Islamabad: Pakistan Sports Minister Shaukatullah has stressed on the need for the quick revival of bilateral hockey ties with India.
The minister observed during a meeting with the President of the Pakistan Hockey Federation Qasim Zia that hockey series between Pakistan and India would be an essential tool for the progress and development of the sport in the region.
"It could also play a role of catalyst to minimize distance between the two countries and as well as increase people to people contact," Shaukatullah said.
Qasim Zia and PHF secretary Asif Bajwa met with the minister to brief him on the progress made to revive hockey series with India.
According to sources, the meeting was held on the directives of Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gillani who is also chief patron of the hockey federation.
"The Prime Minister has directed the PHF and the sports ministry to find ways to revive hockey series with India on the lines of cricket as part of the ongoing goodwill process with the neighbouring country," one ministry source said.
Qasim Zia told the minister that the PHF was keen to invite India later in the year for a Test series and matches could be played at Lahore, Karachi and Faisalabad.
The PHF President informed that talks were being held with their Indian counterparts as Pakistan was keen to play atleast a three-match series before the Champions Trophy which will be held in India in December.
The PHF chief also outlined a proposal to organise a hockey series in Dubai early next year.
Pakistan twice went to India last year for the World Cup and the Commonwealth Games hockey events.