Islamabad - Academicians and intellectuals while addressing an international conference held here on Friday at Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) called for intellectual dialogue among various civilizations and linguistic groups to promote peace and harmony in the society. The event was aimed at promoting harmony and cohesion in the society through language and literature and initiating a process of a dialogue for this process.

The inaugural session was addressed by President AJK, Sardar Masood Khan, Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Shahid Siddiqui and eminent writer and poet Iftikar Arif.


The event, organized by the University was largely attended by intellectuals and researchers from home and abroad.

The speakers deliberated upon the topic of ‘Translation-intellectual dialogue and civilizations’, and called for translating and understanding various languages to check conflicts, clash of civilization and de-integration in the society.

Dr Shahid Siddiqui told the audience that the University has set up a Translation Department to interpret different languages of national and international interest. It has also focused on promoting research work on Pakistani languages and providing academic support in addressing in various socio-economic issues.

A brand-new journal on Pakistani languages will be published by the end of this year. The University was holding series of events to create awareness among the youth about the challenges and needs of the contemporary era.

The President AJK who was the chief guest on the occasion congratulated the Vice Chancellor for promoting the University as a hub of literary, social and cultural activities, raising the issues of national importance through research work.

Sardar Masood Khan who had been associated with AIOU as a faculty member of the English Department at his early age noted the University has developed itself as a most strong educational institution, with a high academic ranking.

He spoke about the importance of the topic and underlined the need of making grater efforts bringing various civilizations and groups together to promote peace and love. Inter-faith harmony and inter-cultural collaboration among various sects and linguistic groups are the need of the hour, he added.

Intellectual dialogue, he said could be important source of creating awareness among the people about the future challenges, he added. About the importance of Urdu, he said it is an official language of AJK, and it had been helpful in smooth working.

Sardar Masood Khan also spoke about the freedom struggle of the Kashmiris and hoped India will understand the ground realities and voice of the masses.

Iftikhar Arif in his key-note address called for promoting indigenous languages for inter-cultural harmony. He also spoke about concept of cultural diversity and its impact on the society.

The inaugural session was also addressed by Dean Social Sciences Dr Samina Awan, Chairman Department of Urdu DR. Abdul Aziz Sehr and Dr Zafar Hussain Zafar. The participates were scheduled to hold nine working sessions during the two-day conference, giving their input on various topics related to language and literature.