Yesterday was the big India-Pakistan semi-final. I was working full day and had a rehearsal at my friend’s place in the evening. So I decided to watch the second half of the Pakistan innings there. Out of the six people out there, three were very biased anti-Pakistani people. They would swear at each move made by a Pakistani player and despite having cricket-oriented brains, would comment negatively on everything. Apparently, they were totally enjoying this.
For me, however, such behavior takes the fun totally out of watching an interesting, high-octane match. Even I wanted India to win, but I don’t hate the Pakistanis. I love them like everyone else. Later, when I tweeted about it, I got a response from a Pakistani tweeter that he felt the same when he hangs out with people with a strong anti-India sentiment. Soon, more users were complaining about people more interested in swearing at Pakistan than celebrating the Indian victory. Such behavior should be condemned and discouraged.
On the positive note, I was encouraged by Shahid Afridi's responses in the post-match ceremony. He said he was proud of his team's effort and was happy for the support that he got in India. Here's a snippet.
Later on, when he reached Pakistan, he gave another brilliant reply to some of the anti-India questions he was asked.
I have full respect for Shahid Afridi and the way he reacted. More Indians should be acting like him and accept Pakistan, its sport, culture, people with smiles and respect.