Post Pulwama attack, various groups are taking out processions at regular intervals in different parts of Uttarakhand. Candlelight march and processions by people chanting slogans against Pakistan is a common sight now.
Dehradun, however, was surprised when an unexpected group of people shouted anti-Pakistan slogans. They were Afghanistan cricket fans who chanted “Pakistan Murdabad” during the Afghanistan versus Ireland T-20 international cricket match in Dehradun on Thursday night.
The cricket series between Afghanistan versus Ireland began at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Dehradun with the first T-20 match. About 40-50 Afghanistan cricket lovers were present in the stand and they surprised Dehradun sports lovers by chanting “Pakistan Murdabad” many times during the match.
Two CRPF jawans, hailing from Uttarakhand, were killed in the Pulawama attack. Post the terror attack, two officers from the hill state made supreme sacrificed in J&K. Major Chitresh Bisht was killed while defusing an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) at Nowshera sector and Major Vibhuti Dhaundiyal was killed in the encounter between the security forces and the terrorists in Pulwama.
Amar Khel, Afghanistan cricket fan, said, “We love India and that why we came here for playing cricket. Pakistan is behind every terror attack.”
The Afghanistan-Ireland match witnessed low turnout, as most of the seats in the stadium were empty and a mere 500 spectators were present to watch the international tie.
Anil Rawat says, “The presence of over four dozen cricket fans from Afghanistan surprised me as I never expected such a big presence in Dehradun.”
The chants of ‘Pakistan Murdabad’ and ‘Bharat Jindabad’ attracted the attention of the sports lovers in Dehradun. The Afghanistan fans were carrying flags of their country and of India. Wahid Khan, another Afghanistan cricket fan, says, “Pakistan army support terrorism. They should be taught a lesson.”
The match saw a brilliant unbeaten partnership of 86 runs between all-rounder Mohammad Nabi and Najibullah Zadran scripting a five-wicket win for Afghanistan in Dehradun on Thursday. Opting to bat first, Ireland managed to score 132 with the loss of six wickets in 20 overs. In reply Afghanistan recovered from early jolts to reach the target with four balls to spare. The second T-20 match of the series is scheduled to be played on 23 February.