News ID: 240559
Published: 1000 GMT March 23, 2019

Pakistan celebrates National Day with traditional zeal

Pakistan celebrates National Day with traditional zeal

Islamabad, March 23, IRNA -- Pakistani nation celebrated National Day on Saturday with a commitment to ensure progress, prosperity and a strong defense of the country.

The day is observed to commemorate the passage of Lahore Resolution on this day in 1940, under which the Muslims of the sub-continent set the agenda of a separate homeland for themselves.

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

Special prayers were offered in mosques for the progress and prosperity of the country. It is a public holiday and national flag was hoisted on major government buildings, IRNA reported.

The main feature of the day was Joint Services parade held in Islamabad with forces displaying their professionalism and military prowess.

The impressive ceremony kicked off with the fly past of fighter jets of Pakistan Air Force led by Air Chief Mujahid Anwar Khan presenting salute to the chief guest President Dr Arif Alvi.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohammad was the guest of honour at the event. Minister of Defense of the Republic of Azerbaijan Colonel General Zakir Hasanov was also present on the occasion.

Chief guest President Alvi addressing the ceremony congratulated the nation on the National Day and said that 'March 23 is that milestone of our national history in which the Muslims of the subcontinent aimed for their liberation through Pakistan Resolution.'

The president noted that Pakistan's sovereignty had been challenged in the past and 'wars were imposed on us' but lauded the nation for fighting off those setbacks.

He said that 'Pakistan respects all the countries' sovereignty and wishes peace' but made it clear that the 'desire for peace should not be misconstrued as a sign of weakness'.

Contingents of Pakistan Army Infantry Corps, Navy, Pakistan Air Force, Special Services Groups, Engineering Corps, Frontier Corps, Rangers, President Body Guards, Armored Corps, Artillery Corps, Army Air Defense Corps, Engineering Corps, Signal Corps, Islamabad police, Nursing officers, Boy Scouts, and Girl Guides marched past the dais presenting salute to the chief guest and the guest of honor.

Pakistan’s deferent missiles were also displayed on the occasion. Contingents from the militaries of Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia also took part in the march past. Helicopters of Pakistan Army Aviation displayed an impressive fly past during the parade.

The march of different floats depicting various aspects of culture of different provinces is also part of the parade.

Paratroopers from Pakistan Army, Air Force, Navy, Azerbaijan, Brunei, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Sri Lanka performed free fall jumping from 10,000 feet above the ground and impressed the audience.

Main feature of the parade was a massive display of aerobatics by jets of Pakistan Air Force, Turkish Air Force and Chinese Air Force.

Prime Minister Imran Khan in his message on the day said the government is determined to establish a society where every person can contribute towards socio-economic development to the best of his ability.

Radio and TV channels aired special programs and documentaries while newspapers published special supplements in connection with the day.

On the day change-of-guards ceremony was also held at the mausoleum of Dr Allama Iqbal in Lahore.

Different organizations and societies arranged functions and ceremonies to commemorate the day.

Mobile phone services were suspended in the capital, where the annual parade took place.

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