This Article is From Oct 20, 2015

Akram, Akhtar Not to Commentate in Mumbai ODI After Sena Threat; Pak Umpire Withdrawn

Akram, Akhtar Not to Commentate in Mumbai ODI After Sena Threat; Pak Umpire Withdrawn

Pakistani umpire Aleem Dar has been withdrawn by the International Cricket Council from officiating the 5th India-South Africa ODI in Mumbai on Sunday.

New Delhi: Pakistani umpire Aleem Dar has been withdrawn from officiating in the remaining two matches of the on-going India-South Africa one-day series, hours after Shiv Sena activists tried to force cancellation of talks between BCCI chief Shashank Manohar and his Pakistani counterpart Shahryar Khan in Mumbai on Monday morning. Citing security reasons, former Pakistani cricketers Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar too have decided to not commentate in the fifth one-day match, which will take place in Mumbai.

Following are the latest developments in this story:

  1. On Monday morning, a group of Shiv Sena activists stormed the Board of Control for Cricket in India or BCCI office in Mumbai and threatened to prevent Mr Dar from umpiring in the fifth One-Day International (ODI) match between India and South Africa on Sunday.

  2. "Under the present circumstances, it will be unreasonable to expect from Aleem that he will be able to perform his duties to the best of his abilities. As such, he has been withdrawn and his replacement will be announced in due course," an International Cricket Council (ICC) spokesman said. Mr Dar had officiated in the first three of the five-match ODI series.

  3. Cricketers-turned-commentators Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar have decided to return to Pakistan on Friday, a day after they will commentate in the fourth ODI in Chennai.

  4. On Monday morning, just before the chiefs of the Indian and Pakistani cricket boards were to discuss a potential bilateral series between the two nations, Shiv Sena activists broke into the office of the BCCI.

  5. Shiv Sena activists waving placards of "Shahryar Khan, Go Back" crashed through the gates of the office in Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium. They entered Mr Manohar's cabin and crowded around his desk, shouting slogans and warning him against meeting Mr Khan. At least 10 protesters were arrested, but were granted bail within hours.

  6. Sources say Mr Manohar drove to the Trident hotel, where Shahryar Khan is staying, and spoke to him. Two two cricket board chiefs, sources say, will meet again in New Delhi today.

  7. The Indian and Pakistani cricket boards had signed a pact for six bilateral series between 2015 and 2023.

  8. The Shiv Sena, which rules Maharashtra in alliance with the BJP, says it will not allow any engagement with Pakistan as long as the country is involved in acts of terror.

  9. Leaders of the BJP disagreed publicly. "Mumbai should host an India-Pakistan match and if Pakistan cricketers come, the government should protect them," said state BJP chief Raosaheb Danve.

  10. The Shiv Sena's protests led to legendary Pakistani artiste Ghulam Ali's concert being cancelled two weeks ago and last week, its activists threw black paint on columnist Sudheendra Kulkarni for organising the launch of former Pakistan minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri's book.