Under the Messengers of Peace initiative, a special integration camp was organized between Rovers of Pakistan and India from 16th to 20th November 2011 at the National Youth Complex, in Gadpuri, Haryana where about 300 Rovers, Rangers, including leaders from India and 55 Rovers and leaders from Pakistan participated.
The Pakistan contingent was received at the Wagha border and was given a warm reception at the National Youth Complex in an Indian traditional way. Pakistan contingent was delighted with the sound of “NAKARA” and “DHOL.”
A formal welcome ceremony was organised on 18th November 2011 where National Commissioner Shri L M Jain welcomed the Pakistan contingent and released pigeons and baloons as a symbol of Peace. Pakistan contingent was welcomed with tilak and garland, and the India contingent applauded when Pakistanis sang the beautiful Integration song of Hindustan and Pakistan. At the cultural programme, national flags of both countries were hoisted together and the whole scene was full of emotions.
During the community interaction with the local people, Pakistan contingent visited Rattan Public School in Sikri where students organised a science exhibition and was highly appreciated. Handmade bags specially made by the students were presented, followed by a colorful cultural show. Local personalities, media persons, students, teachers, principal were all involved in welcoming the contingents. One highlight of this activity was seeing Rovers and leaders from the two countries danced together that one can have difficulty differentiating them. A delicious lunch prepared by the Chairman of Rattan Public School sealed the whole celebration.
On 19th morning, participants headed to Gadpuri village and planted tree saplings to commemorate the Goodwill mission of the Pakistani Rovers to India. Villagers offered to take care of them.
In the afternoon, food plaza was prepared where participants prepared a variety of dishes, followed by a special exhibition of local handicrafts. A grandcampfire was organised including lighting of candles and a singing of the integration song ‘Jot se Jot Jalate Chalo’.
On 20th, All Faiths Prayer was organized where visitors enjoyed the adventure bases at the National Youth Complex and left for New Delhi in the afternoon for another round of sightseeing. Pakistan contingents enjoyed their visits to National Headquarters and other historical places. On their way to Wagha border, Haryana state, a huge dinner was arranged with cultural programme. As they reached Amritsar in the morning, they went to Golden Temple where the local Scouts arranged a breakfast for them and before sending them off while treasuring the good memories of the camp.
Come March 2012, a similar integration camp will be hosted by Pakistan for India Rovers, in return.