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India - Pakistan: A Citizens March for Peace by Indians and Pakistanis

Thursday 8 June 2017, by siawi3

Source: http://march4peace.blogspot.fr/

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Delhi to Multan (23 March - 11 May, 2005)

A Citizens March for Peace by Indians and Pakistanis. An information record in solidarity with the marchers. — South Asia Citizens Web

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January 07, 2007
video on the peace march from Delhi to Lahore

Short video on the peace march from Delhi to Lahore
Posted by c-info at 7.1.07

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May 19, 2005
The India-Pakistan peace march continues
(The News International, May 19, 2005)

The India-Pakistan peace march continues

Sandeep Pandey

The India-Pakistan Peace March from Delhi to Multan is symbolically over, but the Indian participants are leaving quite dissatisfied at not being allowed to march within the country. It was quite embarrassing to be talking about disarmament but moving around under heavy armed security cover, always accompanied by a police jeep, even though obviously, this was for security reasons. Some of the hosts within Pakistan were also uncomfortable with this. However, it was either this curtailed and restricted visit, or none at all.

Marchers from both countries had trouble crossing over into the other country to participate in the march. Both governments delayed granting visas to marchers from the other side, but the Indian government finally did grant visas for all 12 districts that fell on the route; the Pakistani government granted visas only for the cities of Lahore and Multan. It is another matter that the Pakistani marchers could not use their visas for all places, because of the further delays caused by the Pakistani government in granting them permission to cross the Wagha border on foot. By the time they crossed into India, the march was in the last district, Amritsar.

On the positive side, while the Pakistani marchers were walking on the road for five days in India, there was no police accompanying us, which can be considered an achievement of the march.

It is an ironic that whereas both governments created hurdles in the path of peace-lovers from the two countries, L. K. Advani, the mastermind behind the rise of communal politics in India, is soon going to be a state guest of the government of Pakistan.

What this means is that the peace activists who labour to change the relationship of animosity between the two nations over the last 57 years and are mobilising the public support in favour of a friendly and peaceful relationship between India and Pakistan are discouraged at every step. On the other hand, the man whose party brought the two nations to the brink of nuclear war and whose followers indulged in the worst carnage in independent India, in Gujarat, will be enjoying government hospitality in Pakistan.

This only reflects the misplaced priorities of the governments.

Many in India are fighting to free Indian politics of the forces which are a threat to democratic polity, and find it discouraging that their neighbouring nation chooses to honour the leader of these regressive forces. Even opponents of US policy appreciated the American denial of a visa to Narendra Modi, a step that definitely discredits these forces. Many in India admire Pervez Musharraf for his steps to check fundamentalist forces in Pakistan, but they also expect him to help the Indian people in controlling such forces in their country.

The peace march received a very positive response from the many people’s representatives they met. The Nazim of Lahore, Mian Amir Mehmood, granted permission for the peace march to take place within the city and allowed participants to plant a sapling that Professor Rameek Mohan, one of the marchers from India, had brought from Rohtak, as a symbol of peace and friendship.

MNA Rana Tariq Javed was present to welcome us at a small function in Sahiwal on our way to Multan. The local Nazim and the SSP, Khuda Bux Malik, were also present here. In Chichawatni the local Nazim welcomed us. In Multan, MNA Shah Mahmood Hussain Qureshi, who happens to be the Sajjada Nashin of the Dargah of Bahauddin Zakaria, almost echoed our sentiments in his speech and granted us permission to move about freely in Multan, where we planted another Indian sapling at the City Council Hall. Back in Lahore, we were hosted in the Punjab Assembly by opposition leader Qasim Zia.

The people’s representatives compensated for the negative attitude shown by the Pakistani government towards the peace march. Clearly, the movement for democracy will have to be strengthened if pro-people initiatives are allowed to take place freely here. The peace movements on either side should strengthen the democratisation process in both Pakistan and India; they are already resolved to continue pushing forward the agenda for peace and friendship between the two countries. At the level of the common people this is the most important democratic issue in the context of bilateral relationship.

