New Delhi- Pakistan's High Commissioner to India Abdul Basit today said that his country is keen to settle all issues with India, including the disputed issue of Jammu and Kashmir through dialogue, and underlined the importance of both countries, working together for both peace and development.

Congratulating all Pakistani nationals residing in India on the occasion of Pakistan Day, High Commissioner Basit presided over an impressive flag hoisting ceremony at the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi, and said that the creation of Pakistan within seven years of the passage of the 1940 Lahore Resolution reflected the wisdom and tenacity of country’s founding fathers.

"Under the impeccable and sagacious leadership of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the Muslims of the subcontinent realized their dream. It was now incumbent upon us to make Pakistan a truly welfare state as envisioned by the Quaid-e-Azam," he said.

Referring to Pakistan-India relations, the High Commissioner underlined the importance of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's vision of "Peace for development and development for peace."

He further said that peace was in the mutual interest of Pakistan and India and that it was now high time to normalize relations and usher in a new era of peace and stability, enabling the two countries to address the challenges facing our region and exploiting myriad of opportunities unleashed by globalization.

The students of the Pakistan High Commission School sang Pakistan national songs and presented tableaux highlighting the struggle for the creation of Pakistan. At the end of the ceremony, Summiya Basit, the high commissioner's wife, distributed gifts among the students.

A seven-member delegation of Jammu and Kashmir separatist leaders attended the Pakistan National Day at its High Commission in Delhi. The delegation will also hold talks with Pakistani officials. On Sunday, separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq met Abdul Basit. Farooq has called for India and Pakistan to expand dialogue and focus on the resolution of the Kashmir dispute.

Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh had also maintained that the Pakistan government is free to invite anyone for the celebrations. "Pakistan should ponder as to how long this atmosphere of terror will continue. I want to ask Pakistan, how long do you want to keep the border red with terrorism? It must come to an end," Singh said.

However, the Opposition has hit out at the government for not protesting the meeting. "Whether it is Pakistan day or any other day, Pakistan has always used separatists and terror against India. The government needs to say whether it is right for us to talk to Pakistan under these circumstances despite their perseverance with terror," Congress leader Manish Tewari said.