Mumbai police ‘arrest a 23-year-old man’ for threatening to rape the nine-month-old daughter of India cricket captain Virat Kohli after the country’s disastrous performances at the T20 World Cup
- Trolls targeted the India squad after their T20 defeat against rivals Pakistan
- Virat Kohli stood up for Mohamed Shami after he was targeted for his religion
- Trolls then turned on the India captain, making sick threats about his daughter
Police in Mumbai have reportedly arrested a 23-year-old man for threatening to rape the nine-month old daughter of India cricket captain Virat Kohli.
According to News18, a software engineer from Hyderabad was apprehended by police in connection to the sick threats that started to appear after India’s heavy defeat to arch rivals Pakistan in the T20 World Cup in Dubai.
Following the loss, by 10 wickets, Kohli spoke out on social media in defence of his team-mate Mohammed Shami. As the only Muslim player in the Indian team, the bowler was targeted for his religion after the dismal performance.
The skipper Kohli denounced the trolling of Shami, branding the anonymous social media users ‘spineless’.
Kohli said in defence of team-mate Shami: ‘Attacking someone over their religion is the most, I would say, pathetic thing that a human being can do.
‘Everyone has the right to voice their opinion over what they feel about a certain situation, but I personally have never ever even thought of discriminating [against] anyone over their religion. That’s a very sacred and personal thing to every human being.’
But the online trolls soon turned their toxic attention to him and his family – Kohli is married to Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma.
A 23-year-old man has reportedly been arrested after the daughter of Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli and his wife Anushka Sharma was threatened online
The trolls turned on Kohli and his family after India’s captain stood up for Mohamed Shami following a defeat against rivals Pakistan in the T20 World Cup
The Delhi Commission for Women had urged police in the Indian capital to take action over the online threats.
Swati Maliwal, chairperson of the women’s group, described the online comments targeting Kohli’s daughter as ‘very shameful’.
‘The team has made us proud thousands of times, why this silliness in defeat,’ Ms Maliwal said in a tweet.
‘I have issued notice to Delhi Police, arrest all those who threatened 9 months old girl with rape!’
The Indian team, and Kohli in particular, have been widely criticised after poor performances and out-dated captaincy at the T20 World Cup.
Indian fast bowler Shami was targeted by online trolls after defeat to Pakistan in Dubai
Kohli has presided over a disastrous T20 World Cup campaign in which India lost to Pakistan
The Indians followed up their loss to Pakistan with an eight-wicket defeat to New Zealand but before the match against the Kiwis, Kohli reinforced his defence of Shami.
‘They have no understanding of the fact that Shami has won India a number of matches in the last few years and has been our primary bowler along with Jasprit Bumrah when it comes to making an impact in Test cricket,’ said Kohli, who is widely considered to be one of the finest batsman of his generation.
‘If people can overlook that and his passion for the country, I honestly don’t even want to waste one minute of my life to give any attention to those people; neither does Shami or anyone else in the team.
‘The team stands by him and we are backing him 200 percent.’
The sickening abuse prompted the former Pakistan captain, Inzamam-ul-Haq, to come out in support of Kohli, his wife and daughter.
‘People need to understand it’s just a sport, we might be playing for different countries but we are a part of the same community,’ Inzamam said. ‘You have every right to criticise Kohli’s batting or captaincy but nobody has the right to target a cricketer’s family.
‘A few days back [after India’s defeat by Pakistan] something similar happened with Mohammed Shami. Victory and loss is a part of the game.’
India failed to qualify for the knock-out stage of T20 World Cup when New Zealand recorded an eight-wicket victory over Afghanistan.