The original plan had been to organise a joint peace march of activists from both countries. But that remains unfinished. Although in their meeting Pervez Musharraf and Manmohan Singh used language hitherto used by peace activists, the two governments did not cooperate fully in facilitating the peace march.

The activists are determined to return to finish this march next year. Hopefully by then the governments will have realised the advantages of letting such an activity take place.

The writer is a prominent social activist based in Lucknow, who led the Indian peace marchers
Posted by c-info at 19.5.05

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May 18, 2005

March for peace

(Kashmir Times - May 17, 2005)

March for peace

by Beena Sarwar

Mazher Hussain from Hyderabad, India, has a dream that many others share. The energetic peace activist dreams of the time when people from India and Pakistan can walk together on public roads in each other’s countries. When he first talked about this peace march idea during a visit to Karachi over a year ago, the first thing that came to mind was the difficulties of such an exercise. Visas... security... organisation (lack of, especially in Pakistan where the grassroots or community organisations are not as strong as in India)...

But Mazher, who heads a confederation of voluntary organisations (COVA), was not to be daunted. It would be like a relay of marchers, he said, with a core group walking the entire distance, while local organisations would prepare the ground for their meetings at the villages and towns they would pass on their way. "It is doable, and it will work. You will see," he insisted.

A year later, Mazher is part of the dozen peace marchers from India that Pakistan finally granted visas to (out of the 70 who applied) and allowed to cross into the country on foot for the final leg of the march. They had reached the border on April 18, and waited there until the permission arrived on May 7.

The group includes the young activist filmmaker Monica Wahi, who moved from Delhi to Ahmedabad after the Gujarat communal riots (carnage, rather, as the Indian human rights groups labelled them) and took up residence in an apartment block there in her quest to help the affected women. Supported by other women’s groups, she set up a system for them to be able to earn their own livelihood by making and selling readymade garments, simultaneously promoting traditional hand-loom, dying and block-printing methods.

Led by the veteran and respected social activist Dr Sandeep Pandey, the Indian delegation has not been allowed to ’march’ in Pakistan but only to drive, due to ’security reasons’ according to the Pakistani authorities. It is odd that thousands of Indians and Pakistanis can be allowed to roam on public roads and markets in each other’s countries if they are ostensibly there to see a cricket match, but not if they are explicitly making the trip to promote the cause of peace.

Still, the very fact that they are here at all is testimony to their persistence and patience, and that of their fellow peace activists on either side of the border.
The march began on March 23 in Delhi, at the shrine of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya. India granted special visas to only nine Pakistanis (out of the 70 who applied), listing the cities they would be passing through on the journey. However, at the last minute, the Pakistani authorities prevented them from crossing into India on foot. At the inaugural of the march, meanwhile, the presence of celebrities like the Indian director Mahesh Bhatt and the Pakistani film actress Meera (one of the three Pakistanis present there) ensured a fair amount of media coverage for the walk.

Meanwhile hectic efforts to secure permission for the other Pakistanis to join the Indian marchers continued, and on April 9, Pakistan finally allowed nine of them, including four women, to walk across the Wagah border to join their Indian friends who by then had reached the River Beas. The Pakistani women included Lali Kohli, the
courageous former bonded labourer from Sindh who recently won her freedom, and young Nayyar Habib of the Labour Party.

The insistence on crossing the border on foot has political significance. It highlights the fact that the Indian and Pakistani governments normally restrict visitors from each other’s countries to trains, airplanes and buses, which is far more time-consuming and expensive. Visa holders are restricted to the entry and exit points stipulated on their visa applications -you can’t change your mind later and return to Karachi from Bombay if your visa application has Delhi as the exit point.

