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Joint Pakistan-India peace celebrations on August 14 at Sindh Rajasthan border cancelled

by PILER, 8 August 2013

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Joint Pakistan-India peace celebrations on August 14 at Sindh Rajasthan border cancelled

KARACHI, August 8, 2013: Pakistan Peace Coalition (PPC) and Peoples SAARC (Pakistan Process) on Thursday announced postponement of Pakistan-India Joint Independence Day Peace Celebrations at the Sindh-Rajasthan border, scheduled to be held at Khokhrapar in Umerkot district in Pakistan on August 14, 2013.

In a press release, the Organising Committee deplored the denial of permission by the concerned Pakistani authorities to hold the celebrations at Khokhrapar in Umerkot district. The Peoples SAARC had taken the initiative of the celebrations of Pakistani and Indian independence days (14-15 August) as a peace event by the people at Sindh and Rajasthan border. This was the first time such an initiative has been taken on the soil of the Sindh province. Every year a joint Independence Day celebration is organised at the Wagah-Attari border in Punjab by the civil society of Pakistan and India.

In the situation arising after the recent unfortunate developments at Pakistan-Indian Line of Control (LOC) in Kashmir and the tension caused by the killing of five Indian soldiers in the disputed territory, followed by the subsequent retaliatory mob attack on Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi on Wednesday, it is regretted that the voice of hate mongers has become louder and the voice of peace activists for bringing the people closer to each other has become weaker. These recent events have escalated the tension between the governments of Pakistan and India and there is an urgent need to initiate the process of dialogue.
PPC and Pakistan Process of Peoples SAARC have decided to convert the event into a Pak-India Peace Conference simultaneously in both India and Pakistan on 24th August. These conferences can be held in New Delhi or any other city in India (to be decided by Indian Process of Peoples SAARC) and in Pakistan in Karachi/Hyderabad/Umerkot (to be decided by the Organising Committee).
They have resolved to raise the pitch of the peace voice to a level higher than the roar of hate mongers. They have urged both the governments to take serious measures to return to the normalcy situation. "We pledge to continue our efforts for brgining peace loving people of both India and Pakistan much closer," the statement said.

Released by:
Shujauddin Qureshi
Co-Manager Programmes (Advocacy and Networking)
Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER)
Gulshan-e-Maymar, Karachi-75340

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Clipping from Dawn, 9 August 2013 Clipping from The News, 9 August 2013