In view of the strong
desire among the creative community of South Asia to enhance cooperation
and promote peace in the region through the medium of culture, SAF
decided to launch projects that would actively further the cause
of cultural synthesis.
A meeting of the SAF Sub-Committee on Culture
that was held from September 23-25, 2002, in Beaulieu-sur-Mer, France
was presided over by Prof. Salima Hashmi, SAF-Pakistan Chairperson,
and attended by the secretaries of SAF Advisory Boards. They proposed
that in due course SAF may organise workshops and camps for writers
and artists from the region.
It was proposed that a Young Painters' Workshop,
may be held in Kandy, the site of the upcoming SAARC Cultural Centre
in Sri Lanka. The Centre, in the building of which SAF has promised
to match the amount allocated for the project by the government
of Sri Lanka, will provide a forum for artists from the region to
gather, share their artistic skills and widen their experiences
in the performing arts. It was proposed to invite four artists each
from the participating countries to work together for a fortnight
on a theme which will reflect the cause of regional cooperation
A Young Writers Friendship Camp, which will bring together talented
poets and writers of South Asia, was proposed to be held in Nepal.
Translators in regional languages and upcoming publishers will also
be invited to make the interaction more productive. Prominent contemporary
writers in South Asia have experienced tremendous odds in trying
to translate their works into the regional languages. By bringing
writers and publishers of the region on the same platform, SAF hopes
to give a fillip to the dissemination of important works of language
and literature across the region.