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Pretentious Sidhu

People have every right to criticise governments in democracy but they have no right to lower the prestige of country in any manner

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‘In my home town in Kashmir, a family used to flutter the flags of all the major political parties on its rooftop. The four male members of the family worked for four political parties and the head of the family used to contest as an independent candidate. When any sensible person questioned them about their ideological differences.The answer used to be that we like power not political parties or their manifestoes.’

This drama is being enacted today by congress through Navjot Singh Sidhu and Chief Minister Captain Arminder singh of Punjab. They are   playing good cop and bad cop with Indian foreign affairs with an eye on 2019 elections. It is unique and happening for the first time in Indian politics especially in an enemy country like Pakistan. Punjab minister Mr. Navjot Singh Sidhu visited Pakistan on the swearing in ceremony of Pakistan Prime Minister Mr. Imran Khan. Sidhu embraced Gen Bajwa chief of Pakistani army, the person responsible for making terrorists to sneak in India. This created ripples in the country but congress shamelessly justified it as a gesture of friendship. No doubt Sidhu is free to visit any person or country, but hugging a person responsible for beheading Indian soldiers by a State Minister was quite awkward for everyone. The cover up by congress party encouraged him to have close door meeting with the aide of Hafeez Syed named Gopal Singh Chawla on his second visit.  He denounced the Sikhs of the country by using a religious place for meeting a terrorist and was followed by Pakistan in using kartarpur corridor as a tool in the diplomatic tussle between India and Pakistan by terming it as a googly from Imran khan. Both played with the sentiments of Sikhs.  Sidhu in his laughter show style praised Imran Khan and the latter denounced the Indian Prime Minister in his lecture.

On both of these occasions, Capt Arminder Singh played safe by wearing loyalty on his sleeves but never mustered enough courage to sack Sidhu from his cabinet and thereby projected himself as a good cop. Now Sidhu openly rejects Capt. Arminder Singh chief minister under whom he has to work as a minister, instead holds Rahul Gandhi as his captain. This in other words means congress approval for everything which Sidhu spoke in Pakistan.

Sidhu had no time for 1984 Sikh riot victims but he has enough time and love for Pakistan. If Sidhu feels that he can encash Sikh sentiments by visiting Kartarpur corridor he is grossly mistaken as people very well know the treatment of Sikhs in Pakistan and role of his party in the 1984 Sikh riots. It would have been prudent for Sidhu to convince his leader for punishing those responsible for 1984 Sikh riots. It would have been wise on his part to raise the issue of Sikh killings by Taliban with Imran Khan. He should have raised the issue of   killing of Charanjeet Singh, a social activist in Pakistan, in May 2018, with the Pakistan government. He could have added value to his Pakistan visit by raising the issue of Sikh migration from Peshawar with Pakistani authorities. 

It is an irony that  Sidhu and his party  has scooped so low that it is ready to compromise with the prestige of the country for fetching  votes in 2019. Rahul Gandhi shall realise that the sympathy shown by Pakistan for congress will never be taken in a positive way by the people of this country. Instead of being a bone, it will be a bane for him. He shall throw Sidhu away from his party otherwise bear the acrimonious result of Sidhu’s show in Pakistan.

In an interview to a Pakistani channel, Sidhu held that many peace initiatives were worked over the years but credit goes to Pakistan for taking the first step. He not only lied in the Pakistani media but also demeaned India’s position on 26/11 or Kargil war; they were not started by India? He was not least disturbed when slogans like Pakistan Zindabad were recently raised in one of his election rallies in Rajasthan. What worries one the most is the handling of a constitutional post by a person holding secret meeting with Gopal Singh Chawla . Sidhu is either a security risk for the country or has got swayed like many others who speak against India in foreign countries. 

Sidhu cannot be singled out, his new mentor Rahul Gandhi gave justification for the growth of ISIS in Germany and bashed Indian culture. He compared RSS with Muslim Brotherhood. Fake news and social media propaganda is resorted by some people to lower the image of the country, certain human rights activists  like Arundati Roy always paints everything happening in India as black. Mani Shanker Aiyer says in Pakistan that Modi is a problem. This continuous India Bashing in foreign countries is fast becoming a habit with some motor mouthed Indians. It is an outcome of frustration in certain quarters due to their absence from enjoying power. Leaders like Sidhu are encouraged to scoop low for Muslim votes in India, but they fail to realise that Indian Muslims are least interested in Pakistani tantrums. . 

Sidhu and the people of his ilk want to show extra graciousness towards Pakistan so they have coined terms like Aman ki Asha, People to People contact, Indians must keep a big heart and so on. They demand proof for surgical strikes, praise Yaqoob Memon, Afzal Guru, etc. They support terror activities under the garb of human rights violation/freedom of expression etc. They hold that Pakistani artists should be allowed to make money in India because art has no boundaries, as if artists are super humans, come from other world and have nothing to do with the beheading of soldiers on the borders of their country. Contrary to this, artists from Pakistan never denounce the terror policy of their country. This group believes in escalating trade between the two countries despite the nefarious designs of Pakistan. Promoting one sided relationship is merely infatuation and carries little meaning except the self interest of the promoters. 

Pakistan may have got a new sympathiser in Sidhu at a time, when the leaders of whole world are trying to make distance from it. Sidhu cannot befool people by equating his visit with that of the Prime Minister because the latter held no  meeting with any terrorist in that country.

People have every right to criticise governments in democracy but they have no right to lower the prestige of country in any manner. Those whose blood does not boil after seeing atrocities being carried by Pakistani terrorists on Indian soil, have no right to call themselves   as Indians. India first; shall be the prime intension of every Indian in every aspect of life irrespective of his religion, caste or area of inhabitation.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

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Navjot Singh Sidhu Arminder singh

Prof M. K. Bhat

The author is Director, Maharaja Agrasen Institute of Management Studies - Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha university

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