By Dr. Rajesh Aggarwal (POP 96)
The Chandigarh Chapter of East-West Center Association celebrated the East-West Center Day on 14 May 2009 and organised an informal get together over dinner. Six out of the current eight members attended the dinner.
During the dinner meeting, the chapter members discussed various activities that the Chandigarh Chapter can undertake at its level keeping in view the charter of the EWC.
The chapter members also expressed serious concern over the deteriorating political situation in South Asia, especially Pakistan, Nepal, and Sri Lanka that has a large number of alumni from the EWC.
It was further discussed that due to the prevailing political condition in Pakistan, it may not be immediately feasible to have a collaborative effort with Pakistan Lahore Chapter. It was earlier decided that since the chapter is very small, we should collaborate with alumni in neighbouring regions to enhance the EWC mandate. The members felt that the attempts for a collaborative effort should be revived as soon as things improve in Pakistan.
Further, it was decided that the Hawaii Conference should be used as an opportunity to meet with other chapter leaders in neighbouring regions to start a group that keeps in touch and involves in collaborative effort to further enhance the activities mutually beneficial to all.
It was reiterated that since Chandigarh is one of the very active chapters, despite being a small group (only 8), the EWC should be requested to facilitate participation of more than one chapter leader at the Hawaii Conference. This will only be possible with some financial support from the EWC.
Further, the members thought it prudent to ask the EWC of providing it with a list of alumni of the EWC in the region, along with their contact details, so that the group could be expanded to expand the scope of the chapter.