An Indian lawyer has lodged a complaint with the International Cricket Council (ICC) against Pakistan wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Rizwan for offering prayer on the field.
This marks the second occasion on which a complaint has been filed against Rizwan since the commencement of the World Cup in India.
After smashing a match-winning century against Sri Lanka, he dedicated his performance to the people of Gaza in light of the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict on X (formerly Twitter). But, the ICC was content with his act and didn’t find any point in taking action.
Meanwhile, an advocate of the Supreme Court of India by the name of Vineet Jindal has filed a fresh complaint against Mohammad Rizwan.
In his complaint to ICC Chairman Greg Barclay, he stated: “This is a complaint about Pakistan Cricket Player, Mohammad Rizwan, who was seen offering namaz on the cricket field during his team’s opening match of the ongoing ICC Men’s ODI World Cup 2023 on Friday (October 6) against the Netherlands in Hyderabad.”
The complaint continued, “The act of Mohammad Rizwan when he read namaz on the cricket field amid many Indians is symbolic of the intentional depiction of his religion which stands against the spirit of the sports.”
“This very act of the player raises questions about the spirit of the match and raises a question of the ideology, the player follows while playing the match. The act of displaying his religion by Mohammed Rizwan purposefully depicts his intent to message that he is a Muslim, defeating the spirit of sports. Rizwan was seen offering prayers amid the field while his teammates were waiting for the drinks during the break.” the lawyer argued.
“The act of representation of his religion by Mohammed Rizwan in the field and further followed by his statement in his press conference regarding the dedication of his victory to the people of Gaza further attests to his religious and political ideology.”
The complainant went on to mention that, “Earlier in 2021, Rizwan had offered namaz on the ground. When Babar Azam-led side defeated India by 10 wickets in the ICC T20 World Cup ‘Super 12” game, former Pakistan pace bowler Wagar Younis expressed his glee and voiced, “What I liked most is what Rizwan did.
He stood in the middle of the ground and read the prayers in front of the Hindus,” after the 31-year-old Mohammad Rizwan had used the cricket match as an opportunity to flaunt his faith in front of millions of viewers belonging to various religions. Pakistani social media users have also lauded batsman Mohammad Rizwan for offering an on-field prayer during the match.”
Vineet Jindal has requested the ICC to take strict action against Rizwan.
It must be noted that he is the same lawyer who filed a complaint against Pakistan presenter Zainab Abbas over her “anti-Hindu” statements.
Abbas, who was in India as a presenter for the ongoing ICC Men’s World Cup 2023, left the country on October 9, with the international cricket body saying her decision was based on “personal reasons”.