Indian authorities have launched a massive investigation into online rape threats to skipper Virat Kohli’s nine-month-old daughter in the wake of the national cricket team’s recent loss to rival Pakistan in the ICC T20 World Cup in Dubai.
In fact, hateful comments against Virat’s daughter surfaced on social media after Pakistan defeated India in a match on October 24. The hate campaign intensified after he stepped up his support for teammate Md Shami, who was targeted over his religion after the loss.
“Attacking someone over their religion is the most pathetic thing one can do as a human. That is a very sacred and personal thing. People take out their frustration because they have no understanding of what we do,” Virat said ahead of a match against New Zealand.
Sources told UNB on Tuesday that Delhi Police’s cyber sleuths “are probing the online rape threats against the daughter of Virat and Bollywood actor Anushka Sharma. “A special team has been constituted to track down the offenders and bring them to book,” the sources said.
Meanwhile, the Delhi Commission for Women sought an action-taken report from Delhi Police over the online rape threats. Commission’s chairperson Swati Maliwal also tweeted to slam the rape threats as “very shameful”.
Last month, Virat announced that he would step down as the country’s T20 international captain after this T20 World Cup. “I have decided to step down as the T20 captain after this T20 World Cup in Dubai in October,” the 32-year-old wrote on social media.
Virat has, of late, been facing questions over his batting and captaincy. He last scored a century in a Test match in November 2019. For 51 innings, he has not hit a hundred in any international format of the game.
Virat, who took over as India’s T20I captain in 2017 after Mahendra Singh Dhoni stepped down from his position, said he took head coach Ravi Shastri into confidence before spelling out his decision, which he attributed to “immense workload” in all formats of the game.
“… considering my immense workload over the last 8-9 years playing all 3 formats and captaining regularly for the last 5-6 years, I feel I need to give myself space to be fully ready to lead the Indian team in Test and ODI Cricket,” he wrote.
However, Virat had made it clear that he would continue to lead the team in Test cricket and ODIs. “I have given everything to the Team during my time as T20 captain and I will continue to do so for the T20 team as a batsman moving forward.”
A right-handed top-order batsman, Kohli is regarded as one of the best contemporary batsmen in the world. He has been the national cricket team’s captain since 2013. Since October 2017, he has been the top-ranked ODI batsman in the world.
In 2018, Time magazine named Kohli one of the 100 most influential people in the world. In 2020, he became the only cricketer in the world to feature in Forbes list of the top 100 highest-paid athletes in the world with an estimated earnings of USD 26 million.
Source: United News of Bangladesh