The peace march ended on May 11, the seventh anniversary of the Indian nuclear tests. Interestingly, the marchers’ arrival in Lahore coincided with the authorities removing the replica of the Chaghi hills from in front of the railway station - followed by the clarification that the move is being made for ’repairs’, a convenient escape route in case the hawks become louder than the doves.

As for the doves, the reception in Pakistan has been ’amazing’, says Monica. Large numbers of people turned up to greet the marchers, from Lahore, to Sahiwal, to Chichawatni and Multan. "It was beyond all expectations, even of the local organisers," she adds. "Isn’t it a great injustice for the governments to not allow us to walk as we had asked? To keep people apart who want to meet? Is this why they didn’t give us permission to walk, they were afraid of this huge response?" The organisers also raise the very valid question of how Pakistan hopes to host the forthcoming Asia-Pacific Social Forum in Karachi, January 2006, for which the Prime Minister has promised full support, noting that after all, he also promised full support to the 150 peace marchers -a far smaller number than the 20,000 expected for the Social Forum.
- (Courtesy: The News)
Posted by c-info at 18.5.05
Labels: India, Pakistan

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May 12, 2005

Credit where credit is due
(Daily Times,May 12, 2005)

Credit where credit is due

by Kamran Shafi

What kind of good governance do we have in the Mother of All Provinces if the government of the Great Chaudhry cannot provide protection to our guests within his own fiefdom?

There are just so many people in the world who fight for an ideal for no other reason but that it is an ideal, and because it is for the good of humanity; there are very few in the world who have such courage of their convictions that they will stand up against the strongest of the state apparatus and say the truth no matter what. Those who are in the vanguard of peace movements across the world are among those we speak about, the Indian subcontinent producing two outstanding examples: our own Karamat Ali of PILER, and the Magsaysay Award 2002 winner Sandeep Pandey of the Indian NGO, Asha (Hope).

It was so good receiving the India-Pakistan Peace March led by Sandeep Pandey at Wagah on Saturday last in the company of Karamat Ali and friends; it was so heartening to see ordinary, lay people, both Indian and Pakistani, so taken up with peace between their countries that they braved with good humour the hot sun for hours on end while bureaucratic procedures took their twisted, and long, and painful paths. It was so gratifying indeed, to see dedicated people like Sandeep, the moving spirit from the Indian side and Karamat from ours, give so much of themselves to amity and understanding. More than anything, it was great to see Sandeep’s young children, Chaitanya, eight, and Anandi, five, march with the rest!

That is what brought tears to my eyes, to see the little ones marching for peace: what memories these young children will carry all their lives, of being part at their tender ages of a march which attempted to talk some sense to two poverty-ridden but completely senseless countries, both of which possessed the ultimate in weapons of mass destruction but the mass of whose people lived in abject poverty.

It wasn’t easy for this march to proceed, we must note, both governments making it as hard as they could, ours excelling the other side. While the Indians delayed for 10 days the issuance of visas to the Pakistani marchers who were to cross into India to accompany the Indian marchers into Pakistan, the Pakistan government did not allow the Pakistanis to cross the border on foot to join their counterparts for another 13. Once these issues had been resolved and the Pakistanis had crossed over and joined their co-marchers in Beas, the Pakistan government delayed issuing visas to the Indians to cross into Pakistan for a further 19 days. Looks sort of even thus far, this negativism, doesn’t it? So how did we excel? By issuing only 12 visas to the Indian marchers while India issued 22 to ours.

It has to be put on record too that whilst India allowed Pakistani marchers to march alongside the Indians from Beas to Amritsar, we did not allow the Indians to march alongside Pakistani marchers from Lahore to Multan. They have now gone to Multan by motor transport. The reason that the authorities have put forward is the presence of extremists who could pose a threat to the Indian marchers. Permission was not granted despite the organisers taking full responsibility for their Indian guests.

A fob-off on the part of the government if you ask me: for we all know that the cowards who kill the unarmed and the weak would not dare attack hundreds of high profile peace activists. Moreover, what kind of good governance do we have in the Mother of All Provinces if the government of the Great Chaudhry cannot provide protection to our guests within his own fiefdom?

