* If only Pakistan spoke in one voice condemning the 26/11 terror attacks like they are condemning the IPL auction.
* If only Pakistan took action against the perpetrators of 26/11 like they are in the case of IPL auctions.
* If only the Pakistan rose as one nation in support of India after 26/11 as they are against India in the IPL auction.
Then India and Pakistan would have perhaps played together happily ever after.
I am amazed by Pakistan’s response to 11 Pakistani cricketers not been selected by individual team owners of the IPL.
PAK’S IMMATURE RESPONSE
From their interior minister Rehman Malik to their sports minister Aijaz Jakhrani to the man on the street – they want to sever all ties with India. Pakistan has cancelled the visit of their election commission officials to India in retaliation. The visit would have been unnecessary anyways. Who ever wins elections in Pakistan, it is the Army that calls the shots. So ``free and fair’’ elections perhaps means little even to the Pakistanis. Pakistan’s foreign office spokesperson Abdul Basit termed Indian foreign minister SM Krishna’s `stern warning’ to Pakistan ``immature.’’ But from all accounts it is Pakistan’s response to IPL that is rather immature – bordering juvenile. An entire country is up in arms over 11 cricketers not being selected by private cricketing bodies. For Heaven’s sake! We live in the most dangerous neighbourhood in the world. Imagine being nuked for not selecting Shahid Afridi. Pakistan wants Lalit Modi to apologise to the entire nation. But why should Lalit Modi apologise? And why should Shilpa Shetty be forced to explain her decisions? It is for the team owners and advisers to decide who suits their requirements the best. Did we ask Ratan Tata why he bought Jaguar or Lakshmi Nivas Mittal why he pulled out of the Kazakh oil fields? Then why should the IPL team owners have to explain their investments.
WHAT NEXT - RESERVATIONS IN IPL?
Why is only Pakistan crying foul? No Sri Lankan was taken and neither was a single Bangladeshi player selected. Only a single Aussie was taken. Of the 67 up for auction only 13 were sold. So does Pakistan enjoy a special status in the IPL? Does IPL stand for India-Pakistan league? This kind of brouhaha needs to be nipped in the bud otherwise soon there will be pressure to have reservation in the IPL teams. 22.7 per cent Pakistanis. 27 per cent Bangladeshis, Sri Lankans and Australians and 25 per cent from rest of the world – leaving only 25 per cent for Indians. Then it will be a ``propah’’ team. Oh! So politically correct. Forget making money – the franchisees need to do their bit for being diplomatically correct in the sub continent. I still can’t come to terms with the reaction in Pakistan.
Cricket and terror don’t go hand in hand Mr Gilani!
Barely 14 months ago, Pakistan said India was over reacting when 166 innocent people were killed in the worst ever terror attack and India pushed the pause button on composite dialogue. Even today Pakistan prime minister Yusuf Raza Gilani wants India to separate composite dialogue from terror. And yet the Pakistan government decides not to send a high level parliamentary delegation to India because of the ``humiliation’’ their 11 cricketers faced.
Going by that logic India should close down its High Commission in Islamabad and end all ties with Pakistan, because not just India – the world is convinced Pakistan is responsible for all the major terror attacks in India. Lets start from the beginning:- October 1947.
Barely two months after Independence, Pakistan raiders attacked Jammu and Kashmir. 1,104 Indian army soldiers and 684 soldiers of the J&K state forces were killed in the first Indo-Pak war.
3,000 Indian soldiers were killed in the 1965 Indo-Pak war.
3,843 Indian soldiers were killed in the 1971 Indo-Pak war.
530 Indian soldiers were killed in the 1999 war in Kargil.
170 innocent people were killed in Mumbai, the worst terror attack on India. And yet we are going hysterical over 11 Pakistani players not selected by private team owners for the third edition of the IPL.
14 months after the worst terror attack on India, Pakistan has done nothing to bring the perpetrators to book. And Pakistan’s Interior minister Rehman Malik wants India to apologise for these 11 players. Did Pakistan apologise for Mumbai? No! Did Pakistan apologise for terror attacks in Delhi, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Karnataka, J&K, Andhra Pradesh? No!
ANOTHER 26/11 IN INDIA?
Pakistan’s prime minister Gilani says there could be another 26/11 terror attack in India. Is that a veiled threat? Talk or face another attack! Take our players or face another attack? What next – get out of Afghanistan or face another terror attack? Actually to an extent Gilani is right. He is powerless to stop the attacks. For it is the Pakistan army that calls the shots in the country and as long as Pakistan Military Academy, Kakul continues to preach hate for India – the terror tap will never be closed. But Pakistan needs to watch out. It has been described as the terror epicenter of the world. And the world is watching. US defence Secretary Robert Gates has warned Pakistan not to test India’s patience. Another 26/11 would have very dangerous repercussions. British High Commissioner Sir Richard Stagg has also insisted Pakistan cannot shrug off its responsibility. And foreign minister SM Krishna has been unusually frank when he said any misadventure will have serious consequences on bilateral relations. Intelligence agencies have warned there could be another spectacular terror attack. Terror could strike from the skies. Security forces are gearing up to face perhaps – multiple terror attacks across multiple cities but the government needs to do more to tell Pakistan – back off or else…..