Chandigarh, Sep 8 (IANS) The strained relations between nuclear-amed neighbours India and Pakistan in recent months notwithstanding, blood from across the border could come in handy for patients in this country. A group of Pakistani youth is likely to donate blood at a camp to be held here on October 1 on the eve of the 146th birth anniversary of Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi.
The group of 20-25 youth delegates from Pakistan will be part of over 250 international youth volunteers who are arriving here this month-end to be part of the 10th Global Youth Peace Fest (GYPF-2015) to be organized here from September 29 to October 2.
“We have been confirmed participation from Pakistan, other SAARC countries and nearly 25 other countries. The Pakistan youth delegation has confirmed that they will donate blood at the blood donation camp here,” Pramod Sharma, the coordinator for NGO Yuvsatta, which has been organising the festival here for the past decade, told IANS.
The ‘One World-One Blood’ camp will be held on the evening of October 1 at the plaza of Chandigarh’s Sector 17 shopping and commercial hub. The local health authorities will collect the donated blood.
“We are holding the blood donation camp in the evening so that more people come to donate blood and join this noble cause. It will help to strengthen the message of unity of mankind and Indian ethos of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (the whole world is one family),” Sharma said.
“Participants for the GYPF are coming from as far away as Venezuela and other parts of the world, including almost from all South Asian, ASEAN and some African countries, as also from Russia, Kazakhstan and the US,” Sharma pointed out.
Yuvsatta’s GYPF has established itself as an international festival for the youth.
“In the past 10 years of this unique peace campaign, we have created a network of hundreds of motivated youth across the globe. From issues of environment to violence, these young people have been advocating for equal human rights and sustainability in various manners. Now their youth energies will be channelized more in a constructive manner by launching a Global Youth Peace Forum during GYPF-2015,” Sharma, who has been closely associated with social work and peace initiatives, said.
A unique feature for the GYPF this time will be the inaugural event with nearly 10,000 youth volunteers expected to participate in the ‘Meditation & Yoga for World Peace’ to be held at the Sector 16 cricket stadium here on September 29.
The festival will also feature the Global Peace Parade for Sustainable Cities and Habitats (Oct 2), the second SAARC Youth Leadership Summit, Asia-level regional meeting on theme of ‘Rights and Dignity of Girls and Women’, fusion of music and dance of various countries and global youth icon awards.
“The GYPF-2015 will enable young people to be directly get involved with passionate people from all across the globe. It is a platform for increased cross-fertilization of ideas so that young people become true global citizens in thinking and action and volunteer to co-create a future equal to their vast potential,” he said.
(Jaideep Sarin can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)