INDIA PAKISTAN FRIENDSHIP AND PEACE MARCH

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INDIA PAKISTAN FRIENDSHIP AND PEACE MARCH

Ahmedabad to Naderwai-IliyaBet, 19 to 30 June, 2018

In 1947 the country was divided by the foreign rulers by playing a game of divide and rule to which the religious fundamentalists fell prey. India and Pakistan since then have a checkered history and uneasy relationship sometimes climaxing in wars and violent conflagrations.

While the governments prefer to maintain adversarial relationship, which now sustains certain vested interests on both sides, the common people and business interests on two sides want peace. They do not want conflicts in which people die. The soldiers dying on both sides after all come from mostly modest middle class rural backgrounds. While the leaders can meet when they choose to, the common people do not have control over their destiny.

We believe if the governments cannot solve the disputes between the two countries then the people should take the initiative. If the common people of two countries are allowed to meet then over a period of time peace and harmony will prevail. We urge the two governments to facilitate the meeting of common people from two sides by granting them passports and visas easily. Since people of two sides of border share a common culture they can play an important role where the governments have failed.

Along the Indian border with Pakistan there are openings between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad in Kashmir, at Wagah-Attari in Punjab and at Munabao-Khokrapar in Rajasthan-Sindh. Gujarat doesn’t have an opening into Pakistan even though a number of fisherfolk from both sides land up in each other’s jails. The people in Bhuj, Kutch have had intimate relationships with people from the other side and given an opportunity trade can flourish between the two areas.

If the border between Gujarat and Sindh is opened either at Khavda or Nada Bet the people from two sides will get an opportunity to meet easily and there will be promotion of trade, tourism and ultimately peace and friendship will be strengthened. The fisherfolk whose relatives land in jail on other side can easily travel across to find out their well being and make an effort to get them released. It is in the interest of common people that borders are opened up.

If people of two countries are allowed to meet freely an atmosphere of peace and harmony will be created in which it will be easier to resolve the outstanding disputes too. When our defence expenses will go down resources will be freed up for developmental activities which will benefit the poor on both sides.

When the two Koreas can end their enmity after almost as long a period as India-Pakistan animosity has existed, why can the two South Asian neighbours not achieve the same feat?

We urge the two governments to replace the military ceremony on Wagah-Attari every evening with a peace ceremony where people are allowed to meet and celebrate peace, harmony and friendship. Such a model of peace ceremony can then be replicated on all border openings.

We also urge the governments of India and Pakistan to create a situation in which ultimately all restrictions on travel across the border are removed and people are allowed to meet freely. This will be a great service to the humanity.

Sanjay Tula, Mehsana, 9426388234, vishwagrambasna@gmail.com

Kausharali Saiyed, Ahmedabad, 9904150217, kaushars@yahoo.com

Sandeep Pandey, 079 66324953, 0522 4242830 (Lucknow), ashaashram@yahoo.com

Organisations endorsing the India-Pakistan Friendship and Peace March: Pakistan India People’s Forum for Peace and Democracy, Aaghaz-e-Dosti, Minority Coordination Committee, Gujarat, Gujarat Lok Samiti, Bandhkam Mazdoor Sangathan, Pakistan Institute for Labour Education and Research, Karachi, National Alliance of People’s Movements, Bombay Sarvodaya Mandal, All India Secular Forum, Manthan Samayiki, Kolkata, Jharkhand Nagrik Prayas, sacw.net, Confederation of Voluntary Agencies, Hyderabad, Hamari Awaz, Insaf Foundation, Gujarat Mazdoor Panchayat, Khudai Khidmatgar, Socialist Party (India)

INDIA PAKISTAN FRIENDSHIP AND PEACE MARCH ROUTE

Ahmedabad to Naderwai-IliyaBet, 19 to 30 June, 2018

Date

From

To

Distance

(in km)

Contact

19/6/18

Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad

Kalol

27

20/6/18

Kalol

Nandasan

22

21/6/18

Nandasan

Mehsana

26

22/6/18

Mehsana

Sihi

30

23/6/18

Sihi

Patan

25

24/6/18

Patan

Roda

26

25/6/18

Roda

Thara

17

26/6/18

Thara

Diyodar

18

27/6/18

Diyodar

Bhabhar

25

28/6/18

Bhabhar

Suigam

27

29/6/18

Suigam

Nadeswari Mata

20

30/6/18

Nadeswari Mata

Pakistan Border

27

Total distance 290 km

Villages on opposite side of border in Pakistan: Jetli, Asani, Didva, Bartala, Bhodesar, Churiya, City: Nagarparkar

Appeal to Make Financial Contribution for the March

Please make the India Pakistan Friendship and Peace March successful by contributing towards meeting the expenses of organising the March. You may make a financial contribution by using the following bank account details.

Name of Account: Socialist Party (India)

Bank: Allahabad Bank

Branch: Hazratganj, Lucknow, U.P.

Account Number: 50084256339

IFSC: ALLA0210062 (there is a zero following second A and two zeros consecutively)

When you make a financial contribution to the abovementioned account please inform Sharad Patel, 9506533722 or bhikshavrattimukti.abhiyan@gmail.com

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