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India-Pakistan Peace Caravan "Aman ke Badhte Qadam"

Tuesday 27th July, - from 4-5pm Marathi Patrakar, CST, Mumbai

5-6 pm. Candle lighting programmme & Peace Oath at Gateway of India. The Peace Caravan will start simultaneously at Mumbai and Karachi  and reach Wagah-Atari border on 13th August, 2010 .

Karamat Ali: (Trade Unionist, Executive Director of Pakistan Institute for Labour Education & Research) Mahesh Bhatt: (Film-maker & committed Human Rights activist) Asghar Ali Engineer: (Islamic Scholar & doyen of the Secular Movement) & Sandeep Pandey: (Peace Activist & Magsaysay Award Winner) 

Undoubtedly détente between India & Pakistan is the key to sustained peace in the entire region. Yet for more than 6 decades, peace has been an elusive reality. The masses across the divide are the main victims of this discord & thus it is the People of the two countries that will have to urge the governments for a comprehensive & conclusive dialogue. It is in this context that we have organized the peace yatra, that will traverse the length of this country & reach out to the students & masses.

The speakers, who are committed to the cause of peace between India & Pakistan, will also hold forth on the prospects for a meaningful dialogue between the two countries & the path that lies ahead.

The yatra will be flagged off from Mani Bhawan, the abode of Mahatma Gandhi on July 27 at 10a m. The Deputy CM, Shri Chagan Bhujpal, Prof. R. Velukar (VC Mumbai University), Retd Justice Dr. C. S. Dharamadhikari, Shri Tushar Gandhi, Prof. P. Pabrekar (NSS, State Liasion officer) & Prof. M. Nile (Dir. Student Welfare, Mumbai University) will be present. We have also invited the heads of the various religions as well as students, who will gather in large numbers along the entire course of the yatra.

A detailed programme of the yatra in Mumbai has also been provided.
Do kindly assign your reporter & photographer to cover the proceedings.
Thanking You, Yours Truly,

Varsha V V, Feroze Mithiborwala, Kishore Jagtap & Sheikh Muhammad Hussein. (Mumbai Organizing Committee)

India-Pakistan Peace Caravan –   Amn ke Badhte Qadam

The Peace Caravan will start simultaneously at Mumbai and Karachi on 28 th   July

and reach Wagah-Atari border on 14 th   August, 2010  

Probably nowhere in the world are people of two countries as emotionally entwined as are the people of India and Pakistan . Political separation and blood-spattered migration of millions has left deep scars on the collective consciousness of the two nations. Post-partition, our tumultuous history has been interspersed with four wars and loss of innumerable innocent lives. Fundamentalist groups ensure that the fires of animosity are kept alive while Kashmir continues to burn, threatening to take the two countries on a course of self-destruction.    

And yet even as the heart that might harbour hatred and distrust, upon meeting ‘the other' surges forth to embrace the ‘enemy', to offer and reciprocate warmth and friendship. Common people on both sides want peace and normal relations to be established between the two countries. How do we explain this?

Even though geographical boundaries have been forced upon us by historical circumstances, our common customs and traditions, our language, music, food, our values and way of life – continue to bind us together. Even our problems – of poverty and unemployment, of crisis in governance, in health, in education - are the same. On both sides, our people are pushed to the peripheries of poverty by unjust models of economic development. Can we afford this hostility?    

So while the two governments make slow and intermittent steps to establish peace, depending on their current political will and strategic exigencies, we feel that   if genuine peace and friendship has to be established between the two countries giving a chance to real progress and development, the initiative will have to be taken by the people themselves - by the poor, the women, the tribals, the working masses, by us - who are made most vulnerable by this continuous atmosphere of antagonism and war.      

Various such peoples' initiatives for peace have been witnessed over the last many years, the   Indo-Pakistan Delhi to Multan Peace March   in 2005 being one of them. In the spirit of sufi saints and poets who spoke of love,   Padyatris walked from Delhi to Multan spreading the message of love and brotherhood in the hope that our governments would recognise that the spirit of give and take, of mutual co-operation and friendship will bring progress and development to our subcontinent and to South Asia.  

Witnessing the ongoing blow-hot blow-cold attempts of our governments towards the process of dialogue, we are once again emboldened to take up another joint people to people initiative - the Indo-Pakistan Peace Caravan,   Amn ke Badhte Qadam.   Peace & development are possible only in an environment of trust & goodwill: this, indeed, is the message of this Peace Caravan.   The Peace Caravan is travelling through villages, towns, cities – interacting with people from Mumbai to Wagah, from Karachi to Attari – to build an atmosphere of trust & friendship and to gather our collective strength to pressurise our governments to end hostility.    

We understand that our objectives cannot be achieved through just this effort. We also believe that this Peace Caravan is just one element in the many initiatives being taken up by the two peoples. Let us, then, join hands for the sustained creation and development of an environment of trust, goodwill and peace between the two countries – indeed, in South Asia as a whole.    

