Can newspapers bring peace between India, Pak?

At a time when cynicism about the media is at an all-time high, and when war-mongering has become an almost daily routine for media in India and Pakistan, media behemoths in the two countries have taken a small but welcome step on the first day of the new year to reduce the sabre-rattling.

While most newspapers were content with dishing out the predictable January 1 stuff, The Times of India has embarked on a “brave, new people-to-people initiative” in association with Pakistan’s No.1 media house, the Jang Group, to bring the people of the two nations together.

Titled Aman ki Asha, ToI has a provocative, almost unthinkable, headline on its wraparound: “Love Pakistan”.

Seminars, cultural interactions, business seminars, music and literary festivals and citizens meets are on the anvil “to give the bonds of humanity  a chance to survive outside the battlefields of politics, terrorism and fundamentalism.”

The Times of India‘s editor Jaideep Bose writes:

“We believe the media can serve as facilitators in fostering greater understanding between people. Unfortunately — and TOI cannot entirely escape blame — we tend to focus far too much on the negative. In the process, the good that people do is drowned out by the sensational, and by the constant flow of deathand-destruction headlines.”

Gibran Peshimam writes on the Geo TV site:

Aman ki Asha will look to inject impetus into the Indo-Pak dialogue in a manner that is unparalleled, on a scale that is unprecedented.”

Visit the Times microsite: Aman ki Asha

Visit the Jang microsite: Aman ki Asha

Also read: The Times of India discovers peace

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25 Responses to “Can newspapers bring peace between India, Pak?”

  1. Mahesh Vijapurkar Says:

    I wonder if there is a Times Private Treaty (TPT) between the Times of India and Pakistan Government, just as it has with those corporates whose shares it gets in return for adding value (euphemism for plugging?) to the corporates or their products? What is the popular perception?

  2. Doddi Buddi Says:

    I don’t follow these high-brow Urdu phraseology and shit! Here is my take on Aman ki Asha with a little haiku:

    Aman ki Asha
    Confusion ki basha
    Namdu ki beda
    Pakistan ki pasha

  3. Vishala Manassu Says:

    Just like SRK who says love love love ……………… porn.

    Who knows since Bollywood has highest porn,
    unable to make profit as much is thinking of new ways with a page 3 newspaper.

    This publication can become a mediator to pimp out pakistani bombshells; since bombs are already present.

    We already have 1billion . Unable to maintain states .These buggers want one more.
    How can we ban these national newspapers completely and each state start a responsible publications which covers even international news.

  4. raj Says:

    Isn’t it hypocrisy that “Jang” group talks of “Peace” ??? — The message is clear in their name. I see this article on Times of India. If it is a collaboration with the “Jang” group, why hasn’t similar article published by the “Jang” group in Pakistan ?? … If they were sincere, there would have been an article in their newspaper.

  5. Madhu Rao Says:

    Can newspapers bring peace between India, Pak?

    No. But they sure can get famous trying..

  6. Vinutha Mallya Says:

    A question for Mr Bose: if he felt this way, and assuming his employers feel the same way too, why did he not change the editorial stance of the newspaper to stop “the good that people do is drowned out by the sensational, and by the constant flow of deathand-destruction headlines”?

    Over-the-top, self gloating, song-and-dance numbers do not befit a newspaper. Really good editorial policies do.

  7. karthik Says:

    trust TOI to embark on such a fatuous initiative — let the toi buggers go and serve a year in j&k or stand in -35 degrees in siachen where their piss will freeze.
    And then lets see how much “aman” is left in their bhaasha.. third rate, self-serving…

  8. kavitha Says:

    When every country in the world is looking suspiciously at Papistan and tightening screws on it to eschew terrorism as a state policy, here in India we have the redoubtable Toi, declaring a stupid scheme to side with a pariah state. But what else can you expect from a brain dead notional media. Waiting to see when Hindu and the Indian Express will join this bandwagon.

  9. Mahesh Vijapurkar Says:

    Raj is wrong: Jang has published the piece ( on January 1, 2010. But I continue to suspect – is it a Private Treaty that the Times of India is famous for?

