June 29, 2009 2:37:23 am
As part of the Indo-Pak peace camp organised by The Center for Youth Development and Activities (CYDA) in Pune and Pakistan,around 25 youths from Pakistan will arrive here three months down the line to participate in a weeklong interaction on peace,non-violence and democracy.
This is the fourth camp for youth between 17 years and 25 years being organised in India to promote dialogue between the youth of both countries.
“We have tentatively agreed to host the group from Pakistan in the first week of October,bearing in mind that Gandhi Jayanti falls on October 2,which is also celebrated as International Non-violence Day. There will be discussions on peace,tolerance,non-violence and democracy,” said Mathew Mattam,secretary,CYDA,Pune.
Matham said that CYDA Pakistan (formerly Youth-Pakistan) wanted to organise this interaction prior to November 2008,but 26/11 followed by the Lok Sabha elections prompted both groups to defer the trip.
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“Even as there is some sort of reluctance to engage in dialogue with Pakistan,there are many who want to increase interaction with the youth of Pakistan. We want to build this partnership,” he said.
Announcing this camp,CYDA Pakistan said,”Organisers of the Indo-Pak Peace Camp believe in promoting sustainable peace on the subcontinent that counts young people from both India and Pakistan as members. Continuity in contacts is essential for better understanding and removal of misgivings. The differences should be understood and not fought. People of the region shared thousands of years of history,heritage,traditions,but vested interests in both countries have focused on the events of the past five decades only.”
Some members of this group from Pakistan had come to Pune a few years ago as well and stayed with local CYDA youth leaders. “We are planning something similar this time too. If the visiting group can stay with some Indian youth,it will promote better relations between the countries,” he said.
The schedule and the speakers for this camp will be finalised in the next week.
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