Former Pakistan cricket captain Shahid Afridi, known for making controversial statements, especially on Kashmir, has stirred the hornet's nest again by mentioning the issue in his autobiography, 'Game Changer.'
"Kashmir belongs to the Kashmiris. Not to Indians. Not to Pakistanis. That debate comes later. But first and foremost, Kashmir is for the Kashmiri people themselves," the former all-rounder is reported to have said in his autobiography by ANI.
Afridi's history with Kashmir issue
This is not the first time that the controversial former Pakistan all-rounder has raked up the Kashmir issue. In November last year, he stunned everyone by saying, "Pakistan doesn't need Kashmir; it is not able to even handle the four provinces it has."
He further expostulated on what he believes will be the best solution to the vexed issue that has soured relations between the two countries. "Say Pakistan doesn't need Kashmir, don't give it to India as well, let Kashmir become a country. The people dying there should not die. Humanity should stay alive. It pains to see people die there," the Karachi-based player asserted. After a backlash against these comments in his home country, he withdrew his comments and declared, "Kashmir belongs to Pakistan."
But even earlier in 2018, Afridi dipped his toe into the matter and put out a tweet expressing his views. "Appalling and worrisome situation ongoing in the Indian Occupied Kashmir. Innocents being shot down by oppressive regime to clamp voice of self-determination & independence. Wonder where is the @UN & other int (sic) bodies & why aren't they making efforts to stop this bloodshed?" the retired cricketer wrote on the social media site.
Afridi had also courted controversy after the 2011 World Cup when he described Indians as 'small-hearted' in a television interview. This autobiography, which has been co-authored by Pakistani journalist Wajahat S Khan is due for a release on April 25. It may not find many takers in India.