MUZAFFARABAD Nov 6, 2012: The first-ever delegation of women activists from Jammu and Kashmir on Monday crossed the Line of Control (LoC) near Chakothi into Azad (AJK) Kashmir Pakistan to attend a 3-day conference starting here Tuesday.
The delegation was received at Chakoti bridge with schoolchildren singing songs to welcome the guests.
The visit of the women activists has been facilitated by New Delhi-based NGO, Centre for Dialogue and Reconciliation (CDR) while here in PaK an NGO, AJK Women for Peace Organization is the host of intra-Kashmir conference.
The 10-member delegation comprises chairperson HOPE, Nighat Shafi Pandit, former principals of Government Women’s College M A Road Srinagar, Prof Nusrat Andrabi and Prof T Joldan, and Qurrat-ul-Ain, Prof Effat Yasmeen, Prof Ravinderjit Kour, Prof Rekha Chowdhary, Prof Yasmin Ashai, Ellora Puri and Ayesha Saleem.
The women’s group would take part in 3-day cross-LoC conference here which would be attended by women activists from different parts of Pakistan and PaK.
The group will also meet people from various shades of opinion such as political leaders, social activists, academicians and journalists.
This is the first visit of women activists from Indian Kashmir to PaK since 1947. First such conference was organized in Srinagar in November 2007 and the last was held in Gulmarg in September 2011.
The delegation will stay in PaK for a week and return home on November 12.
Noted social activist, academician and chairperson Kashmir Centre for Social & Developmental Studies (KCSDS) Hameeda Nayeem and separatist leader and chairperson of Muslim Khawateen Markaz, Anjum Zamrud Habib have been denied permission by the government to travel across.
Hameeda has been actively associated with CDR’s initiatives in past several years and was very recently in Jammu to attend an inter-regional conference organized by the Delhi based NGO.
Expressing anguish over the government decision not to allow her to cross the LoC, Hameeda said “If the conference is meant to build peace, why they have been selective. We were not going for any training of handling arms and ammunition but to carry a message to build an atmosphere for amicable, just and peaceful resolution of Kashmir dispute,”.
With inputs from Kashmirreader and life