How Hindutva Groups Fan Hatred Against Muslims Using India’s Champions Trophy Loss To Pakistan


Pakistani players celebrate after winning the ICC Champions Trophy Final match against India at Kennington Oval in London. — IANS

Can appreciating a rival team’s achievement in sports, even if that team is Pakistan, qualify as an anti-national stance? This is the question Indians need to ask themselves.

Ankit Misra

NEW DELHI — Many people with right-wing leanings are using India’s loss to Pakistan in the Champions Trophy final in England on Sunday as a pretext to foment hatred against Indian Muslims by circulating fake videos on social media showing the minority community in the country celebrating the green brigade’s win, a report has found.

An Alt News report said two videos, which actually had nothing to do with the title clash between the arch-rivals, were circulated on social media after India’s defeat. Such videos are also going viral on instant messaging applications like WhatsApp.

While one video was shot many months ago in Gujarat’s Vadodara, the other was filmed somewhere in Pakistan. What is indeed shocking is that these videos have not just been edited but their text provocatively rephrased to stoke anger against the minority community.

Pro-Pakistan slogans in Kashmir

On the other hand some videos from Kashmir have also showed how deeply the anti-India sentiment is rooted in the youth, especially among those living in Pulwama and Tral regions.

There were victory marches in various parts of Kashmir celebrating Pakistan’s win.

A student was quoted as saying, “Kashmir would have celebrated regardless of who India lost to, but a loss to Pakistan doubles the celebrations.”

Former Team India cricketer Gautam Gambhir hit back at separatist leader Mirwaiz Farooq when the latter tweeted over Pakistan’s win, “Fireworks all around, feels like an early Eid here. Better team took the day. Congratulations team”. Gambhir hit back, saying, “A suggestion @MirwaizKashmir why don’t u cross the border? U will get better fireworks (Chinese?), Eid celebs there. I can help u wid packing.”

Arrests in Karnataka, Rajasthan for Cheering for Pakistan

Karnataka police arrested three people, all from the Muslim community, for celebrating Pakistan’s victory in Kodagu, reported The News Minute. This after a BJP leader from Kodagu lodged a complaint against them, calling celebration of Pakistan’s victory on Indian soil a dangerous trend.

In another incident, five people were arrested from Rajasthan’s Bikaner for celebrating Pakistan’s win. Rajasthan Police arrested five men — Imran, Sanjay Khan, Tanveer, Shoaib and Wasim — said to have been celebrating Pakistan’s victory to the beats of dhol and chanting slogans favouring Pakistan after a complaint was filed by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s local unit with the District SP.

In yet another case, 15 people were arrested from Madhya Pradesh’s Burhanpur for cheering for Pakistan in the final against India.

This doesn’t end there.

In Kasargod, the state police filed a case 23 people for celebrating Pakistan’s victory in the ICC Champions Trophy finals. Badiyadukka Police booked Razaq, Masood, Siraj and 20 others after a case was filed by BJP leader Rajesh Shetty, reported Malayalam Manorama.

The same report said three men were arrested in Coorg under IPC Section 295(A) for trying to hurt religious sentiments. The police took action after a local BJP leader lodged a complaint.

Mixed response of Indian fans to Champions Trophy loss

The outcome of the contest evoked mixed reactions in India. Indian fans as well as celebrities, while congratulating Pakistan, continued to back the men in blue.

Suggesting that it was just a bad day in office, fans, although obviously disappointed, by and large desisted from resorting to vandalism.

Singer Vishal Dadlani tweeted, “Well played, Pakistan. India, every team has off-days. No need to lose sleep over it. You guys are our champions, and we love you!”

Hardik Pandya’s contribution came in for a special word of acknowledgement from many, who hailed his knock as the one reason that brought smiles on their faces on a day of several lows.

However, a section of the people in Ahmedabad, Kanpur and Haridwar were seen breaking television sets out of frustration.

Is praising a rival team an anti-national stance?

Can appreciating a rival team’s achievement in sports, even if that team is Pakistan, qualify as an anti-national stance? This is the question Indians need to ask themselves.

Praising your opponent, even one as bitterly hostile as Pakistan, is not the same as being soft on terrorism or condoning killings of innocent people.

Pakistan played better cricket in the final and deserved to win. And they did. Wherever the celebrations did not consist of anti-India slogans, a crackdown against and labelling of such fans as anti-national was unwarranted.

Pakistan clearly outplayed India in the final to register a thumping 180-run win. That half the Indian side was back in the hut with less than 55 on the board was enough to convince the most incorrigible of Indian optimists that the green brigade’s ‘mauka’ moment had arrived. And they made the most of this opportunity.

But it is most unfortunate that hate-mongering right-wingers used a loss in the final as a ‘mauka’ to defame Muslims.

Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Share post:




More like this

Article 370 Verdict: ‘Sad, Unfortunate,’ Say Kashmir Leaders

Team Clarion NEW DELHI — The historic Supreme Court verdict on Monday...

Consensus among GCC Countries that Israel is Guilty of Genocide’

Clarion India DOHA - Al Jazeera reports that the six...

Vandalism at Mughal Mausoleums in Delhi’s Mehrauli Area Sparks Outrage

Journalist Sunit Arora wrote on X: “Reporting vandalism at...

Telangana: Congress Keen to Prop up Second-Rung Muslim Leaders

Speculation is rife over Muslim faces in the Revanth...