Islamabad: Prime Minister Imran Khan deserves the Nobel Peace Prize, after his bold gesture of peace helped de-escalate tensions with India, Pakistan’s Parliament said on Saturday.
Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry submitted the resolution, in the secretariat of the National Assembly, to nominate Imran Khan for the prestigious prize.
The resolution praised Imran’s “sagacious role in de-escalating tension between Pakistan and India” and stated that the volatile situation was “averted due to proactive and deft handling of the situation”, by the Pakistani premier.
It also noted that the aggression “manifested by the Indian leadership had brought the two nuclear weapon states to the brink of war”, endangering the lives of millions of people on both sides.
The move came after calls grew on Pakistani social media and beyond for Imran’s nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Many users praised Imran’s decision to release captured Indian pilot Abhinandan within few hours of his capture.
The Indian pilot was sent back to India as a “gesture of peace” on March 1.
On Twitter, the hashtag #NobelPeacePrizeForImranKhan remained the top trend in the country and a petition also started to nominate Khan to win the prize.
The online campaign started by Rameez Asif on the global petitioning platform change.org aimed to gain 20,000 signatures but quickly gained over 200,000 names.
“His contributions deserve the international recognition with the award of Nobel Peace Prize in 2020, his aims of ensuring lasting peace in the region and discouraging revival of militarism should be recognised and greatly appreciated” the petition reads.
“I am signing [this petition] because I firmly believe that Imran Khan is a man of peace and has averted a war between India and Pakistan,” Rukhsana Talpur commented.
The goodwill gesture by PM Imran to de-escalate tensions between Pakistan and India won hearts of people on both sides of the border.
An Indian ad filmmaker, Ram Subramanian said on Twitter that Imran Khan “has won the hearts of people all over India right now” and became the “biggest statesman in the subcontinent” by sending Indian pilot back home.
Imran’s unexpected move came as Pakistan promised to give a surprising response to developing tensions with India.
The move was widely hailed by Pakistani Parliament, all political parties including opposition leaders, as well as common Pakistanis people who termed it as a display of “real statesmanship”.
Some prominent international personalities, including the UN Secretary-General António Guterres, also commended the move by Imran to release Indian pilot.