MUZAFFARABAD-A two-day literature festival - Kashmir 2023 will commence here on Saturday with intensive discussions on culture, literature and Kashmir issue with the participation of the country’s renowned scholars, writers, poets, journalists under the auspices of Pakistan art council Karachi (PACK) with the collaboration of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) government. Chairman PACK Muhammad Ahmad Shah accompanying with three secretaries of AJK government told a press conference here Friday that the festival was first of its kind in the region and aimed to highlight region’s contribution towards art and literature besides fostering its significance on the national arena. Secretary Tourism Midhat Shehzad, Secretary Information and Public Relations Ansir Yaqoob, Coordinator and Secretary of the festival Ahmed Attaullah were present on the occasion. Shah said that Kashmir had a history and culture of thousands of years and was called mini Iran once and the event would play a significant role in keeping the culture alive. He assured to establish a branch of art council in the AJK’s capital . Ahmad Shah expressed concerns that the society in Pakistan was polarized politically, ethnically and he was trying to bridge this division with literature and culture. He said people come from all over the world had attended Urdu conference and all languages were included in this. He said he then decided to take the festival to other cities and abroad so that the culture and bright face of Pakistan could be shown to the world. He said that the government of Azad Kashmir had been very supportive to organize this festival. Giving details about the festival, President Arts said that these sessions will be held in PLF Kashmir Tourists Heaven, Culture Heritage of Kashmir, Kashmir se Sargoshi, Kashmir’s Literature of Resistance, Book Launches, Journey of Kashmiri Women sinc1947, Conversation with Rehman Faris, Role of Media in Kashmir Issue, Aalmi Mushaira, How Article 35-A & 370 Affects People of Kashmir?, Heritage Preservation: A Dialogue with Kamran Lashari, Kashmir & Thoughts of Iqbal, Dabistan-e-Kashmir Kay Naqoosh, Hamain Maathay pe Bosa Do ( Aetraaf-e-Azmat), The Story of Umair Najmi, Conversation with Salman Gilani, From Villain To Hero-Munawar Saeed, Musical evening. Justice retired Nasira Javed Iqbal, Iftikhar Arif, Kishwar Naeed, Mustansar Hussain Tarar, Fawad Hassan Fawad, Kamran Lashari, Dr. Mukhtar Ahmad, Noor ul Huda Shah, Sohail Waraich and Hamid Mir will be prominent amongst the speakers of the different sessions of festival.