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Pakistani Presenter Zainab Abbas leaves India amid social media controversy

NEW DELHI: Pakistani presenter Zainab Abbas, who was part of the ICC digital team covering the ODI World Cup, left India on Monday.

This decision comes in the wake of a social media backlash over her alleged anti-India posts in the past. However, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has reported that Zainab left the country due to personal reasons.

Zainab Abbas departed from India via Hyderabad, where she was assigned to cover Pakistan's three World Cup matches in the city. The 35-year-old presenter was notably present at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad during Pakistan's World Cup opener against the Netherlands on October 6.

The controversy surrounding Zainab Abbas began when posts from her unverified X account, formerly Twitter, went viral. These posts gained attention shortly after she announced her involvement in covering the ICC mega event in India.

While there have been speculations and debates regarding the reasons behind Zainab's departure from India, the ICC has firmly stated that it was due to personal reasons. The social media backlash and controversy surrounding her past posts have fueled discussions both online and offline.

"Zainab has not been deported, she has left for personal reasons," an ICC spokesperson told PTI.

The presenter, who arrived in Hyderabad last week, was supposed to travel to cities where Pakistan are scheduled to play, including Bengaluru, Chennai and Ahmedabad.

Former Pakistan players Rameez Raja and Waqar Younis are in India as part of the commentary panel for the ODI showpiece, which began on October 5 and will end on November 19.

The Pakistan cricket team got a rousing reception at the Hyderabad airport on September 27, marking its arrival to the country after seven years.

The cricketers, including skipper Babar Azam, have acknowledged the overwhelming support they have been getting in India since their arrival.


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