04:02 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Indian offices empty ahead of Cricket World Cup semi-final

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    Over 60% of office workers in cricket-crazy India will not go to work on Wednesday as the country clashes in a Cricket World Cup semifinal match with Pakistan, a survey said.

    Over 60% of office workers in cricket-crazy India will not go to work on Wednesday as the country clashes in a Cricket World Cup semifinal match with Pakistan, a survey said.

    The survey conducted by the association of Indian trade and industry chambers says that 15% of major companies polled announced Wednesday as a day off, while others installed TV-sets in their offices so workers could watch the big game.

    Pakistan went one step further and has officially announced a half-day holiday to allow the entire nation to watch the game, which begins at 2:30 p.m. local time (9:00 GMT).

    The main cricket stadium in Pakistan's Lahore will have huge screens broadcasting the match and fans will be allowed to enter the stadium free of charge.

    The last scheduled match between the two former-British colonies in 2008 was cancelled after India blamed Pakistani militants for the death of over 160 people in a terrorist attack in Mumbai.

    Some 2,000 police and paramilitary personnel will ensure security at the 30,000-people capacity venue in the northwest Indian city of Mohali.

    Cricket fever has even breached the usually frosty relations between politicians in both countries. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh invited his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani to watch the game with him in Mohali.

    NEW DELHI, March 30 (RIA Novosti)

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