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Old 12-25-2008, 11:11 AM
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Default First burn effigy, now make temple? Dhoni’s family asks

The proposed temple for India cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni by fans has not gone down well with his family.

"I was speaking to Dhoni's father Paan Singh yesterday and learnt that the family is not happy with the development. They feel there should be a balance in the response from fans – burning his effigy when things with the team go wrong and worshipping him when on song," Dhoni's former coach Chanchal Bhattacharya said.

The burning of Dhoni's effigy and attack on their house after India lost to Bangladesh in the last World Cup is still fresh in the mind of family members.

His sister had even called up the president of 'Dhoni Fan Club' – Jitendra Singh – and urged him not to go ahead with the proposed temple.
"I was told living beings should not be projected as gods nor keep their statues in temple," Jitendra said quoting Dhoni's sister.

"I have immense respect for Dhoni's family but I have to take the view of other members of the club before taking any decision," he added.
"Maybe the structure will not take the shape of a temple. We might keep Dhoni's statue in the gallery we have proposed to construct to display his photographs taken during the last 26 years... Everything will be discussed and decided in the meeting," he said.

The 'Dhoni Fan Club' has already placed an order for a 5-feet statue of the cricketer.

"If statues of Bollywood stars Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan can find place in London, what is the problem in installing Dhoni's? Anyway, we will review our proposal and announce it soon," Jitendra said.

Bhattacharya said fans should show respect to the players at all times, irrespective of whether he is in form or going through lean patch.

The fan club could set up a photo gallery of the cricketer, suggested former Bihar Ranji player and deputy manager (sports) of Central Coalfields Limited (CCL) Adil Hussein, who was the captain of the CCL team when Dhoni was a member in the 1990s.

For former Test cricketer Ramesh Saxena the temple project should not have objections from any quarters.

"It is a feeling for their (fans) hero. A temple will not hamper Dhoni's performance," said Saxena.
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