BHUBANESWAR: Pakistan's participation in the 22nd Asian Athletic Championships remained doubtful as its athletic body on Friday claimed that its players were yet to receive visas to attend the international meet to be held in Bhubaneswar from July 6.
“Today being the last working day before the weekend, if the visas are not endorsed today it will not be possible for us to make it in time for the event,” president of Athletic Federation of Pakistan (AFP) FP Maj Gen Akram Sahi told the New Indian Express via e-mail.
However, the Indian authorities gave a contrasting picture.
Athletics Federation of India (AFI) said all visa formalities have been cleared and the Pakistan team will participate.
Odisha's Sports and Youth Affairs minister Chandra Sarathi Behera said following chief minister Naveen Patnaik's intervention, visa-related issues for players from foreign countries have been sorted out.
Meanwhile, members of foreign teams began arriving in Bhubaneswar. A team from Oman arrived today. Their arrival, three days ahead of the scheduled, led to immigration clearance issues in Delhi. It was later sorted out, sources said.