The political hustle and bustle in India is on it’s peak over Punjab Congress leader, Navjot Singh Siddhu’s recent visit to Pakistan on the occasion of Oath taking ceremony of the newly elected Pakistan Prime Minister, Imran Khan. Imran Khan had invited his 3 colleagues viz; former Indian Cricket team skipper Kapil Dev, Sunil Gawaskar and Navjot Singh Siddhu who all are cricket fraternities. Kapil Dev and Sunil Gawaskar avoided their visit to Pakistan by giving their excuses while Navjot Singh Siddhu decided to visit the oath taking ceremony. He praised the Pakistanis for their warm welcome and amicable treatment. He even hugged the Pakistan’s Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.
His visit and hugging gesture to the nation’s enemy Bajwa, has got a strong criticism from the ruling party, BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party). Congress leader and current Chief Minister of Punjab, Captain Amarinder Singh has also expressed his disapproval for Siddhu’s hugging gesture. “Siddhu should have avoided indulging in such a gesture when Indian soldiers are getting killed every day on the border,” said Punjab CM. He further added, “After all, it is the army chief who gives the orders to kill, with the soldiers merely following the same,”
Everyday our jawans are getting martyred. To hug their Chief General Bajwa…I am against this. The fact is that the man should understand that our soldiers are being killed everyday: Punjab CM Capt Amarinder Singh on #NavjotSinghSidhu pic.twitter.com/VIZ6FVmlUb
— ANI (@ANI) August 19, 2018
After the strong critism from BJP and his own party leaders, Navjot Singh Siddhu has justified his hugging gesture to Pakistan’s Army Chief Bajwa. “He came up to me. First thing, he is a Jat like the Cheemas, Sandhus, and Sidhus. All three chiefs of Pakistan defence forces came to meet people in the first row. Bajwa walked up to me and said he is a General who wanted to be a cricketer. He was very warm and wanted peace,” justified Siddhu after returning to India, on his hugging gesture. He further said that Bajwa told him that on Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary, Pakistan government will open the Dera Baba Nanak (Kartarpur) corridor. He said, “I felt too much of love and affection from Pakistan side,”
On Saturday, Punjab’s Minister of Local Government, Tourism, Cultural Affairs, Archives and Museums, Navjot Singh Siddhu, had praised Pakistanis for their “infinite respect” and called the love and affection from them as “unbelievable”.