India Vs Australia: Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul suspended after row over TV chat show

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Updated: January 11, 2019 5:01:56 PM

Hardik Pandya and K L Rahul have been suspended pending an inquiry into their outrage-evoking comments on women during a TV show 'Koffee With Karan'.

Indian cricketers Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul

Putting an end to speculations over the inclusion of Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul in the Indian squad, the duo has been suspended pending an inquiry into their outrage-evoking comments on women. Announcing their suspension, the Committee of Administrators (CoA) chairman Vinod Rai said, “Both Pandya and Rahul have been suspended pending an inquiry.”

Pandya, who sparked controversy after his comments on a TV chat show ‘Koffee With Karan’, has landed himself in trouble. A two-match ban was in line for Pandya and his teammate Rahul after CoA member Diana Edulji recommended suspension till further action against the two after the BCCI legal team refused to declare their comments a violation of the code of conduct.

Read | BCCI issues show cause notice to Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul over sexist comments on Koffee With Karan

The two had been omitted from the line-up for the opening match in Sydney on Saturday. While Rahul was not considered for selection, Pandya will not feature in the series-opener game on Saturday. The team management has told Pandya that he is not playing tomorrow as they are yet to get a final directive. Rahul wasn’t in contention for a first XI berth in ODI team.

That’s not all. Pandya’s trouble mounted even more after Indian skipper Virat Kohli distanced himself and the team from the controversy, saying that Indian team doesn’t support comments of Pandya and Rahul on women.

Earlier in the day, CoA member Diana Edulji recommended “suspension till further action” against the duo after the BCCI legal team refused to declare their comments a violation of the code of conduct. “We feel that present matter doesn’t fall under the ambit of Code of Conduct and procedure of Code of Conduct can’t be invoked in present circumstances,” BCCI’s legal firm Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas has said.

Also read | Indian team doesn’t stand by comments made by Hardik Pandya and KL Rahul, says Virat Kohli

Initially, Edulji suggested a two-match suspension for the duo but later referred the matter to the legal cell after CoA chief Vinod Rai agreed with her and recommended the same.

“It is imperative that players be put under suspension till further course of action is decided for this misconduct as was done in case of (BCCI) CEO (Rahul Johri) when he was sent on leave on sexual harassment matter,” Edulji wrote in her response to the legal opinion.

“Based on legal opinion and final procedure is laid down to address this issue, will recommend that a communication is sent to concerned players and team immediately,” she wrote in response to recommendations from the legal firm.

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