Canada refuses visa to Pakistan’s Taekwondo athletes due to lack of funds

Shukriya Pakistan

Pakistan’s campaign for World Junior Taekwondo Championship 2016 has hit a major bump as Canada refused the visa of two out of four athletes. Pakistan’s team was comprised of four athletes along with three officials.

Athletes named Zaheer Baig and Obdoon Butt accompanied by Pakistan Taekwondo Federation’s (PTF) president Waseem Ahmed and coaches Najia Khan and Rizwan Bangash were travelling to Canada for the global event. However, US-based players Mahnoor and Nimra Wasiq have faced no difficulty in getting visa.

Ahmed was shocked by the visa refusal, he told Express Tribune, “It is very upsetting and extremely disappointing. We had fulfilled all the formalities and the government also gave us the NOCs.”

“The Pakistan Sports Board was also supporting us so it is just mind-boggling why we were not issued the visas. Our players are 15 and 16-year-olds while all the officials are well-travelled individuals.”

He went on to say, “They raised the issue that we don’t have enough money, but we actually do, as the Pakistan government also gave us Rs1 million for this event. Of course, we don’t have extra money but we had enough to participate and return to Pakistan.”