New Delhi, June 7: The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Friday (June 7) responded to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) seeking permission to allow veteran cricketer MS Dhoni the Balidaan Badge on his gloves in the ongoing Cricket World Cup 2019.
The global cricketing body has confirmed the dagger insignia displayed by MS Dhoni in the match between India and South Africa on June 5 is not permitted to be worn on his wicket-keeping gloves at the showpiece event.
The regulations for ICC events do not permit any individual message or logo to be displayed on any items of clothing or equipment. In addition to this, the logo also breaches the regulations in relation to what is permitted on wicket-keeper gloves, said Claire Furlong, ICC General Manager - Strategic Communications, in a official statement released by the global cricketing body.
The ICC's response is not going to subside the row for there is a huge demand back in India that 37-year-old cricketer be allowed to carry the logo.
The dagger insignia on Dhoni's wicket-keeping gloves further puts India's cricket administrators on collision course with the ICC after the BCCI declined the world body's "request" to have it removed, instead seeking permission for the star player to sport it. Earlier in the day Committee of Adminstrators (CoA) chief Vinod Rai asserted that Dhoni will continue sporting the insignia on his gloves as it is not a military symbol.
During India's opening World Cup game against South Africa in Southampton, Dhoni's green keeping gloves had a dagger logo embossed, which looked more like an Army insignia. The rule-book allows for only one sponsor's logo on the wicket-keeping gloves.
In Dhoni's case, he already sports an SG logo on his gloves. Dhoni is an Honorary Lieutenant Colonel in the Parachute Regiment of the Territorial Army and dagger is part of their emblem. Committee of Administrator (CoA) chief Vinod Rai had argued that wearing the dagger insignia does not breach any rule.
"As per ICC regulations, players can't sport any commercial, religious or military logo. There was nothing commercial or religious in this regard as we all know. And it is not the paramilitary regimental dagger that is embossed in his gloves. So Dhoni is not in breach of ICC regulations," Rai said.
Rai's comment came after the ICC "requested the BCCI" to ask Dhoni to remove the sign from the gloves, citing rules which forbid display of messages "which relate to political, religious or racial activities or causes."
The CoA's defence was based on the fact that the para-regimental dagger logo has word 'Balidaan' (sacrifice) inscribed on it, which is not the case with the logo sported by Dhoni. Dhoni also got support from Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju, who had urged the BCCI to resolve the matter.
"... the issue is connected with the sentiments of the country, the interest of the nation has to be kept in mind. I urge the BCCI to take a fair step in the Mahendra Singh Dhoni case," Rijiju wrote on his twitter handle.
Various sportspersons such as Suresh Raina and decorated wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt also backed the former captain.
(With PTI inputs)