India-Australia T20I: Chaos, mismanagement at Mohali as fans fail to get inside stadium despite having tickets : The Tribune India

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India-Australia T20I: Chaos, mismanagement at Mohali as fans fail to get inside stadium despite having tickets

Cops allegedly let their 'friends' gatecrash, resort to mild lathi-charge as restive ticket-holders demand entry into the stadium

Tribune News Service

Mohali, September 20

After three years of wait, the IS Bindra PCA Stadium saw a return of the roar of the crowds, but the occasion was marred by gross mismanagement and controversy.

As India took on Australia on Tuesday evening, many ticket-holders were unable to get into the stadium even after the Australian innings started, and fans alleged that police personnel let their “friends” gatecrash the occasion and fill the stands to capacity.

Even after the first innings of the match, fans were seen queuing up outside. Video grab

With a large number of young ticket-holders getting restive and demanding entry into the stadium, the police resorted to a mild lathi-charge and several youngsters felt the rage of the police’s baton.

Even after the end of the Indian innings, fans were seen queuing up outside the stadium. “The police personnel are claiming that the stands are full and they have closed the entry gates. How can the stands get full to the capacity when half of us, having tickets, are still standing outside?” said Gaurav, a young fan.

Another young ticket-holder said: “The crowd started queuing up around 3.30 pm but the police did not allow them inside for hours… Then, when they were unable to manage the situation, they resorted to a lathi-charge.”

Before entering the stadium, the spectators faced parking blues and rude police personnel, deployed at the entry gates, and some fans were lathi-charged.

“The police personnel deployed were of no help instead they were very rude. At one of the entry points (Gate 3/4), personnel helped some fans (without tickets) to gate-crash in, while ticket-holders were kept queued up for over three hours before they were allowed inside the stadium,” said Parbhat. “They even lathi-charged fans who objected!”

Youngsters even tried to climb the fence around the stadium to get in, and while some of them succeeded, they also got hit by the batons of the police.

Another fan added, “This is a regular feature at PCA Stadium. And if fans object, the police personnel threaten them with dire consequences. The authorities should handle such situations better. Overcrowded places are difficult to handle,” said Sahil.

Talking about the bad crowd management, Anjali explained a face-off with a Punjab Police official. “The officials should train the recruits to talk nicely. We have paid for our tickets and deserve some respect. The personnel treated us like we were entering here for free,” she said.

Outside the main gate of the stadium, drivers of many government vehicles were seen arguing with the police personnel over parking.

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