Sorry for boring you, gentle reader, but it is important to point out the fault-lines in this peace process so that the leaders spearheading it, even if they are half-way serious, can take corrective measures to identify the stumbling blocks, be they inflexible and pig-headed bureaucrats or stupid and arcane rules and regulations. Indeed who could find anything wrong with the declaration that the marchers are carrying with them and which 7,000 ordinary, poor Indians have signed during the march from Delhi to Amritsar:

“We support India-Pakistan Peace March and demand:

“1. India and Pakistan should resolve their disputes through peaceful dialogue. The Kashmir problem should be solved considering the wishes of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

“2. India and Pakistan should abolish their nuclear weapons, and remove the armed forces and landmines across the border. The defence budgets should be reduced and resources should be directed towards development of the poor of both countries.

“3. Travelling across the border should be made easy for citizens of both sides and non-visa entry to both countries should be allowed.”

All of the people who signed the declaration also said they did not want their government to buy F-16s or F-18s. “We want the money saved spent on schools, dispensaries, sanitation and potable drinking water, not more weapons”, they all said. Needless to point out, their counterparts on this side of the border have like feelings.

All in all, the march is a laudable effort by all concerned that should be supported by each one of us in whatever way we can. Every little bit helps: a letter to the editor of a newspaper; an email to the Big General who is so very web-savvy; a ‘phone call to the interior minister’s office — anything at all. What today is a small snowflake can tomorrow snowball into an avalanche: of peace, amity and understanding.

This article about the good people of the peace march will not be complete without a mention of the Buddhist Monk Tenzin Rigzin. Dressed in his simple orange and yellow robes, wearing rubber chappals, carrying a small backpack, Tenzin Rigzin was humility and meekness itself. Hanging at the back of the march, out of the limelight, out of the sight of press cameras, bowing low with hands joined together in the traditional Buddhist greeting to everyone who approached, and beating a small hide-covered drum was Tenzin Rigzin. Over and over, softly; again and again. This was his peace drum and he was not about to get tired beating it. Incidentally, Tenzin Rigzin was one of those who appealed to ‘Prime Minister’ Shaukat Aziz for expediting their visas while they waited at the border for a week and more, to no avail of course.

A short note about the influence ‘Prime Minister’ Shaukat Aziz has over the regime he nominally heads: whilst he promised representatives of the peace-marchers when they met him in Karachi some months ago that the Indians would get a 150 visas, they ended up getting only 12! And those too much delayed. Good reason for him to reconsider his position if you ask me, and resign. Also, reason for all future requests to do with the government to be routed to the Big General himself: poor old Shaukat Aziz being neither here nor there. Seems to me his ‘prime ministry’ will be shorter lived than poor old Jamali’s! Any bets? I am good for Rs 10 any time.
[...].

Kamran Shafi is a freelance columnist
Posted by c-info at 12.5.05

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April 21, 2005

22 Indians not issued visas
Daily Times
India-Pakistan peace march left in the dust

* 22 Indians supposed to arrive not issued visas

By Waqar Gillani

LAHORE: The 22 Indians supposed to arrive at Wagah today were unable to cross the border at Wagah because they were not granted visas due to ‘security concerns’, said Karamat Ali of the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research.

Pakistani Peace Coalition, an informal alliance of non-government organisations, temporarily halted the peace march which started in New Delhi and is scheduled to end in Multan on May 11.

“Though we received a report from India early yesterday (Tuesday) stating that the Indian activists had been granted visas and would arrive in Lahore accompanied by nine Pakistanis today, by late night we knew that their names had not been cleared by Pakistan,” Ali told Daily Times at Wagah, where he received the nine Pakistanis.

He said that the NGOs were pursuing the matter with the Interior Ministry. “We have been told that the Pakistani High Commission in India is not clearing the names as a security measure. We believe there is no security risk for Indians marching to Multan.”

