Kashmir’s Celebrity Physio Caught on Wrong Foot

SRINAGAR: A top Indian physio, who is currently working with the Nepal cricket team, has been accused of sexual assault in a Northern Ireland hotel.

Dr Aijaz Bashir Ashai (42), who was hired during the Nepalese team's 15-day preparation tour of India for the ongoing ICC World Twenty20 Qualifiers, has been charged with "touching a hotel masseuse in a sexual manner without her consent" and appeared at the Ards Magistrates Court in handcuffs on Wednesday after spending a night in custody -Belfast Telegraph reported Friday.

The Cricket Association of Nepal (CAN) has also issued a statement informing about Ashai's contract termination effective from Thursday, the report added.

A constable told the court the masseuse alleged that Dr Ashai, who now lives in Mumbai, had asked for a full body massage, and despite having been instructed to wear underpants, he attended without them.

He told her he was suffering in the groin and buttock area, the constable continued, and grabbed her hands and forced them between his legs, while in a state of arousal.

The court heard it was alleged he later apologised to the masseuse, in front of a hotel manager, noting she was in distress, and offered a £10 tip, which was refused.

Dr Ashai's lawyer said he admitted that he attended the massage, but denied that he grabbed the masseuse's hands, or that he was aroused during treatment.

Ashai's LinkedIn profile describes him as "an expert in the field of advanced physiotherapy".

The profile further says: "Dr Ashai's expertise is highly sought after in the sports world. Currently he is the Head Physiotherapist for the celebrity cricket league (Mumbai Heroes), Indian Rugby Team, the West Zone Deodhar Cricket Team and the Chairman of Auxiliary Committee of Indian Association of Physiotherapy. He is the Head of Department of Advance Physiotherapy at Saifee hospital, Mumbai. He also runs his own fitness and sports rehabilitation center in Mumbai."

It also claims that Ashai had worked with some of India's renowned cricket and Bollywood personalities.

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