Olympic Torch Relay.   

Dear all,

Over the last few days I have received several requests not to participate in the Olympic Torch Relay. Requests through members of my family, personal friends, people who are associated with the Tibetan struggle, and my blog. I have gone through and read each and every letter, message and post pertaining to this issue.

I would like to state that I have the highest regard and respect for the struggle that the people of Tibet are going through. I completely empathize with them. Similarly, I have the highest respect and regard for the struggle that the people of Iraq, Kashmiri Pundits who have been displaced, Kashmiris in general, and the people of Palestine, are going through. I have named above just a few instances of human rights violations. Across the world, and indeed within our own country too, there are several instances and examples of atrocities and human rights violation, which are still continuing. I categorically state that I am absolutely against any form of violence, and certainly I am deeply upset whenever the basic rights of human beings are violated anywhere in the world.

However, I feel that the Olympic Games do not belong to China.

In fact if we were to try and find on this planet a place to hold the Olympic Games where the government of that place has not been responsible for human rights violations (in one way or the other), then I suspect that we would be left with very few options, if any at all. If I am not mistaken almost all societies have been responsible for human rights violation either directly or indirectly, sometimes in seen ways and sometimes in unseen ways, sometimes physically, sometimes economically.

The Olympic Games represent for me the coming together of different people across the world despite their differences and difficulties. It is an opportunity for sportsmen and women across the world to showcase their talent, to challenge themselves and others, and for others to watch and marvel at the achievements of the human body, mind and soul.

Are human rights violations continuing across the globe while all this is happening. I'm afraid so. And I hope and pray for the day that we can one day live in absolute peace and harmony, where human suffering is done away with.

I am no one to tell any group of people how they should conduct their struggle. I am not part of it and am not going through what they are going through. But my heart goes out to them.

I request those of you who have asked me to stay away from the Olympic Torch Relay to understand that when I do run with the torch on the 17th of April it is not in support of China. In fact it will be with a prayer in my heart for the people of Tibet, and indeed for all people across the world who are victims of human rights violations.



Posted by Aamir Khan at 04:20 PM
5578 Comments  Post Comment Aamir's Responses
5528. Imran_Aly
Posted on May,02,2008 at 02:07 PM
G'day Aamir..
I think u r right with Torch Relay...i think it's the time much
awaited by millions of people to be celebrated so dere shudn't be
any problem with u associating with it...saying dat i don't mean
that wat's happening in Tibet is right...I do have my sympathies
with them...Wish they get sum sense and stop initiating these

5527. madhuri_c
Posted on May,02,2008 at 01:55 AM
Hi Aamir,
Just as a thought sharing, I see lot of ads by actors about
stopping piracy, donb

5526. mdkhalid
Posted on May,01,2008 at 11:15 AM
hi aamir , i wish ur every wish come true .
i , khalid fr kolkata. the issue of tibet and the torch is not
combine together firstly. secondly ppl should understand holding
a torch or not cannot change anything to tibet issue . and we
cant comment on anyside weather is china or tibet. in my sense it
like planet revolving around sun in solar syster and the whole
solar system moving in glaxy and the glaxy is moving around in
universe , in this case u cant say sun is moving or who is moving
or who is still .... so we cant judge tibet neither chine neither
we can make any difference to them. we can just make difference
to ppl by loving them and making them able to educate and so they
will able to earn good and when they earn then most of the
problem of this world solve . so in one way we dont have
authority to comment in anything around world . we only should
help ppl and love them any form. i hope i didnot bored u ppl
neither any offance

5525. leo23
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 08:27 PM
I don't know if there is anywhere I can leave a suggestion, so
I'll just post here again.

I was wondering if you could also add a 'character counter' for
us to stay in check while typing our comments.

That would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

5524. leo23
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 08:25 PM
(contd. from previous comment)

But, this calls for a disentanglement of issues of sport and
politics, not really a resolution (where none is likely).

Also, doesn't the Dalai Lama have much more power than the leader
of any other group getting the short end of the stick? Is he just
pushing his cause better, or is the cause better?

There's no one perspective on this situation, but that's not the
problem, the problem is there are one too many facets to it.

This is my first (technically, my second) comment, and I just
joined. So finally, I would like to add a word of thanks for
reaching out to us, and giving us a platform to communicate with
you; and congratulations on becoming a blogger and 'Taare Zameen
Par' (my third favourite Indian movie, don't worry, the first and
second are DCH and RDB)

5523. leo23
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 08:21 PM
I completely respect your perspective on this. But frankly
speaking, you make a very strong point and refute it immediately.

If there exists hardly, if any, a nation developed enough to host
the Olympics without succumbing to the economic pressure, then
how is China a worse host than the U.S., France, S.A. or India
for that matter? Are we arbitrarily ranking degrees of violation
of human rights here?

Why do we still have the Olympics after Munich anyways?

IMO, this issue with China seems bigger only because the media
has rapidly grown in power and outreach since the last time such
a thing happened elsewhere.

I am not undermining the atrocities that occur on a daily basis
in Tibet, but I am also not trying to scratch my insides for
forced empathy. Sympathy is all I am humanly capable of. So, I am
sorry for the people who have had it bad.

(I'll continue in the next comment)

5522. tejpal
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 07:28 PM
Well this is the first time i have been to your site . . .
i happen to register as well as post a comment noe . . .
Your point of view is rite . . .
But would anyone stop you if the Olympics were not held in china
We are not against sports We love it . . .
But its jus a way to make them realise what they are doin is
wrong . . .

5521. vartikah
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 05:44 PM
Kudos to having a POV and sticking by it.
Most people would have a diplomatic response, please all
concerned and still do what they want!

5520. amirsashika
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 01:09 PM
I personally think that whatever you do is always good. You have
a very good heart and whatever you did was awsome. Take care.

Oh and by the way i have your photo where you are holding the
torch. Its on my desktop at work and i am always giving you my
blessings. So you go mate.

5519. devenlad
Posted on Apr,30,2008 at 11:46 AM
hey aamir what do you think
about u r new film gajani
when it completed

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