Imran Khan thanks Navjot Sidhu, calls him “Ambassador of Peace”



Islamabad, Aug. 21 (TNS): Prime Minister Imran Khan on  waded into the row over Indian Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu attending his oath ceremony, thanking him and describing him as an “ambassador or peace”.

“Those in India who targeted him are doing a great disservice to peace in the subcontinent – without peace our people cannot progress,” Imran Khan said in a tweet.

The tweet surfaced shortly after cricketer-turned-minister Navjot Singh Sidhu defended his visit to Pakistan and a hug shared with the Pakistani army chief.

Sidhu, addressing days of criticism from rivals as well as his own party leaders, asserted that his visit was “not about politics”, that he had gone on the invitation of an old friend.

He referred to peace gestures by former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who made an unscheduled trip to Lahore in 2015 on the prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s birthday.

“No one is questioning PM Modi,” he said. “For peace, prosperity, goodwill messages are necessary.”

On criticism from his own boss, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, he said: “I was criticised by the Captain, by top Congress leaders. It is not necessary that if the Captain has spoken against me, I should too.”

You can’t, he added pointedly, try to please everybody. “He who tried to, pleases nobody.”