Pakistani sports journalist Zainab Abbas, covering the ICC World Cup 2023 in India, reportedly faced deportation ahead of the Pakistan vs Sri Lanka match in Hyderabad.
Pakistani sports journalist Zainab Abbas, present in India to cover the ICC World Cup 2023, found herself in a contentious situation ahead of the Pakistan vs Sri Lanka match in Hyderabad. The cause of her departure from the country has generated conflicting reports. Some sources claim she was deported due to her tweets critical of India and Hindus, while others assert she voluntarily left, citing security concerns.
The controversy escalated when lawyer Vineet Jindal filed a complaint against Zainab Abbas, accusing her of making derogatory remarks on social media. Jindal pointed out specific old tweets, originally posted under the Twitter handle “Zainablovesrk,” which has since been changed to “ZAbbas Official,” her current handle as a Pakistani sports journalist.
In his formal complaint, Jindal urged the Board of Control for Cricket in India (@BCCI) and the Ministry of Home Affairs (@HMOIndia) to remove Zainab Abbas as the presenter for the ICC World Cup 2023. He asserted that her posts were derogatory and provocative towards Bharat (India) and Hindu Dharma, emphasizing that the principle of “Athiti devo bhava” (Guest is God) applies only to those who respect the country and its cultural ethos.
Samaa TV initially reported Zainab Abbas’s deportation but later deleted the tweet. The channel clarified that the sports presenter left India voluntarily, citing safety concerns. Their statement referenced allegations involving cybercrime and pointed to old anti-India tweets as part of the controversy.
Zainab Abbas, before the controversy unfolded, had expressed excitement about her visit to India. She shared her anticipation on social media, emphasizing the cultural similarities, camaraderie off the field, and her role in representing and creating content for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. The six-week journey away from home, meant to bring expertise from the best in the business, took an unexpected turn amid the unfolding controversy.