Reminiscing Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s message to the Indian cricketers before Pakistan tour

When Sourav Ganguly and his team came to visit him before heading to Pakistan, he wrote a beautiful message on a bat.

Atal Behari Vajpayee
Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee presents a bat with a goodwill message written on it to Indian Cricket team’s captain Sourav Ganguly & his teammate Sachin Tendulkar looks on. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was often referred to as a Pan-Indian, Pan-Party politician, took his final breath on Thursday (16th August). One of the founding members of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Vajpayee was the first leader from his party to have become the Prime Minister of this country in 1996.

From participating in the freedom struggle back in the 1940s to reforming so many International trade and banking policies, Vajpayee has seen the country’s worst and best times sitting in the front row. With his dynamic leadership skills and unmatched poetic oration, he was eye-catching, mesmerizing and inspiring in his own way.


The 94-year-old was admitted in the All Indian Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in June this year and ever since his health condition had been fragile. After the news broke out yesterday night that he was critically ill, the entire country was praying and hoping for the legend to fight past this adversity. But as it turned out, for once, he has lost the inevitable battle.

A beautiful message for the Indian cricket team

Former Union Minister P. Chidambaram tweeted, “He will be remembered for many things, but above all for his genuine efforts to resolve the decades-long hostility between Pakistan and India,” which sums up how much he aspired for both neighbouring nations to live in peace.

In 2004, the Indian cricket team travelled to Pakistan for the first full-fledged tour in 15 years. Vajpayee who always considered cricket as a great medium to bring both these wonderful countries together and this cricket series was one of the initiatives taken for better relations with the neighbouring country.

When Sourav Ganguly and his team came to visit the then PM before heading to Pakistan, he wrote a beautiful message on a bat. “Khel hi nahi, dil bhi jeetiye – shubhkamnaye” (Don’t just win the game, but hearts also – best wishes) said Vajpayee, using just a few words but conveying a heart-warming message. Indian team won ODI series 3-2 and Test series with a 2-1 margin on the historic tour.

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