A Noble Deed And A Little PR Push

The partition of the country in 1947 into the independent countries of India and Pakistan left an inerasable mark on the national consciousness of both the nations…and its painful legacy continues to influence the citizens of both the countries to this day. So much so that an India vs Pakistan cricket match in any series is considered to be nothing less than a ‘war’ for both the nations. Winning this match becomes most crucial for the citizens of both the counties, irrespective of whether it’s the finals or not. The thought process is such that if this match is won or lost, it’s as good as winning or losing the series respectively. This has been the general sentiment over the past several decades now.

Can this sentiment change? Yes…why not?

So the next obvious question is, “If yes, when?” Now that’s a tough one to answer. And the best possible answer could be the tagline of an anti-tobacco product, which is “Yeh ek din mein nahin hoga…magar ek din zaroor hoga”, which simply translates to “It won’t happen in a day…but one day it’ll happen for sure”. It’s going to be a long way…but there’s hope. And some good things are happening towards that end, albeit in bits and pieces.

Building Positivity

Many a time our clients or we do some good work which makes us feel good as professionals. But not every day do our clients and we do something that makes us feel proud as Indians too. Am proud to say that his honour came to my team and me recently when one of our esteemed clients in the healthcare space performed a successful heart transplant on a Pakistani girl at zero cost. The transplant was performed adhering to every norm pertaining to organ transplant…and in this case, cross border transplants.

As the client’s communication partners, our team embarked on a responsible amplification exercise of the good deed, while not going overboard and dramatising the whole thing.

The result was phenomenal, and as expected the good deed garnered nationwide (and even beyond) media coverage and attention. The impact was quite magical, the best part of which were the media reportages, blogs, vlogs and social media posts from Pakistan praising the doctors and the hospital. Various segments of the Pakistani media and their ‘awam’ (general public) have lauded India’s gesture. Herein are few genuine sentiments from the neighbouring country…

“Ek Pakistani ladki ke andar ek Indian ka dil dhadak raha hai…yeh kitni khoobsoorat si baat hai.” (An Indian heart is beating inside a Pakistani girl…it’s such a beautiful thing)

“Pakistan tahe dil se India ka shukriyaada karta hai.” (Pakistan wholeheartedly thanks India)

“Insaaniyat ki jeet hui hai.” (Humanity has won)

“Woh hospital aur wahaan ke doctors kaabile tareef hain…hamari duaayen unke saath hai.” (The hospital and its doctors deserve to be praised…our good wishes are with them)

“India ko salaam…India ke jasbe ko salaam.” (Salute to India…salute to the spirit of India)

“Vaise to seemayen do deshon ko vibhajit karti hain…lekin ek dhadakte dil ne is doori ko khatam kar diya hai.” (Borders generally divide two countries…but one beating heart has bridged this distance) “India ke doctors ne saabit kar diya hai ki woh kisi farishtey ke kamm nahin.” (Indian doctors have proved that they are no less than angels)

Such positivity and good vibes have the power to positively turn the tide in terms of bettering the relationship between the two nations. Hence it becomes imperative to showcase the good deeds to create that positive thought process among the citizens of both the nations.

The reportages and the sentiments that came from Pakistan gave my team and me more goosebumps than the Indian reportages and sentiments. Such is the beauty of this whole experience.

Last Word

And just like no ‘sarhad’ (borders) can stop ‘pancchi, nadiya, pawan ke jhonke’ (birds, rivers and gusts of wind), good PR (that creates positive conversations) too knows no borders.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Vijay Shekhar
Vice President at Concept Public Relations
With over 23 years of experience as a communications professional, Vijay has always been on the consultancy side of the table and has worked on a wide slate of accounts spanning across sectors. He holds a B. Com and an MBA (Human Resources) from the University of Pune.

Vijay likes to watch old Hindi classic films and listen to old Hindi film songs, and has an enviable collection of both of these. He enjoys reading autobiographies and biographies, and also short stories, his favourite authors being R. K. Narayan, Munshi Premchand, Leo Tolstoy and Guy de Maupassant. Vijay also has a hobby of collecting news clippings (from newspapers and magazines) of important events across the globe…events that can be truly classified as ‘Breaking News’ or ‘Front Page News’.

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