Islamabad, Aug 7 : Former Pakistani fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar, known for his blistering deliveries on the cricket field, recently baffled many with a deadly off-field bouncer by claiming he is willing to eat grass if it enabled an increase in budget for his country's Army!
"If Allah ever gives me the authority, I will eat grass myself but I will increase the budget of the army," said Akhtar in an interview with ARY News. The 'Rawalpindi Express', considered the fastest bowler in history said he does not understand why the civilian sector cannot work in collaboration with the Armed forces.
"I will ask my army chief to sit with me and make decisions. If the budget is 20 per cent, I will make it 60 per cent. If we insult each other, the loss is ours only," the once feared fast-bowler said.
Akthar had also claimed to ARY News interview that he was willing to take a bullet for his country and had turned down a county stint just because he wanted to fight the 1999 Kargil War.
Ties between India and Pakistan have been strained in the recent months over several issues, the latest being Pakistan's attempt to broach in the UNSC the issue of Kashmir on the first anniversary of the India's move to scrap the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and to split the erstwhile state into two union territories .
Pakistan also has not been in a good financial position and under prime minister Imran Khan, himself an all rounder cricketer, has added nearly USD 22 billion, that is 35 per cent to the nation's international debt pile in the last two years, according to an Asia Times report in July.
While Pakistan recently received USD 1.39 billion from the IMF to cushion the economic shocks caused due to COVID-19 outbreak, Akthar had a few months ago proposed that a joint cricket match be played between India and Pakistan to raise funds to fight the coronavirus. The suggestion that was put down by cricketers in India.