Capital marks Independence Day under lockdown

ISLAMABAD: The residents of the capital celebrated the Independence Day with great zeal and fervour. Regardless of the high security measures and the imposition of Section 144 in the capital, thousands of citizens, including young children, men, and women celebrated the Independence Day. The placement of containers and the blockade of roads could not stop them from celebrating the day. Most of the people were dressed in green and white to mark the independence. The imposition of Section 144 and strict security measures had little effect on the celebrations. The citizens showed their love for their country in an over-whelming manner.Meanwhile, on the other hand, a ceremony was held at the Higher Education Commission (HEC) Secretariat on Thursday to celebrate the Independence Day. HEC Chairman Mukhtar Ahmed hoisted the national flag at the ceremony, which was also attended HEC Executive Director Mansoor Akbar Kundi, senior management, and a large number of employees. Speaking on the occasion, the chairman underlined the significance of the Independence Day and praised the sacrifices and efforts of our national heroes. He paid homage to those who lost their lives during migration from India at the time of the independence. Mukhtar said that freedom was a blessing and it was the responsibility of every individual to safeguard this freedom and play a part for the progress of the country. He particularly urged the youth to play a vital role in the development of Pakistan. The Sports Division of HEC organised a special performance by the Islamabad Boys Scouts Association. Universities’ sports teams of basketball, football, and squash were also present.Moreover, Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi, on Thursday hoisted the national flag at the IHC building. The chief justice felicitated the nation on the Independence Day and paid tribute to the founder of Pakistan Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, and the leaders of the Pakistan movement for providing a spirited leadership, which created the world’s first ideological state through a democratic struggle. The High Court’s registrar and IHC Bar Association president were also present on the occasion.On the other hand, the main function of the Independence Day flag hoisting ceremony was held in the commissioner’s office. Parliamentarians, PML-N ticket holders, and office bearers including Muhammad Hanif Abbasi, Sardar Nasim, Raja Hanif, Malik Iftikhar, Malik Ghulam Raza, Begum Tehseen Fawad, Lubna Rehan, Sobia Satti and Sardar Ramesh Sing Arora, Rawalpindi Commissioner Zahid Saeed, Regional Police Officer (RPO) Akhter Hayat Lalika, District Coordination Officer (DCO) Sajid Zafar Dall, city police officer (CPO), divisional and district heads of the government departments, teachers, male and female students, and a large number of citizens attended the ceremony. Pakistan Movement’s worker Shamshulhaq Awan was the chief guest on the occasion. Commissioner Zahid Saeed along with Shamshulhaq Awan, Muhammad Hanif Abbasi, Sardar Nasim, Raja Hanif, and Malik Iftikhar hoisted the national flag and the participants of the function sang the national anthem together on this occasion. Special songs were also sung by the students, which really raised the spirit of the participants of the ceremony. Pakistan Movement’s worker Shamshulhaq, who was just a schoolboy at the time of partition, addressing on this occasion narrated some of his memories at the time of the creation of Pakistan and his journey of migration towards Pakistan from Hoshyarpur (India). He said that all the nations progressed and attained prosperity after passing through difficulties and hardships. Pakistan would also become a developed country soon in future after getting itself out of problems and crisis as Almighty Allah has blessed our motherland with vast resources and talented human resource, he added. He said that the Muslims of the subcontinent won independence and created Pakistan under the leadership of its founder Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, under an ideology of leading their lives according to their religion, culture, and norms as a nation. Shamshulhaq added that while celebrating the Independence Day, every citizen should pledge and affirm for laying all kind of sacrifices for the protection of our independence, prosperity, and development of our country. Zahid Saeed, along with Hanif Abbasi, Sardar Nasim, Raja Muhammad Hanif, Raja Iftikhar, and other public representatives also cut the Independence Day cake.Moreover, Canadian High Commissioner to Pakistan Greg Giokas extended his best wishes to the people of Pakistan on its 68th Independence Day. He said, “Today, Pakistan marks its Independence Day, to commemorate its creation as an independent nation. Pakistanis can take pride in their rich multicultural heritage.” He added that Canada would continue to work with Pakistan to promote and strengthen democracy and economic growth.

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