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Indian students march to Pakistan with letters of peace

Indian Catholic - 21 March 2006
Amritsar, India

For the first time, a group of Indian school children are traveling on foot to Lahore to deliver a message of peace, love and harmony to Pakistan President Pervesh Musharraf.

Peace activists organizing the unique peace march said that school children from Amritsar will deliver their first letter of love and harmony to their Pakistani counterparts. These letters will be then delivered to the Pakistan President.

The students begun their march on foot to Lahore on Monday. “We are excited that we are traveling to Pakistan. Our letters are all about what we genuinely feel about peace and our views about peace and harmony,” Shikha, a student said.

The peace march is organised by the voluntary group Friends Without Borders.

According to the organization, the attempt to gather letters began six months ago when two American volunteers went from one school to other to collect letters of friendship to be delivered to the Pakistani kids.

"(It's amazing) children from all over India have written to children in Pakistan," said Mark B. Jacob, member of Friends Without Borders.

India and Pakistan launched peace talks in early 2004 but they have made slow progress, particularly on the core territorial dispute over the Himalayan region of Kashmir.

The letters to be delivered have poured in from across the nation. The students have also indulged in a spot of painting to make 'the world's largest love letter' as colourful as possible.

Young and enthusiastic peace lovers vowed for harmony across the border asthey lighted candles and sang at the Jallianwala Bagh site in the city, which witnessed one of the worst massacres in 1919 during the British rule inundivided India.

  hearts It may be long before the law of love will be recognised in international affairs. The machineries of government stand between and hide the hearts of one people from those of another. -- M.K. Gandhi