RAD02-20030509-LAHORE, PAKISTAN: Portraits of the Indian film stars are at sale in Lahore Pakistan on 9 May 2003. As Pakistan and India are agreed to extend their friendship and relation towards peace, such symbolic gestures show that at enlarge, people of Pakistan are in love with ?Bollywood Stars.Indian film industry is the biggest in Asia. EPA PHOTO *** Local Caption *** 99259573
Indian film posters on display in Pakistan. EPA

TV wars between India and Pakistan are only half the story

Television is a medium, American comedian Fred Allen once quipped, because anything well done is rare. That’s a damning value judgement – but worth thinking about now that Pakistan’s Supreme Court has reinstated a ban on Indian television shows in retaliation for its neighbour’s alleged attempt to dam the Indus river and its tributaries.

What's the point of turning off the flow of Indian television shows to Pakistan? Is it purely symbolic, a sign of worse to come or just another example of the two countries' sporadic, often petty displays of hostility towards each other?

This type of antagonism has history. In September 2016, the Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association imposed a ban on Pakistani artists working in the Bollywood industry, citing the strained diplomatic relations between the two countries. Indian minister Babul Supriyo went so far as to criticise the hiring of world-renowned Pakistani singers such as Atif Aslam and Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, saying producers should show national "solidarity".

The new Pakistani ban is a reprisal of a broader one from 2016, which was lifted last year. The fallout says a lot more than a diplomatic demarche. It sends a message, one that is deadly serious, of the grimness with which Pakistan views any perceived attempt by India to reduce the flow of water. The rivers flow through Indian-administered Kashmir and more than 80 per cent of Pakistan’s agricultural land relies on them for irrigation.

Although India denies accusations of "stealing" Pakistan's water, the consequences of any such attempt would be significant for its neighbour's water supply. But so too is Pakistan's blocking of Indian soap operas, police dramas, quiz shows and Bollywood films. They have a large and passionate following in Pakistan and are a subtle but significant way for India to exert what historian Edward Carr once called "power over opinion".

That is why it mattered when China cut off South Korea’s wildly popular cultural exports in 2016. It had already made known its vehement opposition to the deployment of the US Terminal High Altitude Area Defence missile system in South Korea. But Beijing’s refusal until recently to allow Korean dramas, K-pop concerts and fan meets delivered the message more effectively. It hit the South Koreans where it really hurt – a lucrative relationship with Chinese financiers and massive exposure in a billion-dollar market. More to the point, it made K-pop’s biggest stars personae non gratae in China, even those who made efforts to release songs in Mandarin.

By not acknowledging the Korean entertainment industry, the Chinese seemed to damn an entire people with indifference. Those engaged in the sector urgently sought new audiences and tried to localise their acts to suit sensibilities in Japan, the US and the Middle East, including the UAE. But it was hard going, bad for their sense of self-worth and a huge blow to low-cost cultural messaging from Seoul.

Americans know this well. The relationship between US films and foreign policy is minutely documented. During the Second World War, the US held 16mm film screenings in European villages. The use of American films picked up during the Cold War as a riposte to the Soviet threat and to build favourable mindsets abroad through realistic yet alluring images of US society. After 9/11, senior Bush administration official Karl Rove tried to enlist Hollywood in the so-called war on terror.

Somewhat similar attempts to harness filmmaking to foreign policy objectives have been employed by Russia and Georgia in the years since they clashed in a short but brutal war in 2008. In an obvious attempt to press their respective cases on the big screen, Russian filmmakers released a documentary and romantic feature film that depicted Georgia as a genocidal aggressor, after which the Georgian government supported a Hollywood director’s take on the conflict.

But if image projection – nation-branding in today’s parlance – needs flattering films, persuasive TV shows and alluring creative content, it can also be unmade by it. This has long been the case for Japan and its one-dimensional portrayal in hundreds of Chinese films, year on year. After his recent visit to Beijing, Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe, once labelled an “unwelcome person” by Chinese officials, said bilateral ties were at a “historic turning point”. Just how historic might really only be seen on the big screen.

