Published Date: Mar 14, 2014
Restoration of pre-1947 road links between India, Pakistan
At a time when the Kashmiri youngsters of the Indian Held
Kashmir (IHK) are facing their government’s wrath for cheering the Pakistani
cricket team during a recently-held Asia Cup
cricket match, peace delegates
from India have brought message of love and mutual co-existence. The
well-intentioned senior participants of the delegation have called for
restoration of routes that existed before 1947 between the two countries.
Senior statesman and a vocal champion of
soft visa regime and normalization of relations
between the two countries, Satya Paul Arora, Secretary General, South Asian
Fraternity, New Delhi is leading the four member delegation. The other three
delegates are: Bhawani Shanker Kusum, Chairman, Gram Bharati Samiti, Amer,
Jaipur; Shri Kharaiti Lal Bhola, Chairman, Patita (Destitute) Sudhar Sabha, New
Delhi; and S Ranjit Singh, Secretary , Lala Lajpat Rai Birthplace Memorial
The delegation was in Islamabad on Thursday as part of the ‘Track-II Diplomacy’
on enhancing peaceful relations between the two countries to participate in a
talk titled, “People to people contact: A way forward” organized by Sustainable
Development Policy Institute (SDPI). In the well-attended media briefing, the Indian
guests suggested the ways to make people-to-people contact so strong that the
governments of India and Pakistan are forced to forget the hostile past and live like good neighbours.
Satya Paul Arora discussed the problems and prospects of peace between India
and Pakistan. He said the two governments should relax visa regime as the
people of two countries are already holding video conferences. It is nothing
but old mindset that is holding them (the governments) to keep people from
visiting each others’ countries. “Visa for journalists, traders, lawyers,
students and academicians should specifically be
relaxed for a better communication and business relations,” he
Shri Kharaiti Lal Bhola said the problems were not limited to the
government-level, but in fact, serious psychological and old mindset among the
people created barriers and constraints for
peace. Both governments should spend money on welfare instead of
draining their resources on defence alone, he said.
Bahawani Shanker Kusum called for peaceful exchange of programmes between youth and new generations without
any hindrance. Ranjeet Singh appreciated the positive attitude of Pakistanis towards Indians during exchange visits.
Ahmad Saleem, a writer said
that SDPI had conducted studies on common history and events of 1947 and 1971.
However, instead of narrating violent events, our researchers has compiled
about the events where the people saved people hailing from other religion and
sectarian. He opined that there was a need to remove hate material from our
common history. In his concluding remarks, Shafqat Kakakhel, Chairman Board of Governors, SDPI said
Pakistanis and Indians both want peace. If they join hands to foster peace,
they can make immense progress, he said.