We ask you to lend your commitment to bring in peace and ask our governments to adhere to the following objectives:

1.   Movement of people across the borders should be made easier . Normalisation of relations can happen only if people are allowed to freely and easily meet and interact with each other. Restrictions on movement across the border should be eased and in fact the visa-passport regime should be removed. Heeding to the wishes and aspirations of the people of both countries, a mutually agreed upon and monitored open border system should prevail (like in the case of India – Nepal )

2.   India and Pakistan must resolve issues with a commitment to unconditional friendship.   A solution to all contentious issues should be found peacefully through mutual dialogue. These issues include the issue of Jammu and Kashmir  (which, in our view, should be resolved by taking into consideration the wishes and aspirations of the people of Jammu and Kashmir ), and the issue of terror-related activities on account of which the people of both countries are suffering. Both countries must end proxy, low intensity wars against each other & restrain their intelligence agencies from fomenting trouble across the border.

3.  India and Pakistan should dismantle their atomic-nuclear establishments, destroy landmines and withdraw the army . Real security lies not in the piling of arms and ammunition but in building a relationship based on mutual trust. Besides proving harmful to one's own citizens, underground landmines and nuclear bombs use up precious financial resources that we can ill-afford. Both countries should stop wasting resources in the name of defence, and use them instead for the eradication of poverty.

India-Pakistan Peace Caravan –   Amn ke Badhte Qadam

Mumbai to Attari border [28 th   July to 14 th   August, 2010 ]    





27 th   July

Mumbai, Gateway of India

Varsha V.V., 09869289453, Kishore Jagtap, 09324514101

Shaikh Hussain , 9869289448 , Feroze Mithiborwala , 9820897517

28 th   July

Mumbai, Mani Bhawan

Varsha V.V., 09869289453, Kishore Jagtap, 09324514101

Shaikh Hussain , 9869289448 , Feroze Mithiborwala , 9820897517

29 th   July


Varsha V.V., 09869289453, Kishore Jagtap, 09324514101

Shaikh Hussain , 9869289448 , Feroze Mithiborwala , 9820897517

30 th   July


Jabir Bhai Bhoga, 09913303623

30 th   July


Jabir Bhai Bhoga, 0991330623

31 st   July


Mahesh Kothari, 09879583785

31 st   July


Kishore Desai, 09879124650

1 st   August


Paragji Bapuji, 09426142151

1 st   August


Hansmukh Patel, 09426321832

2 nd   August


Syed Aleemuddin, 09879466247

2 nd   August


Mahadev Vidrohi, 09428825908, Danish, 09898990409

3 rd   August


Rohit Prajapati, 0265 2320399

3 rd   August


Laxmi, 09979422122, Shafi Umerji, 09998243435

4 th   August


Jayanti Bhai, 09426461132

4 th   August


Rajesh Bairagi, 09425202527

5 th   August


Rajesh Bairagi, 09425202527

5 th   August


Gulsher Saheb, 09829146758

6 th   August

Sawai Madhopur

Abdurazzak, 09829805967

6 th   August

Gangapur City

Absar Ahmad, 09413051650

7 th   August


Zahid Bhai, 09250148154

7 th   August


Abduraheem Saheb, 09250148154

8 th   - 9 th   August


Bipin Rai, 09999464609, Dhananjay Tripathi, 09312691435, Shah Alam, 09873672153

10 th   August


Rammohan Rai, 09354926281

10 th   August


Rammohan Rai, 09354926281

11 th   August


Ram Singh, 09416657498

11 th   August


Dr. Arun Mitra, 09417000360

12 th   August


Ramesh Yadav, 09872318484

12 th -14 th   August


Ramesh Yadav, 09872318484


The karwan will merge with the candle lighting programme at Attari border on the night of 14 th   August organized by Sh. Kuldip Nayar. A similar candle lighting event will take place on the Wagah side of border by Pakistani friends.    

For information about route ( India )   please contact Faisal Khan, 09313106745, 09968828230, Varsha 09869289453

Financial contributions in India   may be sent in the name of PEACE to A-124/6, Katwaria Sarai, New Delhi-110016.

For information about Peace Carvan , please subscribe to   indopakpeacecaravan @yahoogroups.com    

Endorsing organizations (till date): Institute for Peace and Secular Studies, Sangat – A South Asian Feminist Network, South Asia Partnership, PEACE, Labour Party, INSAF, CMKP, Centre for Study of Secularism and Society, Peace Keepers, Asha Parivar, Democratic Commission for Human Development, National Alliance of People's Movements, Punjabi Khoj Ghar, ANHAD, Giyan Foundation, Kriti, Himmat, Seimorgh, Ayodhya ki Awaz, Tehrik-e-Niswan, Swayam, PILER, Phule Ambedkar Vichar Manch, Mass Foundation, Jagori, National Youth Forum, NCDHR, People's Development Foundation, Sadbhav Mission, ASR, NACDOR, IPSS, Disha, NCJP, COVA, Bulleh Shah Foundation, Dosti Trust,   IGSSS, Shahri Adhikar Manch,   Women Action Forum, Sungi Development Foundation, Global Gandhi Forum, Mumbai Sarvodaya Mandal, Awami Bharat, SUPRO (Bangladesh), Jana Avakasha (Sri Lanka), Help-O (Sri Lanka)