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Punjabi literature, culture conference ends

LAHORE:17 February:On the last day of the 30th International Conference on Punjabi Literature and Culture, the participants and the distinguished guests from various parts of the world strongly demanded that Punjabi should be given rightful place in Pakistani Punjab. It should be taught at the primary level and spoken in the Punjab legislature. A Punjabi university should be established in Lahore. The curriculum in colleges should be revised and made modern according to the changes in Punjabi language. In the first session, Ahmed Saleem, Baljeet Balli, Sushil Dosanjh and Gurbhajan Singh Gill spoke on Punjabi novel and poetry. The second session was presided over by Dr Nizamuddin, former chairman of Higher Education Commission. He emphasised on the new curriculum of Punjabi at the graduate and post graduate level. He said he had done some work in this direction but more was needed to be done. He also demanded Punjabi University in Lahore. The second session was concluded with Lahore declaration. A declaration committee was formed headed by Fakhar Zaman, chairman of World Punjabi Congress, with the members, including Dr Deepak Manmohan Singh, president of Indian chapter of WPC, Prof Gurbhajan Singh and Sehajpreet Mangat. The declaration said there should be no purism in Punjabi language and it should be more understandable in India and Pakistan. It said the opening of Kartarpur corridor was appreciable because it was the old demand of WPC. The visas between the two countries should be liberalised. The Samjhota Express between India and Pakistan and bus service between Amritsar and Lahore should be resumed. There should be dialogue between the two countries on the longstanding disputes including Kashmir and relations should be normalised between the two neighbouring countries. There should be a full paper of Gurmukhi in MA Punjabi in Punjab University, Lahore. Similarly, there should be a full paper on Shahmukhi in Indian universities. There should be more cultural and literary exchanges between India and Pakistan, especially between the two Punjab. Senior citizens of Pakistan and India should be issued visa on arrival at the border, like the previous practice, demanded the declaration. In the evening, a Mushaira was held in which eminent Punjabi poets of Pakistan and India recited their poems. In the end, WPC Chairman Fakhar Zaman announced the 31st International Conference would be held in London next year.The news.