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Indo-Pak Peace Media is a community of people who care for peace between India and Pakistan. So we’re starting introducing some of you here on this blog. Last day we made a call on our Facebook & Twitter to ask you talk with us.
I’m really very pleased to introduce our very first member here, she is Vani Murarka from Calcutta, India.
Talking to her on Facebook Chat was amazing and she’s such a lovely lady. Here is our conversation.
Sidra Q: Vani, tell us more about yourself?
Vani: I am from Kolkata India. Currently doing my PhD from University of North Carolina at Charlotte, USA in computer science. My family lives back in Kolkata. I also run a hindi poetry website kaavyaalaya.org since around 1998 and my personal and professional website is manaskriti.com.
Q: Why do you care about Indo-Pak Peace?
Vani: Earlier it appealed to me intuitively (so much more sensible, peace) but that was it recently I happened to read Maheen Sadiq’s article “To Afridi, With Love” on FB and via that got in touch with many individuals from Pakistan.
Q: How it went to interact with individuals from Pakistan?
Vani: The experience of being able to directly interact with individuals in Pakistan was such a totally new experience, very nice, very good.
Q: Tell us more about your interaction with Pakistani friends?
Vani: Pakistani friends: unke sang interact karne ke waqt aisaa lagtaa hai ki chir-parichit phir bhi anjaane. Feels so nice to be interacting with someone who seems so very much apnaa [due to the common culture] and at the same time there are things I get to know about Pakistan that I did not know and what it means to be a Pakistani that I did not know – which enhances my compassion and understanding and love.
Q: How did you join IPPM Community?
Vani: When I was reading the huge number of comments in response to “To Afridi, With Love” the thought of making an Indo-Pak friendship group occurred to me. Before doing that, I checked if any such group already exists and I found IPPM and hence joined that too.
Q: So when did you visit India last time?
Vani: Last year, I will be visiting again this July. I have some invitations to Lahore and karachi too .
Q: So now you have friends in Lahore & Karachi. 🙂
Vani: Now I have! I did not have till before that article.
Q: What do you think we can bring peace between people of India & Pakistan?
Vani: I think this new technology is making things much more feasible, and youngsters on both sides are getting in touch with one another. Even something as simple as youngsters on both sides wearing T-shirts which spreads that message and then we need to get out of the electronic world and get our word out in the print media too. More, exchange trips i.e. youngsters from India visit Pakistan and vice versa.
I keep reading that it is tough for Pakistanis to get a visa to India.
Vani had to go for some work, but she left me with many thoughts, especially despite of having similar culture, music and traditions why we’re feeding the gap. And still we looks towards Govts to take actions for us.
My take is to ignore what we don’t have, and to take advantage of what we have. We can connect people across the border, know more about each others. Setting an example before the new generations, governments and to ourselves.
As once Waqas said, it’s not about the people involved, it’s about the people involved showing a bigger truth about themselves. The bigger, biggest truth is Peace, Love and Compassion.
This is our first talk with our members, thank you to for reading and especial thanks to Vani for taking time and being the one to break the silence.
Friends, what do you think of this talk and new initiative in general, this is your turn, see you in comments.