On Wednesday, February 27, the tension between the two neighbouring nations India and Pakistan rocketed sky high after the media channels started reporting that both the country’s Air Forces were engaged in an air strike. Removing the veil of uncertainties, Raveesh Kumar, Ministry of External Affairs in a concise statement to the media said that Pakistan on the morning of Wednesday with the help of its Air Force targetted military installation on the Indian side in response to the Indian Air Force strike on the Jaish-e-Mohammed’s terror camp in Balakot, Pakistan.
People condemn war
Raveesh further said that in the morning’s engagement, Indian Air Force shot down one aircraft belonging to the Pakistan Air Force (PAF). However, in the action, India has lost one of its aircrafts and the pilot is missing. The government later accepted that he is in Pakistan’s custody. Understanding the depth of the situation amidst the building tension of a warlike scenario, netizens from both the countries took to Twitter to express that war is not an answer and will only lead to more bloodshed. The ongoing jingoism and demand for war on social media were quashed by citizens opting peace and condemning war. This trend soon became viral and the hashtag #SayNoToWar grabbed the top spot on Twitter trends in India.
both countries have capability to destroy each other 100 times . nobody wins in war #SayNoToWar
— akshay more (@akshaymore) February 27, 2019
— Anniesen (@anniesen_arun) February 28, 2019
We are on the brink of a war that nobody in their right mind in either Pakistan or India want. Imran Khan's words should be welcomed. Encourage dialogue, commit to deescalation. Anyone who thinks otherwise should for a moment swap places with Abhinandan & his family #SayNoToWar
— Raunak Kapoor (@RaunakRK) February 27, 2019
Not only Indians, several Pakistanis too criticised the horrendous idea of demanding war. They too tabled their opinions saying that war between these two nuclear powers will only exacerbate the condition between the two neighbouring countries and demanded peace. The Twitter trend of #SayNoToWar went viral in Pakistan too and was trending at no. 3.
— Anas Khan (@AnasKha98716966) February 27, 2019
Aurat Azadi March, Pakistan, reaches out to Indian women with a message for peace. Women & children suffer the most in wars started by men. #SayNoToWar Hamay jang nahi aman chaey, humay bombs nahi qalam chaey. Let's build a peaceful world for our children on both sides of border. pic.twitter.com/rxXDV814Db
— Aurat Azadi March Isb (@AuratAzadiMarch) February 27, 2019
Those who celebrate war will not participate in the war, those who participate in the war, will never celebrate war.#SayNoToWar
— Haroon (@TheRealHaroon) February 27, 2019
Indians demanded that Pakistan should return the Indian pilot back to the country over the micro-blogging platform. Following this, a wave of netizens across the border asked their own government to release the Indian pilot and return him safely.
I as a citizen of Pakistan request my govt to treat the “captive” Indian pilot well and send him back ASAP as a gesture of peace. Come on Pakistan you can do this #SayNoToWar
— Tooba Syed (@Tooba_Sd) February 27, 2019
Former Pakistan Prime Minister Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto’s granddaughter Fatima Bhutto too asked the Imran Khan government to release the Indian Airforce pilot.
I and many other young Pakistanis have called upon our country to release the captured Indian pilot as a gesture of our commitment to peace, humanity and dignity. My piece in @nytimes https://t.co/Vmd7EWlDvX
— fatima bhutto (@fbhutto) February 27, 2019
People were worried about the escalating tension between these two nuclear countries.
Few tweets also talked about how the long term enemies US President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong-un at a summit in Hanoi are talking about peace.
The Logical Indian Take
It is the only positive thing that we are seeing in this war-like situation. While social media became an important tool to demand war, citizens coming up and understanding the depth of the situation and comprehending what the condition might lead to and then condemning it is a huge step.