Indian Cricket – Cricket – Women’s One Day International Series – England v India – The Spitfire Ground St Lawrence, Canterbury, Britain – 21 September 2022 Harmanpreet Kaur of India gets 6 action shots via / Andrew Boyers /

New Delhi, Feb 2 (IANS) – Women’s cricket seems poised to emerge from the shadow of the men’s tournament in India and the rest of the world is gearing up for the birth of a superpower in the sport. .

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While male players have long enjoyed status as rock stars in cricket-mad countries, their female counterparts have struggled to be cared for.

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However, their struggle has started to pay off, and 15 years after the start of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the full-fledged women’s T20 tournament will begin in March.

The Cricket Board of Governors of India (BCCI) has already pocketed nearly $690 million from the sale of franchises and media rights, with revenue streams set to be boosted further if title sponsors come on board. At the end of the month.

Indian captain Harmanpreet Kaur called the competition a “game changer” for women’s cricket in the country, fueling the enthusiasm for women’s games among Indian fans.

That excitement was evident in the home match of the T20 series against Australia in December, which the visitors won 4-1.

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The opening match at the DY Patil attracted more than 25,000 spectators, while more than 47,000 turned up for the second match at the same venue on the outskirts of Mumbai.

Although Australia has dominated women’s cricket for the last two decades, India already have a solid base and won the Under-19 T20 World Cup in South Africa on Sunday.

“Women’s cricket may not be as popular as men’s cricket in India, but we can really hope that they match.”

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For the rest of the cricket world, the excitement over the monetization potential for the top players in the WPL comes with concern over India’s dominance of the dominant power in the men’s game.

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“There is a fear among many players that when the women’s IPL starts, India will dominate the cricket world.”

“India will continue to take the lead in dealing with a number of initiatives around women’s cricket,” ICC General Manager of Cricket Wasim Khan told the media on Wednesday.

“The value brought in for those (WPL) teams just confirms the value and importance of women’s cricket and how it is perceived by potential investors.”

Khan said the WPL will change the entire women’s tournament in the coming years.

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“We are very sure that what is happening in India is a driving force,” he added. “Let this match reach a higher level.”

“The combination of ourselves working with the Cricket Council, we really believe that in five years the landscape will look very different,” India captain Virat Kohli and his Pakistan counterpart Babar Azam before the 20 World Cup cricket match at Dubai International Cricket Stadium. Aamir Qureshi/AFP via Getty Images

When India meets Pakistan on cricket field, even those who don’t watch the sport sit and watch. But in the opening match of the T20 World Cup late last month, they were in for a rare disappointment as Pakistan beat India for the first time in nearly 30 years and counting.

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In the aftermath of the Great Depression, religious tensions arose in India, a predominantly Hindu country. Pakistan is a predominantly Muslim country. Cricket fans have unleashed online harassment of Mohammed Shami, India’s only Muslim player, who unfairly blame him for the loss.

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In Uttar Pradesh, three students from Kashmir, a Muslim-majority area claimed by India and Pakistan who celebrated the victory on social media, were suspended from their colleges, arrested and charged. Hold on to rebellion.

Nasir Khuehami, national spokesperson of the Jammu and Kashmir Students’ Union, said several other Kashmiri students celebrating Pakistan were beaten up on the night of games at two universities in Punjab.

Protesters in Srinagar are demanding that the authorities drop charges against students celebrating Pakistan cricket victory in the Twenty20 World Cup. Tauseef Mustafa/AFP via Getty Images

Tensions between India’s Hindus, who make up about 80 percent of the country’s 1.4 billion people, and Muslims, who make up 14 percent, go back hundreds of years and escalated under British colonial rule.

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But under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a Hindu nationalist who took office in 2014, experts say there has been a sharp rise in discrimination and violence against Muslims that is undermining society. Conflict will tarnish India’s reputation for religious tolerance.

Christophe Jaffrelot, author of Modi’s India: Hindu Nationalism and the Rise of Ethnic Democracy, said: “India has a good image internationally as the world’s largest democracy and tolerant country.”

This is a challenge for the United States, which is strengthening ties with India as it seeks to counter China. In September, President Joe Biden hosted the Prime Ministers of India, Australia and Japan at the inaugural meeting of the Quad, a strategic group of four nations.

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US lawmakers have expressed concern about the rights of Indian Muslims and other religious minorities, and a law before Congress requires the State Department to appoint special envoys to fight Islam around the world, including in India. But on November 17, the State Department refused to add India to the list of the worst abusers of religious rights in the world, as recommended for the second year in a row by the US Federal Reserve. (India has rejected the commission’s 2020 report, calling it contemplative.)

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“The United States and Europe need India against China,” Jaffrelot said. “So for now the demand for human rights in India has had no effect.”

Hindu nationalism, or Hindutva “is a unique and exclusive political ideology based on the perceptions of Hindu identities as upper class North Indians and ancestors.” Nikhil Mandalaparthy The American base said. Team.

Members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), a militant group with long Hindu nationalist ties, are known to have taken to the streets, beating drums and blowing horns. AFP via Getty Images

In this version of India, he said, minorities are “closed and not allowed the same status of citizens.”

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Tensions between Hindus and Muslims were exploited by British colonial rulers to maintain their power. But when India gained independence in 1947, the peninsula was transformed by its brutal disintegration into two states: India, mostly Hindu, and Pakistan, mostly Muslim – thus shutting down large-scale migration in both directions.

At least 1 million people died and 18 million were evacuated during that time, according to British government archives.

Thomas Blom Hansen, author of the 1999 book “The Saffron Wave: Democracy and Hindu Nationalism in Modern India,” said the wound had never been fully addressed by Indian leaders.

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“Politicians have tried to cover up all these tensions,” he said. “They want to create a multi-ethnic, multicultural and religious state that has a place for everyone.”

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While India is an officially secular state that guarantees religious freedom in its constitution, Hansen said the BJP has created a narrative about Hindu victims going into a “deep pool of ideas and practices.” “Myths, worries and anger about Muslims are always there.”

“They believe that Hindus are being oppressed in India and they are being oppressed by the minority, but nothing could be further from the truth,” he said.

As prime minister, Modi has strengthened the economy, blessed foreign leaders and led some popular reforms. But critics say Modi’s Hindu nationalist policies and his Bharatiya Janata Party have only intensified since he won a second term as prime minister in 2019.

Within months of winning the election, the government removed Jammu and Kashmir, India’s only Muslim-majority state, from its semi-autonomous state after more than 70 years, deploying thousands of troops and deploying troops. Make it easier for Hindu settlers to move there. according to what critics have seen. Trying to exterminate the Muslim population.

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Indian Army soldiers stand guard during an earlier search operation for suspected militants in Srinagar, Kashmir. This month. Tauseef Mustafa/AFP via Getty Images

In the northeastern state of Assam, nearly 2 million people have been left off the list in a crackdown on illegal immigration, which critics say has targeted Muslims, rendering them stateless.

Across the country, Muslims are also excluded from Indian law changes that would grant access to citizenship for members of persecuted religious minorities who have immigrated to India illegally.

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Tensions have been highlighted by the recent escalation of violence outside India’s borders. In October, at least six people were killed in neighboring Bangladesh, a predominantly Muslim country that gained independence from Pakistan in 1971 in the country’s worst anti-Hindu violence, officials said.Many years.

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Across the border in India’s Tripura state, a group of Hindu nationalists responded to the deaths in Bangladesh by organizing violent protests involving mosques and shops.