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Before becoming an MP, Harbhajan Singh consulted Sachin Tendulkar

Sachin Tendulkar told Harbhajan Singh that he should commit to being an MP only if he is sure about devoting enough time.

Harbhajan Singh (left) with Sachin Tendulkar. (File)

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Former India off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who is a Rajya Sabha Member of Parliament nominated by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), said that he had consulted his close friend and batting legend Sachin Tendulkar before joining politics. Tendulkar also had a term as a Rajya Sabha MP starting 2012.

“I have the most respect for Paaji (Tendulkar). He has made me feel so comfortable. We became very close because there was that comfort and I think he enjoyed my company as well. Then I started speaking in Punjabi to him and we both used to enjoy talking to each other. If I ever need advice, I always go to him. Even before joining the Rajya Sabha, I talked to him. He told me that I was getting an opportunity to serve my country and that I should only commit if I could give the job time. I thought that was good advice. Now this is my new innings – I don’t know how long it will go, just that I do it well,” Harbhajan Singh said during an Idea Exchange session with The Indian Express.

Talking about the switch from cricket to politics, Harbhajan said his innings in parliament is a learning experience.

“It’s an altogether different field for me. I have spent 20-odd years in cricket and enjoyed every bit of it. Today, whatever I am is because of the game. Even the reason why I was given the MP seat is because I am Harbhajan Singh, the cricketer. I am still very new, very raw in politics and trying to know how things work. Being at Parliament sessions, meeting the big people of our country, the decision-makers is an experience, sharing my knowledge, getting to know their mind in a lot of different aspects of life and what is happening in India is obviously a big learning. The more time I spend in it, the more I am trying to learn from different people. I try to keep as much track as I can of these political agendas, what is happening in India and try to raise the same issues in Parliament and also what is happening recently in Delhi with mayor and stuff and BJP and AAP,” Harbhajan said.

When asked about the clashes in the MCD House after the mayor election, Harbhajan said ‘it was not the right thing to do’. The Aam Aadmi Party’s Shelly Oberoi was elected as the mayor of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi on Wednesday.

“Whatever happened there isn’t a good thing and it’s not a good sight for people of any country watching the proceedings. It’s not the right thing to do and a lot of people are watching you. No matter which party you belong to, this kind of behaviour is not right at all. You can sit and talk to find a solution to issues. But if we take this approach, it will just keep on swinging back and forth. I am too young to say what is right or wrong but issues can be resolved by sitting and talking. For that, people from both sides must come forward, putting their pride aside. They need to find the right solution and I think these things can be sorted out very easily.

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First published on: 26-02-2023 at 07:17 IST

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