Friday, April 11, 2008
Who will carry the Olympic Torch?
THE TORCH OF FREEDOM
By Manuwant Choudhary
Indian footballer Baichung Bhutia is a practicing Buddhist so he will not carry the Olympic torch.
Aamir Khan, despite his firebrand film Rang de Basanti, says he will carry the torch since human rights violations take place all over the world, but yes while he runs he will have a prayer in his heart - for Tibet.
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon says he will not be attending the opening ceremony, but not to offend China he says his decision has nothing to do with the protests over Tibet.
Saif Ali says he would carry the torch since the Indian government has no objections over it (since when did Saif become a law abiding citizen....wish he was like that always and a few Chinkaras would have lived).
Presidential candidates urge President Bush not to attend the opening ceremony, but he can attend the games itself otherwise China may throw out US MNCs and that may not be in the interests of the US.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy will not attend the opening ceremony because the French feel more strongly about human rights violations than the British and his speach in the UK was among the best I have heard and he deserves to be the President of the United States, not France.
Hollywood Actor Richard Gere is in campaign mode and says its clear there is a problem in China.
Indian Actress Diya Mirza says she would not carry the torch since she has a lot of regard for His Holiness The Dalai Lama, whom China does not allow to return home.
Now resigned former IPS officer Kiran Bedi first says she is a sportswoman first and last and will carry the torch and then despite her policewoman's life says she will not carry the torch because she feels suffocated with all the security around the flame.
Then India's IOC chief Suresh Kalmadi makes a telephone call through news channels from Beijing saying Rahul Gandhi has been invited to carry the torch.
And the young Gandhi Member of Parliament is still trying to discover India and so he quietly turns down the offer.
And after all this there is news that the torch may just bypass India.
But what if the torch does arrive and someone will have to take the torch to the Amar Jawan Jyoti a memorial for Indian soldiers killed by China.
So who will carry the torch?
Perhaps, the right person for the job is CPI (M) leader Prakash Karat and he could run to Beijing closely followed by India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, otherwise his government may fall - only for Tibet!
And finally, His Holiness The Dalai Lama wants to carry the Olympic torch but the Chinese won't let him.