Speakers at a series of seminars have called for recognizing the invaluable role of young people as agents of peace, change, progress and development, adding that the best way to achieve the objective is by providing young people with effective platforms to raise their voices and giving them opportunities to emerge as harbingers of positive change and development. The first seminar of the series titled ‘Youth Engagement for Peace Building and Perception Management through Paigham-e-Pakistan’ was organised on Nov 4 at Abbottabad University of Science and Technology, Havelian, in collaboration with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Chief Minister’s Secretariat. The second event of the series was held at COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) Abbottabad on Nov 5, followed by two more sessions at Hazara University, Dhudial, Manshera, and University of Haripur on Nov 6 and Nov 7 respectively.KP Chief Minister’s Coordinator Muhammad Kashif, Islamic Research Institute Director General Dr Ziaul Haq, Dr Ehsan Naveed Irfan, Dr Bahadur Shah, Dr Ghiasuddin and Dr Aftab were prominent among those who spoke on the seminars. A large number of academicians, intellectuals, civil society activists, faculty members and students participated in the events.In their speeches, the speakers highlighted the positive role that young people can play to build peace and social cohesion in Pakistan for being a large and dynamic segment of the country’s population with genuine stakes in its stability and prosperity. They especially stressed on the crucial need for providing them with platforms for voicing their grievances and participating in the decision-making process to ensure that future policies do not exclude the potentially positive role that young people can play in ensuring peace and security in Pakistan. The speakers discussed the education system of the country and stressed that prime focus must be the syllabus reforms. They suggested that Paigham-e-Pakistan fatwa should be made part of syllabus at the school and college levels. They called for using different platforms like social media, radio channels, walks, seminars, lectures, workshops, exhibitions, posters, short film competitions, colleges, schools and NGOs for joint cultural and social activities to promote cohesion and unity in the society. They maintained that role of media is vital to help understand the narrative of Paigham-e-Pakistan.The speakers said youth is a significant demographic feature of Pakistan’s population and the rising militancy and violence in the country, deteriorating socio-economic conditions and a decrease in employment opportunities have caused disenchantment among the youth. They also stressed the need to assess the general perceptions of the educated youth in Pakistan on specific social, political and religious issues in order to identify factors that enhance radical sentiments among them.