Mohali, Oct.21 : Mohali Police on Tuesday arrested a group of Australian fans watching the second Test between India and Australia for wearing T-shirts with offensive slogans.
"Today, we found some Australian fans wearing these T-shirts. The slogans written were 'Beer with Mahatma, Bets with Gupta, Dancing with Indira and still getting runs. We took strong objection to it and summoned them," a news agency quoted a police officer, as saying
The slogans were interpreted as a reference to Mahatma Gandhi and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.
An Australians fan, however, defended the slogan, arguing it referred to former SBS and ABC TV newsreader Indira Naidoo, rather than Indira Gandhi.
"The Mahatma bit is not in reference to Mahatma Gandhi," the fan said.
"Mark Waugh and Shane Warne in 1995 got in trouble giving advice to a bookmaker for betting in cricket and the bookmakers name was Gupta, 'bets with Gupta' refers to that bookmaker.
"All was harmless fun. We are on a tour to enjoy India, its culture, its people and cricket. So if we have offended anybody we apologise, but it was not intentional," said the fan
The police officer said the Australian fans were later released without charge.
"They apologised before us, saying their intention was not to hurt anyone's sentiments. We let them off with a warning and sent them to their hotel to get their dresses changed," he said.
Story first published: Tuesday, October 21, 2008, 13:08 [IST]
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