Earlier this year, China and Japan signed a landmark co-production treaty bringing their film industries  – second and third respectively behind the US in domestic box office revenue – closer together. Potentially the agreement will end the powerful and insistent cinematic rendering by China of decades of entrenched bitterness and rivalry with Japan. It had a profoundly negative effect on Japan’s image, as Tokyo University professor and former defence ministry researcher Yasuhiro Matsuda once acknowledged. There are facts, he said, such as the Nanjing massacre and Japan’s invasion of China, but "when there are more than 200 movies coming out (in one year), you can imagine the negative effect”.

Well, quite. Muhammad Iqbal, the poet known as the spiritual father of Pakistan, once wrote: "Nations are born in the hearts of poets, they prosper and die in the hands of politicians". In the age of multimedia, those poets and storytellers are now television producers, film directors and social media users.

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Torque: 310Nm
Transmission: Single-speed auto
Battery: 53kWh lithium-ion battery pack (GS base model); 70kWh battery pack (GF)
Touring range: 350km (GS); 480km (GF)
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Main display: 7.6" QXGA+ Dynamic Amoled 2X, 2176 x 1812, 21.6:18, 374ppi, HDR10+, up to 120Hz

Cover display: 6.2" HD+ Dynamic Amoled 2X, 2316 x 904, 23.1:9, 402ppi, up to 120Hz

Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1, 4nm, octa-core; Adreno 730 GPU

Memory: 12GB

Capacity: 256/512GB / 1TB

Platform: Android 12, One UI 4.1.1

Main camera: Triple 12MP ultra-wide (f/2.2) + 50MP wide (f/1.8) + 10MP telephoto (f/2.4), dual OIS, 3x optical zoom, 30x Space Zoom, portrait, super slo-mo

Video: 8K@24fps, 4K@30/60fps, full-HD@30/60fps, HD@30fps; slo-mo@60/240/960fps; HDR10+

Cover camera: 10MP (f/2.2)

Inner front camera: Under-display 4MP (f/1.8)

Battery: 4400mAh, 25W fast charging, 15W wireless charging, reverse wireless charging, 'all-day' life

Connectivity: 5G; Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC (Samsung Pay)


Cards: Nano-SIM + eSIM; 2 nano-SIMs + eSIM; 2 nano-SIMs

Colours: Graygreen, phantom black, beige, burgundy (online exclusive)

In the box: Fold 4, USB-C-to-USB-C cable

Price: Dh6,799 / Dh7,249 / Dh8,149

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
Nick Diaz v Vicente Luque
Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through www.etihadarena.ae and www.ticketmaster.ae.

Dengue fever symptoms

High fever (40°C/104°F)
Severe headache
Pain behind the eyes
Muscle and joint pains
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The BIO:

He became the first Emirati to climb Mount Everest in 2011, from the south section in Nepal

He ascended Mount Everest the next year from the more treacherous north Tibetan side

By 2015, he had completed the Explorers Grand Slam

Last year, he conquered K2, the world’s second-highest mountain located on the Pakistan-Chinese border

He carries dried camel meat, dried dates and a wheat mixture for the final summit push

His new goal is to climb 14 peaks that are more than 8,000 metres above sea level


- Carbonated drinks, sweet or savoury packaged snacks, confectionery, mass-produced packaged breads and buns 

- margarines and spreads; cookies, biscuits, pastries, cakes, and cake mixes, breakfast cereals, cereal and energy bars;

- energy drinks, milk drinks, fruit yoghurts and fruit drinks, cocoa drinks, meat and chicken extracts and instant sauces

- infant formulas and follow-on milks, health and slimming products such as powdered or fortified meal and dish substitutes,

- many ready-to-heat products including pre-prepared pies and pasta and pizza dishes, poultry and fish nuggets and sticks, sausages, burgers, hot dogs, and other reconstituted meat products, powdered and packaged instant soups, noodles and desserts.

