ISLAMABAD-Pakistan Tenpin Bowling Federation (PTBF) secretary Ijaz-ur Rehman lashes out at government’s pathetic negligence towards sports and increasing duties on import of bowling machines.

Talking to The Nation, Ijaz said: “Everywhere in the world, the governments ensure maximum relaxation in rules and regulations to allow sports industry flourish and use different ways to involve youth in healthy sporting activities, but here in Pakistan, it doesn’t care about anything. The finance minister wants to impose taxes on everything. We are already striving to promote tenpin bowling in Pakistan without any help from the government. I have invested heavily from my personal pocket to install bowling alley in Islamabad, first of its kind, and we are providing highly discounted rates to buck up generation to sharpen their skills in bowling.

“When I started working on bowling in Pakistan, a very few youngsters were involved in this game, but we have attracted a great number of youngsters towards this game and adopted it as career. We have started work on construction of bowling alleys in all major cities of the country and also managed to build many in various cities and the construction process in relatively smaller cities is also underway.

“But instead of appreciating our tireless efforts, the government has introduced alarming and criminal regulatory in import duties under SRO 1035(I)/2017-RD, under a sudden move by the ministry of finance economic affairs issued directives on October 10 to impose further rise on number of items, which were already too high and now they have reached to around 105 percent. The government should focus on removing custom duties drastically on import of sports goods, machinery and equipment accessories,” he added.

Ijaz said: “We are not only focusing on training the youth, but also invited foreign coaches to groom our players well for national and international events. We are bearing hefty amount at our own just to take Pakistan bowlers to new levels. We have arranged a great number of tours of players to different international events. The IPC Minister and PSB Director General have always supported the federation, but we never received any help from the government, even I have requested POA president to help the federation, but he doesn’t have time from his foreign commitments.  “It is not my personal issue, but it is about future of millions of youth of the country. Without keen interest and timely intervention of Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbassi, getting duty-free bowling equipments, lands for bowling alleys and special grant for bowling promotion are not possible, and the ultimate sufferer will be no one else but talented bowling players, who are capable enough to win international medals for Pakistan,” Ijaz concluded.