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Prominent Indian and Pakistani Activists Welcome Mohali Spirit And Partners in Victory Campaign

4 April 2011

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Press Release

Prominent Indian and Pakistani Activists Welcome Mohali Spirit And Partners in Victory Campaign

We convey our very hearty congratulations to Team India for winning the World Cup 2011 and welcome the positive statements by the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan issued from Mohali on the side lines of the Cricket World Cup Semi Final played on 30th March 2011.

Dr. Manmohan Singh’s statement that India and Pakistan should put their "ancient animosities" behind them, work for a "permanent reconciliation" and "cooperative solutions" to their problems “to live together in dignity and honour" is significant and sets a new direction for the subcontinent. Mr. Yousuf Raza Gilani’s assertion that “our common enemy is poverty, hunger, disease, unemployment and that today the intention of both of us is to resolve these issues and both the countries should prosper” is a reminder to both nations that they can rewrite history of backwardness by ousting poverty.

The two Prime Ministers were positive. Their most important statement is that “the people of India and Pakistan want to live in peace and amity (and) that there are difficulties in the way but we will make every honest effort to overcome those difficulties.. (and seek) the resolution of all issues through dialogue and that the two PMs have committed their governments to work in that direction”.

By saying that "winning and losing is something that has its own place but this is a victory for cricket and the two countries" Mr. Gilani endorsed the motto and spirit of the Partners in Victory- Flags for Peace Campaign that was jointly undertaken by a number of organisations of India and Pakistan where in thousands of flags of India and Pakistan tied together along with heart shaped stickers with both the flags were distributed to the spectators going in to the stadium to watch the match. We also salute the capacity crowd in the Mohali stadium who exhibited a spirit of cordiality and cheered good cricket.

As part of the Partners in Victory - Flags for Peace Campaign, peace activists and cricket enthusiasts from Pakistan coming for the Mohali match were welcomed with garlands, refreshments and food at the Wagah border and escorted to Mohali by organisations in India. Local people in Chandigarh provided home stay and hospitality to the guests from Pakistan to further cement the People – to- People bond. The organisations which took lead in organising the Partners in Victory- Flags for Peace Campaign were COVA, Folklore Research Institute, Hind Pak Dosti Manch and Yuvsatta from India; Pakistan Peace Coalition, Ajoka and Institute for Peace and Secular Studies from Pakistan.

The “Mohali Magic” has created a new spirit of conciliation and accommodation by bringing everyone from the ordinary man to the Prime Ministers together for the same cause that is dear to and in the interest of all. The challenge now is to continue and sustain this “Mohali Magic’ till the goal of “cooperative solutions” and “permanent reconciliation” through “uninterrupted and uninterruptable dialogue” is reached to enable people of both the countries “to live together in dignity and honour”.

Pakistan: Asma Jahamgir, Sherry Rahman, Justice (r ) Nasir Aslam Zahid. B.M. Kutty, Madeeha Gauhar, Karamat Ali and S. Diep

India: Kuldip Nayar, Admiral L. Ramdas, Mahesh Bhatt, Shahid Siddiqui, Lalita Ramdas, Jatin Desai, Mazher Hussain and Amrita Chhachhi. Kamla Bhasin