LAHORE: The Aaghaz-e-Dosti Pakistan chapter will launch the 6th Indo-Pak Peace Calendar at the South Asian Free Media Association (Safma) here on Jan 27.

In a statement on Tuesday, it said the launch of the peace calendar exhibited great support of people from both Pakistan and India who believe in peace and mutual prosperity of the South Asian neighbours. The most inspiring aspect of the calendar is that it carries paintings contributed by schoolchildren from both the countries. The artworks reflect the innocent aspirations of people for maintaining strong friendships. Through this voluntary initiative, children have also exchanged heart-warming letters with each other which were exhibited at Faiz Ghar.

The statement adds the calendar also carries inspiring words of personalities who have made significant contribution to peace-building in the subcontinent.

It says Aaghaz-e-Dosti is a volunteer friendship initiative run through collaboration of the non-government organisations – Mission Bhartiyam of India and Hum Sab Aik Hain of Pakistan – and it is maintained through crowd-funding. The Aaghaz-e-Dosti has created a door of friendship between peoples of India and Pakistan through the letters and greeting cards exchange programme, cultural and open mic nights via videoconferencing.

The statement says Aaghaz-e-Dosti is an apolitical effort by the people of both nations and it carries out volunteer work while respecting the laws of both India and Pakistan.

Since the last two years, Raza Khan had been organising the calendar launch in Pakistan. In May 2017, Raza became the convener of Aaghaz-e-Dosti in Pakistan. However, he went missing in the first week of December and the government has, so far, been unable to trace him. A case was registered with police and the proceedings of the case are going on in the high court.

Published in Dawn, January 24th, 2018

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