Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said on Monday that two cricketers from the State were wrongly held by the police in Bangalore on Sunday. His government was in constant touch with Karnataka over the detention of Pervez Rasool and Mehrajudin.
“It is not that we are silent on this, we have been on the job the moment we received the news. There was some defect in the machine and Pervez Rasool was made a scapegoat. We have spoken to different States that they should be sensitive while dealing with such cases because already there are various wounds, which are still raw,” the Chief Minister told journalists after a function at Kashmir University, according to local news agency PBI.
Rasool, member of the State team for an under-22 cricket tournament, was detained after ‘traces of explosives’ were allegedly found in his kit bag. But, after questioning, the police released him for lack of evidence.
The incident prompted organisers of the ongoing Champions League to delay the start of the Twenty20 matches at the Chinnaswamy stadium in Bangalore, where the State team was lodged.
Meanwhile, Rasool’s family accused the Bangalore police of high-handedness saying he was detained for objecting to the use of sniffer dogs to check his bag which had the Koran in it.
Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy Farooq Abdullah, who is also the president of the Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA), has told the State police chief to ascertain whether calls were made to the Bangalore police to falsely implicate Rasool and Mehrajudin.
“I have learnt that the Karnataka police got calls from Jammu and Kashmir and were fed wrong information,” Dr. Farooq Abdullah said. “I suspect the role of the people who could not find a place in the team. I have told the Director-General of Police to find out who these people are.”
To lodge protest
The JKCA will lodge a protest with the Board of Control for Cricket in India even as the Karnataka Cricket Association apologised for the treatment meted out to players from the State.