January 2018 News

Cricket Teams Booked In Kashmir As Pakistan's National Anthem Played Before Match

7 January 2018
The Hindustan Times
Ashiq Hussain

Srinagar: Two cricket teams have been booked and several players were reportedly detained for standing in honour of Pakistan's national anthem being played before the start of a match in north Kashmir's Bandipora district. The arrests were made after a video of the incident, which took place on January 3, went viral on social media. In the video, two cricket teams - one wearing green and another white - are purportedly seen standing in attention in two lines on either side of the pitch as 'Pak Sarzameen' played in the background. The players bowed their heads as the loudspeakers blurted the neighbouring country's anthem. Police confirmed that they have booked the two teams but did not give details about the number of people who were arrested or the identity of the teams. Local reports said that four persons have been arrested. 'The teams have been booked,' said senior superintendent of police Bandipora, Sheikh Zulfikar Azad. Local news portals reported that the incident took place at the finals of a local cricket tournament in Arin, Bandipora between MCC, Gondipora and Dardpora Cricket Club. The reports said that the police are also looking for the organisers of the match. This is not the first time that cricket matches have led to arrests in Kashmir. At-least 11 Kashmiri cricketers were detained in April last year in central Kashmir's Ganderbal district after a video clip had surfaced on social media, showing them wearing the Pakistani team's jersey with the neighbouring country's national anthem playing in the background.

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