The Feroz Shah Kotla was packed to the rafters during the first T20I of the three-match series between India and New Zealand on November 1 as it was also veteran pacer Ashish Nehra's last international outing.

While fans had flocked the stadium to catch a glimpse of their local hero, former cricketers and teammates of left-armer also graced the occasion with their presence.

It has now emerged that officials of Delhi police and South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) had arm-twisted the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) into issuing them extra passes for the series opener.

'How many passes can we give?'

Court-appointed DDCA administrator, Justice Vikramajit Sen, opened up on how difficult it was for the Delhi cricket board to smoothly conduct the match at the Feroz Shah Kotla as the police and municipal officials had created quite a few obstacles when they were initially denied the extra passes.

The 66-year-old revealed that the SDMC had locked the players' kitchen hours before the toss, putting the India and New Zealand cricketers in danger of missing out on dinner.

He added that the Delhi police prevented entry of catering trucks while the traffic police had issued only 60 parking passes, which is lesser than the usual number (250).

Sen lashed out at the police for stopping "special invitee" Bishan Singh Bedi at the gates and instead allowing unauthorised people without frisking them, which resulted in security lapse.

"(Government departments) must realise that they have a job to do and don't have greater rights than other citizens and if citizens of Delhi are not allowed passes why they should take it and in enormous numbers. The tactics they employ are most unfortunate and somebody has to wake up and say this is not permissible," Sen told "The Indian Express".

He added: "The players' kitchen was closed for two hours because they didn't get enough passes... only after the extra passes were issued (at around 3.25 pm), were the players' kitchen doors opened."

Ashish Nehra
Ashish Nehra did a celebratory lap at the Feroz Shah Kotla on November 1IANS

Security hazard

"One of the main obstacles was how difficult some of the (government) organisations were, especially police. We have got footage to show that they actually opened the gates during the game to let people in. It was a security hazard because an international match was taking place. They just kept demanding passes but how many can you give?

"Even Bedi was not allowed through the gate, but these fellows (police) just opened the gate for unauthorised people. Bedi, who was to felicitate Nehra, was not allowed in by the police. He is such an aged person and if he was standing there, what do you do? We got to know when somebody told us... when we went rushing there, we saw this poor gentleman standing outside.

"When Delhi hosts a Test match in December there will be no cricket lovers left in the city."

Meanwhile, Sen has also written to Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik, briefing the latter about the "unfortunate tactics" employed by the officials.