Dhanbad, Feb. 12: Former Team India player and Arjuna award winner Chetan Chauhan today said he did not approve the way the Shiv Sena was registering protests against Australian and Pakistani players, but added that everybody had the democratic right to voice opinions.
“Every person has a right to express his views on an issue. But as a player, I will criticise any unnecessary hype. The play must go on,” Chauhan told reporters at the Union Club here.
The former BJP parliamentarian was in the district to attend the national executive committee meeting of Krida Bharati, the sports wing of the RSS.
Chauhan, who had played 40 test matches alongside Sunil Gavaskar in the 1970s and is a member of the technical committee of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), downplayed the controversy surrounding IPL ignoring Pakistani players. He said the decision was based on availability and other factors like performance of the players.
His views on IPL were strong though. “It is commercialisation of cricket. This kind of cricket is not serious like test matches. They are played for entertainment and money,” Chauhan.
He also said they were not happy with the ICC’s rejection of BCCL’s request to lift the 12-month ban on Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi. “We are not satisfied with the ICC decision,” he said. The international cricket body had declared the stadium unfit following abandonment of India-Srilanka ODI there on December 27.
Denouncing government control over sports bodies, Chauhan said: “Only people having sports background should join such associations. Politicians and other persons should stay away,” he added.