ISLAMABAD - President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf have reiterated government’s commitment to ensure equal treatment to all citizens irrespective of their religion‚ caste and creed.
In their messages on the occasion of National Minorities Day on Saturday‚ they called for to uphold the ideals of equal rights and complete freedom to everyone to freely profess and practice their religion.
President Zardari said it was on this day in 1947 when Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah in his historic address in the Constituent Assembly outlined the contours of a modern and tolerant Pakistan.
He said the present democratic government inspired by the vision of its great leaders‚ has already taken a number of steps to integrate people of all faiths in the national mainstream.
Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf has said government stands committed to the preservation of rights of minorities in Pakistan and has taken a number of concrete steps for their welfare.
He said Islam ordains equality of rights and protects religious freedom of all faiths.
The Prime Minister said one of the top priorities of the present democratic government is to protect the rights of the minorities and further empower them.
Meanwhile, the religious minorities living across the country celebrated the National Minorities day on Saturday to highlight the contribution, services and sacrifices of minorities in creation of Pakistan and nation building.
Events, seminars and social gatherings were arranged across the country by the members of various religious minorities and the ministry of National Harmony.
In a message issued on Minorities day, Dr Paul Bhatti, Minister Incharge for National Harmony said, “The day we celebrate every year on August 11, recalls the vision of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah with reference of his speech and the contribution of non-Muslim communities of Pakistan.”
“The celebration of minority day provides us an opportunity to re-assure that despite belonging to different faiths we are one nation that continues to march for united and prosperous Pakistan,” he said.
The commendable services of religious minorities along with our Muslim brothers is a glorious chapter in the history of independence movement of Pakistan. Furthermore religious minorities have given a considerable contribution in different fields of the society including health, education, defence, and social welfare.
He urged all religious communities to stay united and promote interfaith harmony, creating unity, peace, equity and justice in this society.
Since the formation of Pakistan, minorities are contributing in every sphere of life and their political involvement is also worth appreciating. The day was dedicated to the minorities who played their constructive role in Pakistan Movement.
He said the government was committed to follow the vision of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah for the enlightened, liberal, progressive and tolerant Pakistan. August 11 has a special significance in our national calendar.
It was this day in 1947 when the Father of the Nation Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, made a historic speech in the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, he said.