- ‘Whoever wants Azadi leave now! Kashmir is ours’
Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir in a tweet asked Kashmiri leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq to celebrate Pakistan’s win in the ICC Champions Trophy in Pakistan rather than in (Indian-held) Kashmir.
The Indian cricketer was reacting after Mirwaiz tweeting his joy at Pakistan beating India in the Champion’s Trophy final. With one sarcastic tweet, the former India opener managed to not just slam the Kashmiri leader but also got in a dig at what Indians say is China’s increasing ‘colonisation’ of Pakistan.
In fact, this isn’t the first time Mirwaiz congratulated the Pakistani cricket team. After it beat England to enter the Champions Trophy final, the Kashmiri leader tweeted: “As we were finishing taraweeh (prayers), could hear the firecrackers bursting, well-played team Pakistan. Best of luck for the finals.”
Gambhir has of late been tweeting about things, not cricket. He has taken on those who abuse India’s armed forces. “For every slap on my army’s Jawan lay down at least a 100 jihadi lives. Whoever wants Azadi leave now! Kashmir is ours,” he tweeted.
That tweet came after a video was circulated in April allegedly showing Indian soldiers being kicked and abused by people, allegedly in Kashmir. Here’s more of what he had to say about that: “Anti-Indians have forgotten that our flag also stands for: saffron – fire of our anger, white – shroud for jihadis, green – hatred for terror.”
A month before that, Gambhir spoke in favour of the Indian Army, but at the same time defended Delhi University student Gurmehar Kaur, who posted a pro-peace message and was not just mocked for it but hounded. There were also rape threats against her. The cricketer strongly supported Gurmehar.
“I have the utmost respect for the army. Their service to the nation and all of us is unmatched. However, the recent events have left me with a sense of disappointment. We live in a free country where everyone is entitled to their opinion. If a daughter who lost her father puts up posts about the horrors of war with the intention of achieving peace, she has all the right to,” he said.