Ali added the march would be halted in Lahore. “We have requested the nine Pakistanis to wait at least a week before returning home.” The future of the march depends on the arrival of the Indians. He said that a meeting would be held in Multan on April 24 to formulate a strategy for the peace march. “As a last resort, we can ask the Pakistani marchers to walk to Multan and conclude the march in May.”

Arrival of Pakistanis The nine Pakistanis arrived at Wagah on Wednesday afternoon. They were received by dozens of peace activists, who chanted slogans saying the Kashmir issue should be solved with dialogue and not guns. The marchers went to India last week to cross into Pakistan with their Indian counterparts.

The 200-strong turnout at Wagah was much lower than the organisers’ claims. The departure time for journalists to Wagah from the press club was changed twice. During the journey, the organisers’ vehicle was called back, and the press people had to go the rest of the way on their own. Due to this, a dispute arose between the organisers and journalists at the border. The media people criticised the organisers’ attitude after they refused to acknowledge the oversight. Later, they demanded an apology from the pressmen. The main organisers reached the border late. The organisers had also avoided the media people before the arrival.

The Pakistani peace activists who crossed the border condemned the government for not issuing visas to the Indians. They said that the act was a contradiction of the governments’ claims of peace.

Residents of Jalo More and Shalimar Garden arranged a reception in honour of the Pakistani activists.
Posted by c-info at 21.4.05

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April 20, 2005

Indians marchers could not cross the border; Press conference in Delhi 21 April
INDIA PAKISTAN PEACE MARCH
Delhi to Multan, 23rd March to 11th May 2005

Press Invite

India Pakistan Peace March started on 23rd March from New Delhi. This
people to people initiative is lead by Dr.Sandeep Pandey, Magsaysay
Awardee and noted social activist, with the objective of building
peace & harmony between two countries. The march was well received by
citizens along its route and after walking around 500 kms, the
marchers reached Wagha border on 20th April.

Nine Pakistani Marchers were able to get visas and clearances from
Indian and Pak governments. They historically walked on Indian roads
for the cause of peace from 14th April to 20th April. However, the
visas have not been granted to Indian Marchers, they could not cross
wagha and walk on Pakistan roads. In spite of Sandeep Pandeyís
meeting with Pak Prime Minister Shoukat Aziz on 12th March in
Islamabad and Pak PMís assurances for supporting the cause, Indian
Marchers did not get visas to walk across.

Pakistani peace marchers have crossed Wagha border on 20th April and they will walk to Multan (Pakistan) where March will end on 11th of May with concluding ceremony.

To express our feelings in this regard and give more information about our plans further, we are arranging the press conference.

Venue: Press Club, Raisina Road, New Delhi
Time: 3.30 pm to 5.30 pm, 21st April, 2005

Speakers: Sandeep Pandey and fellow marchers

With warm regards

Harshavardhan Purandare Shree Prakash
Asha For Education INSAF
M: 0-9322696617 M: 9818030423 mumbaikar100 gmail.com
insafindia gmail.com

Contact: INSAF, A124/6 Katwaria Sarai New Delhi 110016, Tel: 26517814
/55663958

Supported By: Kuldip Nayyar, Nirmala Deshpande, Medha Patkar, Aruna
Roy, Anil Chaudhary, Mahesh Bhatt, Meera, Nandita Das, Nafisa Ali and
Ghazal Srinivas.
Posted by c-info at 20.4.05

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22 Indians to arrive in Pakistan today - Events planned in Lahore
(Daily Times - April 20, 2005 )

INDIA-PAKISTAN JOINT PEACE MARCH: 22 INDIANS ARRIVE TODAY IN PAKISTAN

BY WAQAR GILLANI

LAHORE: As part of an India-Pakistan joint peace march from the shrine of Saint Nizamudidn Aulia in New Delhi to the shrine of Saint Bahauddin Zakariya in Multan, 22 Indians will cross into Pakistan at Wagah today (Wednesday).

