Indian test fast bowler Mohammad Shami has been issued with an arrest warrant on charges of domestic violence.
The 29-year old seamer was part of the touring party to the West Indies for a series of one day matches and test matches, and set a personal landmark in the first innings of the second test in Kingston, Jamaica. His dismissal of Rahkeem Cornwall made him the third quickest Indian pace bowler to take 150 test wickets. He also claimed the wicket of John Campbell in the second innings.
The warrant, which was issued by a court in Alipore in West Bengal on Monday, is the latest in a series of developments that began when Shami’s wife. Hasin Jahan, took to social media last March to make a series of allegations against Shami and other family members. Jahan, a former model, used her Facebook account to post photos of a series of chats that Shami had enjoyed with other women in the course of their four year marriage. She went further, claiming that Shami had tried to cajole her into having sex with his brother, and that his brother and mother had tortured her, and attempted to kill her.
Shami has always denied the allegations maintaining that it was “part of a big conspiracy”, and an attempt by his estranged wife to defame him.
Despite that, law enforcement officials took the allegations seriously enough for Kolkata police to charge him with Kolkata police earlier this year, and now both he and his brother have been asked by the court to surrender themselves within 15 days, at which point they can apply for bail.
For the time being there is no suggestion that the charges will affect his international test career, with the Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) deciding not to take any action for the time being. Instead they are holding fire, waiting to see the charge sheet, and how much substance there is to the allegations made.
Previously the Board has shown its inclination to back Shami, awarding him a new central contract last year, even when it was aware of Jahan’s claims. The contract is reputed to be worth 30 million rupees a year.
Shami, who was born in Uttar Pradesh, made his first class debut for Bengal in 2010, breaking into the test side which played the West Indies in November 2013. He has since played 42 Tests, 70 ODIS and 7 T20Is for his country.