By Muslim Mirror Special Correspondent,
New Delhi: At an Eid Milan program hare, civil society groups have pledged of reviving the two-decade-old candlelight vigil at Wagha border on the eve of India and Pakistan’s Independence Day. underlining the importance of building peace and friendly atmosphere between India and Pakistan, noted Intellectuals and activists urged the youths a role to play their part in improving the environment of peace and harmony within India and in South Asia.
On the occasion, a documentary ‘India-Pakistan Peace Narratives’ made by Melton Fellows under ‘Project Narratives was screened. Nikhil Sharma who is a Melton fellow and one of the filmmakers who made this documentary, also present in the program.
Taking part in the discussion on India and Pakistan relations, Padma Bhushan awardee and Founder Trustee of Women’s Initiative for Peace in South Asia (WIPSA) Mohini Giri said there was a strong need to build people to people contacts across South Asia. Former member Planning Commission Dr. Syeda Hameed talked about the candle-light initiative taken by civil groups two decades ago as a ray of hope between two nations. She called upon youths to lead the movement of peace with full gusto.
Dr. Shankar Sanyal, president of Harijan Sevak Sangh, said the Gandhian values need to be taken as a vision for building bonds among people.
Veena Behen, founder of Mahila Chetna Kendra talked about women empowerment and their role in peacebuilding. Peace activist Jatin Desai also emphasized the need of building bridges between both the countries. Father Pinto stressed the need to build communal harmony and the need to engage young minds with the importance of peace. Prof. Qureshi offered his full support to youths towards this work. Coordinator of Association of Peoples of Asia Ram Mohan Rai talked about the importance of different works that people are doing to have peace and harmony in South Asia. He talked about his recent experiences of Noakhali in Bangladesh and future plans of actions where people can join.
Secretary general of South Asian Fraternity Satyapal talked about how youth camps can be organised as a powerful learning centres to let youths know about each other and each other’s culture.
Aaghaz-e-Dosti convener Devika Mittal talked about joining hands of more classrooms connects programs between India and Pakistan. She also narrated different experiences of such sessions.
Yousuf Nizami sung nazms for peace and fraternity to conclude the program. Few plans of actions was also decided including the one of going to Wagah border with candles on 14-15 August to continue the legacy of peace message that was started by people more than two decades ago.
The program was jointly organised by Aaghaz-e-Dosti, Aariz Media,Association of People of Asia, Gandhi Global Family, Guild of Service, Hali Panipati Trust, Mission Bhartiyam, National Youth Project, Nirmala Deshpande Sansthan, Project Narratives (Melton Foundation), South Asian Fraternity and Women’s Initiative for Peace in South Asia (WIPSA).