with Sri Lanka, asks Thackeray

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Mumbai, Apr 1: Attacking Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for inviting his Pakistani counterpart to the Cricket World Cup semi-final match between India and Pakistan, Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray today asked if the ''special offer of cricket diplomacy'' was also applicable to Sri Lanka.

Terming as ''foolish'' Singh's cricket diplomacy, Thackeray said he would like to know if the Lankan President and PM have been invited for tomorrow's final in Mumbai.

"We came to know from media that Lankan president is coming for the final. We would like to know has he been invited officially," Thackeray said in an editorial in party mouthpiece Saamna here.

"If no such invitation has been extended, then are we to presume that the special offer of cricket diplomacy was limited to Pakistan," he added.

"Why can't India indulge in cricket diplomacy with Lanka for the sake of Tamil brethren there, he asked.

Thackeray also objected to the Pakistani team performing ''namaaz'' at the Mohali stadium.

The Sena chief also expressed satisfaction that Pakistan team is not there in the final at Mumbai, "due to blessings from Goddess Jagdamba".

PTI

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