Skip to main content

Villagers demand Pak consulate in Ahmedabad, bus service to Karachi, as peace march ends "successfully"

Sandeep Pandey with Baldev Nath Bapu at a temple 25 km from the border
By Sandeep Pandey*
The India-Pakistan Friendship and Peace March from Ahmedabad to Nada Bet during 19 to 29 June, 2018 concluded successfully, even though Ahmedabad Police detained the march for about 3 hours at the beginning from Gandhi Ashram and Border Security Force didn’t give permission to the march from Nadeshwari Mata Mandir to the border, a distance of 25 km.
The march was taken out around the following issues:
(1) Governments of India and Pakistan reach an agreement to stop killing of each other’s soldiers on border,
(2) Grant easy permission for visas to travel across the border. Waive the visa requirement for old, children, journalists, academics, social activists and labourers,
(3) Open one route on Gujarat border with Sind to facilitate travel and trade across two countries either at Khavda or Nada Bet,
(4) Revive the proposal to run a bus service between Suigam and Nagarparkar,
(5) China, India and Pakistan should give up their nuclear weapons to make Asia a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone and safe for all people, and
(6) Replace the daily evening military ceremony at Wagha-Attari border by a peace ceremony. Allow people from two countries to meet freely for a couple of hours every day without Passports and Visas merely by depositing one of their identity cards and making proper security arrangements.
About 500 signatures were collected during the march on the abovementioned issues which will be sent to PMs of India and Pakistan.
A demand was raised during the march at Balisana, where about hundred families have relatives who live in Karachi, to open a Pakistani Consulate at Ahmedabad so that they would be saved the trouble of long distance travel and going to Delhi to obtain their visas.
Baldev Nath Bapu, head priest of temple in Devdarbar, between Thara and Diyodar, belonging to Lohana (Thakkar) community, hosted the peace march during day time on June 26, 2018 described his experience of travel to Pakistan last year for about a month. He is building a hospital in Salemkot from the donations he received from his followers in Pakistan. He refuted the allegations that Hindus are forcibly converted to Islam in Pakistan and temples are destroyed there. He said on record that not once during his month long stay there he received any complaints like these.
A letter has been written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to start a bus service between Ahmedabad to Karachi similar to the one started by former PM Atal Behari Vajpayee between Delhi and Lahore.
We believe that India and Pakistan have been overtaken by Bangladesh in social indices like literacy, malnourishment, fertility rate, health status of children and women, women empowerment primarily because the two countries have heavily invested in defence, including the dangerous nuclear weapons whereas Bangladesh has judiciously concentrated on improving the general condition of its women and children. The security for common people comes from fulfillment of their basis needs. Nuclear weapons at best protect the vested interested of the ruling elite.
India and Pakistan must bury their differences and resolve all their outstanding disputes amicably through dialogue and give peace a chance.
---
*Senior Magsaysay award winning academic-activist, leader of the India-Pakistan Friendship and Peace March

Comments

Anand Sahay said…
Pleasantly surprised to see there are peace marched in Gujarat on Pakistan. Glad you publish these.

TRENDING

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Liberating Bengal Hindus? Worst flames of communal division, lessons from the past

By Shamsul Islam*  The whole thrust of the RSS-BJP election campaign for 2021 state assembly elections in West Bengal has been to save Bengal from the rule of Mamata Bannerjee who is allegedly not a ‘Hindu’. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a self-proclaimed Hindu nationalist, as usual set the polarizing agenda. While addressing the first election rally, he called upon the electorate to overthrow the ‘nirmam’ (cruel) rule of Mamata by showing a ‘Ram Card’. He did not name Hindus directly but there was no confusion about the religious identity of the electorate Indian PM was addressing to.

Pradeep Bhattacharya, who spent his life for the cause of working masses, rational thinking

By YS Gill*  At 11:30 pm on May 3, 2021, I lost my best friend and comrade Pradeep Bhattacharya. He spent his life dedicated to the cause of the working masses and rational thinking. A person of thorough scientific outlook and a well-read student of Marxian thought, he was a walking encyclopedia and could speak on a wide variety of topics from art and culture to science, philosophy, history and politics.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Rs 5 crore 'demand' for India Today anchor: What about 52 lesser souls who died in April?

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  A well known Hindutva protagonist masquerading as journalist passed away recently resulting in messages of condolences and tribute right from the Prime Minister and the Home Minister to progressive liberals expressing grief of his untimely death. It is said that he passed away due to cardiac arrest, though the fact is, he was also Covid infected. The Prime Minister and the Home Minister termed him a ‘brave’ journalist, insisting, his passing away has left a big ‘vacuum’.

Modi's Hindutva 'ensuring' empowerment of rich, disenfranchisement of poor

Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  The Hindutva socio-psychopaths are neither nationalists nor patriotic people. These medieval reactionary forces don’t understand the idea of citizenship, justice, liberty, equality and humanism. Indian democracy is merely an electoral transaction for the Hindutva forces. Hindutva forces neither follow science nor understand the sufferings of fellow human beings. These core qualities are common among the Hindutva forces in India.

Despite crisis, Modi's Hindutva strategy 'increased' mass base in society and polity

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  Narendra Modi and his RSS brethren can qualify as masters of fake claims. There is a long lists of lies spread by RSS, BJP and their IT cell workers. It is not a personality disorder or lying with fear. They are trained to defend Modi and his government’s decisions in whatever possible way. They defended demonetisation by arguing that it is “an important step” in his fight against black money and corruption.

India's Covid-19 'nightmare': A product of majoritarian Hindutva ideological praxis?

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  Indians struggle to find place and time to bury their dead due to the devastating effects of the second wave of Covid-19 in India. The crematoriums in the capital cities are overflowing with dead bodies. People are dying without oxygen and basic medical support. The cities like Delhi and Mumbai are struggling to cope with the rising number of infections and COVID-19 led deaths. The deaths and destitutions are products of a defunct BJP government led by Narendra Modi.

Indian media persons collapsing to Covid disease as fast as 3 per day, third highest

Yogesh Sharma, Shailesh Rawal  By Our Representative  The Switzerland based media rights and safety body, Press Emblem Campaign ( PEC ) has said that it is “alarming for Indian journalists”, who have lost at least 107 colleagues to Covid-19”, noting, Indian “journo-colleagues” have been collapsing to the Covid-19 complications now as fast as three scribes per day. In a statement, PEC said, “India with 107 media corona-casualties has already placed itself on the third position just below Brazil (181 dead) and Peru (140) in the list of Covid-19 victims among journalist.”

Communal rhetoric? Hindutva preached by RSS-BJP is 'monolithic', not Hinduism

By Prem Verma*  I am a devout Hindu but not a believer of RSS Hindutva form of Hinduism which brings about hatred of other religions. My Hindu religion has not taught me to look down on other religions and neither has it instilled in me to go about converting others to my religion because my religion is superior.