Mumbai: After attacking Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh for inviting his Pakistani counterpart to the
Cricket World Cup semi-final match between India and Pakistan,
Shiv Sena chief Bal Thackeray has now objected to the
Pakistani team performing `namaaz` in Mohali stadium.
"The Pakistani team could have performed namaaz in
their rooms, but by doing so on the greens (of the Mohali
stadium), they gave a clarion call for a holy war," Thackeray
said in an editorial in party mouthpiece `Saamana`.
"Tanks, troops, artillery and missiles have been
deployed at Mohali. Is this deployment because there is a
match in progress? Such preparedness is not seen during other
matches. Why should it be for Pakistanis," the Sena chief, an
avid cricket lover, said.
Thackeray had earlier said, "If Pak President Asif Ali
Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani can be invited
for the match in the name of peace, why should injustice be
done to Kasab and Guru," referring to the main accused in the
Mumbai terror attacks and the Parliament attack.
The Shiv Sena has been opposing Indo-Pak cricket ties,
saying Indian soldiers were being killed on the border while
fighting Pakistan and, "hence, our country should not maintain
ties with the neighbouring nation."
In 2005, Sena activists caused minor damage to the
pitch at Mohali, then venue of a Test match beween the two