A delegation of Indian girl guides and boy scouts arrived in Lahore on Sunday night from Islamabad. After a day in Lahore on Monday (today), the 74-member delegation will return to India through the Wagha Border on May 8.
The delegates were in Pakistan to participate in the Special Integration Camp organised by the Pakistan Boy Scouts Association in Islamabad. Since their arrival on May 1, the guides and the scouts have been participating in activities like school visits, cultural nights and camp fires along with their Pakistani counterparts at the Integration Camp.
A Punjab Boy Scouts Association (PBSA) is their hosts during their stay in Lahore.
Talking to The Express Tribune, Tariq Qureshi, the Punjab Boy Scouts Association secretary, said that the delegates aim at promoting peace between the two countries. He said the delegation was visiting Pakistan as a part of the Peace Project, an exchange programme, which he said, focuses on improving diplomatic ties between the two neighbours through its youth.
Qureshi said as many as 100 members of the Punjab Boy Scouts Association will join the Indian delegates for a breakfast on Monday morning. This, he said, would be followed by a trip to the Science Museum, a visit to the Shalamar Gardens and one to the Lahore Fort.
The delegates will be served lunch at the Shalamar Gardens. They will also visit the Government College University for an interactive session with its students.
Qureshi, who is excited about hosting the delegation at Lahore, said that such programmes will ensure the exposure of Pakistani youth to those of the neighbouring countries.
He said a Pakistani scouts’ delegation had recently returned from India after a successful trip. Such programmes, he said, help “bust negative myths about the people of the neighbouring countries”.
Though he regretted that the delegates will be in Lahore only for a day, Qureshi said the young scouts were eagerly looking forward to their visit.
“One understands the misconceptions among people from different places and regions only by personally interacting with them,” he said.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 7th, 2012.