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Writers pledge to advocate culture of dialogue, tolerance

Writers pledge to advocate culture of dialogue, tolerance

PESHAWAR: Noted poets, writers, intellectuals and researchers have pledged to promote a culture of dialogue and tolerance through their writings to achieve the goal of permanent peace in the region.

They writers gathered at a lively discussion to ponder over ways and means to face the challenges of new technology in the rapidly changing geo-political global village.

They highlighted various issues and requirements of the contemporary world with regard to emerging literary trends. The provincial culture directorate conducted the debate titled ‘Our literature and contemporary requirements’ at historic Sethi House here on Sunday.

Opening the debate, Naeem Safi, project director at culture directorate, said that the basic theme of the discussion was to highlight the role of literature in social development. He said literati of the entire province would be invited to share their views for promotion and preservation of local arts, social values and literary traditions.

The speakers said Pakhtuns suddenly became part of global village without passing through different stages of evolution. “The change in their life is, therefore, painful and uncalled for. Terrorism, extremism, poverty and intolerance and economic backwardness are some of the obstacles in the way of social development of our society,” they added.

Akbar Khan Hoti, specialist at the culture directorate, said that provincial government launched five new units including languages and literature, new media, crafts designs, visual arts, creative economy, research documentation and web developing to meet world challenges for effective exposure. He said that such open air debates would be conducted in all districts to evolve a consensus for promotion and preservation of arts, culture and literature.

Qari Javed Iqbal, a writer, said on the occasion that literature played a significant role in shaping the ideas of people. He said that it was foremost moral responsibility of poets and writers to give a due place to public issues in their writings.

Sana Ejaz, a rights activist and the lone woman participant of the event, questioned as to why Pakhtun literati only praised women’s lips and hair locks instead of appreciating their bravery and their role in the society.

“It is also an important requirement of the present time to encourage and endorse women’s role in the uplift of Pakhtun society. Though, Pakhtun women, from Malalai of Maiwand in the British-era to Malala Yousafzai of our militancy-plagued era, have rendered numerous sacrifices,” she said.

Hindko writer Dr Salahuddin said that Hindko literati had also contributed to highlighting of contemporary issues like others. He said that culture department should revive literary events and publication of literary magazines at the educational institutions in the province.

Urdu poet Aziz Ejaz said that writers should advocate humanism and tolerance in their pieces. He said that peace was the biggest requirement of the contemporary time.

Fiction writer Noorul Amin Yousafzai said that Pakhtun literati had always played their due role in every era and fulfilled their responsibilities. He said that from legendary Khushal Khan Khattak, Rahman Baba to a host of modern poets and writers well in accordance with requirements of contemporary time had suffered many hardships while raising voice of Pakhtuns.

Prof Mohib Wazir, Prof Izharullah Izhar, Prof Zubair Hasrat, Dr Owais Qarni, Noorul Basar Amn, Shabir Jan, Yousaf Ali Dilsoz, Malik Wazir Khan, Ihtisham Toru and Shams Moomand also spoke on the occasion.

Published in Dawn, August 8th, 2016

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