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Govt appeals to Supreme Court against return of Ashraf as Pakistan Cricket Board chief

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ISLAMABAD - The Pakistan government has appealed to the Supreme Court against a lower court's decision to recall Zaka Ashraf as the Pakistan Cricket Board chairman.

The government in Tuesday's filing urged the Supreme Court to restore the management committee headed by Najam Sethi.

The Islamabad High Court on Saturday annulled Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's decision in February to remove Ashraf, and set aside all the decisions made by the new management committee.

The Supreme Court will hear the petition on Wednesday.

In its petition, the ministry of inter-provincial co-ordination said IHC judge Noor-ul-Haq Qureshi's decision will "unleash a chain of events that will create immense chaos and destruction (in PCB) costing million and millions of rupees."

Ashraf took charge of the PCB on Monday for the second time, and said he will review all the decisions by Sethi's committee within days.

Sharif, as patron of the PCB and through a special notification in February, removed Ashraf for mismanagement, and appointed a committee which later elected Sethi as the chairman.

Sethi has led reforms to the PCB constitution, and organized fresh elections for chairman in early June.

The ministry said in its appeal "all reforms towards elections, constitution-making, and international commitments will be at peril" if Sethi and his committee were not restored.

Former PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan, ex-captain Zaheer Abbas, and former national team manager Naveed Akram Cheema were part of the committee.

In Lahore at the PCB headquarters, Ashraf appointed former PCB secretary and chief operating officer Arif Ali Khan Abbasi as his chief consultant.

"He (Abbasi) was also concerned that all these litigations are making Pakistan as a laughingstock in international cricket," Ashraf aid. "We would like to take benefit from Mr. Abbasi's expertise and see what could be done to restore Pakistan's image."

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