Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir has clarified why he recently targeted Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for the poor air quality in the national capital. The cricketer, who recently announced his retirement from cricket, said that he was not joining politics as speculated in media.
Speaking to India Today, the former India opener said, “Absolutely not. I too have heard plenty of rumours. But I have not taken any such decisions yet.”
He said that his recent tweet targeting Kejriwal was because he was genuinely concerned about the alarming rise in pollution in Delhi. He said, “I talk about social issue because I have every right to question the government because I am a tax payer…If you look at the air quality in Delhi, what are you leaving for the next generation? That’s why I had posted that tweet against Aam Aadmi Party, because they are in power. I would have posted the same tweet if the BJP or the Congress were in power.”
Earlier this month, he had lashed out at Kejriwal by calling him ‘muffler-clad fraudster.’ Reacting to the report of National Green Tribunal directing the Delhi government to deposit Rs 25 crore for its inability to check air pollution in the capital, Gambhir had written, “Smoke has cleared and muffler-clad fraudster has emerged. So @ArvindKejriwal @BJP4India Who’ll pay this fine? Of course me, the taxpayer. I wish I had the option of saying that my tax is not for Delhi CM’s callousness.Air pollution:NGT slaps Rs 25 crore fine on Delhi govt.”
Some media reports in August had indicated that Gambhir may contest assembly polls on a BJP ticket from Delhi in 2020.
If indeed Gambhir joins the BJP, he will be following the precedence of several other formal cricketers, who’ve joined the electoral politics after quitting international cricket in the past. They are Chetan Chauhan, Navjot Singh Sidhu, Mohhamed Azharuddin, Mohammed Kaif, Kirti Azad, Vinod Kambli and Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi among others.