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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Dec 2014

'Pak bashing a favourite pastime of Indian media'

PTI  Hyderabad, October 06, 2013
First Published: 21:11 IST(6/10/2013) | Last Updated: 21:59 IST(6/10/2013)

Pakistan High Commissioner to India Salman Bashir on Saturday took a swipe at Indian media, saying "Pakistan-bashing" has become its "favourite pastime".

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"Fortunately, in Pakistan this is not the case. Our media doesn't extensively report negative about India. But, in India some of them (media channels) made a good business out of it. It certainly does not help our relationship," Bashir told reporters in Hyderabad while debunking media reports about Pakistani infiltration in Keran sector in Jammu and Kashmir.

"Friendship (between India and Pakistan) can only flourish if it is cultivated and nurtured in the hearts and the minds of people. So by poisoning their hearts and minds, you are killing the soil on which it is sought to be based," Bashir said.

The high commissioner said, "twisted reports (by media) prove to be a big dis-service not only to our friendship, peace and future of peoples but they also hold us back from friendship and realising our potential as nation states."

"True friendship comes from hearts. This is where this sort of negativity dampens it. Hope the (Indian) media doesn't just go by sensational reporting but also try to take the essence and the spirit of good things that both countries have," Bashir added.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan envoy said he would endorse a proposal for setting up a Pakistan visa facilitation centre in Hyderabad.

"We need the Government of India's approval for that," he said.

Rahnuma-e-Deccan editor-in-chief Syed Vicaruddin, who hosted lunch in honour of the visiting high commissioner, said he would take up the issue with External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid. Vicaruddin also requested the Pakistani official to take steps towards introducing at least a weekly direct flight between Hyderabad and Karachi.


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