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Kashmir Solidarity Day observed with renewed pledge

LAHORE: Kashmir Solidarity Day was observed to express solidarity with the Kashmiri people struggling for their right to self-determination under the United Nations resolutions, in the Punjab capital on Monday.

The day dawned with special prayers in mosques for progress and prosperity of Pakistan, eternal peace of martyrs of Kashmir’s struggle and liberation of all occupied territories including Indian-held Kashmir.

A one-minute silence was observed at 10 am to honour the Kashmiri martyrs. During the day, mass rallies, seminars, walks, conventions, meetings and speech contests were held to mark the day.

Special cultural programmes and festivals were also held to promote Kashmiri culture and tradition while photographic exhibitions were also arranged depicting the atrocities committed by Indian forces against the Kashmiris.

The government had announced February 5 as a closed holiday to observe Kashmir Solidarity Day in support of Kashmiris. People took to the streets in the provincial metropolis and voiced their support for the struggling Kashmiris.

The Punjab Assembly during its especially convened sitting expressed solidarity with the Kashmiris struggling to get liberation from India. It paid glowing tributes to the Kashmiri martyrs and urged the federal government to use all international fora to pressurise New Delhi to implement resolutions passed by the United Nations.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz also set up a camp at the Chairing Cross to express solidarity with the Kashmiris.

Addressing the camp, Federal Minister for Railways Khawaja Saad Rafique said, the resolution of Kashmir issue was essential for regional peace and development. He said, atrocities being inflicted on innocent Kashmiris could not affect the freedom struggle of Kashmiris. “Sacrifices of people of Kashmir will never go waste and Kashmir day reminds the global community that they should play their proactive role in the light of the UN resolutions to provide Kashmiris their due right,” he added.

Minister Commerce Pervaiz Malik, MNA Shaista Pervaiz Malik and others also spoke.

Speakers at Jamaat-e-Islami Lahore’s rally in their speeches urged the international human rights organizations to stock of Indian atrocities being perpetrated against innocent and unarmed Kashmiris in Held Valley.

At a function organized by the Nazria Pakistan Trust, former President of Pakistan Mohammad Rafique Tarar and former Vice-Chairman University of Punjab, Prof. Mohammad Rafique called upon the international community to force India to withdraw its forces from the occupied Kashmir and grant Kashmiris their right to self-determination.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) also organised a public meeting at historic Mochi Gate on Kashmir Solidarity Day which was addressed by Co-Chairman of the party Asif Ali Zardari. He vowed to continue moral support to Kashmiris.