ISLAMABAD: The entire Pakistani nation is celebrating the Defence Day today commemorating the sacrifices of the armed forces, who fought valiantly to defend the homeland in September 1965.
On September 6, 1965, Indian forces violated the international border and attacked Pakistan at midnight. The enemy had code-named the operation as Riddle 11.
In such a critical time, a limited contingent of the Pakistan Army intercepted the enemy advance at Bambanwala Ravi Bediyan (BRB) Canal. This was the same BRB canal where Major Raja Aziz Bhatti embraced martyrdom among the ones defending the motherland.
PM’s message on Defence Day
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, in his message on Defence Day, said that Pakistan’s defense capabilities meet the contemporary needs as its strong defence has ensured peace in South Asia.
We do not want to join the arms race in the region however will continue to maintain a strategic balance in the region, the premier said in a statement.
He said the country’s defence capability was in fact reflective of the nation’s courage, steadfastness and determination, and showed how capable it was to face difficult situations.
“Operation Zarb-e-Azb is a continuation of this conviction which has resulted in containing terrorists through combined will of our political leadership, determination of the nation and sacrifices and professionalism of armed forces and security institutions,” he said.
The prime minister said the improved situation of law and order in the country was encouraging and to maintain that there was a need to adopt an approach by rising above political and personal interests.
PM Sharif said the fast changing global scenario, internal and external conspiracies, and terrorism were the challenges that demanded strong defence besides showing unity within ranks and files of the nation and faith.
Tributes and ceremonies
A solemn Guard of Honour ceremony has taken place at Mazar e Iqbal in Lahore, where a freshly turned-out contingent of the Pakistan Rangers presented salute to the late Thinker of Pakistan. A similar ceremony will be held at the mausoleum of Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in Karachi.
Parades and flag hoisting ceremonies will also be held across the country to mark the day. The nation will pay tributes to its martyrs by laying floral wreaths on their graves and at the martyrs monuments.