Disseminating the brighter and lighter side of Pakistan through literature

* Illustrated book, edited by Lok Virsa Director Dr Fouzia Saeed, was launched in Islamabad

ISLAMABAD: Folk Heritage of Pakistan, a richly illustrated book containing articles and features on the rich cultural, traditions, arts and cuisine of Pakistan, was launched on Thursday at Lok Virsa.

It is an anthology of highly researched articles edited by Lok Virsa Executive Director Dr Fouzia Saeed, who is also a PhD scholar chiefly known for her books Taboo and Working with Sharks.

The book touches almost all aspects of life of a highly diversified nation on the western fringes of South Asia.

“Such a book was extremely required that we can present to foreigners who generally, and quite misleadingly, knew all sensational things about Pakistan which associates it with extremism, but don`t know how rich and diversified our society really is,” Dr Fouzia Saeed said.

She informed how while compiling matter for the book, she got to know that it was not hard to get women’s pictures living in the rural swathes; however, the same was extremely difficult when “we tried to get women’s pictures on public spaces in urban areas”.

She said that the book held on to all the aspects of life in the country with pluralism turning out to be its chief theme. “This book depicts the pluralistic face of Pakistan. We are the proud nation of very different people,” she said.

Talking about the hurdles she faced in putting the book together were lack of funds; however this was overcome by volunteers such as research writers, photographers and technical hands.

“We can call it a complete community project, which gave us a good product in the end,” she said.

HE Takashi Kurai, who is the Ambassador of Japan, was the chief guest of the book launching ceremony. He called the book “beautiful”.

He said that Pakistan had a diversified culture and its people had one of the oldest cultures and civilisations as the book gave historical linkages, which was beautifully done. These linkages show from where people of this land came thousands of years ago.

“What makes me glad is that every picture in this book is joyful and smiling,” he expressed. Foreign Ministry Additional Secretary Tariq Zameer, termed it as an “important book”.

 Published in Daily Times, February  9th2018.