Islamabad - Every year the 1848 Revolution is celebrated on 15 March in Hungary.  The nation commemorates the Hungarian Revolution of 1848, which led to the war of independence from the Austrian rule. This day is a tribute to the struggle for democracy and freedom of all the Hungarian’s involved in the revolution.

The ambassador of Hungary H.E. Mr. István SZABÓ celebrated the national day of his country with a unique approach to boost cultural ties between Pakistan and Hungary. He arranged two photographers Mr. Zulfiqar Ali from Pakistan and Gergely Szatmari from Hungary to organize a visual journey through Hungary and Pakistan via a photo exhibition. The project started almost a year ago, when Pakistani photographer Mr. Ali visited Hungary while Mr. Szatmari visited Pakistan during last September, where they took numerous exemplary photos that were exhibited here on Friday. 

The photo exhibition was held in the lawn of the Hungarian embassy and selected notables and Hungarian nationals from all over Pakistan attended the event.

The purpose of the Pak-Hungarian photography exhibition was to bring the two countries closer through presenting the rich culture and natural beauty of the two countries through the lens of these photographers. Guests were not only amazed by the beauty, rich culture and diversity of Pakistan but they were also awestruck after viewing breath taking photos of Hungary. 

The publication Aks-e-Haqiqi as the name suggests is a true reflection of reality. Each photo provides a direct sense of how the artist viewed and interpreted each scene through his eyes. Mr. Szatmari’s photos were very vibrant and full of life whereas Mr. Ali touched everyone’s soul through his black and white photography. 

The EU ambassador Mr Jean-François Cautain while commenting on the exhibition said that he appreciates the efforts of the Hungarian ambassador for maintaining excellent social and cultural ties between the two countries. He hopes that this exhibition will also promote tourism between the two countries. While talking about the upcoming Russian Presidential Election he predicted that Mr. Putin will turn out to be victorious. To shed light on international politics and the growing tension between Russia and Britain he said that EU has not yet taken any position on this issue but consultation between EU countries is going on. The Ukrainian Ambassador Mr. Volodymyr Lakomov also had a very aggressive attitude towards Russia and issued a warning that if any Pakistani citizen will travel to Crimea his visa for EU will be cancelled. When asked about Moscow he said, “it’s not a problem”.

Ms. Emilia Szabo, the wife of Hungarian ambassador read out a message of the President of Hungary Mr. János Áder about the photo exhibition in which he said that this exhibition depicts the relationship between mankind and water. Today, all around the world humans are suffering due to severe water shortage, long ques at wells, unprecedented droughts and rivers/lakes are getting polluted beyond recovery so it is imperative to save water and prohibit everyone from wasting it.

The Hungarian ambassador also delivered a speech on this occasion in which he stated that 1848 has become a symbol of Freedom and Liberty.  He further added that during the 40 years of communist rule the regime tried to monopolize this celebration but it has always turned into an anticommunist demonstration. He further lauded both the photographers for their exemplary work and also appreciated MOL Oil and Gas Company for a generous sponsorship. The Cultural Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade also contributed to the budget and the Budapest Water Works facilitated Mr. Ali’s work in Hungary.

The Hungarian photographer Mr. Gergely Szatmari shared his views about Pakistan in which he said that Pakistan is a beautiful country and he was thankful for this opportunity.

–The writer is a freelance contributor. 

ZAFAR BAKHTAWARI