“I am taking back home a lot of love, it’s on us what to ignore and what to keep,” said Malika Abbas, senior photojournalist based in Karachi, working with the DAWN group of Newspapers. Abbas has been in Mumbai for the last seven days, shooting pictures of the markets, streets and people and refers to the city as a better form of Karachi. She today even witnessed a small bunch of Shiv Sainiks disrupting her press conference where another four of her countrymen and women were present at the Press club.
Abbas, claims that she got so much of love and the way she was treated here, has made her indebted for life. “I didn’t make friends here, they are my family now,” she said. On the protest by Shiv Sena, she said, “We were aware that there are people like this here in Mumbai and back home too, but we cannot be scared of them and stop living our life or stop doing things that we love to do.”
In all the seven days of her stay in Mumbai she claimed that she never faced any problem, and expects that people who are against her right now, will one day sit and talk, though she admits it’s a difficult task. “Sitting and talking with the people who protested, I know it won’t work, but then this is an organic process, will take some time and finally love and peace will prevail,” she said.
She also claimed that like Mumbai, Karachi also has a lot of similar places, “Similar to Worli we also have a fishermen village, photojournalists coming to Karachi can shoot our markets, but also can go to lanes like the Qawall lanes, where all qawalls can be found and many such lanes. Mumbai is so much like Karachi, just that here it’s more pleasant because of the rains.
Abbas was in Mumbai as part of a photography summit, Tasveer-e-Mumbai and Tasveer-e-Karachi, organised by Observers Research Foundation (ORF) under the forum called Mumbai-Karachi Friendship Forum. Under this five photographers each from Mumbai and Karachi are visiting the city and will be clicking pictures, Karachi based photographers will be clicking pictures of Mumbai and vice versa.
For the same a press conference was held at the Press Club on Tuesday afternoon, where a bunch of Sena activists disrupted the conference for few minutes. Confirming the same Pandurang Sakpal, the Vibhag Pramukh of South Bombay said, “Yes I was there protesting because this Sudheendra Kulkarni, has some sort of love for Pakistan, he should go and hold the press conference at the border, were our soldiers are being killed by the Pakistanis.”
Meanwhile, Kulkarni, who heads ORF dismissed the disruption as a small thing. He said, “They came and they protested and went, our even will go on.” On being asked that Sena claims he has some special love for Pakistan he opened his bag and showed a booklet which talks about India-China relationship too. “People only see what they want to, we are talking to many countries,” he said.