  10. Brahmanyan Says:

    Yes. They can. Media has powerful influence on certain strata of society, which in turn can influence the public view. Newspapers and media can help in easy interaction between common people. While I was browsing the internet I found that many Pak Groups have taken interest in preserving their heritage and culture, which incidentally are old Hindu Temples in Sindh, Baluchistan and Indus valley. Any action in building up good neighborliness should be encouraged.

  11. chriskb Says:

    Aren’t we all fed up of Pakistan? How about we completely shut off all communication with Pakistan (no visas, no exchanges, no talks, nothing and we will not utter the word Pakistan) for a few years and see what happens? I think that would be peace.

  12. prasanna Says:

    M not surprised its TOI….They unbelievebly once brought in Pervez Musharaf ffor some leadership seminar series…not sure if it was in 2009/2008 but his name was splattered all across TOI AND ET…..

  13. NS Rao Says:

    I have a few questions here….

    1. It is an open secret that Newspapers take money to publish ‘interesting’ stories. How can we believe any newspaper taking such an initiative?
    2. Is this an action that is backed by the Governments of India and Pakistan?
    3. As long as Pakistan continues to be influenced by their Army’s dictates, is it possible to achieve anything on this front?
    4. Due to continued hatred by the Intelligence Agencies who foment terrorist organisations for their own selfishness, is it possible to have a common world order, let alone any peace between India and Pakistan?

    My take here is that, though the common man in both the countries would be seriously interested in this initiative, it will be highly impossible to achieve it (whether you have people – people contact, exchange of cultural programmes, talk between heads of governments etc) unless the mindset of the Pakistan Army towards India changes and they make up their mind to decimate the terrorist organisation being cultured day in and day out.

    Coming back to the subject, my 2 cents is – this is an ambitious initiative, and I sincerely pray for its success I am very skeptical about the results in a positive manner.

  14. T.Shetty Says:

    This is just another naive move by self-hating morons in Indian media. Not sure who is worse – Our PM who offered ‘olive branch’ to Pakistan in less than a year from mumbai attacks OR ‘love Pakistan’ media morons? You decide!

  15. ponnaps Says:

    Aman ki Asha?? – sounds like a case of love jehad to me….

  16. Rooney Says:

    How blatantly parochial the Indian Railways has become!
    Centre wants State to share cost of 13 pending rail projects

  17. Mumbai Paused Says:

    If politicians and generals can use wars and almost wars to make some money, newspapers can make some money out of selling peace.

    They will have some nice concerts and stuff and the entertainment is very welcome. :)

  18. Mahesh Vijapurkar Says:

    Yes, ‘Mumbai Paused’, the Times of India is quite entertaining. I buy a newspaper for information, you see. But then, newspapers these days disappoint, don’t they?

  19. Anshuman Patel Says:

    LoL @ Mumbai Paused!

    Very true:). Aam Janata sans hawks and doves will carry on with their life with or without these ‘initiatives’.

    There is every reason to be cynical. However if some thaw can be achieved by it, so be it.

    Methinks the best chance for peace was during Vajpayee-Nawaz Sharif regime. However Mr. Musharaff skewered it. Now the only possibility is the common people of Pak rising and giving it soundly to Generals and Zardaris. But that possibility is as remote as Eshwarappa ensuring 24/7 uninterrupted power.

  20. sudhir Says:

    Nuke the Pakis. That will bring peace at one go

  21. Cool dude Says:

    Of-course, news papers can teach to love pakistan, to conveniently forget security issues and start pampering the neighbor! TOI knows Indians are mad at pakistan, so, they can make some money on the issue!

  22. Sapna Says:

    TOI sure knows how to create news!!!

  23. Ali Iqbal Says:

    Seriously No! This what most of us thought in our school. Its not religion anymore that brings the conflict, its just that we have created the walls so high and strong, no going back from here. However the only thing that can keep peace on both sides is “Minding their own business”. Still No peace joining hands!

    btw song is good! these ppl know their monoply for sure! full aces to the song!

  24. FI Says:

    This is how it should be :

  25. Sohini Says:

    A big NO!!…

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