ISLAMABAD - Rawalpindi-Islamabad Sports Journalists Association (RISJA) has expressed displeasure over the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) decision not to invite media to cover the award ceremony held in Lahore on Saturday.

In an emergency meeting held at RISJA office, the office-bearers expressed their surprise over the behavior of the board by denying right of coverage to media journalists. “You cannot keep media away from such ceremony, as it is their right to cover the event.

At one hand, the Pakistan Cricket Board includes veteran journalists in a committee that picks the best of 2012 and on the other hand, it keeps the media away from the coverage. Such an act by the Pakistan Cricket Board tantamount to depriving media of their genuine right," RISJA chairman Abdul Mohi Shah said while commenting on the serious issue.

RISJA president Nasir Aslam Raja said that it was the print and electronic media that kept masses update about cricket happening throughout the year. "Keeping them out of this yearly award ceremony is nothing less than depriving them of their genuine right.”

“It is media that makes players and board popular amongst cricket followers and they have the right to be a part of such function,” Nasir concluded.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Sports Writers Federation (PSWF) and other sports associations of various cities also expressed their disappointment over Pakistan Cricket Board’s step motherly treatment with media regarding cash awards ceremony.

“It is highly unacceptable that the media is barred from covering the inaugural award ceremony of the PCB. It seems that the PCB is following the style of the ICC awards but the difference is that the highly competent ICC officials make every award winner available within minutes to the media in a separate enclosure,” said a statement issued by PSWF on Saturday.