Pakistani Journalist Leaves Cricket World Cup in India Due to Backlash Over Social Media Posts
Zainab Abbas, a Pakistani journalist covering the Cricket World Cup in India, has recently spoken out about feeling “intimidated and scared” by the backlash she received for her past social media posts. Abbas, who was working for the International Cricket Council’s digital team, left India after old social media posts resurfaced and caused controversy.
The backlash was sparked by a Delhi lawyer who lodged a police complaint over “derogatory and provocative posts” made by Abbas about India and Hinduism. This led to speculation that she had been forced to leave the country, but the ICC clarified that she left due to personal reasons.
Abbas, who has also worked for Sky Sports on The Hundred, released a statement to clarify the situation. She expressed her gratitude for the opportunities she has had to travel and present the sport she loves, and mentioned that her interactions with everyone during her stay were kind and cheerful. However, she admitted feeling intimidated and scared by the online reaction to her posts.
While there was no immediate threat to her safety, Abbas explained that her family and friends from both sides of the border were concerned. She needed some space and time to reflect on the situation. Abbas also deeply regretted the hurt caused by her circulated posts, emphasizing that they do not represent her values or who she is as a person today. She sincerely apologized to anyone who was offended.
Abbas concluded her statement by expressing gratitude to those who reached out during this challenging time. The incident did not affect India’s performance in the Cricket World Cup, as they secured a seven-wicket victory over Pakistan on Saturday, maintaining their perfect start to the tournament.