Coronavirus has been declared ‘pandemic’ by World Health Organisation and all the countries across the globe has started to put ban on the mass gathering more sternly. The sports minister of India has also released as advisory related to organising games in closed doors to avoid mass gatherings.
Yesterday saw a number of series being called off and a number of them being advised to be played behind the closed doors by the officials of BCCI and India’s Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports.
With the corona threat increasing every passing day, the dark clouds are hovering over the IPL 2020 as well. As there are just 15 days left for the start of the tournament, BCCI and IPL GC are fretting over organising the event in empty stands.
In a tweet, Kiren Rijiju, India’s Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports, posted an advisory that to be followed by sports bodies across the country. Terming the health of citizens of utter importance, the minister tweeted, “There are many confusions amongst the athletes at this moment. Two Advisories are issued by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports for matches abroad and the domestic. There’s no restrictions on playing but guidelines to be followed strictly in the larger interest of health,” with the screenshot of advisory issued by the health ministry of India.
The advisory reads- “Experts across the World have advised to reduce mass gatherings to avoid the spread of COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus disease. In view of above, it is advised that mass gatherings may be avoided or possibly be postponed till the disease spread is contained.
“In case any such mass gatherings are organized, States may take necessary action guide the Organisers on precautions to be taken as per the risk communication material already sent so as to avoid any Severe Acute Respiratory Illness (SARI) cases and Influenz Illness (ILs) including Covid-19.”
After the release of advisory, Rijiju talked about the impact of advisory and also the possibility of organising the tournaments closed doors.
“We are not stopping the game. We are just telling to ensure that there is no mass gathering. Precautionary step is very important for the health of the country.
“Health of the nation is more important than anything. If matches happen the organisers would need to put in place all infrastructure including screening machines. You cannot hold a match without that.
“We are not saying anything to stop the match. We are just saying: even if they go ahead with the match, ensure that guidelines are followed. People’s health cannot be put into danger,” Rijiju was quoted as saying by the reporters outside the parliament.
As per the latest development, all the upcoming matches – two ODIs against South Africa, Ranji Trophy final and the upcoming IPL will be played behind the closed doors.