Indian fan Sudhir was not attacked in Dhaka, says press photographer who witnessed the incident

Amid Indian media reports that Team India’s number one fan Sudhir Gautam was attacked by Bangladeshi supporters outside the stadium after Sunday’s ODI, a press photographer, who was there, has dismissed the allegations.

Published : 22 June 2015, 02:26 PM
Updated : 22 June 2015, 02:35 PM

Indian media had reported that Sudhir was “attacked” near the VIP gate of Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium after the match on Sunday night.

Sudhir, who has devoted his life to Sachin Tendulkar, is the most visible and famous fan of Indian cricket team.

He makes his presence felt by painting his body and face with tri-colour, representing Indian flag.

The media reports claimed that Sudhir was mobbed by Bangladesh supporters as soon as he came out of the stadium.’s photojournalist Asif Mahmud Ove, who was present there, however, said the Indian fan was not physically assaulted.

He had even clicked a photo of Sudhir boarding an autorickshaw near the stadium.

“After the match around 11:45pm when Sudhir was coming out of the stadium through VIP gate, some Bangladesh fans surrounded him shouting Bhua, Bhua (fake).

“Some also taunted him chanting Mauka, Mauka (opportunity),” the photo journalist said.

Star Sports had made the ‘Mauka Mauka’ advertisement campaign ahead of India’s match against Pakistan in the last World Cup.

As the advertisement became popular, the sports channel came up with new such ‘Mauka advertisements’ before India’s every World Cup match.

Some Indian fans had even circulated on YouTube their self-created Mauka videos. Alleging that Indian videos were offensive to Bangladesh, counter videos were also circulated at that time.

“Sudhir was waiting for an autorickshaw, when a group of Bangladesh fans jeered him. Seeing the crowd around him, some police personnel, who was on duty there, cordoned him and put him into an autorickshaw,” Ove recalled.

Sudhir Gautam being jeered at by Bangladesh fans as he leaves the stadium in an autorickshaw

At that time, some fans chased the three-wheeler shouting Bhua Bhua.”

Kolkata-based Anandabazar Patrika, quoting Sudhir, reported that a group of Bangladesh supporters attacked the Indian fan.

It further claimed that stones were also pelted targeting the autorickshaw he had hired.

“I have not seen him being physically assaulted,” Ove said.

Almost all the Indian media, however described the incident as “attack.”

But Mirpur police said there was no incident of attack on any Indian fan.

Deputy Commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s Mirpur division Quayumuzzaman told that strong police presence was there in the stadium and its surrounding areas.

“I am not aware of any incident of attack on anyone in the area,” he said.