Australian commenter Andrew Bolt criticizes the Indian cricket team for taking the knee at the T20 World Cup match as a sign of protest against racism. While hosting his show, he said he laughed in bitterness at the team’s “protest.”
Before India’s match with Pakistan, the Indian players took the knee to support the Black Lives Matter movement. Cricketers across the world take the knee to show support to the movement since the death of African-American George Floyd. Last year, George Floyd died at the hands of police personnel in Minneapolis.
Interesting to note, the Indian team made the gesture for the first time. Players of the Pakistan team also paid a tribute by holding their right hand to their hearts.
While the Indian team expressed solidarity with the movement, it received a lot of backlash and criticism for its silence on issues in India.
On this note, Andrew Bolt too criticized the Indian team for taking the knee.
“This is from a team representing the country that should first fix its own caste system before making big international statements,” he said.
To clarify, the Hindu caste system comprises Brahmins at the very top and the untouchables at the very bottom. The caste system perpetuates discrimination against the lower castes, for example, the Dalits.
“Has the Indian team ever taken the knee to protest against that, or is that a bit too close to home?” he further added.
The Dalits: India’s oppressed group
Violence against the Dalits is a common practice in India. Recently, a mob from upper caste communities attacked a Dalit family as they offered prayers at a temple installation ceremony.
Indian media reported that a mob of 20 people attacked a farmer and his family. The attackers beat the farmer with wooden sticks, pipes, axe, and sickle. They also threatened to kill the farmer and his family.
After the attack, the farmer lodged a complaint with the local police. As per his complaint, the mob warned the farmer to not attend the ceremony. However, the farmer paid no heed to their warnings. Therefore, they attacked him.