Australian opener Usman Khawaja wanted to express his sympathy to the people of Palestine in the violence in Gaza. But Isis is blocking him for various reasons. The behavior of cricket’s governing body has been called outright hypocrisy by legend Michael Holding. In a video message on Instagram yesterday, Khawaja himself highlighted the hypocrisy of the ICC.
Wanted to post peace message in Perth Test, ICC blocked it. So he came down wearing black armbands. The ICC later objected. He wanted to enter the Melbourne Test which started today. But the ICC has also objected to the dove of peace that speaks of human rights. It is said that it is not in the ICC rules to write any message on ‘Politics, Religion and Race’.
So everyone was interested in what Khawaja is doing today. The 37-year-old opener did not disappoint. He scored 42 runs before returning with a catch at slip off Hasan Ali. However, at the beginning of the day, he caught everyone’s attention.
No, the ICC ban has not been lifted. But rightly protested in a unique way. Khawaja wrote the names of two daughters Ayesha and Ayala on the shoes. This is the message of love to girls in common eyes. But those who followed the Khawaja vs ICC case from the beginning, they understand the meaning.
Before the Perth Test, Khawaja practiced writing ‘Freedom is the right of all’ and ‘All lives are equal’ on his shoes. The color of the ink was the color of the Palestinian flag. As the ICC objected to this, the black armband came down. And before the Melbourne Test, he wore black pigeon stickers on his bat and shoes in practice.
Along with it was written Zero One: UDHR. He recalled the first article of the Universal Charter of Human Rights. But the ICC said, no political, religious or racist message can be taken to the field. Last night on Instagram, the ICC’s decision was washed away, ‘Happy Christmas everyone. (Laughing Emoji) Sometimes you just want to smile! See you on Boxing Day.’
He explained why the smile comes in the video. Khawaja has shown three pictures of three players in the video. First up is a picture of West Indies’ Nicholas Pooran, showing a Christian cross on his bat. Then a photo of teammate Marnus Labuschagne. The image depicts a falcon on Labusche’s bat, which in the Bible speaks of God’s power, faith in God, and other attributes. At the end is a photo of South Africa’s Keshav Maharaj, with the special Hindu symbol ‘O’ painted on the back of the bat.
Khawaja showed in the video that the ICC did not see any problem even if Pooran, Labuschenne or Maharaj came to the field with such signs. But they are now finding something forbidden in the symbol of peace in support of Palestine. That’s why Khawaja added the hashtag at the end of the caption of the video, ‘Double standard!’
After such a video, we have to go back to the video of the day before the first test to understand the reason why Khawaja wrote the names of two girls today. Although he accepted the decision of the ICC that day, he said that the message was for the pain he feels for the innocent children killed indiscriminately in Gaza, ‘When I see innocent children on my Instagram, I see the scene of them dying, that hurts me the most. Then I think of my children in my arms… (the way other fathers in Gaza wail over dead children) I get emotional. I have no hidden political motive in this.’
Today Khawaja wrote the names of Ayesha and Ayala. Explained that the ICC does not allow him to speak about the helpless children of Gaza, but he sees the faces of those innocent lives in his own children.