Bonds without borders
Thank you for this wonderful article (“#SeditionThis: Why I believe Pakistanis are the most gracious people in the world”).
After such toxic media coverage on both sides of the border, this article comes as a breath of fresh air. I have been following India-Pakistan relations for a really long time, and more so for the past 2 years. I often read Pakistani newspapers to learn the other side of the story and I find that they too have the same concerns that we have with our neighbors.
Recently, a post by Spanish woman praising the warmth of Pakistanis while bidding goodbye to the country went viral:
I too have been keen on visiting the country for some time now and this article has reaffirmed this. I would like to experience the country, especially its food, the hill stations and places replete with natural, untarnished beauty. – Sarim Iman
This was a really nice article and showed how hospitable Pakistanis – indeed, the common people on both sides of the border – are. All that citizens want is peace, brotherhood and harmony.
The real culprit is religious radicalisation of people – be it Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian or any other religion – by self-styled saviours of religion and corrupt politicians.
It was immature of a leader of the stature of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to liken Pakistan to hell. It was also wrong to book actor Divya Spandana for sedition for speaking in Pakistan’s defence. – Anurag Malik
I have been following Harsh Mander’s work since the 2002 Gujarat riots. After reading his recent articles on Scroll.in, I couldn’t stop myself from expressing my appreciation of and gratitude towards him.
It’s also heartening that only today, I read about a post by a Spanish woman about her experiences in Pakistan.
I strongly believe that it is because of truth-loving people like Mander that India is able to hold its ground against hatred. I admire his unflinching courage and straightforwardness. – SM Mallick
What a beautiful story! It's a pity that we are so critical of Pakistan when they, in fact, seem far more decent in their behaviour towards us than we Indians are towards them, or, for that matter, even towards fellow Indians.
I am touched by their graciousness. If only we could learn from them these courtesies. On our social networking sites, in particular, we have forgotten to be respectful. – Rajratna Jadhav
This is a great story of your journey and time in Pakistan. I would love to visit that country. The common people on both sides of the border are very similar.
Why can’t the two countries live together in peace? People should realise that violence and hatred has done no good for society and the world. I wish Indians and Pakistanis could see each other as brothers and sisters. – Vishal Bambroo
This is just one side of the story.
Not to undermine the humane minority there, but what about the ever-decreasing population of Hindus in Pakistan? Is that also their graciousness? – Nagin Chand
These are people who had driven your family out of their ancestral property. That is the secret of their courtesy today.
You don’t have the guts to write about the thousands of Kashmiri Pandits who were mercilessly thrown out of their homes and land. Harsh Mander, please go and settle down in Pakistan to enjoy their ever-lasting hospitality without spreading venom in India. – JR Krishnan
***I would like to register my disappointment with this article.
As someone who has been following and admiring Harsh Mander's hard hitting articles on Scroll.in and elsewhere on India's disenfranchised people, I expected better than this puff piece on Pakistan. Perhaps he could try being a Christian in Lahore or an atheist in Peshawar and report on the "graciousness" of the people.It is one thing to poke holes in the pomposity of the ruling classes in one country and quite another to sing hosannas of another equally despicable class just to score political points. - AA