For the second time in the ongoing World Cup, a plane carrying political messages flew over the Headingley stadium with India and Sri Lanka World Cup match was in progress on Saturday. The banners read “#Justice for Kashmir” and “India stop genocide & free Kashmir”.
In the third over of the Sri Lankan innings, a plane appeared for the first time with a banner trailing behind that read “Justice for Kashmir.”
The second time, with the 17th over in progress, plane hovered around the stadium again with another banner that time having a stronger message, saying “India Stop Genocide and Free Kashmir.”
ICC is not pleased with this development, as it’s the second incident of the same nature. On 29th of June, a plane with a banner ‘Justice for Balochistan’ flew over the same stadium during Pakistan’s match against Afghanistan.
“We are incredibly disappointed this has happened again. We do not condone any sort of political messages at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup.
Throughout the tournament we have worked with local police forces around the country to prevent this type of protest occurring.
After the previous incident we were assured by West Yorkshire Police there would not be a repeat of this issue, so we are very dissatisfied it has happened again,” an ICC spokesperson said on Saturday’s incident.
The ICC had also responded to the earlier incident, saying they wouldn’t overlook political messages being spread during the World Cup.
“We work with local police forces around the country to prevent this type of incident occurring and were assured that given Headingley is under the flight path for the Leeds Bradford Airport it would not be an issue,” an ICC spokesperson had said.
“We do not condone any sort of political messages at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup and will work with West Yorkshire police to deal with and understand why this has happened and to ensure it does not happen again.”
The Pakistan vs. Afghanistan match also witnessed ugly brawls inside and outside the stadium between the fans of the two countries.