Flix Friday, January 16, 2015 - 05:30
The News Minute | July 24, 2014 | 1.28 pm IST Well, we are back to square one. A tennis player of international repute settled in Hyderabad has been reduced to a "daughter-in-law of Pakistan" after she was appointed ambassador for the state in which she lives. K Chandrashekar Rao appointed Sania Mirza as the brand ambassador for Telangana and handed over a cheque for Rs 1 crore. A BJP MLA from the state K Laxman took objection to it saying she was born in Maharashtra and settled in Hyderabad only later. Moreover, he said, she was the daughter-in-law of Pakistan.  But his objections were not limited to her being, as he called it Pakistan’s daughter-in-law. Mirza had married Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Mallik in 2010. Hence, the daughter-in-law reference. This statement over shadowed the other reasons he objected to Mirza’s appointment. But that’s another story. Many people have taken offence to Laxman calling Mirza a daughter-in-law of Pakistan, or referring to her as daughter-in-law etc. They said Mirza was an Indian sports person of talent who had brought a name to the country.  It just brings us back to a basic question: why are women defined in terms of the men in their family? Can we not look at a Sania Mirza or a Saina Nehwal, or a Mary Kom as sports persons in their own right? But given this statement came from a BJP leader whose party has now distanced itself from these this remark, has prompted some to ask, why the party has a problem with Sonia Gandhi, who is an Italian by birth and moved to India after she married Rajiv Gandhi. By the BJP's logic, she is then India's daughter-in-law. People on Twitter took on the BJP's stance, dissecting it apart on questions of identity, representation sports, patriarchy and also politics. BJP says #SaniaMirza can't b Telengana brand ambassador cos she's a "daughter in law of Pak"?Will they ban our pride in her achievemnts too? — Anna MM Vetticad (@annavetticad) July 24, 2014 Sexist Bigot. Gives away his mindset -always daughter in laws,never daughters? the idiot MP who calls @MirzaSania Pakistan's daughter in law — barkha dutt (@BDUTT) July 24, 2014 If by marrying a Pakistani @MirzaSania forfeits Indianness, then what was the big deal about Sonia Gandhi's Italian origins? — Nistula Hebbar (@nistula) July 24, 2014 Dear @MirzaSania baiters, before she became as you call her "a daughter in law of Pakistan" was she somebody's daughter 1st? & was it India? — kanika gahlaut (@kanikagahlaut) July 24, 2014 Leave # telangana, #SaniaMirza is not worthy being called an 'Indian' pic.twitter.com/lGYiOXRYjv — ραναη ѕнєтн (@pavansheth) July 24, 2014 BJP took 4 decades in accepting Ms Gandhi as India's daughter in law & less than 4 years to accept Sania Mirza as Pakistan's daughter in law — Pawan Khera (@Pawankhera) July 24, 2014 Renuka Choudhury for one, said that Sania Mirza was a daughter of the country. “When men are appointed (brand ambassadors) you become their slaves, but when a woman is appointed, suddenly you remember where she is from, her maike (mother’s house).” She said.  Subramanian Swamy said: “When people have divided loyalties, we cannot expect them to represent country or any other part of the country faithfully.” Others compared her to Amitabh Bachchan who apparently is a brand ambassador for several states.

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