SARRC CHARTER DAY CELEBRATIONS INDIA, DECEMBER 2005

A panel discussion on the theme : 13 SAARC Summits : The Way Ahead was held on December 10, 2005. The discussion was chaired by H.E. Mr. Kama Dhoj Adhikary, Ambassador of Nepal in India, and Mr. Lalit Mansingh.

The panelists included : Mr. Rakesh Kumar, Special Secretary (Economic Relations), MEA; Mr. Lalit Mansingh, former Foreign Secretary, Government of India; Mr. RK. Kapur, Joint Secretary, SAARC Division, Government of India; Ms. Ajeet Cour, Chairperson, Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature; and Mr. Munawar Saeed Bhatti, Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan in Delhi.

The panelists spoke of the significant contributions of the Foundation of SAARC Writers and Literature in bringing the people of the region together through cultural initiatives.

At the outset, Mr. Rakesh Kumar delineated the importance of strengthening bonds of friendship with neighbouring countries, because progress is impossible without cooperation in economic, social and cultural spheres.

Ms. Ajeet Cour said that cultural connectivity and cultural interactions are the foundation stone of any economic, political, business and trade cooperation, because it is only cultural interactions which connect the countries of the region emotionally.
Mr. P.K. Kapur,Joint Secretary, SAARC, MEA, stated that FOSWAL had a tremendous potential in serving the interests of all the countries of South Asia, as it was apolitical and non-governmental, and therefore vitally important as a Track Two diplomatic initiative. He also emphasized the importance of culture and stated that in the 13th SAARC Summit Declaration, culture had been assigned a special paragraph.

 

Ms. Ajeet Cour addressing the delegates on the occasion of the SAARC 

 Charter Day 2005. On the dias, Mr. P.K. Kapur, Mr. Lalit Mansingh

and  Mr. Rakesh Kumar, Special Secretary, Ministry of External Affairs

In friendly embrace: Mr. Munawar Saeed Bhatti,

Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan, with Ms. Ajeet Cour

Ms. Ajeet Cour with Mr. Rai Riaz and Mr. Zia-Ulla Abbasi,

 First Secretary, (Press), Pakistan High Commission

 launched by FOSWAL would go a long way in inculcating an understanding for mutual coexistence and tolerance.

UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS DAY – DECEMBER, 2005

There was a group of 12 Sudanese artists and sculptors who participated in the exhibition. The art works brought out several instances of human rights abuses in African countries and drew the attention of the audience to the need for awareness of human rights issues. The exhibition was well attended by artists, writers, theatre activists, peace activists, representatives of the College of Arts, students of schools and colleges as well as diplomats and scholars.