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Cricket pitch invaded to protest potential SBI loan to Carmichael project

November 28, 2020

The Wire:

The first one-day international match between the Indian men’s and Australian men’s cricket teams saw crowds return to international cricket for the first time since March, when governments around the world banned mass gatherings in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

And almost immediately, the crowd made its presence felt.

At the beginning of the seventh over of Australia’s innings, two young men dressed in shorts and black t-shirts walked towards the fence between the Victor Trumper stand and the ground, climbed over and jogged onto the ground. The fronts of their t-shirts read “Stop Adani” and the back, “Stop Coal #StopAdani Take Action”.

Over the last few days, people have organised several protest actions around Australia, New Zealand and the US urging the SBI to not provide the Rs 5,000 crore loan that it is mulling for the Adani group, according to IANS. (The report only mentions “media reports” as the source of its information. The Wire has requested more details from IANS and will update this article if/when they become available.)

Tim Buckley, director of energy finance studies, South Asia, at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), argues that if the story was false, the SBI would have denied it, which it so far hasn’t done. Both SBI and the Adani group are yet to respond to The Wire‘s requests for comment.

The loan is vital for the project, which Buckely has called a “climate bomb” and a “stranded asset”. 

[Kabir Agarwal]

More: When ‘Stop Adani’ Protests Reached the Sydney Cricket Ground

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