-Shri Pawan Kumar Bansal speaking at the valedictory function of IYPF 2011
Chandigarh, October 2; The 6th International Youth Peace Fest 2011 came to an end today with much pomp- and- show .The day started off with ‘Run for Forest and Wildlife’ where participants ran a marathon from Parade Ground to Panjab University and back. The marathon was flagged-off by Justice Mahesh Grover, Judge, Punjab & Haryana High Court, at 6 am in the morning. Supported by Department of Forest & wildlife it was an effort to spread awareness amongst the citizens about the depleting forest spread and endangered species in the world.
The delegates were then taken to GGD SD College Sector 32, the main venue of the event for the valedictory ceremony, where Pawan Kumar Bansal, Union Cabinet Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Water Resources, was the Chief Guest. Amongst the distinguished guests were the governing body members of College, Principals of the associated schools, Prof. AC Vaid, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Appejay Satya University, DS Saroya, Director, NZCC, Madhu Bahl, Principal, KB DAV Sr. Sec. School, Principal, Principal, Shivalik School. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, MP & Former Minister from Sri Lanka, American Gandhi Bernie Meyer & Donald McAvinchey and Chandrika De Zoysa, Vice President, Sri Lanka Freedom Party-Women’s organization was the other distinguished guests present on the occasion.
Pawan Kumar Bansal in his speech paid tribute to Late Didi Nirmala Despande-a peace icon, in whose sacred memory this peace festival was organized annually in Chandigarh. He congratulated the organizing body on the success of the event. And promised that next time he’ll ensure that young delegates from Pakistan who were denied visa twice in the past, participate in the seventh International Youth Peace Festival in the city next year. He also launched the logo for 7th International Youth Peace Festival, which will be held from September 27 to October 2, 2012.
All the peace delegates were honored with mementos and certificates by Shri Pawan Kumar Bansal. Pramod Sharma, Coordinator of Yuvsatta, was then felicitated by international delegates from Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Nepal. The valedictory function was followed with a sumptuous lunch in the food corner of the College.
On a concluding note, one could see nostalgic but inspired faces that were ready to go back to their respective nations and put the ideas to action. With a smile on their faces and a hope to come back next year, the delegates bid goodbye.
Organized jointly by Yuvsatta, Oxfam-India, Gandhi Smriti & Darshan Samiti, UN Volunteers, SD College this year IYPF 2011 saw participation of students from 25 countries of the world and next year the organizers intend to double this number.