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IPL cheerleaders under fire
April 25, 2008 13:31 IST
Last Updated: April 25, 2008 17:33 IST
Cheerleaders will not be banned during Indian Premier League cricket matches in Mumbai. However, they may have to shed their skimpy outfits, as the police warned of action against the organisers if their shows are found to be vulgar.
As the police cleared the air on whether the scantily-clad cheer girls will be allowed to perform in a Navi Mumbai stadium on April 27 by imposing some conditions, the 'ban cheerleaders' chant grew louder with West Bengal joining Maharashtra in targeting the dancing beauties.
Senior BJP leader Venkaiah Naidu also joined the chorus of protests, saying the dance was a "distraction and nonsense" as a debate raged over whether US-style cheerleaders have a role during cricket matches in the country.
"The girls are merely artistes who perform as per the instructions of organisers," Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner Ramrao Wagh said, adding that a performance license has been granted to the organisers of the match between Mumbai Indians and Deccan Chargers, to be held at Nerul's D Y Patil stadium.
In the event of the cheerleaders indulging in obscenity, Wagh said, the "license holders" (the organisers) will be prosecuted under various provisions of the Bombay Police Act for indecency in a public place and breach of license terms.
Wagh said the show should not be vulgar or obscene nor offend the dignity of women. He, however, said there are no instructions from the government.
West Bengal Sports Minister Subash Chakravarty said the cheerleaders have no role and are out of context during sporting encounters and there is no need to import Western culture. Chakravarty, who was supported by PWD Minister Kshiti Goswami(RSP) and Water Investigation Minister Nandgopal Bhttacharya(CPI), said he will take up the issue with Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharya.