Cricketer Virender Sehwag, known for his outspoken nature, on Saturday, sparked controversy with one of his tweets after he allegedly tried to give a communal angle to the murder of a poor tribal man in Kerala.
A tribal man from Attappadi, Madhu, was severely beaten up on Thursday evening by a mob, which accused him of stealing rice. Madhu vomited and fell unconscious while he was being taken to the police station, and was declared brought dead by the hospital authorities.
Sehwag, in his tweet, called the incident as a disgrace to a civilised society, but named three people in particular as the accused, all of the three being Muslims.
He tweeted,” Madhu stole 1 kg rice. A mob of Ubaid, Hussain and Abdul Kareem lynched the poor tribal man to death. This is a disgrace to a civilised society and I feel ashamed that this happens and kuch farak nahi padta.”
His tweet irked many people on the social media platform, who called him selective for naming just three people as accused. Many questioned that he should have just looked at the crime as horrifying and not bring religion into it.
Sehwag, however, later apologised for his prolonged silence as well as his original remark, and later deleted both the tweets from the social media platform.
His second tweet of apologise was, “Non acceptance of a fault is itself a 2nd fault.I apologise I missed out on more names involved in this crime bcoz of incomplete info & sincerely apologise 4 it but the tweet is not communal at all.Killers r divided by religion but united by a violent mentality. May there b peace.”
Ramachandra Guha, cricketer, and historian, first criticised Sehwag for his ‘communal’ tweet, but later praised him when he apologised.
Cherry pick names from a mixed crowd in Kerala; stay shamefully silent on the rash of hate crimes in your own state of Haryana. Once great cricketer, maybe: despicable human being, certainly. If he has an ounce of humanity left, Sehwag would delete his tweet. https://t.co/2eFBLJRBJa— Ramachandra Guha (@Ram_Guha) February 24, 2018
Glad that after first issuing a partial apology, Sehwag has done the decent thing and deleted his hateful tweet altogether. He has thus shown his humanity; wish other stars in cricket, film, politics & (yes) academics would, when shown to be wrong, admit their own mistakes too! https://t.co/is3IXVOv8z— Ramachandra Guha (@Ram_Guha) February 25, 2018
The police had arrested 16 people in connection who were suspected to be a part of the mob and killing Madhu.