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The News – End to hate-mongering only way forward
Published: The News – August 9, 2012
The dialogue hosted by the Institute for Peace and Secular Studies concluded on Wednesday, with the consensus that putting an end to jingoism and hate-mongering was the only way forward.
The dialogue sought to address the issues hindering progress in creating amiability between Pakistan and India. Those who spoke at the dialogue were: GEO Lahore bureau chief Khawar Naeem Hashmi, Daily Waqt Lahore editor Khalid Farooqi, Lahore Press Club president Arshad Ansari, senior journalists Sadia Salahuddin, Mubashir Bokhari and Wajahat Masood.
The speakers stressed the need for positive approach towards Indo-Pak relations, highlighting the importance of a relaxed visa policy which was very important to encourage better understanding and cooperation between both countries and their people. Identifying media as a potential key contributor in this regard, the speakers said that there was a need to practice restraint, instead of going overboard with negative image-building. They were of the view that the media should play its role in mitigating hate-mongering and rigidity of perceptions, rather than realities. The speakers also mentioned that there were certain elements in the society which benefited from the widening gulf of Indo-Pak relations and thus worked to damage all confidence-building measures between the two neighboring countries. The speakers called for the identification and discouragement of such elements.
India’s actions over the water distribution issue and security of Indian Muslims also came under the discussion.