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BBC reporter Sadiq Khan if being in Pakistan feels like 'coming home'

The Labour politician was asked the question by BBC London reporter Karl Mercer while visiting Pakistan and India as part of an historic trip.
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A BBC journalist asked the Mayor of London if being in Pakistan felt like 'coming home' during an interview.   

Sadiq Khan, who was born and raised in England, was presented with the bizarre question while visiting Pakistan and India as part of a historic trip.  

During the exchange, BBC London reporter Karl Mercer asked the Labour politician if visiting the country felt like 'coming home'.

Within a flash, Khan hit back: 'Home's south London, mate.'

Scroll down for video  

BBC journalist Karl Mercer asked the Mayor of London if being in Pakistan felt like 'coming home' during an interview 

'I'm from south London, mate': The BBC reporter took to Twitter after the exchange to share the Mayor's response to his question 

He then added:  'But it's good to be in Pakistan. It's good to come to India, home of my parents and grandparents.'

Mr Mercer has been travelling in the press pack following Khan on his trip to India and Pakistan this week. 

Pictured: BBC London reporter Karl Mercer 

Footage of the toe-curling exchange was shared on Twitter.

In a tweet which went viral, Dj Artwork wrote: 'Blinder from Sadiq Khan on BBC News just now', in reference to the Mayor's quick-witted response.  

A spokesman for the BBC told MailOnline: 'Our reporter asked the Mayor a question in the context of the trip being referred to by senior politicians in the region as a homecoming. 

'The full answer the Mayor gave shows he understood the context of the question.'

But others appeared to disagree, including the Beeb's own producer of their flagship political show Newsnight.

Matthew Thompson wrote: 'Yes Sadiq! That question though...!' 

While another journalist Rohan Jayasekera added: 'Mayor deals neatly with small pickle spoonful of BBC institutional racism with good grace.' 

Khan was born in Tooting and made history by becoming London's first ethic minority mayor after beating Conservative Zac Goldsmith last year.

His parents were born in India and lived in Pakistan before emigrating to Britain in the 1950s. 

This week he has broken records by becoming the first Western politician in a generation to make the journey between Pakistan and India on foot.  

A spokesman for Khan told MailOnline he is visiting the two countries to promote the message 'London is open for business'.  

The trip almost didn't happen after the Foreign Office disapproved of the visit.

'We were advised against going to India and Pakistan on the same trip,' Mr Khan said. 'There are tensions between the two countries, there are diplomatic challenges. The land crossing is symbolic.' 

Khan was born in Tooting and made history by becoming London's first ethic minority mayor after beating Conservative Zac Goldsmith last year

Karl Mercer, pictured second from left, has been accompanying Khan on his tour of Pakistan this week

How Sadiq's parents risked their comfortable, middle-class life in Pakistan to 'try their luck' in London

The story of Sadiq Khan is now well-known: the working-class son of a bus driver who excelled in his professional career as a human rights barrister before entering politics in 2005.

As the Mayor of London, Khan has never lived anywhere but the bustling city however for his grandparents 70 years ago, the British metropolis seemed a million miles away.

When the Indian empire was divided in 1947 and the British left, almost 15 million people fled as violence mounted between Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs. 

Pictured: Sadiq, pictured in yellow, with his three older siblings and father Amanullah, left, shortly after the family moved to Earlsfield in London in the 1960s 

Caught up in the carnage, were Khan's grandparents. As villages were set alight, women were subjected to horrific sexual violence and more than a million people were slaughtered.

But by the time Khan's mother and father were born, tensions had settled and he said they were far more sheltered from the horrors witnessed by the older generations.

Both sets of grandparents enjoyed comfortable lives near Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh before leaving India for Pakistan. The families settled in Karachi where his paternal grandfather was a civil servant.

His parents were wed after his great-grandparents arranged their marriage. His parents, Amanullah and Sehrun, had happy childhood memories with his mother, who lives in south west London now, recalling memories about mango trees.   

Family life: Sadiq, centre with two of his six brothers, went to school in south London where he was encouraged by a teacher to practice law 

Khan rules out of becoming UK's first Muslim Prime Minister  

Sadiq Khan today ruled himself out of being Britain's first Muslim Prime Minister, insisting he had no ambitions to move to Downing Street. 

The London Mayor has been tipped as a future Labour leader ever since he won the race for City Hall in 2016.

Speaking to ITV News, he said he had no ambition: 'I never had ambitions in the first place and I've got no ambitions now. I love being the Mayor.

'Why give up a job I love to do a job I don't want. I'm absolutely ruling myself out. Forever.'

Diplomatic sources in Islamabad said the mayor's rise from humble beginnings make him 'huge' in Pakistan. He was granted a personal meeting with Pakistan's Prime Minister Shahid Abbasi. 

His parents had three children before his father decided to 'try his luck' in other parts of the Commonwealth, joining the air force in Australia before moving to London in 1968.  

Speaking to the Evening Standard, Khan said his father didn't talk about when he first arrived in Earl's Court where signs read: 'No blacks, no Irish, no dogs'. He described the period as 'difficult'.

Before long, his father was joined by the rest of the family in London. 

Khan described his childhood as 'tough' as he and his siblings were subjected to racism. He took up boxing as a hobby and said it wasn't uncommon to get into fights.    

The family lived in a three-bedroom council flat on the Henry Price estate in Earlsfield. In the city, Amanullah worked as a bus driver and Sehrun as a seamstress. 

He attended Fircroft Primary School and then Ernest Bevin School, a local comprehensive. 

He initially dreamt of becoming a dentist but a teacher recommended that he read law instead, as he had an argumentative personality.  

He read Law at the University of North London (now London Metropolitan University). He practised as a human rights lawyer before entering politics in 2005 where he was elected first time round as the member of parliament for his home constituency of Tooting.    

Since becoming a teenager, Khan has always worked and credits his parents for his strong work ethic. He said: 'I was surrounded by my mum and dad working all the time, so as soon as I could get a job, I got a job. I got a paper round, a Saturday job—some summers I laboured on a building site.'

The family continues to send money to relatives in Pakistan, 'because we're blessed being in this country.'  

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