Islamabad: Pakistan’s Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Qamar Zaman Kaira on Sunday said that struggle against terrorism and extremism can never meet success without enhanced consultation with intellectuals and promotion of book reading culture.
Addressing an award distribution ceremony for Best Book Reader of the Year Kaira said that Pakistan was fighting against terrorism administratively but its major aspect that is educational is going unattended.
“We cannot win this war without addressing this aspect,” the minister added.
The ceremony was attended by huge number of writers and artists including Intizar Hussain, Ghazi Salahuddin, Abdul Qavi Khan, Ataul Haq Qasmi, Asghar Nadeem Syed, Agha Nasir, Professor Fateh Muhammad Malik, Sadia Imam, Naghma Sarwar and Akhtar Waqar Azim, besides dozens others from across the country.
The award ceremony was a component of five-day celebrations being arranged by National Book Foundation to observe National Book Day starting from Sunday.
Kaira said unfortunately the respective governments had been ignoring the consultation with the intellectuals that begot extremism.
“When we dissociate from intellectuals, fanaticism finds the space,” said the minister, adding the only societies can achieve progress those use `words’ as tool to step forward. He said that it was unfortunate that we had given up using words as tool, that is why the tolerance has been diminishing from the society.
Qamar Zaman Kaira said though the government has taken remarkable steps for strengthening of democracy and devolution but the education sector could not get its share what it deserved for societal reformation.
“The number of schools and universities has been multiplied but literacy could not increase with that pace,” he observed advising the people to revive their association with books.
The information minister also sought suggestions from the participants to promote book reading culture as without their consultation, the society cannot make progress.
Later, the minister gave Best Child Book Reader Award to Manzoor Elahi from Chitral along with a cheque worth Rs 20,000.