Prime Minister Stresses Need To Preserve National Heritage
Sumaira FH 17 days ago Sat 04th May 2019 | 11:38 PM
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday said it was necessary to preserve the national heritage and culture for the next generations
Speaking at the inauguration of the resurrected Mughal era Picture Wall here at the Lahore Fort, he said when the nations knew of their glorious past, they were destined to greatness. The heritage was a source of national pride.
The 'Picture Wall' is a 17th century monument which has been restored to its original grandeur after years of toil by the local and foreign archaeologists through the technical assistance from some foreign countries, including Norway.
The prime minister regretted the neglect of the past rulers due to which historic monuments deteriorated in the country. The foreign countries, including neighbouring India, had preserved their heritage successfully. Pakistan could learn a lot from the Indian experience after improvement in bilateral relations, he added.
He said preserving the national heritage and promoting tourism could help the country overcome the current account deficit, citing Turkey and Malaysia, which earned billions of Dollars through tourism. Turkey earned 40 billion dollars through tourism economy.
Pakistan was great tourist destination, he added.
The prime minister said the government had divided tourism into different sections, including architectural, nature and religious. Pakistan was home to the oldest Bhuddist, Hindu, Sikh and Islamic civilizations.
India, he said, would be a great tourism client as the relations between the two neighbouring countries were destined to improve. Similarly, there was immense interest from China, Japan, Korea and other countries and it was a good omen for the country's tourism industry.
He also stressed the need to explore Sufi tourism.
He said no hill resorts were developed after the British departed in 1947. His government was developing 30 new hill resorts, he added.
He said the government would allocate funds for the development and preservation of heritage and nature.
Earlier, Director General (DG) Walled City of Lahore Authority (WCLA) Kamran Lashari briefed the prime minister on the preservation of various parts of the Lahore Fort and other heritage sites in the city. He thanked Agha Khan Foundation, USAID and donor countries, including Norway, for supporting the preservation work in the country.
Lashari said the Picture Wall was the largest preserved heritage wall in the world and more work was being undertaken to preserve rest of the wall.
Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Khan Buzdar, Special Assistant to the PM on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan, Federal education Minister Shafqat Mehmood, politicians, foreign diplomats, including Norwegian Ambassador Kjell-Gunnar Eriksen and Canadian Deputy High Commissioner Elizabeth Baldwin-Jones and a large number of people attended the ceremony.
Later, the prime minister laid bare the Mughal-era Picture Wall plaque. He was shown round the different preserved sites of the Lahore Fort, including the Royal Kitchen. A Sufi music night followed by a dinner were also arranged for the guests.