Chidambaram plays to the gallery at WBC

Chidambaram plays to the gallery at WBC

What better way to play to the galleries. The home minister’s symbolic act, not lost on the hundreds who trooped in to watch the WBC finals, was aimed at assuaging fears that there was a threat to the tournament from terrorists.

Just that Chidambaram’s gesture could have been well received by the England side, which pulled out of the tournament citing security reasons, at the very beginning. Chidambaram’s action is seen as an attempt to prove a point that there is no threat to the premier event. He flew into Hyderabad by a scheduled commercial flight and proceeded in a private car to Gachibowli Stadium, a 15-minute drive, unannounced. The minister, who was without any security cover, was on a “private’ visit to the city, official sources said in New Delhi.

The minister purchased a Rs 1,000 ticket and proceeded to watch the finals of the championships from the gallery before he was spotted by the tournament organisers. He was asked to give away the prizes to men’s champion Lin Dan of China China. He later watched the finals of mixed doubles and women’s doubles from the VIP arena with national badminton coach P Gopichand. Hyderabad Police Commissioner S Prabhakara Reddy said Chidambaram’s office in Delhi had not even breathed a word about his idea to visit here without any security cover and that it was not “prearranged.”  “Despite a statement made by me, one of the teams withdrew and, if I may say frankly, I was burning from inside when I saw that,” the Home Minister said after coming out of the stadium.

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