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The Role Of Civil Society in Pakistan and India

Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4
Closing & Thanks
Notes on Speakers


Civil Society in India and Pakistan, Closing & Thanks

Based on the procedings of the seminar "The Role Of Civil Society in Pakistan and India:
Peace, Conflict Resolution, Democracy" by Jang Group of Newspapers (Pakistan) & Friedrich/Naumann Foundation (Germany), September 12-13, 1997 at Pearl Continental Hotel, Karachi.

Text edited by Khurram Ali Shafique and Farida Z. Hemani

Closing Remarks & Thanks

Closing remarks from India
Closing remarks from Pakistan
Vote of thanks

Closing remarks from India

Mr. S.V. Raju summed up the seminar proceedings by remarking that "all good things must come to an end." He said that he was touched by the warmth and friendship shown by their Pakistani friends and thanked the Jang Group of publication and the Friedrich/Naumann Foundation for holding this seminar.

He said that they, the Indian participants, were in for a pleasant surprise when they found their Pakistani counterparts to be frank and open in their views. They were under the wrong impression that because of their experience under military rule, they Pakistani participants would be inhibited but this was not to be the case.

He also stressed that since we are basically people of the same stock and share the same culture and experience, they did not feel like in a foreign land in Pakistan. In response to the criticism of such seminars, he said that not all seminars end up for their own sake and this one has been successful in being different.

Closing remarks from Pakistan

Mr. Rehman began by asking the question: dialogues between India and Pakistan are taking place at various levels, so what is different about this seminar?

He felt that in the seminar "we have looked at people’s capacity to influence their governments."

A lot of new area was covered in this seminar and therefore depth and detail were compromised. "There is no harm in admitting that in terms of concrete suggestions we have not covered much ground." Yet it has been ambitious and worthwhile in terms of the breadth of the topics discussed.

He suggested that the deliberations of this seminar should be translated into respective national languages and widely disseminated. Also, follow-up meetings should take place to pick up certain problem areas and find solutions. He thanked the Jang group of Publications and the Freidrich/Naumann Foundation for facilitating this exchange of ideas and ended on an optimistic note by saying that "the days of shouting and firing will soon come to an end."

Vote of Thanks

Mr. Ghazi Salahuddin, Editing Director of Jang Group of Publications, offered his thanks to the Indian guests, the Freidich/Naumann Foundation, Dr. Rene Klaff and Dr. Rainer Adam.

In response to the criticism that such seminars do not touch the common man (who do not understand English, the language used in this seminar), he said that the flagship of Jang Group of publications was the Urdu daily Jang and it was providing excellent and comprehensive reporting of the proceedings of this seminar.

He also emphasised that the Jang Group had taken the initiative of this seminar and that this seminar had been funded equally by the Jang Group and the Freidrich Neiman Foundation and not solely by the foreign sponsor. He also thanked his Editor- in -Chief, Mir Shakeel-ur-Rehman for taking interest and providing support.

He said that this seminar had been different from other such seminars because a lot of thought had been put in the design of the seminar as well as the choice of the speakers. They had only invited people whom they felt were genuinely interested in civil society issue, were experts in their respective field and not just anyone off the street. He felt that a lot has been learnt and exchanged and many useful things have come out of it which need to be built upon and pursued further.

He said that the Jang Group of Publications also had a civil responsibility of "Public Jounalism" to fulfil and arranging this seminar has been a step in that direction. He said that" An open society is the vested interest of the print media" He assured that the proceedings of this seminar would be translated into both English and Urdu and published in the form of books.

Lastly, he thanked the Indian guests for their co-operation and said that he looked forward in future such support from them.

Notes on Speakers

Source: The Role Of Civil Society in Pakistan and India:
Peace, Conflict Resolution, Democracy: Procedings of the seminar
by Jang Group of Newspapers (Pakistan) & Friedrich/Naumann Foundation (Germany).
Edited by Khurram Ali Shafique and Farida Z. Hemani

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