CoA lifts Pandya, Rahul suspensions
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According to a BCCI media release, the indefinite suspension on Indian cricketers, Hardik Pandya, and KL Rahul has been provisionally lifted with immediate effect by the Committee of Administrators. The inquiry into the matter will continue once the Supreme Court appoints an ombudsman. The apex court has listed the matter tentatively for February.
"The above matter and decision has been taken with the concurrence of the Learned Amicus Curiae, Mr. P.S. Narasimha. In view of the above, the suspension orders dated 11.01.2019 is immediately lifted pending appointment and adjudication of the allegations by the BCCI Ombudsman," BCCI said in the statement issued today.
Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul were suspended after the remarks made by them on the television talk show named "Koffee with Karan". After the show got aired, Hardik Pandya received severe backlash for his 'racist', 'sexist' and 'misogynist' comments on women. While Hardik had to face the brunt of social media for comments on the show, Rahul too faced action from BCCI for his teammate's antics.
The two cricketers, who were part of the limited overs side, were immediately sent back from Australia and are not part of the Indian side touring New Zealand. Pandya even issued a public apology on social media but that did not stop the BCCI from serving up a show-cause notice to the all-rounder as well as Rahul while seeking an explanation for those controversial comments.
In his statement issued on Twitter and Instagram, Pandya said "After reflecting on my comments on Koffee with Karan show, I would like to apologise to everyone concerned who I may have hurt in any way. Honestly, I got a bit carried away with the nature of the show. In no way did I mean to disrespect or hurt anyone's sentiments. Respect."
With the lifting of the ban, KL Rahul and Hardik Pandya will once again be available for selection to the national team. Pandya is now expected to join the team in New Zealand while Rahul might play in either domestic circuit or show up for India A in an ongoing home series against England Lions.
The two players are important members of the Indian team and will be key to India's success at the 2019 World Cup. The team management must ensure that the controversy does not have any effect on their mental state after their return.