The Indians will be accompanied by nine Pakistanis who had crossed into India last week for the march. The walk was contrived by an informal alliance of non-government organisations, including the Pakistan Peace Coalition and the National Alliance of Peoples’ Movements in India. Originally, 180 people were scheduled to participate in it. It will continue till May 11.

The Joint Action Committee for Peoples’ Rights, an alliance of over 30 NGOs in Lahore, on Tuesday chalked out a plan to receive the delegates at Wagah. It has also planned their activities for the three days they will stay in the city.

The group will walk to Shalimar Garden on Wednesday before wrapping up for the day. On April 21, they will reach the Lahore High Court and on March 22 they will leave for Multan via the Grand Trunk Road.

The peace activists have been invited to two dinners, one by the South Asia Free Media Association (SAFMA) and the other by the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS).
Karamat Ali of the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education & Research (PILER), one of the main organisers, told Daily Times that the Indians were originally denied visas. “They were only given permission to enter Pakistan after intervention by the federal interior minister,” he said

The Pakistani High Commission in New Delhi granted visas to just 22 of the 140 people who applied, he said. The Indian group is led by Dr Sandeep Panda[y].

Dr Panda[y], who is from Lucknow, proposed the march plan during a joint convention of the Pakistan-India Peoples’ Forum for Peace and Democracy (PIPFPD) at Karachi in 2003.
Posted by c-info at 20.4.05

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April 19, 2005

Priorities in India, Pakistan relations
[Kashmir Times, April 18, 2005]

