BY Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, Feb 7: There is no bitter feeling against Indians among the general public in Pakistan, the Pakistani contingent participating in the South Asian Games said, putting the blame on media and some "big people" for the fraught relations between the two neighbours.
During an interview to The Sentinel, Pakistani weightlifter dia Maqsood said that she would carry back home loads of sweet memories from the 12th edition of the South Asian Games.
"People here have been very sweet and hospitable. We didn't expect this kind of hospitality. We are enjoying the beauty of the place and the love we are getting from the people. The audience has been great…they are cheering every participant," she said, adding that she would be happy to visit Guwahati again.
Asked about the strained relationship between the two countries, Maqsood said, "The general public in Pakistan has no bad feeling for Indians. The problems have been created by the media and some big people."
She felt that such sporting events can bring the countries closer and foster brotherhood.
Guwahati will be special for another weightlifter - Abu Sufiyan, who clinched the bronze in the 69-kg category. "This is my first medal in SAG and so Guwahati will be always special for me," he exclaimed.
He professed being awestruck by the tural beauty of Guwahati, besides the excellent facilities provided by the Games organizers. "The facilities provided to the participants have been really good," he gushed.
Sufiyan also felt sports can help foster brotherhood, unity and peace between India and Pakistan.
Pakistan's team official Muhammad Rashed also appreciated the reception his contingent was given in Guwahati as well as the hospitality.
There are eight male and six female weightlifters in the Pakistani contingent.