Tavleen Defends Son From ‘Pakistani’ Jibe, Twitter Erupts
The TIME Magazine article calling PM Modi ‘India’s Divider In Chief’ has angered the BJP and ‘bhakts.’ Author of the article, Aatish Taseer, was called a Pakistani citizen by the BJP. BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra said on Saturday, 11 May, “Pakistani writer is trying to malign the image of PM Modi and Rahul Gandhi is tweeting about it.”
Aatish’s mother and veteran journalist Tavleen Singh did not respond then, but on Tuesday, 13 May, actor Kabir Bedi put out a tweet calling Aatish a ‘Pakistani’. Responding to the tweet, Tavleen Singh said, “Kabir disagree with what he writes. But, you know that he isn’t Pakistani.” Aatish Taseer’s father Salman Taseer was the governor of Pakistan’s Punjab, and was assassinated for opposing the country’s blasphemy laws in 2011.
Her tweet resulted in many comments from writers and other personalities. Writer Sanjukta Basu said Tavleen, a Modi supporter, had a Pakistani husband. She also questioned her citizenship.
But many, including journalist Barkha Dutt, said her family should not be dragged into individual politics.
Tavleen Singh’s support for Modi was also questioned, with many asking her to reflect on her own previous views.
Writer Zainab Sikander said, “You've so far been singing odes of this party that has completely ignored the mother's nationality and view Aatish Taseer, your son, as a Pakistani because of his father.”
Consulting editor of TV9 Bharatvarsh channel Ajit Anjum reminded Tavleen Singh that everyday, many Indians are branded as ‘Pakistanis’. “Why is there such a situation? From when? Who created it? Who are calling dissenting voices ‘Pakistani’? Why are such people encouraged at every stage?” he asked.
Tavleen Singh replied to Ajit Anjum saying she never supported anyone who called the Muslims of India Pakistanis. “Those who use ‘Pakistani’ as an abuse is revealing their sick mentality.”
Writer Tony Joseph replied to Tavleen Singh with a tweet that said, “It is difficult to put back the genie of hate in the bottle once it has been released”.
One Twitter user said it is ‘karma’.
When another journalist had asked on Saturday, 11 May, if an Indian article could publish such a cover, Tavleen had replied, “Read the article Tufail and you will find that it is a critique of the Indian political scenario not just Modi. He calls Rahul Gandhi ‘an unteachable mediocrity’. And, by the way Modi has been attacked in the Indian media since day one.”