LARKANA: The sixth death anniversary of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto was observed on Friday with great reverence, fervour and solemnity.
Quran khwani and fateha were held across the country for the departed soul, as people from all walks of life paid rich tributes to Benazir for her services for the cause of poor, progress and prosperity of Pakistan and restoration of democracy in the country.
The main ceremony was held in Garhi Khuda Bukhsh, some 28 kilometres from Larkana.
Former president Asif Ali Zardari, PPP Patron-in-chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, the AJK president, AJK prime minister, Gilgit-Baltistan governor, Gilgit-Baltistan Chief Minister Syed Mehdi Shah, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, Senate Chairman Syed Nayyar Bukhari, Rehman Malik, PPP Central Information Secretary Qamar Zaman Kaira, Syed Naveed Qamar, Syed Khurshid Ahmad Shah, Manzoor Watto, Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Khan Durrani, senators and provincial ministers visited the graves of Benazir, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and others. They placed floral wreaths at the graves and offered fateha.
Groups of people from across the country had started arriving in Garhi Khuda Bukhsh since Thursday evening to attend the death anniversary.
The ceremony started with a mushaira. Prominent poets from Sindh, Punjab and other parts of the country paid tribute to Benazir Bhutto.
Bilawal, Zardari, Qaim Ali Shah, Agha Siraj Khan Durrani, Aitzaz Ahsan, Muhammad Ayaz Soomro, Syed Mehdi Shah and other leaders of PPP addressed a public meeting outside the mausoleum of Benazir and paid homage to her services for the country, the democratic order and the rights of people.
They reiterated their pledge to carry forward the mission for which Benazir had laid down her life. They also praised the slain prime minister for her efforts for the betterment of the poor. They added that democracy was restored in the country due to sacrifices rendered by Benazir.
A two minute silence was also observed at 5.20pm in honour of former prime minister. Peoples Doctors Forum (PDF) Larkana district, District Health Department and CMC Hospital had established free medical camps to provide medical assistance to the participants of the death anniversary ceremony.
Ambulances and fire tenders were also deployed and first aid camps were set up.
Sindh Inspector General of Police Shahid Nadeem Baloch had established a base camp in Naudero to monitor security arrangements.
Foolproof security arrangements had been made to maintain order and face any untoward incident. More than 8,000 personals of police and Rangers were deployed in Garhi Khuda Bukhsh and its adjoining areas.
Police and Rangers used 75 vehicles and 250 motorcycles to patrol the area under supervision of senior police officers, while police had set up pickets along roads leading to Garhi Khuda Bukhsh to guide caravans of people.
Besides close circuit cameras, walkthrough gates and other security equipment had been installed at entry and exit points of the mausoleum and routes leading to Garhi Khuda Bukhsh. The death anniversary of Benazir was also observed with great reverence in Lahore, with jiyalas paying tribute to their assassinate leader through a one-of-a-kind portrait vigil.
PPP jiyalas in the city also arranged a torch rally from the Lahore Press Club to the Punjab Assembly to pay tribute to the great leader.
A separate candlelight vigil was also held in Youhanabad by the Christian community and PPP workers on the day. The rally from the Lahore Press Club to the Punjab Assembly was organised by the PPP Lahore office-bearers. PPP Lahore President Samina Khalid Ghurki led the rally, which was participated by a good number of party workers. Party leaders and workers paid tribute to their martyred leader and offered fateha on this occasion.
A large number of female activists of the party also took part in the torch rally, chanting slogans in favour of their martyred leader.
The participants of the rally also hoisted PPP flags and portraits of the party leadership, especially of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Benazir Bhutto and Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.
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