Sri Lanka-India Test series schedule
  • 1st Test India won by 304 runs at Galle
  • 2nd Test Thursday-Monday at Colombo
  • 3rd Test August 12-16 at Pallekele

Schedule (All times UAE)
First practice: Friday, 5-6.30am
Second practice: Friday, 9-10.30am
Third practice: Saturday, 7-8am
Qualifying: Saturday, 10-11am
Race: Sunday, 9am-midday 

Race venue: Suzuka International Racing Course
Circuit Length: 5.807km
Number of Laps: 53
Watch live: beIN Sports HD

Director: Nag Ashwin

Starring: Prabhas, Saswata Chatterjee, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan, Shobhana

Rating: ★★★★


Updated team: 15-Israel Folau, 14-Dane Haylett-Petty, 13-Reece Hodge, 12-Matt Toomua, 11-Marika Koroibete, 10-Kurtley Beale, 9-Will Genia, 8-Pete Samu, 7-Michael Hooper (captain), 6-Lukhan Tui, 5-Adam Coleman, 4-Rory Arnold, 3-Allan Alaalatoa, 2-Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1-Scott Sio.

Replacements: 16-Folau Faingaa, 17-Tom Robertson, 18-Taniela Tupou, 19-Izack Rodda, 20-Ned Hanigan, 21-Joe Powell, 22-Bernard Foley, 23-Jack Maddocks.

Brief scores:

Manchester City 3

Aguero 1', 44', 61'

Arsenal ​​​​​1

Koscielny 11'

Man of the match: Sergio Aguero (Manchester City)

SPECS: Polestar 3

Engine: Long-range dual motor with 400V battery
Power: 360kW / 483bhp
Torque: 840Nm
Transmission: Single-speed automatic
Max touring range: 628km
0-100km/h: 4.7sec
Top speed: 210kph
Price: From Dh360,000
On sale: September

Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
Based: Cambridge and Dubai
Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

The specs

Engine: 3.9-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 620hp from 5,750-7,500rpm
Torque: 760Nm from 3,000-5,750rpm
Transmission: Eight-speed dual-clutch auto
On sale: Now
Price: From Dh1.05 million ($286,000)

The burning issue

The internal combustion engine is facing a watershed moment – major manufacturer Volvo is to stop producing petroleum-powered vehicles by 2021 and countries in Europe, including the UK, have vowed to ban their sale before 2040. The National takes a look at the story of one of the most successful technologies of the last 100 years and how it has impacted life in the UAE.

Part three: an affection for classic cars lives on

Read part two: how climate change drove the race for an alternative 

Read part one: how cars came to the UAE


Power train: 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 and synchronous electric motor
Max power: 800hp
Max torque: 950Nm
Transmission: Eight-speed auto
Battery: 25.7kWh lithium-ion
0-100km/h: 3.4sec
0-200km/h: 11.4sec
Top speed: 312km/h
Max electric-only range: 60km (claimed)
On sale: Q3
Price: From Dh1.2m (estimate)


Engine: Two-litre four-cylinder turbo
Power: 235hp
Torque: 350Nm
Transmission: Nine-speed automatic
Price: From Dh167,500 ($45,000)
On sale: Now


Team X 1 Team Y 0


Red card

Man of the Match


Company name: Almouneer
Started: 2017
Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
$3.6 million led by Global Ventures


2.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh40,000 1,700m; Winner: AF Mezmar, Adam McLean (jockey), Ernst Oertel (trainer).

3pm: Maiden (PA) Dh40,000 2,000m; Winner: AF Ajwad, Tadhg O’Shea, Ernst Oertel.

3.30pm: Handicap (PA) Dh40,000 1,200m; Winner: Gold Silver, Sam Hitchcott, Ibrahim Aseel.

4pm: Maiden (PA) Dh40,000 1,000m; Winner: Atrash, Richard Mullen, Ana Mendez.

4.30pm: Gulf Cup Prestige (PA) Dh150,000 1,700m; Winner: AF Momtaz, Saif Al Balushi, Musabah Al Muhairi.

5pm: Handicap (TB) Dh40,000 1,200m; Winner: Al Mushtashar, Richard Mullen, Satish Seemar.

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