AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla to be given Indian citizenship following extended stay in India
Image credit: India.com

Following the snooze fest excellent test match batting by the South African team, sources in the external affairs ministry are speaking about the possibility of conferring Indian citizenship to both AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla for the time they have spent in India. Speaking on behalf of the government, wannabe celebrity journalist PaajivsPunter caught up with Anurag Thakur, the BCCI secretary and MP from the ruling party of India, who disclosed the intentions of the government in a freewheeling chat. Here are the excerpts:

PVP: (trying to act cool) Yeh haath mujhe de dijiye Thakur sahab! What is this I hear from the rumour mill at Lutyens’ Delhi? AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla are going to be given Indian citizenship?

AT: (shakes PVP’s hand) Yes, we were alerted of the possibility 12 years ago before they started batting in the Kotla match. In fact, their visa expired by the time they got off the mark itself. There was a chance of a diplomatic crisis but it was averted due to the Indian government stepping in.

PVP: But tell me Thakur sahab, isn’t this a dangerous move? Has there been any precedent…

AT: (cuts off PVP mid-sentence) Of course! Adnan Sami was given Indian citizenship a few months ago. If a Pakistani citizen can be given Indian citizenship on humanitarian grounds, these great players can get it easily. Don’t forget, they played this match in the spirit of non-violence practiced by both Bapu and Madiba.

PVP: (excitedly rubbing his palms) I can’t wait to see them turn up for the Indian team.

AT: Yes, that is the idea we had as well. Once they were eligible for the Indian citizenship, BCCI proposed this to the MEA. Just think of our batting order with these two superstars.. (salivating).. I just hope they jump ship to our side. We can then erase the name Rohit Sharma from our memory (wistfully). We need to move swiftly though. Given our recent history with the Saffers , we don’t want them foiling our plans like the Pakistanis. Fingers crossed!

PVP: Do you think the Indian community will accept them wholeheartedly?

AT: ABD’s mom has said that he is one of our own. What more do you need? Amla will be in great demand from all things political after this innings.

PVP: How?

AT: (Sighs) You don’t understand politics beta… BJP will say Muslims are thriving and this is an example of the excellent example of  tolerance in Indian culture. Baba Ramdev will want Amla to be the face of Patanjali Chavanprash. The Congress party will enlist his help to block parliament. Kejriwal’s AAP Delhi government will make a big announcement to regularise the unauthorised settlement of Kotla by ABD and Amla. The babulog will make a beeline to learn the art of stalling a government file. Good days of learning for the power circles of Delhi!

PVP: Do you think the sponsors and corporate sector will still back test cricket after all this?

AT: Why not? BCCI plans to sub-let out parts of the cricket field for Bollywood entertainment and red carpet film launches. Bollywood anyway uses airtime for film publicity. If the ground is not being used fully, why not earn extra income? We have got reports that Uber put a congestion charge looking at how everything stood still around the ground. And I’m sure Delhi’s overactive real estate agents would have charged the South African team rent for AB de Villiers’ and Amla’s stay at the ground and made a killing. The economy is on the upswing!

PVP: How do you plan to counter the bad pitches rebuke by ICC?

AT: (Thunders) What bad pitches? The South Africans have done very well in Delhi and the match lasted till the final session. I am sure it was their ploy to bat so slowly so that grass grew on the pitch due to inactivity and it became easier for them to bat. Test cricket has space for all sorts of pitches and challenges. Why, AB de Villiers and Amla handled so many deliveries that would have made experienced gynecologists proud. I’ll go further and say that they faced more balls than many pornstars!

Please note this is a humour article — work of pure fiction

(The above article is reproduced with permission from UnReal Times. You can follow Paaj Punter here)