12 Pakistani artistes of Tehrik-e-Niswan, a Pakistani cultural organisation, will perform Kathak, Bharatnatyam, and Odissi dances on poetry of the two nations in venues across the city from today

India and Pakistan share the same history, and even have similar cultures, but many misconceptions exist among citizens across the borders. In an effort to bring them closer, 12 Pakistani artistes of Tehrik-e-Niswan, a cultural organisation, will perform Kathak, Bharatnatyam, and Odissi dances on poetry of the two nations, here from February 14 to 16 at different places.

Performances will be held as part of the India Pakistan Culture Connect – Joint Celebrations for Union of Hearts, and is being organised by Cova and the Centre for People’s Foreign Policy in South Asia.

“Art and culture have no boundaries. But we have the same history, and the people of Pakistan would like to come here,” said Sheema Kermani, Tehrik-e-Niswan founder told reporters here on Thursday.

Ms. Kermani, whose parents are from Hyderabad, formed her organisation in 1979 to work for the development of women through theatre and cultural work. She teaches Indian classical dances in Pakistan and said their performances were more about showing political defiance. Anwer Jafri, a playwright, said notions like fundamentalism and religious intolerance about his country were not true.

The 12-member delegation includes Saima Hayat, a researcher with Tehrik-e-Niswan, Shujauddin Qureshi, a Co-Manager of the Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research, Usman Zia, an actor, Atif Hayat, an human rights activist, Zahra Batool, theatre actor, Dawood Samson Bhatti, an actor & dancer, Nafees Ashraf, theatre artist, Mansoor Ahmad, training officer with the South Asia Partnership-Pakistan (SAP-P), Saima Jan, a Coordinator with SAP-P, and Sehrish Bhatti, a theatre actor and teacher.

The group will perform at UoH on February 14, at Ravindra Bharati on February 15, and OU on February 16.

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