Monday, December 8, 2008

South Asia Youth Summit

Towards Democracy, Peace and Open Borders”

Constitution Club, New Delhi

24- 25 November 2008

LYSA organized the first South Asia Youth Summit in New Delhi on 24th and 25th November, 2008 providing a platform for 100 youth representatives across South Asia to discuss and debate various issues confronting the region from a liberal perspective. “We believe that we can set an example for our political leaders about cooperation and the benefits of joining hands in overcoming barriers…. we envision a peaceful, democratic and open region…” reads the declaration at the end of the youth summit, which was hosted by Centre for Public Policy Research (CPPR) and supported by the Friedrich-Naumann-Siftung für die Freiheit. The delegates identified lack of appropriate governance as the central issue behind all the problems facing the region.

The Summit was inaugurated by Dr. M.S.Gill, Hon’ble Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports, Govt of India. Dr.Gill emphasized the need to setup democratic institutions in the South Asian countries to ensure the accommodation of diverse opinions in the decision making process. By citing the Indian example he highlighted the advantages of democracy and stressed the need to establish democratic institutions in South Asia for a peaceful and prosperous region. Speaking at the occasion, Mr.Naveen Jindal M.P urged the youth to actively involve in politics to bring about positive changes in the society. Mr.Jindal also released the annual LYSA publication, “Our Common Future: South Asia.

Over the two day schedule participants got to interact with eminent speakers from various countries of South Asia who presented their views on a range of subjects related to the broad theme; Democracy, Peace and Open Borders. Some of these speakers included, Dr. Donya Aziz, Member, National Assembly, Pakistan; Mr. Manish Tiwari, Secretary and Spokesperson, All India Congress Committee, India; Mr. Pradeep Peiris, Centre for Policy Alternatives, Sri Lanka; Dr. Zafarullah Khan, Executive Director, Centre for Civic Education, Pakistan; Prof. N.R. Madhava Menon, Founding Director, National Law School, India; Dr. Najmul Hossain, Economist, Bangladesh; Dr.P.V.indiresan, Former Director, Indian Institute of Technology; Dr. Parth J. Shah, President, Centre for Civil Society, India; Ms. Arpita Nepal, Samruddhi Foundation, Nepal; Mr.Bart Woords, Secretary General, IFLRY; Mr.Jan Argy Tolentino, President, YLDA and many others from all across South Asia.

The participants discussed upon issues like Youth and Politics, Youth Participation in Development, Market Economy and South Asian Free Trade Zone, Quality Education for All: Choice & Competition, State and Democracy and Human Rights in South Asia. The discussions carried out by the youth across the sessions mainly focused upon the major global and local developments which compel the youth to take a particular note of the policies that need to be changed and what implications these changes have for the future of youth. Separate sessions were conducted with the working groups formed from among the participants to discuss how they could take this dialogue forward.

The culmination of the two day summit took place at India Gate where participants formed a youth chain and lit candles in solidarity with each other to fight against terrorism and spread the message of peace. And there began the “drafting of a new South Asia.”

Inaguration Ceremony

Monday, December 1, 2008

Light a candle, take a pledge| Youth Chain @ India Gate

On 25th November, 2008 at 5 pm, a Youth Chain was formed at India Gate which emphasized on the importance of peace across the borders and the need to come together in order to fight against terrorism. The formation of youth chain and lighting candles in solidarity with the fight against terrorism was the culmination of the two day South Asia Youth Summit.

Align Center


We, the youth of South Asia, recognise the diversity of the region and pledge to preserve and further, peace and co-operation through common platforms, facilitating dialogue.

We also pledge to endeavour towards the motto of open borders between nations, ensuring better harmony and solidarity among the people of the region.

Friday, September 5, 2008

SAYS '08

South Asia Youth Summit ‘08

Towards Democracy, Peace and Open Borders

Dates: 24 & 25 November 2008

Venue: Constitution Club, New Delhi

Liberal Youth South Asia is organizing the South Asia Youth Summit (SAYS) to provide a platform for youth in the age group of 18-30 to interact, debate and understand various issues confronting the region from a liberal perspective. SAYS ‘08 being an annual event, hosted by Centre for Public Policy Research, envisions a democratic and peaceful South Asia with open borders emphasizing the role of youth in restructuring the society.

Over the two-day schedule, the delegates would be exposed to a variety of simulations, discussions and debates leading to the Summit Declaration and Plan of Action for the next year. Highlights of the conference include:

  • Panel discussions and plenary sessions with South Asian experts from diverse fields.
  • Presentations by the young leaders and interactive discussions amongst participants facilitated by experienced moderators.
  • “Youth Chain” and lighting the lamp against terrorism near India Gate, New Delhi
  • Musical Concerts and cultural presentations by youth performers across South Asia.

Latest on SAYS!!!

The final date for submission of the nomination forms for the South Asia Youth Summit '08 has been extended to 15th October, 2008.

Hurry up and send across your forms soon!!!

South Asia

South Asia is home to 1.5 billion people, who together comprise 1/5 of all humanity. One fifth of the population in South Asia is between the ages of 15 and 24. This is the largest number of young people ever to transition into adulthood, both in South Asia and in the world as a whole.

South Asia consists of:

  1. Afghanistan.
  2. Bangladesh
  3. Bhutan
  4. India
  5. Maldives
  6. Nepal
  7. Pakistan
  8. Sri Lanka

The nations of South Asia are more alike than they are different.” Cultures and languages spill across national borders, most of which were created in the colonial era. As in many other parts of the world, the creation of new and "artificial" national identities has been the source of much conflict and violent upheaval. This complex struggle continues to shape South Asia’s political and economic landscape.

Together, the eight countries of South AsiaIndia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Maldives and Afghanistan are members of SAARC—the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation. Through SAARC, its member countries are working together to identify solutions for their common problems. South Asian economies are a mixture of poverty and plenty, with advanced and productive economies coupled with persistent poverty.

  • Most populous region — 1.3 billion people, one-fifth of humanity.
  • Densely populated, and growing fast India will be world's most populous country by 2025.
  • Rural lifestyle — nearly 3/4 of people live in rural areas.
  • India and Bangladesh — 85 percent of the region's people live in these two countries.
  • Ancient history — 5000 years of tradition and cultural continuity.
  • Cultural advances — have enriched the whole world.
  • Seven distinct nations — with common cultural, political, and economic characteristics.
  • National conflicts — territorial, ethnic and religious.
  • Highly stratified societies — women are lowest on the social scale.
  • Commitment to democracy India is the world's largest.
  • Dual economy — industrial growth, world's largest middle class, and persistent poverty.