pakistan
Sunday Jan 16 2022
By
Web Desk

'No one above law': Murad Raas supports Australian court's decision to deport Djokovic

By
Web Desk
Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas (L) and Serbian tennis player Novac Djokovic (R). Photo: Geo.tv/Reuters.
Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas (L) and Serbian tennis player Novac Djokovic (R). Photo: Geo.tv/Reuters.

  • Punjab education minister Murad Raas terms decision against Djokovic 'great'.
  • Says "no one should be above the law when it comes to vaccination".
  • Says Novak Djokovic should have made better decisions.


Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas has termed the Australian court's decision to deport world number one tennis player Novak Djokovic, on the grounds that his decision not to be vaccinated posed a risk to the country, "great".

Tennis star Novak Djokovic was set to be deported from Australia after a court on Sunday dismissed his appeal against the government's cancellation of his Australian visa.

Taking to Twitter, Raas said that no one should be exempted from laws "when it comes to vaccination."

He said that the people should get vaccinated or they should stay isolated.

The minister said that the Serbian tennis player should have made better decisions instead of choosing to stay unvaccinated. 

"Great decision by Australian Courts. No one should be above the law when it comes to vaccination. Either you get vaccinated or stay home isolated. Novak Djokovic should have made better decisions," Raas wrote.

Djokovic had appealed Immigration Minister Alex Hawke's use of discretionary powers to cancel his visa on the grounds that he was a threat to public order because his presence would encourage anti-vaccination sentiment amidst Australia's worst outbreak of the virus.

The verdict brings to a climax a rollercoaster 10 days during which the world's top tennis player was detained by immigration authorities, released and then detained again ahead of a tournament that starts on Monday.

Djokovic had been granted a visa to enter Australia, with a COVID-19 infection on December 16 providing the basis a medical exemption from Australia's vaccination requirements to play in the Open. The exemption was organised through Tennis Australia.

That exemption prompted widespread anger in Australia, which has undergone some the world's toughest COVID-19 lockdowns and where more than 90% of adults are vaccinated, and the government said recent infection alone did not meet its standards for an exemption.

Dominating headlines globally for more than a week, the Djokovic visa saga has fuelled the fierce debate over the rights of those who opt to remain unvaccinated as governments take stronger measures to protect their people from the pandemic.

Additional input from Reuters