Former India batsman Aakash Chopra has come out speaking in defense of the Ahmedabad crowd that received criticism on social media for an incident involving Mohammad Rizwan during the IND vs PAK game on Sunday.
The Narendra Modi Stadium, the highest seating capacity cricket stadium in the world, was packed with Indian supporters, in front of whom India recorded a thumping 7-wicket victory to continue their winning momentum in the World Cup 2023.
After Rizwan got out, as he walked through the tunnel from the ground to the dressing room, some Indian fans chanted “Jai Shree Ram”. A short clip of this incident went viral on social media and fans online slammed the Ahmedabad crowd.
However, Aakash Chopra has pointed out a couple of notable factors regarding this supposed heckling of Mohammad Rizwan.
Why it happened with only Rizwan? If someone has an agenda, they can peddle it: Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra called out those who want to peddle their agenda on social media by demonizing the Ahmedabad crowd. He pointed out that the likes of Waqar Younis and Ramiz Raja are doing commentary with them; not to forget the love and cheering which Afghanistan players Rashid Khan, Gurbaz, etc got in Delhi.
In his YouTube video, Aakash Chopra said: “If you are getting a certain kind of behavior, if you have a problem although no one has said anything, only Mickey Arthur said, I haven’t heard any Pakistan player speaking, but if anyone among them speaks, you might need to look slightly within that why it happened with only one guy. Why did it not happen with the others?”
“The entire story is not there in 20 or 30-second clips. India is an extremely inclusive country and we treat everyone with love and a lot of people will stand witness to that. Waqar Younis and Ramiz Raja are working with us. If someone has an agenda, they can peddle it.”
Aakash Chopra then went on to slam Mickey Arthur, expressing perplexed at Arthur’s post-match comment about the Ahmedabad crowd being full of only Indian supporters and the DJ in the stadium not playing ‘Dil Dil Pakistan’ song.
The Indian commentator brought to attention the one-sided support Pakistan got in their Hyderabad matches against Sri Lanka and the Netherlands.
“Mickey Arthur said the DJ was not playing ‘Dil dil Pakistan’. To be very honest, they will not play. Some other people said that the crowd should always be equal. Sri Lanka could have also said the same thing when they were in Hyderabad.
“They are our neighbors just like Pakistan but when the DJ said – ‘Jeetega bhai jeetega’, the entire crowd said ‘Pakistan jeetega’. There wasn’t even one voice for Sri Lanka. If we talk about Afghanistan-England, it was in Delhi and the Afghanistan players got a lot of support in Delhi,” the former opener asserted.