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News at Midday February 7, 2008

Posted by uberhim in Uncategorized.
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India’s preeminent tennis tournament next month will be played without India’s preeminent women’s player. Sania Mirza dropped out of the Bangalore Open, and says she has little desire to play again in her homeland, after facing a rash of criticism from Indian nationalists and religious Muslims.

Her decision, and the controversies that spurred it, reflect a clash between the modern and the traditional. “If she is to excel in her game, she can’t afford to be distracted by such matters as whether the length of her skirt meets the exacting specifications of religious clerics,” the Times of India writes in an editorial. The Calcutta Telegraph says she needs space: “Ms Mirza should be left alone to serve and volley. That is the only way she can contribute to the greater glory of India and Indians.”

But letter writers to the Times and to an Indian newspaper chain say stress, whatever form it takes, is the price of fame. One letter writer from Canada opines, “She is living in 21st century where every thing is checked, mocked touted or question. She has to go through this mill.”

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