Wednesday, February 10, 2010

India, Pakistan NGOs plan march in May to promote peace, harmony

PPI on 08/02/2010 15:26:00

New Delhi, More than a dozen NGOs from India in association with their Pakistani
counterparts are planning a march in May next to promote peace and harmony in
the region.
Feroze Mithiborwala President of Awami Bharat said march combination of a
Rath-cum-Padyatra would begin from Mumbai and follow route from Dahanu,
(Maharashtra), Surat, Baroda, Ahmedabad, Mehsana (Gujarat), Udaipur,
Chittorgarh, Ajmer, Jaipur (Rajasthan), Agra, Mathura (Uttar Pradesh), Delhi,
Panipat (Haryana), Chandigargh (Haryana-Punjab), Ludhiana, Amristsar (Punjab),
Wagah (India-Pakistan border) before entering Pakistan and culminating in
Karachi. It is expected to travel over 2000 kilometers in India and around 1000
kilometers in Pakistan by May 31, 2010.
Saying consensus is building for India and Pakistan peace and vast majority of
people in both countries are in its favour, Feroze said at time when both
governments are now having talks, ``we would only be adding to creating larger
space within people of two countries, as well as powers that be." Titled as
India-Pakistan pilgrimage for peace and harmony, march has been borrowed from
Mahatma Gandhi's Salt Satyagraha launched during British rule in the
"Considering religio-cultural history of South Asia, that has deep devotion to
Sufi & Bhakti Saints & for where Pilgrimages, either to Amarnath or Ajmer, are a
holy & spiritually purifying act, we chose name for our peace march", added
Feroze."Throughout course of our journey for peace, we would appeal to people to
contribute a Mutthi bhar mitti - fist full of soil, that would then be collected
from every city, town & village along the way. By this, people would feel that
they are part of larger process of peace & unity", he said.
Noting Peepal is tree under which Buddha received his enlightenment and South
Asia currently needs dose of same kind of enlightenment, he said, "We will also
carry saplings – preferably Peepal from each of these places & plant them in
GARDEN OF PEACE that we will create along with a PILLAR OF PEACE or
Bharat-Pakistan Shanti Stambh. This could then be made in all cities towns &
villages across the two countries. We do need lot of emotional markers on our
cultural landscape - We will create same with soil of two countries."

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