Pakistanis talk peace at MohaliMarch 30th, 2011 - 4:23 pm ICT by IANS
Mohali, March 30 (IANS) “We are not at all bothered about the result. I have come here with my daughter to enjoy the company of our Indian brothers and sisters.”
The comment by Aliyah Khan of Lahore, who reached Mohali Tuesday, summed up the feeling among most Pakistanis who appeared to enjoy every moment of their stay in Mohali as India and Pakistan clashed in the World Cup.
“The environment here is so thrilling. We are totally feeling at home here,” Aliyah Khan told IANS.
She added: “I am staying with an Indian family near stadium. They are the perfect hosts, and we certainly want many more reasons to come to India in future.”
Mohammad Akram, a Lahore-based businessman who flew into Chandigarh from New Delhi Wednesday, told IANS: “This is not a war, and we are taking this match in the best spirits of camaraderie. Besides cricket, this is also an opportunity for us to come closer to Indians and exchange our views.
“We are cheering for both India and Pakistan. Many of my friends also wanted to come to Mohali to see the match but they could not get tickets.”
The Pakistan team’s lucky mascot, Chaudhry Abdul Jalil, also known as ‘Chacha Cricket’ and attired in a flowing green kurta and white salwar, is confident his team will win.
“I am sure of Pakistan’s win. All our players, especially the skipper Shahid Afridi, are in good nick. I was waiting for an India-Pakistan clash for a long time. Many Pakistani fans from Karachi and Lahore have reached Mohali to support our team,” said Jalil.
Many Pakistani peace activists have also reached the city.
Saeeda Diep, director of the Institute for Peace and Secular Studies of Lahore, told IANS: “We will distribute flags of India and Pakistan (attached together) and love sign badges with flags of both countries to the spectators. The two flags together signify a new trend of togetherness and friendship for India and Pakistan.”
Around 400 Pakistani cricket fans, including officials and relatives of the players, have crossed into India through the Attari-Wagah border in the last seven days.
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