The flag lowering drill performed by the armed forces of India and Pakistan at the Wagah Border is a spectacle to be watched live.
However, on Saturday (April 21), spectators at the ceremony saw Pakistani cricketers Hasan Ali entering the flag-lowering ceremony from the Pakistani side Saturday evening and made his signature wicket-taking gesture towards the Border Security Force (BSF) and Indian audience.
Now the BSF has taken strong note of a civilian from Pakistan “interfering” in the ceremony on the Pakistani side. As per protocol, only the BSF from Indian side and Rangers from Pakistani side are allowed to participate in the ceremony.
“The act has hit the sanctity of the parade. We will lodge a protest with Pakistan Rangers,” BSF Inspector General (Punjab Frontier) Mukul Goel told The Sunday Express over the phone.
Goel added, “Anyone can make any aggressive gesture in the viewers’ gallery on both sides but no public person can interfere in the parade. Before or after the parade, the people are free to do such things, but not in the middle of the parade.”
BSF spokesperson and DIG R S Kataria said, “I am on leave. I have inquired into it. A BSF officer at Attari has told me that the national cricket team of Pakistan had come to witness the ceremony at Wagah. One of the cricketers from their team started making provocative gestures during the drill. It happened on the Pakistani side. Pakistani officers later made that player sit. Since it is a drill of forces of two countries, BSF is lodging protest with Pakistan Rangers.”
In a viral video, Hasan Ali is seen making his way into the midst of the ceremony as Rangers look on. Ali is then seen patting his thigh and then posing the way he does after taking a wicket on the cricket field.