Expats opt to skip work for Indo-Pak match

ABU DHABI- Companies and establishments in the capital with a sizeable number of Indian and Pakistani employees are facing a piquant situation. Most of the staff want to take casual leave or half-day off tomorrow.

By N. Srinivasan

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Published: Fri 28 Feb 2003, 3:28 AM

Last updated: Wed 1 Apr 2015, 10:26 PM

The reason? The pitch battle between Asian Titans, India and Pakistan, in the World Cup cricket in South Africa after a gap of four years.

Senior managers and heads of departments in some companies said that they had taken a lenient approach to let their cricket crazy staff to have a field day on the occasion, although Saturday, being the first working day of the week, is generally a busy day.

"Our boss is an Egyptian, but he is aware of high tension, emotion and drama that an Indo-Pak clash on the cricket ground means," said M.A. Muthalib, a Sri Lankan accountant with Emirates Tyres, a private company.

"What is the point if your mind is elsewhere and you are only physically present in the office and prone to committing mistakes," is his poser.

D. Natarajan, Senior General Manager of ETA/Melco Group that has a large number of Indian employees, said there had been no formal leave applications, but he would consider favourably any request from cricket fans who wanted to leave a bit early if they were through with their work.

Mansoor Javed, head of a group at the Union National Bank and president of Abu Dhabi Cricket Council, said the match being a one-day match, cricket buffs will miss only part of the first session. As such, there has not been any desire to take off in general.

Considering the interest the match has generated, both the teams should play more often, without mixing politics with sports, he remarked.

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