India’s cricketers on Friday sported camouflaged caps during the third One-Day International against Australia in Ranchi as a tribute to the country’s armed forces.
Speaking after the toss at the JSCA International Stadium in Ranchi, Indian captain Virat Kohli said that the players decided to wear the special cap “in honour of our soldiers who died in the Pulwama Attack.”
The caps were distributed to the players by Mahendra Singh Dhoni. The former captain was conferred the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel by the Indian Territorial Army in 2011.
Not just the cricketers, even the Indian commentators decided to wear the camouflaged caps during the match on Friday. Former captain Sunil Gavaskar distributed the caps to Sanjay Manjrekar, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Murali Kartik and Harsha Bhogle.
However, this initiative by the Board of Control for Cricket in India drew mixed reactions of people. There were many who reckoned that sports shouldn’t be used for symbolism. It was even pointed out that displaying any kind of message on the field through clothing or equipment is against the International Cricket Council’s laws.
In July 2014, Moeen Ali was banned from wearing “Save Gaza” and “Free Palestine” wristbands in the Test series against India in England.
England were prepared to let Ali continue wearing the wristbands during the remainder of the third Investec Test against India, but the ICC has ruled that its international sports arena was not the place for the British Muslim’s show of solidarity.
He was not charged or punished, but simply told the wristbands must go when he is out on the field.
ICC issued the following statement on it: “The ICC equipment and clothing regulations do not permit the display of messages that relate to political, religious or racial activities or causes during an international match. Moeen Ali was told by the match referee that while he is free to express his views on such causes away from the cricket field, he is not permitted to wear the wristbands on the field of play and warned not to wear the bands again during an international match.”
Now Pakistan has asked ICC to take notice of Indian team for wearing military caps.
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Saturday said the International Cricket Council (ICC) should take notice of the Indian team for wearing military caps during the third One Day International (ODI) against Australia.
“The world saw that the Indian cricket team wore military caps instead of their own, did ICC not see this? We think that it is the ICC’s responsibility to take notice of this without the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) bringing it up,” the foreign minister said.
Minister for Information Fawad Chaudhry Friday expressed hope that the International Cricket Council (ICC) would take action against India for politicising the gentleman’s game of cricket by distributing army camouflage caps among its players ahead of the third one-day international (ODI) against Australia.
“It’s just not Cricket”, I hope ICC ll take action for politicising Gentleman’s game … if Indian Cricket team ll not be stopped, Pak Cricket team should wear black bands to remind The World about Indian atrocities in Kashmir… I urge PCB to lodge formal protest,” Fawad tweeted.