New Delhi, Feb 5: As the cricket governing body permits rape-accused cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane to practice, there have been increased calls to boycott the activities that the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) would be hosting.
On Saturday, demonstrators questioned CAN’s decision to add Lamichhane, who is currently out on bail but is being investigated by the police for allegedly raping a minor, to the team while carrying placards at the Maitighar Mandala protest site.
Using the hashtag #BoycottCAN, which has gained popularity in the Himalayan nation, users have taken social media by storm in opposition to the cricket governing body.
Nepal | Demonstration held in Kathmandu against the induction of rape-accused cricketer Sandeep Lamichhane in the training camp. pic.twitter.com/X2gG2yvv9R
— ANI (@ANI) February 5, 2023
Notably, from February 14 to 21, Nepal will host a triangular series as part of the ICC World Cup League 2 at Kirtipur with Namibia and Scotland. Since Lamichhane joined the team for practice, which began on Thursday, there have been calls to boycott the games.
The Patan High Court granted bail to the Nepali cricketer on January 13 after he was charged with raping a 17-year-old juvenile on August 21 of last year. The Attorney General’s Office filed a petition with the Supreme Court on Tuesday contesting the judgement of the High Court.
He is the subject of an investigation under Section 219 of the Criminal Code of 2074. If the charges against him are upheld, he will be imprisoned for 10–12 years.
The 22-year-old cricketer was reinstated into the 20-member national team camp that was announced on Thursday after the national cricket governing body, the Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN), removed the suspension imposed on him at a meeting of its executive committee on Tuesday.
On September 8, the CAN suspended him after the Kathmandu District Court issued a warrant for his arrest.