Indians are BIG fans of football and there’s little doubt about that. Even though our country doesn't play the game at the World Cup level and is obsessed about cricket, we do have a sizeable soft corner for football. The heartbreaks and the joys that come with the win and the loss of countries that aren't related to us by a far stretch are REAL.
But looks like Kiran Bedi, the Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry (formerly known as Pondicherry), took this sentiment a bit too far. When France became the champion of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Final, beating Croatia by 4 goals to 2, Bedi congratulated Puducherrians, even claiming that ‘We’ won the World Cup.
We the Puducherrians (erstwhile French Territory) won the World Cup.— Kiran Bedi (@thekiranbedi) July 15, 2018
👏👏🤣🤣 Congratulations Friends.
What a mixed team-all French.
While she had her own logic behind the sentiment, Tweeples would have nothing of it.
We are Indians Madam. Your publicity stunts need to stop..— KPL_Leader (@KplLeader) July 15, 2018
There are other ways to celebrate a French victory than to be so servile— Alo Pal (@AloPal) July 15, 2018
I'm a born Pondicherrian, I don't feel I've won at all
France won, and it's a game and I love the game.I don't need the crutch of a colonial mindset to enjoy
Please do consider pulling this tweet down.
Whole india is very sad (erstwhile British Territory) came 4th only.— BalramKhan #SaveDemocracy #NoGodsNoMasters (@BalramKhan) July 15, 2018
One senior journalist, the president of the Editors' Guild of India, had this to say.
Small correction, ma’am.Puducherry was never French Territory. It was always Indian territory, occupied/colonised by the French. Nobody would dare call Goa an erstwhile Portuguese territory. https://t.co/Ivh3RcwzrJ— Shekhar Gupta (@ShekharGupta) July 15, 2018
And the Congressman Pawan Khera had a request for the Modi government.
However, it isn’t all wrath as some Twitter users came out in support of the Lieutenant Governor.
When French in Pondicherry can celebrate our wins, why not we celebrate theirs! That's the spirit mam🙏🏻 True leader pic.twitter.com/XyflHpNNra— United We (@TrueFactsIndia1) July 15, 2018
Mam u support colonial ideology ..its not a good way to support #francevscroatia match.— Lokesh Rathor (@lokeshrathor007) July 15, 2018
Following the outrage, Bedi took to her account on Monday morning explaining why she wanted France to win the World Cup.
Good #MorningNutrition.— Kiran Bedi (@thekiranbedi) July 16, 2018
We in Puducherry wanted France to win d #WorldCup as d UT of Puducherry has a very memorable historical bond with #France.
Thousands of Puducherrians have maintained close ties with France. France also generously supports Puducherry in several ways @ANI pic.twitter.com/02o8zJ3l4S
Congrats my brothers & sisters in Puducherry.— Kiran Bedi (@thekiranbedi) July 16, 2018
In Puducherry we can build on this spirit of celebration by promoting football in UT by organising inter village, inter town and inter city football tournaments.
It costs just ONE ball to unite,as was visible in French Team pic.twitter.com/8K8PKziNnF
Meanwhile, the debate still rages…