The blatant discrimination towards Kashmir Pandits in Kashmir Valley was witnessed two days ago when two Kashmiri cricketers were picked up during IPL auctions by different franchisees, but entire media and the government were gaga over the selection of only one, completely blacking out the other.
Apart from Dar, there is one more player hailing from the Valley who has been selected to once again represent the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the cash-rich competition but was not accolades with the praises that he deserved.
Siddarth Kaul will be playing for the Hyderabad outfit and was roped in for a hefty amount of Rs 3.2 crore.
Sidharth comes from a cricketing family and is son of veteran cricketer Tej Kaul who has represented Jammu and Kashmir in late 70s.
While Dar’s selection in Kings XI Punjab was highly touted as an exemplary feat put forth as a role model for the youth and the budding cricketers in Kashmir, Kaul, who has achieved heights in the professional circuit having represented the country on the top level, was ignored.
Manzoor Dar after being picked by Kings XI Punjab at his base price of Rs 20 lakh was hailed by top Kashmiri politicians and congratulations pour in for the young gun. “Congratulations & all the best for the tournament.
Look forward to watching you play,” wrote former Jammu and Kashmir CM Omar Abdullah on Twitter. “Manzoor Ahmed Pandav, an icon and a role model for our youth. More power to you dear,” posted Imran Raza Ansari, Jammu and Kashmir Youth and Sports minister.
Meanwhile, Siddarth Kaul failed to find any mention in any of the tweets. Born in Pathankot, Punjab he rose to fame in the U-19 World Cup under Captain Virat Kohli when he asserted his prominence as a death over specialist. He was roped in by the Kolkata Knight Riders but failed to make it into the first team.
He has played three seasons of the IPL with the last season being one of his best. He picked up 16 wickets in ten games for the SRH while donning the role of a domestic seam specialist alongside the likes of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Trent Boult.
He represents Punjab in the Ranji Trophy and has had a decent run in the domestic season playing for Punjab and has been with the Sunrisers Hyderabad for the last two years.
More ironical was the fact that the government too completely ignored the Pandit boy in its congratulatory message and mentioned the name of Manzoor Pandav alone. Minister for Youth Services and Sports, Molvi Imran Raza Ansari on Sunday congratulated Manzoor Ahmad Dar (Pandav) for his selection in IPL- Kings XI Punjab.
While congratulating the Cricketer Pandav, Minister for Youth Services and Sports, Molvi Imran Reza Ansari on January 28 tweeted, “Congratulations Manzoor Dar (Pandav). Make Jk Proud and thanks to friends who made this happen.”
Ansari further hoped that his selection will boost the energies of youth in the field of cricket and wished him best.