PESHAWAR - In a message on the eve of 75th Pakistan Day falling on Monday, March 23, former President Asif Ali Zardari, while urging the people to rededicate themselves to democratic ideals, said that state power must flow from the will of the people and not from the barrel of the gun. “The Pakistan Day is an auspicious occasion in our national calendar and I wish to greet the people of Pakistan,” he said. “On this day we also need to rededicate ourselves to the ideals for which Pakistan was created. These were the ideals of democracy, rule of law, constitutionalism and egalitarianism,” he said.

“The people of Pakistan will never accept the agenda of fanatics and extremists in the name of religion and imposed through bullet,” he added.

Let it be made abundantly clear that in Pakistan power must flow from the collective will of the people and not from the barrel of the gun or the dictate of the self righteous individual behind the façade of religion.

“On this day we also need to remind ourselves the pledge made by our founding fathers in the historic Resolution adopted in 1940 to safeguard the religious, cultural, political and all other rights of Non Muslim minorities in consultations with them.”

“The rising incidents of intolerance and bigotry towards the non-Muslims and the misuse of certain laws against them is a matter of grave concern and we must strive to promote tolerance and religious harmony,” he said.

“Let us honour the pledge made by our founding fathers on our behalf in safeguarding the rights and interest of the non Muslim citizens of the state,” he said. “May Allah bless our efforts to prove ourselves worthy of the heritage bequeathed to us by the Quaid-e-Azam,” he concluded.

our staff reporter

peshawar

Maadr-i-Jamhooriat late Begum Nusrat Bhutto was a woman of exceptional courage who faced great challenges and waged through unspeakable tragedies in the course of democratic struggle. This has been stated by former President Asif Ali Zardari in a message on the eve of 86th birth anniversary of Begum Nusrat Bhutto falling on March 23.

The scars of brutality and victimization that she endured are shining today as glittering medallions ever worn by a woman in the course of democratic struggle, he said.

Her example to lead from the front will continue to inspire generations to come to aspire and struggle for lofty democratic ideals.

Begum Nusrat Bhutto was not only the spouse of Pakistan’s first directly elected Prime Minister and the mother of twice elected and the Muslim World’s first directly elected Prime Minister but also a woman leader who herself led the struggle for democracy from the front. She will also be remembered for her services to the refugees pouring into Pakistan with little or no resources.

“On the occasion of her 86th birth anniversary while we pay her homage let us also rededicate ourselves to the principles for which the Begum Sahiba struggled all her life and suffered so much. May her soul rest in eternal peace,” he concluded.