Navjot Singh Sidhu appears to have invited trouble unnecessarily by attending the oath taking ceremony of his friend Imran Khan, whom he honoured with a shawl. He would have initially imbued the feeling what American author John Filson said: So much does friendship triumph over misfortune that sorrows and sufferings vanish at the meeting not only of real friends, but of the most distant acquaintances, and substitutes, happiness in their room.
However, his positive approach turned nightmarish the moment he embraced the Army Chief of Pakistan. A complaint of sedition was filed against him at Muzaffarpur court by one Sudhir Kumar Ojha as he felt that Sidhu’s act insulted the families of Indian soldiers who have been killed by Pakistan’s army. The Bajrang Dal went as far as to suggest a ₹5 lakh ransom for his head.
Even his boss Amarinder Singh, Punjab’s Chief Minister was unhappy about this hug. And the Congress party established that he was not representing the party during his visit. In a scathing attack, dissenters blackened his face in posters, and the BJP termed his embrace as shameful and disgraceful.
Amidst mounting criticism, he clarified that he had embraced Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa in a fit of cheerfulness at the Pakistan President’s house. He approached Gen. Bajwa after the Army Chief made him aware that he was planning to open the closed route of Gurudwara Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur in Pakistan for Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary next year.
Criticisms haven’t died down even after Sidhu has made several clarifications in this regard. Presenting himself as a goodwill ambassador of India, he had responded to a hospitable gesture in Pakistan.
It is really strange to see whenever the Congress Party leaders hug important persons; the ruling party politicians get extremely enraged. When Rahul Gandhi embraced Narendra Modi in the Parliament, he was amply criticised.