Islamabad—Pakistan intends to take a new initiative of peace through art and culture with neighbouring India and wish to materialize into a reality an agreement that was already reached upon long ago but failed to sign due to tense relationship between the two countries.
Pakistan’s new cultural diplomacy was set off few days earlier when Director General of Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) Tauqir Nasir visited India and held useful talk with his Indian counterparts to take up the thread where it was left six years ago.
India-Pakistan pact for exchange in music, dance, theatre and visual arts could become reality next year with the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) renewing a dialogue with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), affirmed the DG of PNCA.
Talking to Pakistan Observer, Tauqir Nasir stressed the need for concerted efforts to push the peace process. “The cultural exchange between Pakistan and India can be a major step forward in the peace process,” believed Nasir. Exchange of art and culture can help promote people-to-people contacts.
He regretted that the last cultural pact could not see the light of the day. “The two countries decided to sign an MoU six year ago but it could not be materialized.” However, the DG of PNCA seemed confident about the current pledge. “We wish to continue the recent MoU forward to promote people-to-people contact. Pakistanis are eagerly looking forward for cultural exchange,” he said, adding that “India should also open the door of their hearts for Pakistani artists.”
Pakistani artists believe that it is only by opening the India-Pakistan border to each other’s artists and cultural troupes, that the officials can in fact reduce political tensions between the two countries.
DG of PNCA also said with the bilateral relations coming back on track, Pakistan is keen to have an agreement with India in the field of culture to bring the two nations closer and create markets for art.
However he noted that although Pakistan has created a huge market for Indian films and music in the country, but the same did not happen in India. “There is a need to promote the art and artists of both sides of the border to truly attain a cultural pact.”
Tauqeer Nasir also dreams of facilitation of visa for artists and cultural troupes of both countries. He assured that he would raise the issue with ministries concerned while he also urged the Indian media to play a positive role and facilitate the peace process through cultural exchange of arts and culture.