It has been reported that a Pakistan-born South African leg-spinner Imran Tahir has been confined to his hotel in Mumbai following the Hindu extremist outfit Shiv Sena’s anti-Pakistan protests.
“There were instructions from the team management that Tahir should not leave the team hotel at any point of time when in Mumbai,” a source close to the South African team said on Saturday.
Shiv Sena’s recent protest demanding Pakistan Cricket Board officials to be sent back triggered a debate over the safety of cricketers in Mumbai and Tahir has been reportedly confined to his hotel in the aftermath of the incident.
“Since Tahir is born in Pakistan, the team management took extra security precaution. It was only to avoid any untoward incident,” the source added.
South African team’s media manager denied the reports of Tahir being given extra security but sources close to the matter said on Sunday that the bowler’s movement was being closely monitored and extra precaution was being taken.
“It is general security that we have for all other players in the team. There is nothing extraordinary for Imran Tahir,” she said.
The source also said that Tahir was eager to visit monumental places in the city with his wife Sumayya Dildar and his 18-month-old son Gibraan.
“Tahir was planning to take them shopping at some malls and also wanted to visit the iconic Haji Ali dargah. He wanted to explore all that he had heard and read about Mumbai. Unfortunately, he could not do it this time,” the source said.
Tahir was also said to be ordering special vegetarian food from a nearby hotel. “Tahir’s wife is a vegetarian and she likes phulka rotis. Tahir too loves the food from that hotel, especially the rabdi,” said the source.
The South African cricketers were on their way from Rajkot to Chennai when the Shiv Sainiks entered the BCCI office at the Wankhede Stadium and shouted anti-Pakistan slogans on October 19. Following the incident, security was beefed up at the Trident hotel where the PCB chief was staying.
The talks were then called off and later BCCI apologised to the PCB for the event.