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Cricket diplomacy

Pakistan Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani's acceptance of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's invitation to attend the World Cup semi-final between India and Pakistan in Mohali on Wednesday is welcome. Mr. Gilani's visit, preceded by Home Secretary level talks, will prove wrong cynics who say any effort to resolve the issues between the two countries, particularly after 26/11, is a wild goose chase.

Vivek Mishra,

New Delhi

As underscored by M.K. Bhadrakumar in his article “The gardens of the night at Mohali” (March 28), India and Pakistan need to remain engaged. The leaders of both countries should maintain an equilibrium in bilateral relations so that peace and harmony can gradually replace hatred and mistrust.

R. Ramanathan,

Coimbatore

Cricket is a force that can truly unite the two countries. Islamabad's decision to pardon Gopal Dass, languishing in a Pakistani prison for 27 years, is another positive step. Both nations should feel proud of the fact that they made it to the semi-finals, beating the so-called giants in world cricket.

Priyanka Chakrabarty,

Guwahati

It is true that the Mohali semi-final could be a platform for the re-initiation of bilateral talks. But the cricket mania in both countries is akin to a war spirit. Such a competitive atmosphere should not be used as a political stage.

C.A. Akhil Singla,

Gurgaon

The Prime Minister is treading a dangerous ground by inviting Pakistani leaders to the Mohali semi-final. Sports and politics should not be mixed as the move could easily backfire, especially since the contenders are two countries that are at odds.

Chandru Arni,

Hyderabad

I feel unnecessary hype has been generated around the India-Pakistan semi-finals in the media. The electronic media, in particular, are going overboard mixing politics with sports. All cricket lovers know that every possible act of goodwill on the political front will be quickly forgotten by the leaders — once the match is over. Let us, therefore, watch the match for the beauty of cricket and not read too much into it. As an Indian and a cricket fanatic, I wish India wins the Mohali match.

R. Sivakumar,

Chennai

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