The Pakistani nation is celebrating yet another Independence Day on August 14, 2019 with the continued blessings of Almighty Allah for which brisk and enthusiastic preparations have been going on for many days. This is a very great and joyful occasion for everyone living within the geographical frontiers of Pakistan as a proud, free, sovereign and independent Pakistan. Besides expressing gratitude to Almighty Allah, we all should sincerely be remembering our forefathers whose struggle and sacrifices had resulted in the creation of our new motherland, free from economic slavery of Hindus and the alien British rulers, under the inspiring and principled leadership of Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah.

As we all celebrate another Independence Day, which calls for soul searching and catharsis, it is pertinent to mention here some important development developments which had taken place during the last one year prior to going ahead.

India has all along been hatching conspiracies and planning measures to destabilise Pakistan and isolate it in the comity of nations internationally as well as weakening it economically. India had ventured into misadventure on February 27, 2019 when it its aircrafts had violated Pakistan’s air space and stuck some places. They had also tried to play this mischief the previous night and had fled away on being chased by the ever-vigilant eagles of Pakistan Air Force. They tried to do the same again on the night of February 27th but were intercepted and two IAF aircrafts were shot down, in a humiliating defeat for India.

Two other important developments, among several others, took place in the third week of July 2019 in quick succession to each other.

The merger of tribal areas into Khyber Pukhtunkhwah was completed when the tribal men and women elected their representatives to the Provincial Assembly, thus becoming equal citizens of Pakistan like the rest of their brethren and sisters throughout the country.

Soon after taking the mantle as the 22nd Prime Minister of Pakistan with his party Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI) securing majority seats and making its maiden entry into the corridors of powers in Islamabad, Imran Khan had been visiting different friendly countries like Saudi Arabia, UAE and China quite objectively reviving Pakistan’s relations and strengthening personal contacts with the leadership of these countries.

Without undermining the importance of visits to other countries, PM Imran Khan paid a very successful visit to the USA for three days at the invitation of President Donald Trump in the backdrop of persistent cold ties between the old allies. While talking to each other at the White House and responding to the queries from media, it was here that President Donald Trump offered his good offices for mediation to resolve lingering and burning Kashmir issue. This had internationalised the Kashmir issue within no time.

Most importantly, 2019’s Independence Day is being celebrated and observed as “Kashmir Solidarity Day” to reiterate Pakistan and its people’s unflinching support for Kashmiris in their indigenous struggle for securing their right of self-determination in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions. This is in retaliation to India’s attempt to change the status of the internationally acknowledged disputed area and marking the occupied territory as its own at the gun-point.

Pakistan is just 82 years old which is no age for a nation and with the continued blessings of Almighty Allah it has to go a long and still longer way in coming decades, nay, in the centuries. Pakistan has overcome many of its internal and external challenges and is grappling with an economic crisis, which has started showing signs of stability and its people are as determined and committed as ever to continue facing all challenges which confront them steadfastly, courageously and boldly.

Ever since the early departure of the Father of the Nation, Pakistan has been facing and overcoming a host of internal as well as external problems and challenges. But the challenges it has been facing during the last decades in the form of militancy, extremism and terrorism are of a very serious nature threatening national security and solidarity.

The Muslims of the sub-continent had suffered, struggled and offered great sacrifices for securing a separate, independent and sovereign motherland of their own. Now they are offering even more sacrifices to preserve their solidarity and security while combating various menaces. It is quite commendable that the Armed Forces of Pakistan, fully backed and supported by the government, political leadership and the people at large, are offering great sacrifices in chasing out the terrorists, militants and extremists from the sacred soil of Pakistan and securing success and restoring peace in the previously troubled tribal areas. Our valiant soldiers are laying down their lives for ensuring national safety and for ensuring our tomorrow. With every sacrifice, they are becoming all the more determined to eliminate the menaces of terrorism, militancy and extremism in all their different manifestations once and for all.

This independence month, it is desirable that the people of Pakistan should rise above petty, selfish, personal, political, regional and other interests and keep national interests supreme in their thinking and actions. We should all discharge our duties and obligations sincerely and honestly. At the same time, it is also imperative that all possible steps and measures are taken in an effective manner to ensure that the future generations are educated, informed and apprised about the Pakistan Movement as well as the sufferings of the Muslims who had migrated after the partition of the sub-continent to their newly created motherland.

It is also essential that a moderate, forward looking, progressive and positive image of Pakistan and its people is continuously promoted and highlighted through all possible means before the international community in the wake of persistent hostile propaganda by our enemies. Every Pakistani going abroad, either on an official or private visit, should and must ensure that in their inter-actions with foreigners anywhere around the globe, they avail every opportunity to tell them that Pakistan is a peace loving country and its people believe in peaceful co-existence with all countries including our close neighbours.

While celebrating the Independence Day every year from now onwards, please do always pause and ponder over what you have done in the service of Pakistan throughout the preceding year.