LAHORE: Turkish Consul General Emir Ozbay while appreciating diversity in Pakistan noted importance of strengthening and developing of interfaith relations for a cooperative, constructive, and positive interaction between people of different religious traditions.
“I am sure that the interfaith Iftar dinner is an opportunity to understand and show respect for religious identities of fellow citizens besides publically an appreciation of values of each other,” he said while speaking during the Iftar dinner, hosted jointly by the Youth Council for Interfaith, Peace and Harmony (YCIPH), FACES Pakistan and the National Council for Interfaith, Peace and Harmony (NCIPH).
Emir Ozbay suggests interfaith relations for a cooperative, constructive, and positive interaction between people of different religious traditions
Speakers on the occasion said that fasting, practiced in all religions in one form or the other, promotes sacrifice, discipline, fortitude and empathy with the poor. The Interfaith Iftar dinner was attended by eminent religious scholars, spiritual leaders and young people from different areas, including Sheikhupura and Okara districts, as an opportunity to join those friends for an evening meal as they break their fast.
FACES Pakistan founder Javaid William expressed his gratitude to the participants in attendance for joining the interfaith Iftar dinner. “We always want interfaith dialogue that involves promoting understanding between different beliefs to increase acceptance of each other,” he said. “I hope that all discussion on engaging table will hopefully satisfy the mind, the body and the soul of the participants,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Majid Abel, Shakeel Ur Rehman Nasir, Hindu leader Bhagat Lal, Syed Kazim Raza Naqvi, Mufti Syed Ashiq Hussain and others said that all religions bring a message of peace, harmony and tranquility. They urged the young people to adopt the culture of tolerance and acceptance and play their role for the promotion of peace, and peaceful coexistence.
Javaid William supports interfaith dialogue that involves promoting understanding between different beliefs to increase acceptance
The participants characterized the interfaith Iftar dinner as remarkable in its nature which brings forth harmony among followers of diverse faiths. They were all happy that they broke bread and fast together at one place. They said that such events were the best way to bring people from different religions together as well as bridge the gap between communities.
“We have no other option but to accept each other respectfully,” said Saira Butt, coordinator for the Youth Council for Interfaith, Peace and Harmony. She said that only a tolerant society based on the principles of interfaith harmony can ensure social development. “We must remember that promoting interfaith harmony is indeed a service to the humanity,” he said.
On the occasion, the Youth Council for Interfaith, Peace and Harmony presented a drama – A Conference of Animals – with a message of a journey towards a true path so that all communities can promote interfaith harmony and peaceful coexistence. They also presented a tableau to connect people with the spirituality. The young participants also appreciated promotion of interfaith harmony.