Pakistan to skip SCO film fest in Mumbai, I&B says only country to not send entry | India News

NEW DELHI: Pakistan will not participate in the upcoming five-day Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Film Festival in Mumbai from January 27-31, I&B ministry said on Monday.
India formally contacted all SCO member countries – China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Pakistan – through their missions and sought their cinematic nominations across various sections of the film festival, the ministry said. However, all countries other than Pakistan sent their nominations.
“There is only one SCO member country – Pakistan – from which entries have not been received and there has been no response from them. No delegation from the country is participating either,” Neerja Shekhar, additional secretary, I&B ministry, told TOI in response to a question on whether Pakistan cited any reason for staying away.
India took over the presidency of the SCO following the nine-member bloc’s summit at Samarkand in Uzbekistan in September last year and will host the SCO Summit before the G20 Summit in New Delhi in September 2023.
Despite strains in bilateral relations between the two countries, Pakistan had sent two mid-level officials from its foreign ministry to participate in the SCO national coordinators’ meeting in India in October last year. Each member country has nominated two films to the competition section and India’s nominees are Nikhil Mahajan’s Marathi film ‘Godavari’ and Pan Nalin’s Gujarati film ‘The Chhello Show’, also India’s official nomination to the Oscars.

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