ISLAMABAD, Feb 7 (APP):Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan Friday announced that Pakistan would launch a joint venture with Iran to produce movies and documentaries based on Islamic culture, history and achievements of the Muslim heroes.

Addressing a ceremony on ‘The Introduction to 40 Years of Iranian Cinema’ here at the Pakistan National Council of Arts (PNCA), she said the best practices adopted by the Iranian cinema would be replicated in Pakistan to highlight the real and bright face of Islam across the world under the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan, who had been a strong proponent of transforming the country into a welfare state like ‘Madina’.

Assuring the Iranian ambassador for her government’s full support to further promote decades-long Pak-Iran relationship based on same culture, heritage, social values and religious ties, she said: “Let me assure you his excellency that my ministry is all out for this assignment and we will work with you in close collaboration.”

The focal persons of both sides, she said, would sit together and worked out a strategy in that regard soon, and assured that her ministry would provide all-out support to the Iranian film industry.

“Iranian movies will be considered as one of the favourite movies in Pakistan in upcoming months,” she remarked.

She said the movies of Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arab and other Arab countries, would be dubbed into Urdu language and put on the display in Pakistani cinemas to sensitize the youth to the great Islamic ideology and history, and contributions made by Muslim heroes in diverse fields like science and others.

“We have to revive the culture of cinema, which has been facing a decline due to a ban on displaying the Indian content in Pakistani cinemas.”

Dr Firdous said the Muslim world had a large number of heroes and there was a need to disseminate information about them so that the youth could excel in diverse fields like science and technology. However, due to less visual content generation on Islamic history, they were idealizing the western heroes, she added.

The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf government was striving to revive and boost the film industry in the country, she said while inviting the Iranian film makers to work with their Pakistani counterparts for co-production of movies.

The Pakistani film makers could learn from their Iranian colleagues in producing quality movies based on socio-culture and religious values, she added.

The SAPM said Iranian films were being screened at all the reputed world film festivals, including ‘Cannes’ that showed the quality Iranian production, which was purely based on culture and values.

The cinema industries in many countries, she stressed, followed the popular trends set by major world film productions, but the Iranian film makers took their own initiatives which helped them to gain worldwide popularity.

Dr Firdous said Pakistan and Iran enjoyed decades-long ties as the Persian culture, language and literature specifically had left a deep impression on Urdu language and literature. Moreover, their relations were beyond the borders as people of both the countries were tied through shared traditions and values.

“The relations between Pakistan and Iran do not hinge on the governments and political parties, but it is a people-to-people contact that is transferring from generation to generation,” she added.

She said: “Prominent Persian poets like Rumi, Hafez-e-Sherazi, Saadi and Ferdowsi are common household names in Pakistan, and are looked up as finest specimen of literacy craftsmanship.”

She said Iran was a resilient nation and that was why their country was flourishing despite facing numerous challenges on foreign front like international sanctions.

She said a negative propaganda was made against across the globe that Iranians were deprived of fundamental rights, which was contrary to the facts. Iranian women were fully empowered and contributing in the national development without compromising their cultural norms and values, she said while recalling her official visits to Iran.