In an unexpected move, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has cancelled the accreditation of news channels. News broadcasters received a letter from the ICC on Sunday. The letter charged them with violation of broadcasting norms during news reporting of ICC matches.
The ICC has asked broadcasters to sign an undertaking as dictated by it. It is learnt that the ICC has drafted a set of restrictive guidelines for the channels.
The News Broadcasters Association (NBA), in response to the action initiated by the ICC, has decided that its members would stand united and voluntarily desist from accessing match venues or availing any other accreditation benefits like attending press conferences, practice sessions, and interviews.
Annie Joseph, secretary general, NBA, says, "The ICC, in its letter, has not clarified about the coverage norms broken by the broadcasters. Therefore, in view of the unreasonable stand taken by the ICC at a crucial juncture of the ICC World Cup 2011 matches, the NBA has decided in a board meeting, to desist from using the benefits of accreditation."
The ICC's move is a big jolt to the news channels as the semi-finals of the ICC World Cup 2011, between India and Pakistan, will be played on Wednesday, March 30, 2011, at Mohali. The match has evoked a lot of hype and buzz in both countries. This is the first head-to-head match since the Asia Cup in July 2008, which had taken place in Karachi, in which Pakistan had defeated India by eight wickets.