In a recent speech at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Prime Minister Imran Khan called out Indian Premier Narendra Modi for propagating war between the two countries by revoking Article 370 and putting Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK) in a blackout. He claimed that such steps are responsible for radicalising Muslims around the world.
However, Khan’s statements provoked severe controversy as prominent Indian figures accused him of “threatening” and “warmongering”. From politicians to journalists and now even sportspersons, many suggested that as a former cricketer, Khan should promote peace instead of instilling hatred.
Veteran cricketer Harbhajan Singh is one of them. He tweeted, “At UNGA speech, there were indications for India of a potential nuclear war. As a prominent sportsperson, Imran Khan’s choice of words such as ‘bloodbath’ and ‘fight to the end’ will only increase hatred between the two nations. As a fellow sportsperson I expect him to promote peace.”
Reporting on the same, an article on Indiatimes read, “Imran Khan is being criticised by Indian cricketers for his ‘brainless’ and ‘warmongering’ address.” Similarly, News18 published, “Veteran Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh refused to relent in his criticism of the Pakistan PM for issuing ‘despicable threats’ and ‘speaking about ‘hatred’.”
While former Indian players, Saurav Ganguly and Gautam Gambhir, also commented on the matter, Harbhajan’s tweet made headlines because of the response it received from local actor Veena Malik.
Veena did not only defend PM Khan’s address but also took a jibe at Harbhajan. “PM Imran khan did talk about peace in his speech. He talked about the reality and the horror that will ‘surly’ occur when the curfew is lifted and sadly there’s going to be a bloodbath,” she wrote. Directing her post at Harbhajan, she added, “Don’t you understand English?”
As matters escalated, he then mocked Veena for her incorrect spelling of ‘surely’, without providing a response to her clarification of the matter.
“What do u mean by surly? Oh is it surely ?? lo ji dekho yeh Angreji Inki (look at her own English) chill pill, next time try and read before you write something in English.”
Although it seemed like the matter ended there and Harbhajan had owned Veena on Twitter, it turns out that their squabble had only begun. The two incited keyboard warriors from both India and Pakistan, who took to the micro-blogging site to share their opinions.
“Surly, much? Took Bhajji six years to get the correct spelling of ‘surely’,” tweeted one user, who attached two of Harbhajan’s earlier posts where he himself said ‘surly’ instead of ‘surely’.”
Another user retorted saying that Harbhajan at least got his grammar right after six years, while Veena is still “uneducated”.
To this, the first user responded, “Let’s level the playing field and give her six years too to get it right.”
Nevertheless, it seems that both the countries will remain busy in arguing over a foreign language that they have been brainwashed into believing is their ‘heritage’ from years of British rule. This reiterates the fact that western supremacy might never leave the subcontinent and real issues will always be left behind.
Have something to add to the story? Share in the comments below.