Sushma Swaraj is no more: How former External Affairs Minister showcased India’s humanity first approach

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New Delhi | Published: August 7, 2019 2:04:37 PM

Sushma Swaraj often extended helping hand to Pakistani nationals especially children and women. Swaraj showcased India's big heartedness and its humane attitude towards the neighbours.

sushma swaraj imageSushma Swaraj had turned her official Twitter handle into grievance redressal medium where she used to come up with prompt panacea.

Sushma Swaraj is no more. India is mourning the untimely demise of its one of the finest stateswomen and popular Foreign Minister (External Affairs Minister) Sushma Swaraj and rich tributes from across the world have been pouring in. For Sushma Swaraj, humanity always came first. Swaraj was known for her sharp yet mellifluous oratorical skills. However, as External Affairs Minister, Swaraj’s humanitarian, as well as an empathetic approach towards hapless individuals and families, made her a noble person. Often these individuals or families hailed from Pakistan. She was not hesitant in issuing medical visas to patients from Pakistan. However, that does not mean that she was soft towards Pakistan. Instead, she used to tear into Islamabad at the global diplomatic stage for issues relating to cross-border terrorism. As we bid adieu to Swaraj, all we can say is that her deeds won’t perish into oblivion.

Swaraj had turned her official Twitter handle into grievance redressal medium where she used to come up with prompt panacea. One of her wittiest and most remembered tweets was “Even if you are stuck on the Mars, Indian Embassy there will help you”. She posted this on June 8, 2017.

Often Swaraj extended helping hand to Pakistani nationals especially children and women. In 2017, one woman from Pakistan tweeted that “pls help daughter in law of India, applied 2nd time and husband visa expire on 24th November…”. Swaraj replied, “Hindustan apni betiyon aur bahuon ka visa inkaar nahin karta. Tumhein visa zaroor milega.” In 2017, one Shahzaib Iqbal tweeted that “After Allah, Swaraj was the last hope” and urged for medical visa. Swaraj replied that India would not belie his hope and assured him that a visa will be issued immediately.

Again in 2017, Swaraj announced medical visas for two Pakistani citizens. While one Naseem Akhtar’s mother needed liver transplant surgery, Ali Asadullah’s father underwent the same medical procedure. Swaraj always represented India’s open-heartedness to citizens of its neighbouring country. A family hailing from Pakistan’s Karachi thanked Swaraj after their 15-month-old daughter was allowed medical visa within a few hours after they applied.

Swaraj repeated the same gesture when one Ken Sid tweeted “why my bud suffers for medical treatment!! Any answers Sir Sartaaj Azeez or Ma’am Sushma.” In reply, Swaraj said, “No. the child will not suffer. Pls contact Indian High Commission in Pakistan. We will give the medical visa.”

A 7-year-old Pakistani girl shared a ‘Thank You’ video message after her family was granted a medical visa. The mother of the 7-year-old tweeted, urging for a medical visa. Swaraj took cognizance of the matter and granted the visa. The girl needed to have open-heart surgery.

These are a few instances where Swaraj showcased India’s big heartedness and its humane attitude towards the neighbours.

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