ISLAMABAD - Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) to start fund-raising movement for disabled players and to ensure at least 4 to 5 percent jobs quota for disabled players in private and corporate sector.

Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) vice president Munawar Mughal, who is also the chief patron of Pakistan Disabled Sports Association announced this during an exclusive interview with The Nation on Friday. He said the T20 between ICCI and PDSA teams would be held on December 3 to mark World Disabled Day at National cricket ground and he had given instructions to provide kits and other related stuff to PDSA team.

He said there was an urgent need to understand the basic rights of disabled persons as they were given special benefits all over the world but unfortunately in Pakistan, they were not getting what they deserve. “The basic aim behind forming PDSA is to provide a platform to disabled persons, where they could not only showcase their skills and earn respect for their families but also earn bread and butter by applying their trade instead of begging. Government must increase the two percent quota to at least 4 to 5 percent for disabled persons and secondly and should also work on the implementation of this quota policy.”

Munawar said he had witnessed disabled players in action during a cricket match recently and he was very impressed with their performances and commitment. He suggested the government and private sectors must join hands to promote the disabled players and ICCI was already working on these lines and was committed to all disable players belonging to any sports and in this regard soon bright players would get stipends and central contracts from the chamber.

He said he would talk to Capital Development Authority (CDA) chairman Afzal Maroof to allocate a piece of land for disabled players as they did not have any play ground in the country and a greta hindrance for these players to improve them. He said as soon as the CDA allots a piece of land the ICCI would come forward to turn it into a state of art multi-purpose stadium where fascilities for outdoor as well as indoor games would be provided to these players. He also requested to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to look into this matter personally and issue directives to CDA to release land as early as possible.

He also expressed grave shock and sorrow over the sad incident of Philip Huges and termed it a great loss for not only Australian cricket but also for the entire cricket community.

He also requested to critics not to put extra pressure and entire blame on Sean Abbot as it was purely accidental.

“As a player and captain of ICCI cricket team, I have decided to organise a simple but impressive ceremony at ICCI building in collaboration with Rawalpindi Islamabad Sports Journalists Association (RISJA) to pay homage to Philip Huges. We will light candles and observe 2 minute silence in his memory,” Munawar concluded.