A local cricket match in the western part of Uttar Pradesh (UP) ended in tragedy after a player killed a family member of the umpire following an argument over a decision.
According to a report on The Times of India, the incident occurred in the town of Jarara near Aligarh. During the Jarara Premier League (JPL), as the tournament was christened, umpire Raj Kumar called a no-ball during a crucial stage of the match between Jarara and Bariki, the 'unfair' decision of which was met with an angry reaction from Sandeep Pal, one of the players.
Pal walked up to the umpire in order to influence him to change his decision, and threatened him with dire consequences — specifically the loss of a family member — when Kumar didn't relent.
True to his word, Pal offered Kumar's sister Pooja and three of her friends cold drinks laced with poison on the following day. The girls knew Pal, and did not suspect him at the time of accepting the offer.
According to the report, Pooja collapsed moments after consuming the drink, and died later, while her friends were rushed to a local hospital, from where they were shifted to a bigger one in Aligarh.
"I always knew it was a bad idea to hold such a cricket tournament here. My fears have come true," said Rattan Pal Rawal, the pradhan in Jarara.
"These people don't know what sportsmanship is. They are touchy and violent. Give them a bat and they will swing it on each other's face," added Rawal.
"From the site of the incident, we found another bottle that had a potent insecticide in it. We will get to the bottom of this in a few days," said Sukhdev Yadav, station officer at Khair in Aligarh district. Meanwhile, Pal has been declared an absconder by the police.