The Board of Control for Cricket in India is reportedly not happy with the latest controversy India captain Virat Kohli has dug himself in, after saying that fans who do not like Indian cricketers should move to another country.
Kohli courted controversy on Wednesday when he was responding to unflattering tweets aimed at him, in a video released on his official app. The India captain asked fans who preferred cricketers from other countries to move out of India.
While Kohli later apologised for his comment, the BCCI’s top brass, PTI reported, is not happy but are undecided whether to haul him up.
“It was a very stupid comment to make,” PTI quoted a senior BCCI official as saying. “He should have been more careful. He must understand that the kind of money he is earning is because Indian fans have invested in this game.
The official added, “But again the comment was made on his private forum or business initiative. He hasn’t used a BCCI platform so that’s also an issue.”
Kohli, who is on a brief break during the T20I series against West Indies ahead of India’s tour of Australia, recorded the video as part of the promotions for his newly launched app, called the Virat Kohli Official App. It was released on his 30th birthday on Monday.
In a section where he reacted to unflattering tweets sent to him, Kohli is seen replying to someone who said that they prefer English and Australian batsmen over him. He first read out the tweet that said: “Over-rated batsman and personally I see nothing special in his batting. I enjoy watching English and Australian batsmen more than these Indians.”
In response, Kohli said, “Okay, I don’t think you should live in India then... you should go and live somewhere else no. Why are you living in our country and loving other countries? I don’t mind you not liking me but I don’t think you should live in our country and like other things. Get your priorities right.”
Kohli’s comment drew a lot of flak on social media, including from senior commentator and broadcaster Harsha Bhogle. “Virat Kohli’s statement is a reflection of the bubble that most famous people either slip into or are forced into,” Bhogle tweeted. “Power and fame tend to attract those people who agree with you and reinforce your opinion because they benefit from proximity to fame and power,” he added.
Kohli later took to Twitter to apologise, saying, “I guess trolling isn’t for me guys, I’ll stick to getting trolled!... I’m all for freedom of choice. Keep it light guys and enjoy the festive season. Love and peace to all.”