British Prime Minister Tony Blair, in a special gesture took the children of "Experience
Pakistan 2002" around to a few rooms of the 10 Downing Street on
Monday and explained to them its historical significance which generated
more interest among students.
The 52 school children, mostly of Pakitani origin, from across the United Kingdom were
accorded this honour by Tony Blair after their visit to Pakistan last month following an essay
competition on Pakistan organized by London? based "Akhter Education Trust and Experience
Pakistan 2002", which also paid expenses of their visit.
Blair specially squeezed some time out of his pressing Daily engagements on Monday to take
them around to a Cabinet Room and another room of historical import before
having a group photo with children outside the 10? Downing Street.
Pakistan High Commissioner to the UK, Abul Kader Jaffer, Humyaun A. Mughal Chief Executive of the
Akhter Computers Ltd.(sponsor of the competition), were present on the occasion.
Kader Jaffer expressed his gratitude to Prime Minister Tony Blair for sparing time.He
said "it was very good of the Prime Minister to meet with the children"
who had come back after visiting Pakistan and to show them around the
10 Downing Street.
President General Perevez Musharraf, he said, had spent
over an hour with these students during their visit to Islamabad.
"It is good for the children to meet leaders of their country and to know
more about it", said the High Commissioner at a reception he hosted
later on Monday at his residence to treat the children and answered their
queries about Pakistan. These children visited Lahore, Peshawar, Islamabad, historic Khyper Pass,
Murree and enchanting Swat Valley in March and returned impressed by the
natural beauty and warmth of the Pakistani people.
Kader Jaffer said "the idea is to create interest among the students about Pakistan.
There are so many in the young generation who do not know" much about their country.
"I think this initiative of Humayun is extremely good. It will establish great
feelings among the students community and it will also enable the younger
generation to visit Pakistan from time to time," he told APP at the
He said Humayun A. Mughal of Akhtar Commuters Ltd. has taken this great initiative in
introducing this conmpetition.
"I hope this continues on annual an basis," he said and announced to give
award to the best three articles written by these studenst on their trip to Pakistan.
Pakistan High Commission would organize a competition for all the children who
visited Pakistan and he urged the 52 students to write an essay. He said
each of their schools will send the High Commission three best essays
on their visit to Pakistan. Out of all these essays, the best three would
be selected for an award.
The High Commission will award 250, 150 ,100 Sterling Pounds to the writer of the
first , second and third best essay respectively, he said.
Experience Pakistan 2002 was organized by Ahkter Computers and school students from
across the UK was urged to contribute an essay on any aspect of Pakistan.
In all 52 students from these schools were selected for their presentations. Many
students both Pakistani and foreigners, participated in the competition by sending
their 15 minutes presentations to judged by a panel of 13 judges.
The judges who selected 52 essays of these students
included Pakistan High Commissioner to the UK Abdul Kader Jaffer, Sir
Christopher former UK High Commissioner to Islamabad, Lord Nazir Ahmed,
Lord Gatheri, eminent journalist Victoria Scofield, Head of the National
Association of Head Teachers UK , Prof. Talbot, Prof. Davuid Taylor and
Students who visited Pakistan said they found atmosphere
there very friendly and found it very beautiful country and different
from the UK.
Ben Littlerich of Impengton Village College(IVC) said he would recommend to his colleagues
that "it is very nice country" and natural beauty of "Swat
Valley is amazing".
Nadia Mughal of Theperse School Cambridge said "It is very exciting and very different
than England". "It is completely different to what is said about
in the newspapers". She said, "There is a more crime here than
in Pakistan" like burglaries and kidnapping. She said there should
be more trips like this to improve the image of Pakistan among the young
Another student Jonathan Austin said ,"the main thing is it was completely
different from what I expect. There is amazing scenery in Pakistan which
you don,t see in England.The people are incredibly friendly that is completely
He said he was initially worried to go to Pakistan after what he read about in the
press but " I realize I need not to worry about. It is safe place'',
and tourists could visit many big towns.
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