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Chinar Corps organizes seminar on ‘Kashmir at Historic Crossroads’

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Srinagar: A one-day long seminar titled, ‘Kashmir at Historic Crossroads’ was organized by Chinar Corps in collaboration with a Kashmir-based Think-Tank, ‘Kashmir Chapter of International Centre for Peace Studies’ at BB Cantt Srinagar Thursday.

The seminar was third in the series of seminars organised to create platforms for intellectual debates on issues pertaining to Kashmir, said PRO (Defence) Srinagar.

“The seminar had six speakers from cross section of intelligentsia speaking on topics relevant to ushering in permanent peace in Kashmir. Ashok K Behuria of Manohar Parrikar Institute of Defence Studies speaking on a faltering and isolated Pakistan, explained that it was a strategic opportunity for building a lasting peace in Kashmir,” the PRO said.

“Prof Ashok Aima, ex Vice Chancellor of Central University of Kashmir and member of International Centre of Peace Studies highlighted Pakistan induced propaganda to politically and religiously mislead the youth. He emphasized on the role of various segments of society and departments in countering negativity emanating from Pakistan,” he said.

“Dr Md Muzaffar Khan of J&K Police Rehabilitation Centre, Srinagar spoke about increasing drug abuse and narco terrorism fuelling conflict in Kashmir. He talked about the ‘denial of society to accept the problem’ and explained various initiatives undertaken by the Govt to tackle the drug menace and encouraged citizens in identifying drug peddlers and at the same time assisting the misguided youth to shun the habit,” the PRO said.

“Javed Ahmad Beigh a young leader, peace activist and journalist from Badgam addressed the problem of continued refugee status of Kashmir Hindus. He took the opportunity to highlight that return of Kashmiri Hindus would enable the Kashmiri society to regain its multi-ethnic and multi-religious heritage,” he said.

“Eminent Kashmiri journalist, Saleem Pundit, working with the Times of India, spoke on role of free and fair media as a pillar of democracy in J&K, he also spoke about the added dimension of social media and its impact. He urged Kashmiri society and journalists to see through the agents of conflict and urged them to contribute in peace building through positive stories,” he added.

The PRO further said: “Saba Sheikh, an advocate and working through White Globe NGO, addressed the issue of impact of conflict on women and role of women in reconciliation and peace. She passionately spoke about the women all over the world and in Kashmir need to fight for and get their equal status in society. She talked how women have been ray of hope across religions and sects, and hence have an important role for peace in J&K.”

“Sheikh Khalid Jehangir’s latest book on Kashmir titled ‘Why Article 370 had to go’, was also released on the sidelines of the Seminar. Sheikh Khalid Jehangir, who is Secretary General, International Centre of Peace Studies, has previously written a book titled, ‘They snatched my playground’ which has been well received by the literary world,” he said.

“Lt Gen DP Pandey, GOC Chinar Corps, complimented all the speakers on their insights and detailed talk on the subjects. While addressing the gathering, he said that Kashmir has been impacted by geo-political maneuverings, resulting in seven exoduses of Kashmiri Pandits from Kashmir valley. Pakistan’s continued use of Kashmir as a tool to hit at idea of India and continued propaganda to misguide youth has had severe impact on the outlook of peace-loving and progressive Kashmiri society,” the PRO said.

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