Lankan Prez bans Cup theme song
A cricket song supporting Sri Lanka in the World Cup but carrying taunts and threats against other teams including India was taken off air after President Mahinda Rajapaksa found it offensive. Sutirtho Patranobis reports.cricket Updated: Feb 24, 2011 00:37 IST
A cricket song supporting Sri Lanka in the World Cup but carrying taunts and threats against other teams including India was taken off air after President Mahinda Rajapaksa found it offensive.
The music video, commissioned by a mobile phone company and a team sponsor, symbolically threatened India with a global warming-related catastrophe from the heat generated by the local team's performance. The song talked about the melting of ice on mountaintops in India.
The Australians had it worse and were reduced to bird feed, while New Zealanders were threatened that their jaws would be cracked.
The British team too was not spared. A line in the song said that sixes from the home team would rattle the tiles and damage the furniture in the Queen's palace.
Fellow islanders from West Indies were threatened that coconut palms on their islands will be smashed.
Even gods were not left alone. What might have irked Rajapaksa even more was that it referred to the Sinhalese mythological abode of gods and said its glasses would be shattered by sixes hit by the Lankan team.
Buddhism is the central religion here and the government is mandated by the Constitution to give it precedence over all other religions.
The song is more than three minutes long and has a mix of Sinhala and Tamil lines. Apparently, Rajapaksa heard the song during the Sri Lanka-Canada match in Hambantota and gave an earful to the sports minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage.
Soon after, the state media was directed not to air or telecast the song. Most of private media also decided not to broadcast it.
Sri Lanka authorities have already run into trouble with fans after banning music and placards at match venues. But subsequently, police removed the ban.