62nd Children's Literature Festival kicks off in Islamabad.

ISLAMABAD -- The two-day 62nd Children's Literature Festival (CLF), a flagship program of civil society organization Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA), kicked off with a number of interactive sessions and activities on Wednesday, at Lok Virsa, Islamabad.

The festival, being held in sponsorship with Oxford University Press (OUP) Pakistan, Open Society Foundations (OSF), Oxfam, British Council, Ittehad Steel Mills, Female Education Trust Balochistan, Sightsavers and Millennium Education, was attended by a large number of students and their parents, teachers, academics, educationists and public.

Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood inaugurated the two-day event. He appreciated CLF's efforts for providing an inclusive learning platform for children. The festival began with National Anthem sung by students of Al Maktoon and Pehli Kiran Schools in a jam packed hall, followed by collective singing of CLF anthem 'Humein Kitab Chahiye' written by Zehra Nigah and composed by Rakae Jamil.

ITA CEO Baela Raza Jamil apprised the audience about the magic of CLF and how it has become a nationwide movement. She acknowledged the supporters of CLF and thanked CLF co-founder and advisor Ameena Saiyid for her active contribution to the cause of promoting learning for children.

Oxfam Pakistan's Country Director Mohammed Qazilbash lauded ITA's efforts in promoting a culture of creativity, learning and self-discovery among children and youth in Pakistan. He also strongly advocated for women's empowerment through quality education for girls to enhance their participation in the social, economic and political spheres. OUP Pakistan Managing Director Arshad Saeed Husain and OSF Senior Education Officer Nargis Sultana also expressed their solidarity to CLF.

A documentary on Girls Education 'A Dream Reignited' was screened at the ceremony. Esteemed Urdu poet and writer Kishwar Naheed added grace to the event with her poetry on the girl child and her conversation with children.

The festival opened with multiple sessions taking place simultaneously. The first day saw Lok Virsa Theatre packed with children, where the Uncle Sargam and Gogi Show by Nigar Nazar entertained them and Theatre Wallay presented a special play on 'Bachay Hamaray Zamanay Kay'. Khaled Anam held an interactive session 'Dosti Kitabon Say' with the children to promote the book reading culture.

Different activities were organized in the front courtyard named 'Vehra Kitab...

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