Media Foundation 360 organized a seminar on ‘religious and social festivities with Citizen Action cluster at The First Hotel, Multan November 27, 2019. Journalists from print and electronic media, lawyers, human rights activists, members of civil societies, and only one partner of Azm e Pakistan (AeP) Ufaq Development Organization attended the seminar.
MF360’s Communication Officer Hasnain Tirmizi welcomed the participants and stated the objectives of the activity. Later, the participants introduced themselves one by one.
Consultant Shehryar Warraich briefed the participants about background of religious and social festivities in Multan (South Punjab).
Hesaid, “Civil Society and media has done a lot for peace and interfaith harmony in the country but it is not enough. We have to continue our efforts to make our dream of making Pakistan a peaceful and inclusive state true.” The religious harmony and peace are however, not possible without participation of minorities and women at every public forum, he added.
He said that a peaceful society cannot be established without social and inter-faith harmony. “Peace of any country is linked to harmony in the society. Once, a society creates harmony in its ranks, the outcome is always prosperity,” he said.
Sajjad Ali of Ufaq Development Organization said, “We launched our project in Jungle Kalran, Multan for interfaith harmony and peace. Our achievement is we constituted several peace committees in the area which look after religious festivities and occasion due to which people belonging to different faith participate in each other religious activities.”
Allah Yar alias Fauji, Secretary of a Peace Committee of Basti Mali Shaheed told an interesting anecdote that was warmly appreciated by the listerners. He said, “In our village Sunni and Shia, like other place, used to hold their funeral prayers of their deceased separately. Then, the peace committee gathered elders of the two communities and proposed that the funeral prayers should be offered jointly. We managed to persuade them. Now, If a Shia dies, his funeral prayer is led by a Shia cleric while Sunni offer the prayer behind him and of a Sunni dies, Shia do the same thing and offer prayer behind a Sunni cleric.”
Muhammad Waqas, President of Peace Committee of Jungle Kalran told the participants another story of conflict resolution. He said, “In our village there is only one playground. In past, when Shia would play cricket in that ground, Sunni would not go there and when Sunni would use the playground, Shia would stay away. We intervened and brought them close as the result of which they formed mixed teams of Sunni and Shia and organized a tournament.”
Shahadat Hussain, Geo Tv’s Bureau Chief and a Mentor of MF 360 gave the vote of thanks and praised the participants for attending the event with full concentration and seriousness.
Some photos of the event