Harbhajan is an abuser, not a racist
As was expected following the BCCI's belligerent threats to withdraw from the one-day series if Harbhajan was not cleared of racism charges, the racism charge was downgraded to a Level 2 offence
("Using language that is obscene, offensive or of a seriously insulting nature to another Player") during the appeal hearing by Justice John Hansen
A few questions are left unanswered at this point in time:
- Why was Harbhajan fined 50% of his match fees from one test and two ODIs (as per Times Now TV)
- Will the BCCI re-open the charges against Brad Hogg? After all, the original case was that he should also be charged for a racist abuse. Subsequently, the charges were dropped. Can the word 'bastard' be considered to be obscene, offensive or seriously insulting? Of course yes!
- Since there is no evidence that Harbhajan did actually call Symonds a monkey (the transcripts from the stump microphones only had Symonds saying 'You just called me a monkey' or 'What monkey, big monkey, you don't know what you've said.'), is it fair to assume that Harbhajan can file a defamation suit against Symonds, Clarke, Ponting & Hayden? They insinuated that Harbhajan made a racist comment, and he was therefore seen as a racist by a lot of cricket followers, thereby resulting in extreme mental anguish for over three weeks?
- Is the ICC going to do anything about Mike Procter now? He has botched up twice in the span of a little more than a year, the previous instance being at the Oval in August 2006 where he didn't do anything to prevent Pakistan from walking off.
Labels: australia, harbhajan, icc, india, racism, sydney, sydney 2008, symonds