Tolerance and Indianness are synonyms

Ex cricketers Navjot Sidhu and Kapil Dev received special invitation for attending the swearing in ceremony of the new Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan. It seems that he wanted to keep this event largely apolitical and so special invitees to this ceremony included the members of the Pakistani cricket squad that won 1994 World Cup under Imran’s leadership, apart from the aforesaid two Indian cricketers of great repute. For some reason, Kapil Dev did not make it to Islamabad, though Sidhu seemed to have enjoyed every moment of his stay there.

It all seemed to be a very good starting initiative by Imran till our ever opinionated social media took a great umbrage to the friendly hug shared by Sidhu with Pakistan Army Chief General Bajwa! There are posts on how a congressman Sidhu could choose to hug the murderer of scores of Indian soldiers? To take their wrath out on Sidhu further, this set of self styled patriots and moralists are posting another video on supposedly royal ignore being given by Imran to Sidhu!

The above is an instance of immaturity and intolerance not representative of what India and Indians stand for. If indeed the Government was so sensitive to the acts of a Indian politico and that too one from the opposition, it should have barred Sidhu’s visit or allowed him by explaining clear dos and don’ts! If enmity, Kashmir, border strife are going to be the basis of our future dealings with Pakistan, why Government of India welcomed Imran’s premiership? And if these issues have to be discussed with seriousness, sincerity and willingness on both sides for long standing peace, why such non events are being endorsed by the secular, middle of the stream, moderates of this country? Sidhu went to Pakistan as a goodwill messenger and his hugging Bajwa was a step forward to exchanging this goodwill only and nothing more! He also went there as Imran’s friend on his special invitation and in such a scenario the question of Imran ignoring or giving cold shoulder to Sidhu does not arise, because such things don’t hold water between two friends, especially on such occasions when one has attained new heights of personal accomplishment.

Let’s take pride in India’s tolerance, all encompassing culture and its message of peace and brotherhood to the entire world. Posts of such nature and contents are unbecoming of what Indianness as known to all of us stands for.

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