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Association for Communal Harmony in Asia (ACHA)
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India-Pakistan Peace Day 2004

Lahore, Pakistan: 10th Anniversary of the Pakistan-India Peoples Forum for Peace and Democracy

Celebration of 10th anniversary of the Pakistan-India Peoples Forum for Peace and Democracy (PIPFPD) was held at Lahore, from September 3 to 5. Representatives from its chapters in over 19 Indian cities came to Lahore, Pakistan, to participate in it.

The forum was set up in September 1994 in Lahore “to spread peace at the grass roots level, promote bilateral relations, friendship and trade, help governments to resolve major issues peacefully, strive for easier communication and visa policies and strengthen interpersonal contacts,” according to the forum central general secretary and founding member, Anees Haroon. It has chapters in all the major Pakistani cities and more than 1,000 members in Pakistan.

Resolutions passed on the final day, among other things, urged the governments of India and Pakistan to continue their composite dialogue with consistency, patience and open minds.

The delegates called on them “to take immediate steps to freeze further nuclearisation, desist from conducting new nuclear and missle tests, and desist from glorifying these measures.”

They demanded that the two governments “take concrete steps towards normalisation of relations and allowing the people of both countries to meet each other freely,” and “to lift the existing restrictions on the exchange of each other's publications.”

Both governments were encouraged “to urgently initiate the process of reviewing and revisig school curricula in both countries to remove hate material and propaganda glorifying the symbols of jehad and militarisation; and to include peace education as a compulsory part of the curricula.”

They recommended that they accord the Kashmiri people “a central place in the dialogue process.”

Other resolutions addressed issues related to the religious minorities, gender discrimination, respect for democracy, and the rule of law.

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