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Pakistan-India detente thru’ peoples contact

Pakistan-India detente thru’ peoples contact

LAHORE: A Polish academic has floated the idea of reconciliation through cultural exchange and people-to-people contact between Pakistan and India for lasting peace in the South Asia region.

“There should be confidence building measures (CBMs) and concrete efforts to pacify hawkish elements on both sides of the border,” said University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Warsaw (Poland) Prof Dr Agnieszka Kuszewska at a seminar on ‘Pakistan-India relations: The European perspective,’ arranged by Punjab University’s Pakistan Study Centre on the New Campus on Saturday.

Read: From India to Pakistan: 'We're not so different'

Highlighting the significance of Pakistan-India peace relations from the European perspective, she said Saarc was a paper tiger as no real cooperation existed between its member countries.

Comparing South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) and the European Union (EU), she said almost all the member states of the EU had high human development index while Saarc countries were mired in poverty.

Drawing similarities between Pakistan-India nuclear rivalry and the US-Soviet cold war, Dr Kuszewska also brought to light the differences the eastern and western Europe had.

“Western bloc’s concerns are economic in nature whereas eastern Europe’s matter revolves around security issues,” she said.

Also read: Pakistani, Indian students come closer through virtual chat

A lively question-answer session was held at the end of the keynote speech of the Polish scholar at the seminar, followed by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing between the Punjab University and the University of Humanities and Social Sciences, Warsaw.

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s Federal Education Minister Dato Seri Idris Jusoh called on Punjab University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran here on Saturday.

Malaysia’s High Commissioner to Pakistan Hasrul Sani Mujtabar, PU deans and principals were also present on the occasion.

During the meeting, Dr Mujahid Kamran gave a detailed introduction of various campuses and departments of Punjab University and highlighted its academic achievements.

The meeting stressed the need to enhance collaboration in various academic spheres and exchange programmes and discussed various issues of mutual interest.

Later, the Malaysian minister visited the PU library and interacted with students who warmly welcomed him.

Published in Dawn, May 3rd, 2015

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