The Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry, Kiran Bedi, decided to put out a congratulatory tweet to the French team for winning the FIFA World Cup but caused quite an uproar on social media when she referenced Puducherrians as an ‘erstwhile French territory’, and proceeded to celebrate the victory as their own.
We the Puducherrians (erstwhile French Territory) won the World Cup.
👏👏🤣🤣 Congratulations Friends.
What a mixed team-all French.
— Kiran Bedi (@thekiranbedi) July 15, 2018
Naturally, her tweet evoked backlash as it wasn’t a very conducive choice of words on her part, implying any sort of lasting piety to Puducherry’s colonizers.
While we certainly don’t have to hold any ill-will towards countries like France or England that had a presence in India, we do have to be careful that we don’t colour ourselves with the same brush any longer.
India is an independent, sovereign country – an emerging world power – and it’s about time that people started imbibing that in their subconscious.