Imran Khan's photo was covered by the CCI as a mark of protest against the Pulwama terror attack. (Image credit: ANI Twitter)
The fall-out of the Pulwama terror attacks continue as the nation continues to mourn the death of the 40 CRPF jawans who lost their lives. Cricket players and institutions have offered condolences but the Cricket Club of India (CCI) has taken matters one step further. After covering the photo of former Pakistan skipper and current Prime Minister of the country Imran Khan, the club is deliberating to remove his photo altogether. CCI Secretary Suresh Bafna said to ANI,'We called a meeting on the very next day of the attack & to condemn the attack, we decided to cover the photo. We'll be deciding soon how to remove the photo." On Thursday, at least 40 CRPF paramilitary troopers were killed in a terror attack while several others are battling for their lives following what is being termed as the deadliest terrorist strike in three decades in Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan-based terror organization Jaish-e-Mohammad has claimed responsibility for it.
The CCI, which is an affiliated unit of BCCI, is home to the iconic Brabourne Stadium, which has hosted many Test matches and is considered to be a cricketing hub.
The entire CCI premises, including its restaurant, adorn portraits of the greatest cricketers across eras and from all nations. Imran's portrait is one of them as he was a distinguished former cricket captain, who led Pakistan to 1992 World Cup victory. CCI President Premal Udani confirmed the development to PTI on Saturday, saying a decision in this regard was taken on Friday.
CCI President Premal Udani says,"We respect Imran Khan's cricket credentials but at the same time he is Pakistan PM & we're just showing our solidarity for our forces & our country"
"See, CCI is a sports-club and we have photographs of past and present cricketers from all countries. Did we want to show, in our way displeasure on whatever is happening right now. It is a mark of protest. We have covered it as of now but can't say right now if we would take it down," Udani told PTI.
Another senior CCI official said that the portrait 'Porbunder All-rounder', a restaurant, inside the club premises on the ground floor, which also houses pictures of other past cricketers.
In the past, Imran has twice played for Pakistan against India at the Brabourne Stadium. He had lead Pakistan in a festival game against India in 1987. He has also played an ODI at the venue when he leads Pakistan to victory against Australia in a Nehru Cup game in 1989, where he was also declared as the man of the match.