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Abbottabad Learning Festival

Abbottabad Learning Festival held at COMSATS Abbottabad
Abbottabad Literature Festival was organized on 11th and 12th March 2023 at COMSATS University Islamabad (CUI), Abbottabad Campus. The event was organized in collaboration with District Administration and District Youth Affairs Abbottabad to generate awareness among the masses for promoting knowledge and education. The event was graced by notable personalities including Additional Deputy Commissioner Jabril Raza, Chairman District Reconciliation Committee, Lieutenant General (ret) Ayaz Saleem Rana, and other invited speakers. A large number of students and citizens also participated in the festival.
The event included sessions like lectures on literature, cultural heritage, digital safety, judicial reforms, poetry, tableaus, and storytelling wherein notable speakers and children from different schools participated. The noteworthy talk was on Current Challenges and The Way Forward in the Light of Hikmat-e-Iqbal wherein speakers Director CUI, Abbottabad Prof Dr. Muhammad Maroof Shah, Allama Zaid Gul Khattak (Advisor RUH Forum), and Lt. Col. Retired Murtaza Ali Shah (Founding Member RHU Forum) elaborated the message of Iqbal that help us to realize the purpose of our existence and set up the righteous path for survival in changing global scenarios.
Mushaira was honored by poets Ahmed Hussain Mujahid (Chief Guest), Dr. Nazar Abid (Presidency), Nizamat Amir Sohail Riaz, Saeed Ahmed, Riaz Nasir, Waheed Qureshi, Aman Ullah Khan, Imtiaz Ul Haq Imtiaz, Shujaat Shah, Zia Shahid, Taj Uddin, Dr. Zia Ur Rasheed Rustam, Shakeel Aiwan, Abdul Waheed, Tahir Gul, Jan-e-Alam, Naeem Akhter, Sohail Ahmed, Sameem Pervaiz Sahir, Muhammed Amin Sadiq, Muhammed Hanif Saeed, Naz Khurram Shah, Syed Majid Shah, Dr. Jamil Anwar, Muhammed Hanif Deep, Ghani Khan, Tasleem Ikram, Bilal Mushtaq Hassan Saif. The session on Poetry was taken up by Mr. Sohail Ahmad Sameem, Mr. Ahmad Riaz, Mr. Amir Sohail, and Mr. Abdul Wahid. Legends Zia Mohiuddin and Amjad Islam Amjad were also remembered and discussed for their outstanding work.
Dr. Adil Saeed Qureshi managed the Factors of Enlightenment in Hindko Literature wherein Mr. Ahmed Hussain Mujahid Qazi Nasir Bakhtiar, Mr. Nasir Dawood, Mr. Abdul Waheed Bismil, and Mr. Basheer Ahmed Soz shared their views on the topic. Dr. Farzana Iqbal and Syed Majid Shah shared the reading of Hazara’s First Hindko Novel while the Dramatic Reading of Aik Baccha aur Jugnoo (Ismail Meerathi ki Mashoor Nazm) and Sufi Tabbassum ki Halki Phulki Nazmain was done by Mr. Atif Badar. Cultural Heritage of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was enlightened by Dr. Abdul Samad while the Literary Organizations of Hazara were discussed by Mr. Jaan-e-Alam, Mr. Aman Ullah Khan Aman, and Mr. Qamar Zaman. For children, different activities were set up including Sohail Rana kay Geet Atif Kay Saath, Daastan Goiee (Dastaan e Ghummi Kababi, Kalash Folk Stories, and mosaic art, thumb painting, Painting/Sketching. Mr. Atif Badar, Mr. Khurshid Khan, and Mr. Inam Elahi conducted these sessions and thoroughly interacted with the children.
Sessions on Judicial Reforms (speakers: Mr. Mehdi Zaman Moderator: Mr. Hashim Iqbal Jadoon), Digital Safety and Security (Speaker: Mrs. Sehrish Farooq), Bridging the education divide in Pakistan (Speakers: Mr. Fayyaz Khan Swati, Prof. Munir, Dr. Fareeda Aziz), Pakistan’s Foreign Policy Challenges (Speakers: Muhammad Khalid Banori Amb (R) Fauzia Sana Amb (R), SanaUllah Moderator: Ms. Salma Mali), Women Empowerment (Speaker: Ms. Rukhshanda Naz (Ombudsperson KP), Ms. Samina Sardar (Head of Child Protection, British Council Pakistan), Ms. Sana Khalid Khan, Moderator: Ms. Kiran Ayub Tanoli), and Climate Change and Environment (Speaker: Mr. Bilal Zahoor and Mr. Aziz Ali Dad) were also part of the event.
Stalls were also set up by local merchandizers, Oxford University Press National Book Foundation, Social Welfare, Wildlife, Rescue Services, Agriculture Office, and CUI Abbottabad in which citizens took great interest. It is prominent to mention that students from the bioproduct laboratory and department of biotechnology also set up stall containg bioproducts i.e. mushrooms grown at the CUI research farm and vermicompost that were gifted to the guests.
Additional Deputy Commissioner Jabril Raza thanked and appreciated all the participants, educationalists, students, and visitors for their interest that make this event a success. He further extended his gratitude to educational Institutes, the directorate of youth officers, and other departments for their overwhelming response. He acknowledged the management of CUI Abbottabad for their untiring efforts that results in an organized and successful event. He said that such festivals promote knowledge and provide learning opportunities to students.
At the occasion Director CUI, Abbottabad, Prof. Dr. Muhammad Maroof Shah also praised the participants and all the visitors from different walks of life. He said that such endeavors are a great opportunity to build up an enlightened society that understands the importance of knowledge and education. He said that at CUI we believe in extending knowledge vast and for that this festival was a great opportunity for all. He showed his interest in extending the collaboration with the district government for organizing such events in the future as well.

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