LONDON Aug 14 (APP):Like other parts of the globe the 71st Independence Day of Pakistan was celebrated across the United Kingdom (UK) by British Pakistanis with national zeal and zest on Tuesday.
To mark the auspicious occasion, a flag hoisting ceremony was held here at the Pakistan High Commission, London.
The messages of the President Mamnoon Hussain and Caretaker Prime Minister of Pakistan
Justice (Retd) Nasir-ul-Mulk were read out on this occasion.
A large number of community members, especially women and children, as well as British
friends of Pakistan, diplomats, journalists, lords and councilors attended the ceremony.
Pakistan High Commissioner to the UK Sahebzada Ahmed Khan unfurled the Pakistani
flag to the tunes of National Anthem.
He felicitated the Pak-community in the UK and all Pakistanis around the world on Pakistan’s Independence Day.
He paid tributes to the untiring struggle of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Allama Iqbal and other heroes of the Pakistan Movement.
Giving an overview of the country, the high commissioner termed the recent democratic transition “a dawn of the new era in Pakistan.”
He said people had spoken for socioeconomic justice, good governance in a pluralistic and progressive Pakistan, which was in fact envisioned by the Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. People of Pakistan wanted to reclaim the Quaid’s Pakistan, he added.
Sahebzada Ahmed Khan read out several quotes of the Quai-i-Azam on democracy, rights of minorities, and human rights of the citizens of Pakistan irrespective of caste, creed or religion.
He said, “Let’s sincerely pledge today to rebuild and reclaim Pakistan which is economically stronger and prosperous; politically inclusive and accommodative; and socially just and tolerant.”
Highlighting the issue of scarcity of water in Pakistan, the high commissioner called
upon the community to donate generously to the fund created for the construction of dams.
He urged the community to send their remittances to Pakistan through proper banking
He termed the Pakistan-UK relations excellent and said, “We would further strengthen these relations through enhanced bilateral trade.”
He called 1.3 million diaspora as the ambassadors of Pakistan and appreciated their role in cementing the Pakistan-UK relations.
Speaking about Kashmir, the high commissioner condemned the ongoing gross human rights abuses in Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK).
He said Pakistan would continue its political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Kashmir till they achieve their right to self-determination.
Live patriotic songs sung by local Sufi opera singer Saira Peters, Qawwal Sohail Salamat Ali, and child singers Muhammad Hassan and Ismail Khan enthralled the audience. The cultural component added extra colour to the ceremony. Guests were also served with brunch of traditional Pakistani cuisine.
Similar Independence Day events were held at all the four consulates of Pakistan
in Birmingham, Bradford, Glasgow and Manchester.
The cake cutting ceremony was also performed by the high commissioner along with dozens of children to mark the Independence Day.