Islamabad: The Pakistan government has directed the country’s cricket board and its High Commission in the United Kingdom to submit a detailed report on the recent spot-fixing case in order to seek repatriation of the three jailed cricketers there.
Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt, and fast bowlers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir, were jailed by London``s Southwark Crown Court for their involvement in a spot-fixing scam during the 2010 Lord``s Test against England.
Butt has been sentenced to two-and-a-half years in jail, Asif for a year, while Amir will be jailed for six months.
According to the Daily Times, the government led by President Asif Zardari, who is also a patron of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), is giving the case his full consideration.
Interior minister Rehman Malik has said that a meeting has been held to sort out the issue.
“During a high-level meeting President Zardari on Friday directed the PCB to submit a report which should include recommendations on how to avoid a repeat of such incidents,” the paper quoted Malik, as saying.
“The government would consider bringing the three players home. We have also requested Pakistan’s High Commissioner to the UK, Wajid Shamsul Hassan, to provide necessary legal aid to them and he has been asked to submit a report,” he added.
Malik termed the whole episode “unfortunate”, insisting that the players could still be innocent.
“Despite their guilty verdicts in both the ICC hearings and the recently concluded criminal trial in London, we cannot rule out the possibility of any of the convicted players being innocent,” Malik said, adding: “It’s unfortunate what happened, the government will form a commission to investigate the matter thoroughly and the players will not be left alone.”