Tea is Fantastic” Tweet by Lahore Qalandars: Harmless Joke or Further Strain on India-Pakistan Relations?

Tea is Fantastic” Tweet by Lahore Qalandars: Harmless Joke or Further Strain on India-Pakistan Relations?

Lahore Qalandars, the reigning champions of the Pakistan Super League, has caused a stir on social media with a controversial tweet that is likely to further strain the already tense relations between the Indian cricket board and the PSL giants. The tweet, which takes a dig at Indian fighter jet pilot Abhinandan Varthaman, has sparked an uproar among both Indian and Pakistani cricket fans.

The tweet shows a photograph of all-rounder Mohammad Hussain Talat enjoying a cup of tea with the caption: “Ye tu “Tea is Fantastic” hogya” (“This is now ‘Tea is Fantastic'”). The tweet is a reference to a viral video that emerged in 2019 after Abhinandan Varthaman’s MiG-21 was shot down in Pakistan. The pilot was captured by Pakistani locals and later taken into custody by the Pakistani army. In a video released by Pakistani authorities, Abhinandan thanked the officials for their professional treatment and was asked if he liked the tea. He responded by saying, “The tea is fantastic, thank you.”

The phrase “tea is fantastic” has since become a popular meme in Pakistan, with many people using it to poke fun at India. Pakistani celebrities like Fakhar-e-Alam have even joined in on the fun, urging people to “sip on tea for free” instead of engaging in conflict. However, Lahore Qalandars’ latest tweet has taken the joke too far, and Indian cricket fans have responded by pointing out that it was only last year that Pakistan’s Planning Minister Ahsan Iqbal was urging Pakistanis to drink less tea to help the economy.

The tweet has further escalated tensions between the Indian cricket board and Lahore Qalandars, as the PSL is currently streamed on Sony Live in India, and this tweet could affect their broadcast in the country as well. The incident highlights the delicate nature of cricket diplomacy in the region, where even a seemingly innocuous tweet can have serious consequences.

In recent years, cricket has been used as a means to improve relations between India and Pakistan, with both countries engaging in a number of bilateral series and participating in international tournaments together. However, political tensions between the two countries have often spilled over into the cricket field, with matches being cancelled or boycotted as a result.

While the Lahore Qalandars’ tweet may have been intended as a harmless joke, it serves as a reminder of the deep-rooted animosity that exists between India and Pakistan. It is essential for both countries to continue engaging in cricket diplomacy and promoting peace and friendship through the sport.

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