India's daughter to Pakistan's daughter-in-law -- Sania Mirza: Controversy Explained

Sania Mirza and Shoaib Malik
Bangalore, July 24: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) opposed Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao's (KCR's) decision of appointing tennis star Sania Mirza as the ambassador of the state.

Who is Sania Mirza?

  • She was born in Mumbai, Maharashtra. Later she was brought to her ancestral home in Hyderabad.
  • She married Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik in 2010.

What is the recent controversy?

  • Telangana BJP leader K Laxman on 23 July 2013, called Sania Mirza as "daughter-in-law" of Pakistan.
  • Laxman questioned Sania's credentials to be the brand ambassador of Telangana.
  • BJP claimed Sania never participated in the agitation for a separate state of Telangana.
  • Laxman also raised Sania's "non-local" status as well as her marriage to Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik.

Real reason(s) behind BJP's decision of opposing Sania:

  • KCR recently refused to provide scholarships to poor children who were born and brought up in Hyderabad but belong to Seemandhra.
  • Opposition raised questions asking if students belonging to Seemandhra are being branded as outsiders and denied scholarships then why a person born in Mumbai and connected with Pakistan was chosen to be the the brand ambassador of the state.

Politics in Sania Mirza controversy:

  • According to BJP, TRS appointed Sania as Telangana's ambassador just to appease minorities in the state.
  • BJP claimed that TRS has been trying to woo the minorities in view of the coming elections to the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation.

What is Sania Mirza saying?

  • I am married to Mr Shoaib Malik, who is from Pakistan. I am an Indian, who will remain an Indian until the end of my life.
  • It hurts me that so much precious time of prominent politicians and the media is being wasted on a petty issue of my being appointed the Brand Ambassador of my State of Telangana.
  • I sincerely believe that this precious time should be spent on solving the more urgent issues of our State and country.

Sania Mirza's connection with Telangana:

  • She was born in Mumbai as her mother needed to be at a specialist hospital since she was seriously unwell at the time of Sania's birth.
  • She was brought to home to Hyderabad when she was 3 weeks old.
  • Sania's forefathers have lived in Hyderabad for more than a century.
  • Her grandfather -- Mohammed Zaffer Mirza had started his career as an Engineer in Nizam's Railways in Hyderabad in 1948 and died in his ancestral home in Hyderabad.
  • Her great, great grandfather -- Mr Aziz Mirza was the Home Secretary under the Nizam in Hyderabad.
  • Aziz Mirza had worked tirelessly for relief works during the historic Musi River floods of 1908.

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