The accommodation offered to the women’s cricket team from Pakistan in a Cuttack stadium has upset many back home with some even demanding the team’s recall from the ICC Women’s World Cup tournament beginning on Thursday.
Though the team manager Ayesha Ashar and captain Sana Mir were quoted as having no issues with the accommodation in the stadium , the fact that hotels of the city refused them accommodation has upset many a Pakistani. The Pakistan Cricket Board was being questioned if the “treatment being meted out” to the team is acceptable and, whether the reaction would have been the same if the men’s squad had been put up in similar quarters.
Besides taking digs galore at India’s claims to greatness, people were ventilating on social media platforms on the lack of coverage in the international media about the confinement of the team. Would the media have turned a blind eye had this happened to an Indian team in Pakistan was a common question. Even in Pakistan, media coverage of the problem was muted in comparison to that when blind cricket team captain Zeeshan Abbasi took ill after consuming water contaminated with soap solution in a Bangalore hotel last December.
Omar Quraishi, an editor with The Express Tribune who was in India last week for a Track II dialogue, wondered if Indian Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde’s statement about “Hindu terrorist groups” was not on target under the circumstances. “When I was in India last week, a remark by India’s Home Minister that there were Hindu terrorist groups in India riled many Indians. Doesn’t the fact that Indian authorities are taking the security threat to Pakistan’s team so seriously imply that he was right?”