ICC withdraws Aleem Dar from India-South Africa series

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The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced on Monday that it has withdrawn Aleem Dar from the remaining matches in the ongoing series between India and South Africa.

The ICC made the decision following Monday’s incident in Mumbai where a group of Shiv Sena activists stormed the headquarters of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in order to prevent BCCI chief Shashank Manohar from holding talks with his Pakistan counterpart Shahryar Khan.

The protestors had also threatened to prevent Dar from officiating in the fifth One Day International (ODI) to be held in Mumbai on October 25.

Dar, a member of the elite panel of ICC umpires, had officiated in the first three ODIs and is also scheduled to stand in the fourth ODI in Chennai on October 22.

“Under the present circumstances, it will be unreasonable to expect from Aleem that he will be able to perform his duties to the best of his abilities. As such, he has been withdrawn and his replacement will be announced in due course,” an ICC spokesman said.

Shiv Sena rules the Maharashtra state in alliance with the BJP, but the coalition currently looks far from comfortable, especially after some recent events. These events included protests over the launch of former Pakistan foreign minister Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri’s book. Also, the Shiv Sainiks protested over organising a programme by legendary Pakistan ghazal singer Ghulam Ali. The cultural programme was cancelled.

This latest decision by the ICC is likely to adversely impact the image of India internationally. Though, several BJP leaders have reacted to Monday’s developments, none has condemned the attack outright.

Meanwhile Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar too have decided they will not be commentating in the last ODI between India and South Africa on account of potential security hazard

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