ISLAMABAD: Pakistan is celebrating Defence Day today to commemorate the sacrifices of the heroes of the 1965 war with a renewed pledge to defend the motherland against all threats.
The day began with special prayers for progress and prosperity of the country. Fateha and Quran Khawanis were also held for the martyrs who laid their lives for the defense of the country during the 1965 war with neighboring India.
An impressive change of guard ceremony was held at Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s mausoleum with smartly dressed contingent of Pakistan Air Force (PAF) assuming ceremonial guard duties at the mausoleum. A change of guard ceremony was also held at the tomb of Allama Iqbal where a contingent of Pakistan Army took over guard duties.
President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi in their separate messages on the Defence Day said Pakistan is fully capable of defeating aggression, reported Radio Pakistan.
They paid homage to all those who laid down their lives in defending the motherland.
The president said the government has launched National Action Plan under which the armed forces, police and law enforcement agencies are successfully rooting out the menace of terrorism and extremism from the country.
The prime minister said that we can only defeat our enemies through strict adherence to the cardinal principles of unity, faith and discipline laid down by the Father of the Nation.
He said that Pakistan is on the path of accelerated development and we are being viewed as an emerging economy by the global economic community.
He said that Pakistan’s military has been victorious in the war against terror and has proved its professional excellence. Operations Zarb-e-Azb, Radd-ul-Fasaad and Khyber-4 have broken the backbone of terrorists.
Meanwhile, former chief of army staff retired Gen Raheel Sharif along with members of his family laid a floral wreath on the grave of Major Shabbir Sharif Shaheed (Nishan-i-Haider). Major Shabbir laid his life on Dec 6 while defending the motherland during the 1971 War.
A Hilal-e-Istiqlal ceremony was held in Sarghoda to remember the heroes of the 1965 war. Deputy commissioner Liaqat Ali Chattha unfurled the national flag at the ceremony at Company Bagh.
In 1966, the Pakistani government awarded the citizens of Lahore, Sialkot and Sarghoda the Hilal-i-Istaqlal for their bravery in the 1965 war.
A number of functions will be held across the country to mark the day. Main function of the day will be held at General Headquarters in Rawalpindi to pay tribute to the martyrs.
Functions, seminars and rallies are also being organized in Azad Kashmir today to highlight the significance of the day.
On Sept 6, 1965 Indian forces crossed international border in the darkness of night to attack Pakistan but the nation foiled the nefarious designs of the enemy.