Our advice would be not do it at this time but if they want to go ahead its their decision: Dammu Ravi
The External Affairs Ministry on Thursday advised against holding this year's Indian Premier League (IPL) edition in wake of the coronavirus scare, but left it to the organisers to take a final call on it.
This was stated by MEA Additional Secretary Dammu Ravi who has been appointed as the nodal officer to coordinate efforts to deal with the coronavirus outbreak.
Responding to questions about IPL and other sporting events, Mr Ravi said the government's advice would be "not do it at this time but if the organisers want to go ahead, it is their decision".
"We are assessing a lot of requests of this nature of sports events that have been held in India and some thing related to mega event already being planned. It is for the organisers to decide if they want to go ahead with it or not," Mr Ravi said during a press briefing.
"Our advice would be not do it at this time but if they still want to go ahead it is their decision," said Mr Ravi.
In response to another question on IPL, Mr Ravi said it is a commercial decision of the organisers.
"We will have to assess over a period of time if specific guidelines need to be issued on it or not but there are mega events too like Tokyo Olympics which will be held later this year so all this our decisions of organisers keeping in consideration heath of people. We will be reviewing it over course of time also," he said.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said on holding IPL in India, the comments were general observations on holding large sporting events in India.
"Our view is that this is a decision to be taken by the organisers. No specific recommendations have been sought or made by MEA regarding hosting IPL or any other sporting event in India," he said.
The coronavirus outbreak, declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on Wednesday, has led to more than 4,000 deaths globally.
The government on Wednesday suspended all visas, barring a few categories like diplomatic and employment, in an attempt to prevent the spread of coronavirus as cases across India rose to more than 60.
No foreign player will be available in the league due to the restrictions.