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International news agencies boycott India-England Cricket Test series

The BCCI had withheld accreditation of photo agencies such as Getty Images and Action Images, saying that it will provide its own photographs

 
Ahmedabad: International news agencies on Thursday decided to boycott the high-profile Test series between India and England which began here to protest against the restrictions imposed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI),  on some photo agencies covering the tour, reports PTI.
 
International agencies Thomson Reuters, Agence France-Presse and Associated Press decided to suspend reports from the tour as well as pictures. The Press Association, national agency in the United Kingdom, will not also supply photographs, according to a release issued by the News Media Coalition (NMC).
 
"In addition to Getty Images, Action Images and two Indian photo agencies being barred, international news agencies have decided against providing pictorial or text coverage of the tour," the NMC, a coalition of international and domestic media organisations, said.
 
"The lock-out of photographic agencies by the BCCI will result in cricket fans worldwide having sight of far fewer images taken by press photographers," the NMC said.
 
"Normally, agencies would distribute thousands of images as part of their editorial coverage to the enjoyment of fans, the curious and sponsors of teams, such as Nike and Sahara," it added.
 
The BCCI had withheld accreditation of photo agencies such as Getty Images and Action Images, saying that it will provide its own photographs.
 
Meanwhile, editors of Britain's national newspapers today added their voice to the protests against BCCI's refusal to resolve the media dispute.
 
London-based 'The Telegraph' stated, "Photographic coverage of the first Test will be disrupted by media protests - supported by the Telegraph - at new restrictions imposed by the BCCI regarding the use of images and the threat they pose to media freedom."
 
Bob Satchwell, Executive Director of the Society of Editors, said, "Editors will be angered by this decision of the BCCI and confused by the motives. They just want to do the best job they can for their cricket-loving readers by choosing from the best news material. By damaging the ability of the press to cover cricket, the good name of the game also risks damage."
 
Earlier, the NMC had "deplored" the decision of the BCCI "to block attendance by reputable photographic agencies" and asked the Board to rethink.
 
"In our view, the BCCI's move will hit fans and cricket sponsors alike. The BCCI has offered to make its own photographs available but this is no substitute for independent and objective press photography," Executive Director of the NMC, Andrew Moger said.
 
"Despite numerous opportunities, the BCCI has yet to explain why it is discriminating against photographic agencies or indeed whether other news sectors will be targetted next.
 
We deplore this move and insult to organisations which have supported cricket worldwide," Moger added.
 
NMC members include Thomson Reuters, Agence France-Presse, Associated Press, the international photo agency Getty Images, the Press Association, the numerous British titles via the Newspaper Publishers Association, the European Newspaper Publishers' Association (ENPA), the European Publishers Council (EPC), the World Association of Newspapers (WAN-IFRA), among others.
 

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Azhar rules out any legal action, wants to work with BCCI

With Azhar not mulling any legal action, it is expected that the BCCI is likely to soften its stand in near future

 
New Delhi/Hyderabad: Welcoming the Andhra Pradesh High Court verdict setting aside the life ban on him, former India captain Mohammed Azharuddin on Thursday ruled out taking any legal action against Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and said he is willing to work with the Board for development of cricket, reports PTI.
 
"I can't predict how BCCI will react but it's totally up to them. As far as I am concerned, I am ready to work for the benefit of cricket and cricketers," a relieved Azharuddin told reporters at his MP residence in New Delhi, Thursday.
 
Asked if he would take any legal action against BCCI, the former captain said, "I am not going to take any legal action against any authority and I don't want to blame anybody for this also. It is about destiny and whatever had to happen has happened. I don't have any complaints."
 
The stylish right-hander from Hyderabad, who will be turning 50 next February said that he always had his conscience clear.
 
"My conscience was always clear as I haven't done anything wrong. I have represented my country and had played the game with utmost honesty. I never lost faith and was never a broken man. I didn't blame anybody and was ready to fight it out in the court of law," said one of India's most successful captains.
 
Apart from his parents, Azhar thanked former India captain Kapil Dev and BCCI president Late Raj Singh Dungarpur for their constant support during the darkest phase of his career.
 
"I thank Late Raj Singh Dungarpur for his constant support when he was alive. Also Kapil paaji has been very vocal in my support in all forums. So was former BCCI vice-president Kamal Morarka. I also thank all my fans who had stood by me in all these 12 years." 
 
His career ended at 99 Tests and Azhar doesn't want to dwell on it.
 
"May be I was destined to play 99 Test matches and that's what the Almighty wanted. I would not like to dwell on the past and move on. I am an MP and would like to focus on the development of my constituency Moradabad."
 
Senior BCCI official Rajeev Shukla said, "Our legal team will analyse the judgement. Then only we will react."
 
However with Azhar not mulling any legal action, it is expected that the BCCI is likely to soften its stand in near future.
 
A man who has always preferred answering in monosyllables during his playing days, Azhar got a bit emotional when there was a reference of his late son Mohammed Ayazuddin who passed away in a tragic bike accident last year.
 
"What I lost last year is scar that will remain with me forever. Nothing can change that. It was Almighty Allah's wish but certainly myself and my elder son Abbas (Mohammed Asaduddin) are relieved today."
 

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COMMENTS

R Balakrishnan

6 years ago

Of course, the BCCI purse for ex cricketers, helps maintain a dignified acceptance stance.

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