The ongoing conflict in Afghanistan has galvanised the country’s cricket captain Rashid Khan into action. After his heart-rending tweet to the world leaders to intervene and help stop continued bloodletting in his country and people, the leading strike bowler of Sunrisers Hyderabad has swung into action.
He followed it up on twitter with another appeal to donate liberally to the Rashid Khan Fund which is helping to provide succor and reduce the trauma on innocent little children and women.
“The ongoing war in Afghanistan has led to humanitarian crisis. Please support @RashidKhanFund and @Afghan_cricketA emergency online fundraiser to provide basic essentials to those affected by the conflict,” read a Tweet put out by him.
It is hoped that his numerous fans and his fellow cricketers who earn millions from the IPL will come forward to donate during this time of crisis.
The hike in violence in Afghanistan has left many people dead, injured and homeless. Thousands have no shelter. According to a BBC report, within the last three days alone, at least 27 children have been killed. Little children who are caught up in the fighting, have been the worst sufferers. UNICEF stated that it was shocked by the “rapid escalation of grave violence against children.
In the midst of it all, Rashid Khan continues his efforts to provide help. In an earlier post he had stated: “I cannot do all great things, but I can do small things with great love and inspiration. Smallest acts of kindness are worth more than the greatest intention. The @RashidKhanFund will support Afghan children in need of education, clean water and healthcare.”
The talented cricketer has spoken for children and the downtrodden on earlier occasions too. Several times he has stated that there is no greater crime than killing little innocent children. His stand against violence and war has won him fans from all sections of the population in his own country and abroad. Even those who are not keen followers of cricket admire his social work and charitable pursuits.
It is amazing how he can find the time to push forward his work for the violence affected people in the middle of his busy cricket schedule. His cricketing talents have made him a much wanted player in many lands. He is the mainstay of Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL but he also plays in the Caribbean Premier League, the Big Bash League in Australia, the Afghanistan Premier League and the Pakistan Super League.
“I have always wanted to be involved in improving children’s lives by contributing to issues pertaining to health, education and nutrition. I hope we can make a change for a better tomorrow,” Rashid Khan said a few months ago.
Today, as Afghanistan has slipped into the grip of war and conflict, he continues his struggle to make the world a better place to live. May his tribe increase! May he be successful in his endeavour. Best of luck to Rashid Khan.
Abhijit Sen Gupta is a veteran journalist and columnist who has previously worked with The Hindu.