Gilgit-Baltistan: Peace for Tolerance Conference in Gilgit

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Gilgit: Tolerance and open-mindedness in society, especially in matters pertaining to religion, are inevitable for durable peace and stability. This was the consensus among speakers at a seminar titled “Peace for tolerance” held by Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) Special Task Force in Gilgit on Thursday.

The seminar was attended by politicians, intelligentsia, poets, educationists and students from schools in Gilgit.

The speakers made a vivid assessment of the situation of Gilgit in the previous decade with respect to division on sectarian basis.

“Without tolerance, we cannot expect peace to prevail,” said Karakoram International University Dean of Social Sciences Department Shafiq Jullandhry.

He said that the developed countries adopted the norms of civility and progressed in all fields of life.

PML-N Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B) President Hafizur Rehman accused politicians for the turmoil in G-B, saying that politicians created rifts between sects to win their seats.

He praised the late PPP founder Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, but said some of his acts left a negative impact on the society in G-B, which paved way for religious fanatics to step in and fill in the vacuum.

“Bhutto abolished the Raja system in G-B, but he handed over the people to the bureaucracy instead of introducing a political setup, which left the people astray,” he said, adding that the elections in G-B were held on a party basis, favouring small factions and groups of vested interests.

“Political parties in G-B should be discouraged from sectarian politics, which has repeatedly marred law and order in the region,” said Rehman, adding that educational institutions should focus on character building besides imparting education to the youth.

Earlier, HRCP Gilgit-Baltistan Coordinator Israrud Din said the HRCP formally monitored the elections in 2009. He said they carried out different activities in schools and held awareness programmes on human rights in several districts as a part of the advocacy campaign.

Courtesy: The Express Tribune

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