RAWALPINDI  - Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) leader Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri has said that time has come for both India and Pakistan to open a new chapter of bilateral relations based on mutual cooperation and peace.

He said that wars, tensions, and disputes were no solution to the problems bedeviling their relations.

He said that dialogue was the only way forward through which all bilateral issues between the both countries could be brought to negotiated and amicable settlement.

Pakistan and India need to work together against poverty, ignorance, corruption and unemployment, which are their joint enemies. He said that the killing of innocent people whether in India or Pakistan was a great crime against humanity. Qadri said this while addressing a seminar held under the banner of Minhaj University on the subject of ‘Pakistan-India, SAARC Relations and Future of South Asia” through a video link from Canada, informed PAT spokesman here on Thursday.

He said that road to progress passed through love and peace. He said that philosophy of love, peace and non-violence espoused by the Quaid-e-Azam and Mahatama Gandhi was inspired by the Quranic message, adding that the people of India and Pakistan should take guidance from the teachings of their respective founding fathers, Gandhi and Quaid-e-Azam, to chart a new course in their relations.

The PAT leader said that if both countries became peaceful neighbours for the sake of the bright future of their succeeding generations, the SAARC vision of development would emerge with a bang for the entire world to see as the region possessed huge natural and human potential.

Dr Qadri said that Pakistan and India in particular and SAARC countries in general were entering a new era where their bilateral and multilateral relations should become moderate, normal and friendly and these relations should be based on mutual trust, and cooperation.

He also said that the people of both India and Pakistan should have a firm belief that they were not enemies of each other. Rather their enemies were poverty, underdevelopment, corruption and deteriorating law and order in the region. He said that Pakistan and India should work for promotion of education and poverty eradication, adding that their actions should be people-centric aimed at ensuring their well-being.

Dr Tahir-ul-Qadri asked both the nations to move forward by doing away with acrimony, and confrontationist mindset and bridge the gulf through promotion of positive and moderate behavior. He said that trust deficit had been one of the major factors hindering the growth of their bilateral relations, adding that it was time to turn the page in their relations and chart a new course forward based on modern-day realities.

He said that a negotiated settlement of all outstanding issues between India and Pakistan was the only option available as wars failed to present any solution.

Addressing the Hindus living in India, Dr Qadri asked them to take to conception of peace and love, which Gandhi propounded about Islam and the Quran. He said that the Indian Muslims should also play their role for the development of the region in accordance with the Quranic teachings.

He said that the thought of Muhammad Ali Jinnah emanated from the Holy Quran and his teachings were based on promotion of love, peace and tolerance.