Nation Observes August 14 As Kashmir Solidarity Day
ISLAMABAD, (UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 14th Aug, 2019 ) :The nation on Wednesday celebrated its 72nd independence day with great spirit by expressing solidarity with the people of Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK) facing oppression for more than seven decades, which further mounted after revocation of the Articles 370 and 35-A of the Indian constitution by New Delhi this month.
The day dawned with 31-gun salute in the Federal capital and 21-gun salute in the provincial headquarters, besides special prayers for peace, progress and prosperity of the country and salvation of the people of IoK from Indian suppression and atrocities.
The main event was a grand flag hoisting ceremony held here at the Convention Centre, in which President Dr Arif Alvi hoisted the national flag. The ceremony was attended by Chairman Senate Muhammad Sadiq Sanjrani, Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser, services chiefs, ministers, diplomats and a large number of people.
Addressing the flag-hoisting ceremony, President Dr Arif Alvi reiterated Pakistan's unflinching support to the Kashmiris in their just struggle to self-determination, saying India's regressive decision to alter the special status of Kashmir as a disputed territory and its attempt to tamper with IOK's demographics was unacceptable.
"Kashmir is an internationally acknowledged disputed territory on the agenda of Security Council. India cannot unilaterally change the status of Kashmir as a disputed territory, nor does it have any right to alter the demographics of IOK," he said.
Declaring himself as an ambassador for raising the Kashmir issue at international fora, he sternly warned of stronger response from Pakistan in case of any misadventure by Modi led government across the Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).
He said wars were no solution to the issues, but in case it was imposed upon Pakistan, it would evoke a stronger response entailing serious consequences. The whole nation and its armed forces were ready to respond to any Indian aggression or miscalculation, he added.
Endorsing the statement of AJK Prime Minister Farooq Haider, he said the ideology of Bharatiya Janata Party applied through Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) would not merely end over the IoK rather it could head towards Pakistan.
Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa said Pakistan had always stood by the Kashmiris against India's hegemonic ambitions and would continue doing so, and there could never be a compromise on the Kashmir issue.
"Reality of Kashmir was neither changed by an illegal piece of paper in 1947 nor will any other do it now or in future. Pakistan has always stood by Kashmiris against India's hegemonic ambitions, will always do.
There can never be a compromise on Kashmir," the COAS was quoted by Director General Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor in tweets.
The Army Chief said Pakistan would stand in the face of tyranny, regardless of the cost. The "Pakistan Army is fully alive to the sanctity of Jammu and Kashmir and will remain fully ready to perform its part in line with our national duty for Kashmir cause." Meanwhile, jubilant citizens took out rallies carrying national and AJK flags across the country, chanting slogans of 'Pakistan Zindabad and Kashmir Baney Ga Pakistan.' Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) held a rally from Liaquat Bagh, Rawalpindi to D-Chowk, Islamabad to express solidarity with the people of IoK, which was attended among others by people from all walks of life including top leadership of PTI, federal and provincial ministers, members of national and provincial assemblies and party workers.
Prominent among speakers, who addressed the rally, were Ministers Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Murad Saeed, Amin Aslam Gandapur, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, Chairman Parliamentary Committee on Kashmir Syed Fakhar Imam and PTI's senior leader Asad Umer.
The prime minister, she said, in his address to the Azad Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly earlier in the day had given a strong message to the Modi government to stop targeting people in Indian occupied Kashmir (IoK), who were struggling for their legitimate right of self-determination.
The special assistant said people of both Kashmir and Pakistan had strong will and spirit, who could not be afraid of use of force by India, adding the whole nation was standing by the Kashmiris struggling for their just right of freedom from the Indian clutches.
In Karachi, a change of the guards ceremony was held at the mausoleum of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, where a smartly turned out contingent of the cadets of Pakistan Naval academy assumed their duties.
Similarly, an impressive ceremony of change of the guards was held at the tomb of the poet of the east Allama Muhammad Iqbal in Lahore, where a contingent of the Pakistan Army assumed the charge of the guards' duty from the Pakistan Rangers (Punjab).
In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the main function was held at the Governor's House, Peshawar to mark Independence Day. Governor Shah Farman hoisted the national flag, offering collective prayers for development and prosperity of the country and liberation of IoK.
In Gilgit, the main activity of August 14 and Kashmir Solidarity Day was held in Chinar Garden where Deputy Speaker GB Assembly Jaffarullah Khan hoisted the national flag, laid wreath at Yadgar-e-Shuhada and offered Fateha.