Priorities in India, Pakistan relations

By Sandeep Pandey

When we reached Phillaur from Ludhiana we met the first resistance
to our position on Kashmir during the Peace March. Our host here was
Mr. Johal, president of the committee which runs the Gurudwara where
we were to stay. He registered his protest as soon as we reached
Phillaur saying that our position that the Kashmir issue must be
resolved according to the wishes of people of J&K was not acceptable
to him as it was a position which favoured Pakistan. He was of the
view that Kashmir was an integral part of India and only Indians had
a right to decide about the future of Kashmir. It was obviously a
narrow nationalist position held by him and shared by few people in
the country. The meeting was being held in a Hanuman temple.
He snatched our signature campaign sheet and started striking out
the statement on Kahsmir. He was stopped from doing this after two
sheets as he was told that there were other people who had signed
the sheets who did not share his opinion on Kashmir and instead
agreed with the position of the Peace March. The peace marchers
tried to avoid getting into an unpleasant situation with their host
for the evening. They tried to reason with him but he was not in a
mood to listen to any other point of view.
In the night after the dinner at the Gurudwara his associates joined
a meeting that we were holding to discuss how to tackle such a
situation in future. Another round of discussion took place on
Kashmir and we tried to reason with them that the any possible
humane solution to the problem must involve the people from J&K. We
explained that the narrow nationalist view held by Indians from
outside Kashmir, or for that matter Pakistanis outside Kashmir, was
born out of feudal mindset and in a world in which people were more
sensitive to human rights violations and also democratic way of
thinking, the conventional nationalist Indian and Pakistani view
could not be imposed on the people of Kashmir. Also, in a world
where economic policy of globalization was taking over, the concept
of nation state was weakening and even the two Governments probably
realize that staying ahead in economic development was more
important than in arms race, taking away pressure from the
governments to make a prestige issue out of Kashmir. It was also
pointed out that the traditional concept of nationalism was not
shared by a major section of the society including dalits, tribals,
women, and other marginalized sections, who were busy with more
basic struggles for life and livelihood than engage with the
question of national pride. They, for example, were not likely to
feel the same enthusiasm if India were to beat Pakistan in a game of
Cricket compared to people who were close to the ruling class. We
don’t know whether this discussion had any affect on the associates
of Mr. Johal but he did come to see us off in the morning and seemed
to be more calm than the previous evening. He had probably accepted
the difference in point of view held by him and us and had
reconciled himself with this fact.
Our march while it was in Ludhiana was shown on the national TV
Doordarshan news. As we were walking from Phillaur to Phagwara a
man, Paramjit, who was in the business of buying and selling
buffaloes, after recognizing us came over from the other side of the
road and stopped us. He expressed his happiness that such a march
was taking place and confidently told us that we were going to get
visas to cross over into Pakistan. At that time we knew that the
Pakistani government had dashed all our hopes by refusing to allow
marchers from Pakistan to cross over into India. But Paramjit’s
resolve reflected the opinion of common people that people should be
allowed to cross the border freely. Little did we know then that two
days later the Internal Ministry of Pakistan would actually grant
permission to the Pakistani marchers to join the march. This has
also opened the possibility of us going to Pakistan and realizing
our dream of a joint march through the territories of India and
Pakistan and jointly crossing the Wagha.
As we were walking out of Phagwara towards Jalandhar a man came from
behind on a bicycle and got down from his bicycle after stopping
next to me. Surjit Singh earns his living as a Tadi Kirtan singer.
His wife is also in the same vocation. He first congratulated us on
taking out this march. He told me that he had signed our signature
campaign which my colleague Chandralekha from Hardoi District of
U.P. was carrying walking behind me. He then offered a suggestion
with which I was pleasantly surprised.
He said that the third point in the signature campaign, about
allowing people from two countries to meet freely and, if possible,
doing away with Passport-Visa system, should have a higher priority
than the first two points. The first point was about two sides
resolving their disputes peacefully through dialogue, including the
issue of Kashmir according to the wishes of people of J&K and the
second point was about doing away with nuclear weapons, land mines
and reducing the defence budgets so that resources could be spent on
development of poor people on both sides of the border. Surjit’s
argument was that for the common people from India and Pakistan the
third point was closest to their heart and it was also probably the
easiest for the two Governments to agree to.
The impact that this could have would also create an atmosphere
where the Governments will find it easier to make progress on the
first two points. I looked at him in admiration and promised him
that I would mention his views in an article. I’m truly impressed by
the understanding of Surjit Singh who is a representative of the
common people. Only somebody like him could have thought like this
because we intellectuals often cannot free ourselves from our
preferences and biases. I’m glad I met Surjit Singh, the Tadi Kirtan
singer, on my way and thank him for educating me about the
priorities of issues as common people see it. I kept cursing myself
why I could not see this simple logic when I was drafting the
signature campaign text. Anyway, we’re glad that we’ve collected
over 5000 signatures on this statement and so far and except for Mr.
Johal, nobody seems to have any problems with the point of view that
we’re putting forward during the India Pakistan Peace March.
Posted by c-info at 19.4.05

°°

solidarity event in support of the marchers Wagah Border 20 April 2005
INDO-PAK PEACE MARCH
Delhi to Multan, 23 March - 11May

Dear Friends,

As you all know, India Pakistan Peace March, Delhi to Multan is on
its way with great support of local citizens along the route. Since
last couple of days Pakistani marchers have joined Indian marchers,
the dream of walking together on roads of India and Pakistan is now
becoming a reality.

We had earlier planned to cross Wagha border on 18th April, but due
to administrative delays in visa processing, now we will be able to
cross on 20th April.

The ceremony for expressing solidarity in support of the marchers
will start at 10 a.m. on 20th April. The occasion will be marked with
inspiring cultural activities performed by eminent Indian and
Pakistani artists.

We all request you to be at Wagha and strengthen the cause of
Indo-Pak friendship, peace and harmony.

Regards,

Sandeep Pandey & Karamat Ali
India Pakistan Peace March Team

P.S. even if you are reaching as per earlier schedule on 18th April,
you will be participating in welcome programmes organised in
Amritsar.

Lodging: Guru Arjun Dev Niwas, Golden Temple, Amritsar
Posted by c-info at 19.4.05