Pakistan's weightlifting team has threatened to pull out of the Oct 3-14 Commonwealth Games after a verbal spat with their contingent leader over carrying their national flag at the grand opening ceremony in New Delhi.
Sheikh Rashid, weightlifting team coach, told Dawn from New Delhi that Shujauddin Malik, who is a gold medallist in weightlifting, was to carry the flag and lead the national contingent at the opening ceremony at Jawaharlal Nehru stadium.
However, at the last moment, Muhammad Ali Shah, who heads the Pakistan contingent, said that he would be carrying the nation flag.
Weightlifting team members felt slighted and they insisted that the national flag must be carried by Shujauddin. This led to a verbal altercation between the weightlifters and Shah.
Shah refused to hand over the national flag and led the contingent at the opening ceremony, Dawn quoted Rashid as saying.
The coach said that the players participated in the opening ceremony just for national dignity.
Rashid said: "However, my players will not feature in events and will come back unless Mr.Shah apologises to the contingent."
He added that several other athletes and Indian officials were witness to the spat between them and Shah.