Pakistan observes Defence Day with zeal and fervour

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KARACHI/ISLAMABAD: The nation is celebrating Defence and Martyrs Day on Thursday to pay tribute to martyrs on the 53rd anniversary of the 1965 war.

The day dawned with a thirty-one gun salute in the federal capital and twenty-one gun salute in provincial capitals.

Celebrations have been scheduled across the country to mark the day with the main event being held at the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi which is attended by Army Chief General Qamar Jawed Bajwa and Prime Minister Imran Khan is chief guest.

A change-of-guard ceremony was held at the mausoleum of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in Karachi and is also scheduled to be held at Allama Iqbal’s mausoleum in Lahore.

Change-of-guard ceremony held at Quaid-e-Azam’s mausoleum in Karachi. Photo: Geo News screengrab 

Special events to pay homage to the martyrs are also being held at all district headquarters. Families of martyrs are participating in the events to commemorate their sacrifices.

Wreath laying ceremonies will also be held at the mausoleums of the recipients of Nishan-e-Haider and will be attended by senior officials of the respective areas across the country.

After fajr, special prayers were offered in mosques for the country’s progress and prosperity. Fateha prayers and Quran Khawani events for the martyrs are also slated to be held later in the day.

On this day, 53 years ago, Indian forces had crossed the international border in the darkness of night to attack Pakistan but the nation foiled the nefarious designs of the enemy.

According to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the main event for the day will be held at Army Headquarters in Rawalpindi to pay tributes to the martyrs. Prime Minister Imran Khan will be the chief guest at the event, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa said.

PM Imran’s message

Prime Minister Imran Khan in his message to the nation on Defence Day said that the people of Pakistan will leave no stone unturned in defending their motherland.

We stand side-by-side with valiant armed forces of the country, the premier said.

“We will face all challenges while following Quaid-e-Azam’s principles of unity, faith and discipline,” he continued.

PM Imran also paid rich tribute to the martyrs for their sacrifices in defending the motherland and assured their families that every possible step will be taken for their welfare.

“Pakistan believes in peaceful coexistence and wants to promote mutual cooperation with the world, including neighbours on the basis of equality,” PM Imran added.

President Mamnoon’s message

President Mamnoon Hussain said that people of Pakistan demonstrated unsurpassed national unity.

In his message, the outgoing president added, “The sacrifices rendered by our valiant armed forces and the nation call for carrying on the spirit of September by forging unity among our ranks and fostering collective consciousness and wisdom as these traits are imperative to defeat the evil designs and conspiracies of the enemy.”

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