Pakistani Cricket & Terrorism! Another Close Encounter!
Last week, a Pakistani man was expelled from #Italy for allegedly plotting an attack in the name of the militant Islamic State (IS) group. #Aftab Farook used to captain the Italian youth cricket team. But this is not the first time, Pakistan Cricket is being linked to #terrorism.
Sri Lanka national cricket team on its last visit to the Pakistan in 2009 barely escaped getting massacred by Muslim terrorists. Since then no major cricket playing nation has travelled to Pakistan.
The Tablighi Jamaat (TJ) of Pakistan, a jihadi organisation has deep influence on almost all Pakistan national team players. Amir Mir, the well-known Pakistani journalist, had written a scathing article on the influence of the TJ contributing to the brutal murder of Bob Woolmer, then Pakistan’s national coach, after Pakistan unexpectedly lost to a unheralded Ireland in the 2007 World Cup Cricket Tournament. Woolmer vociferously objected to the growing influence of the TJ on some of the players, including the national Captain, and their consequent indifference to training and performance.
Pakistani’s ex-captain and a national hero, #Javed Miandad‘s son is married to the daughter of Dawood Ibrahim, India’s most wanted terrorist, ‘hiding’ in Pakistan. Now, one more connection between Pakistan cricket and Terrorism is revealed! Not surprisingly, India has banned Pakistani cricketers to play in the highly lucrative IPL tournament due to Pakistan’s state support to terrorism.
In Italy, Aftab Farook was caught on a wire-tap talking about using a Kalashnikov or bomb to attack targets such as a wine shop in Milan or the airport of Bergamo in northern Italy, saying the important thing was to scare Europeans, Italian newspapers reported.
On Tuesday, Interior Minister Angelino Alfano said the 26-year-old supported IS and was planning to go to Syria to join militants.
The news stunned locals in Vaprio d’Adda near Milan, where Farook had lived with his family.
Photos published in 2009 by Sportweek, a weekly insert in Italy’s Gazzetta dello Sport daily, and re-issued in the media Wednesday, show him as the captain of the under-19s national team, wearing the Italian colours in international competitions.
“It hit us like lightning out of the blue, I still don’t believe it,” Fabio Marabini, president of the Kingsgrove Milano cricket club and a close paternal figure to Farook, told La Stampa daily.
Citing the investigative report drawn up by anti-mafia police, however, La Stampa said Farook had changed over the past year or so, and had begun beating his wife and forcing her to wear a burqa, as demanded by Muslim clerics.
Farook was expelled from Italy on Wednesday but his family plan to challenge the extradition at the European Court of Human Rights, the reports said.
He will join hundreds of other terror suspects in Europe, who on being caught, reach out to the European Court of Human Rights for keeping their western privileges.