Gambhir shows middle finger at Kohli fans, says it was meant at anti-India sloganstext_fields
New Delhi: Former Indian cricketer and current BJP Member of Parliament, Gautam Gambhir, whose obscene gesture during an India-Nepal cricket match drew backlash, cited an anti-India slogan to justify his 'middle finger' gesture.
Gambhir is seen in a viral video showing the middle finger to fans who were reportedly chanting "Kohli, Kohli," seemingly in support of Indian cricket captain Virat Kohli.
Gambhir explained that his reaction was a result of the presence of 2-3 individuals from Pakistan who were making derogatory comments about India and discussing the Kashmir issue.
However, Gambhir asserted that his reaction was not directed at Kohli's fans but rather at a group of individuals who were allegedly shouting anti-India slogans, particularly regarding the sensitive issue of Kashmir.
The video circulating on social media only captures chants of "Kohli, Kohli," contradicting Gambhir's assertion that there were individuals making anti-India remarks in the vicinity.
He claimed that his response was a natural reaction to such provocative comments and reiterated his strong patriotism, stating that he cannot tolerate anything against his country.
The controversy took a political turn when the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) criticized Gambhir and the BJP. AAP took to social media to express their disapproval of the BJP MP's behaviour.
They compared Gambhir's gesture to a recent incident involving BJP leader Smriti Irani and a viral video of Rahul Gandhi blowing a flying kiss in the Lok Sabha. AAP's tweet questioned whether Irani would respond similarly to this "vulgar gesture" as she had to the flying kiss incident.
The incident occurred during India vs. Nepal match at the Pallekele stadium at the Asia Cup 2023, where Gambhir was providing commentary for the host broadcasters.