Having already suggested that the India vs Pakistan contest at the World Cup should be boycotted, India cricketer Harbhajan Singh has now asked former Pakistan cricketer and now Prime Minister Imran Khan to take steps to put an end to the violence perpetrated in India from across the border. The sentiments were echoed by wrist spinner Yuzvendra Chahal.
“I can only tell Imran Khan that he should take steps so that these issues can be addressed and how they can be addressed, he knows best,” Harbhajan told India Today.
“We are too small to understand how these issues can be tackled politically. But there should be an end to this. An end after which not a single soldier of ours has to lose his life. Because every soldier is someone’s son or brother and only that family can understand the pain,” he added.
Chahal, meanwhile, called for a strong response and war if need be. “This should settle once and for all. We can’t tolerate it any longer. Every three months we get to hear about our jawans losing their lives to terrorism and we can’t keep waiting for things to happen. It’s high time and we have to make things happen and we should settle this face to face, even if that means aar paar ki ladaai (fight on the battlefield),” Chahal was quoted as saying by India Today.
On Tuesday, Imran Khan had addressed the Pulwama attack in a video aimed at India. Imran said that Pakistan is ready to take any action if India is able to provide proof that they were involved in the terror act in which 40 CRPF soldiers died. However, he further went to say that if India attack then Pakistan is ready to retaliate.
“India has blamed Pakistan without any proof. Pakistan has nothing to gain from this attack. Pakistan is moving towards peace and stability,” said the Pakistan Prime Minister.
Harbhajan had earlier said India should boycott their World Cup match against Pakistan to register protest for the Pulwama attacks. Chahal, however, said the decision will be made by the cricket board and government. “The decision to play the World Cup match against Pakistan has to be taken by the BCCI and the government. One or two players cannot decide but I think it is high time and we need to take strong action against the perpetrators of terrorism,” Chahal said.
Many state cricket associations have taken down the portraits of Pakistani cricketers including Imran Khan in protest to the attack. The 2019 ICC World Cup will be held in England and Wales from May 30 to July 14 and India are scheduled to take on Pakistan on June 16 at Old Trafford.