‘Such love’ – Navjot Singh Sidhu reveals real reason behind his hug to Pakistan army chief

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New Delhi | Published: August 20, 2018 4:32 PM

Sidhu was the only Indian who attended Khan's swearing-in ceremony in Islamabad on Saturday. He was seen sitting next to PoK chief Masood Khan and hugging Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

Navjot Singh SidhuNavjot Singh Sidhu also claimed that he felt much “love” from Pakistan.

Notwithstanding the sharp criticism over his Pakistan visit to attend ‘friend’ and PTI chief Imran Khan’s swearing-in ceremony as the 22nd Prime Minister of our neighbouring country, Punjab minister and Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu has asserted that he did nothing wrong by hugging Pakistan army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa. This came despite Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s strong disapproval of Sidhu’s gesture.

“I think it was wrong of him (Sidhu) to have shown the affection he did for the Pakistan army chief. I am not in its favour… the fact is that the man (Sidhu) should understand that our soldiers are being killed every day. My own regiment lost one major and two jawans a few months ago,” said CM Singh, a retired officer of the Indian Army’s Sikh Regiment.

Sidhu was the only Indian who attended Khan’s swearing-in ceremony in Islamabad on Saturday. He was seen sitting next to PoK chief Masood Khan and hugging Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa. Asked about his gesture that has gotten swords drawn back home, Sidhu told reporters here that “if someone (Pak army chief) comes to me and says that we belong to the same culture and we’ll open the route to Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib (in Pakistan) on first Sikh Guru, Guru Nanak Dev’s 550th birth anniversary, what else I could do?”

He also claimed that he felt much “love” from Pakistan. On the issue of his sitting next to the PoK chief in the front row at Imran Khan’s oath ceremony, the Congress leader replied, “If you are invited as a guest of honour somewhere, you sit wherever you are asked to. I was sitting somewhere else but they asked me to sit there.”

Khan, who captained his national cricket team to the World Cup glory in 1992, had invited some of his cricketing friends to witness his formal accession to the top job in Pakistan. The BJP and the Akali Dal have hit out at Sidhu for “ignoring the sentiments” of the people of his country, mourning the demise of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Sidhu chose his friendship over the country by attending the swearing-in ceremony of Imran Khan as Pakistan’s prime minister.

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