Full Text of address by President Arif Alvi at Flag Hoisting and Kashmir Solidarity Day Ceremony on Pakistan’s 73nd Independence Day

“Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Raheem”

 Chairman, Senate,

  • Speaker, National Assembly
  • Federal Ministers, Parliamentarians
  • Services Chiefs,
  • My Fellow Countrymen,
  • Ladies and Gentlemen,

Assalam-o-Alaikum!

Congratulations to the whole nation on 72nd Independence Day! I pray that the Green Flag, the symbol of our national sanctity and identity, may always fly high and keep on representing our national aspirations. May the white Crescent and Star keep on spreading the rays of peace and progress and may they continue illuminating the hearts and minds of all Pakistanis.

This day holds special significance in our national history, a political miracle transpired on the world’s map and it fulfilled the demand of the Muslims of sub-continent for a separate homeland. On this holy eve, our hearts fill up with sheer gratitude to Almighty Allah for granting us the unparalleled blessing of liberty. This occasion also calls for paying gratitude to those great leaders whose vibrant leadership and sacrifices won freedom for us. We can pay real tribute to those great ancestors only by rising above our self-interests and uniting to dedicate our fullest capabilities for the development and progress of the motherland. This year Independence Day is also Kashmir Solidarity Day.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Today, the entire world can see that the Pakistani nation stands with their Kashmiri brethren in this difficult time and it will continue to provide its moral, political, and diplomatic support to the Kashmiris until they are given the right to self-determination. We will never leave their side. Kashmiris are ours and we are theirs. We consider their pain our pain. Their grief is our grief and their tears fill our hearts with sorrow and grief. We have been with them, are with them, and will always remain with them. Reflective of its staunch commitment to Kashmir cause, the Government of Pakistan has downgraded its diplomatic relations with India, suspended bilateral trade, decided to review bilateral arrangements with India, and the issue is being taken up in United Nations and Security Council. This Independence Day is the expression of solidarity with the valiant people of Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK).

In this regard, the Joint Session of the Parliament of Pakistan in its resolution of 7th August 2019 has consensually condemned the illegal and unilateral actions taken by India on Indian Occupied Kashmir. India’s regressive decision to alter the special status of Kashmir as a disputed territory and its attempt to tamper with IOK’s demographics is unacceptable. Kashmir is an internationally acknowledged disputed territory on the agenda of Security Council. India cannot unilaterally change the status of Kashmir as a disputed territory, nor does it have any right to alter the demographics of IOK.

India, by its unilateral action, has not only violated the Security Council Resolutions but has also discarded Simla Agreement, wherein both the countries had pledged that the two countries will resolve Kashmir dispute through peaceful dialogue and neither country will unilaterally alter the existing state of affairs. This step of India is in utter violation of all injunctions of Simla Agreement.

On 7th August 1952, Indian Prime Minister Nehru said in Indian Parliament, I quote:

“Let me say clearly that we accept the basic proposition that the future of Kashmir is going to be decided finally by the goodwill and pleasure of her people.  The goodwill and pleasure of this Parliament is of no importance in this matter, not because this Parliament does not have the strength to decide the question of Kashmir but because any kind of imposition would be against the principles that this Parliament holds.”

He said further and I again quote:

“I want to stress that it is only the people of Kashmir who can decide the future of Kashmir.  It is not that we have merely said that to the United Nations and to the people of Kashmir, it is our conviction and one that is borne out by the policy that we have pursued, not only in Kashmir but everywhere.”

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Pakistan strongly supports the right to self-determination of the people of IOK as provided for in the Security Council resolutions and international law. India should not forget that there are three parties to the Kashmir dispute: Pakistan, India, and the people of Kashmir. The people of Kashmir have a right to plebiscite to determine their future, but obstinate India has never allowed them to exercise it.

The persecution of minorities by the so called largest democracy of the world, India, is known to everyone. Its religious extremism has tarnished the face of secular India. In this regard, the reports of international human rights watchdogs are enough to clear all delusions. Today the Muslims and other minorities in India have realized the political vision and two-nation theory of Quaid-i-Azam and are openly acknowledging that their ancestors made a historic and political mistake in not joining Quaid-i-Azam at the time of partition.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Kashmir is the most militarized conflict zone in the world right now due to the presence of 900,000 Indian troops. Unending curfew, arrest of Kashmiri leaders, suspension of mobile and other communication services in Kashmir and the recent Indian deployment of additional 180,000 troops is remonstrable. Indian armed forces, through murder and plunder, violence, illegal imprisonments, use of pellet guns, and rape of Kashmiri women, are inhumanely and blatantly violating fundamental human rights of the people of IOK. We condemn it in the strongest possible manner and demand that India stop its brutalities and atrocities, end the protracted curfew, allow communication services in Indian Occupied Kashmir, free Kashmiri leadership, and restore the basic civil liberties of the innocent people of Indian Occupied Kashmir.

Moreover, India is continuously violating the ceasefire agreement by its unprovoked firing and bombing of people across the Line of Control. India’s irresponsible and belligerent actions pose a grave danger to peace and stability in South Asia. 

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Pakistan is a peace-loving country and is desirous of peace in the region. We want to resolve Kashmir issue through dialogue and diplomacy in accordance with international law. We demand from India to stop its military aggression, state terrorism and brutalities in IOK. We also want to clarify that India should not take our desire for peace as a sign of weakness. We want to make it clear to the International community that we are a peace-loving nation, but if war is imposed on us, it will not be limited to two countries alone; rather it will have consequences for the whole region and the entire world. Even now we warn the Indian leaders to come to their senses and not to create an irreversibly dangerous situation.

Pakistan desires peaceful resolution of Kashmir dispute. My Pakistanis, you have in your hands the powerful tool of social media, through which you can disclose to the world the monstrous face of India.

We urge Organization of International Cooperation (OIC) and United Nations to constitute an enquiry commission to investigate the human rights violation in Indian Occupied Kashmir.

Here, I would also like to thank those friendly countries, who stand by our oppressed brethren of Indian Occupied Kashmir in this difficult time.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

Keeping in view the global scenario, I would urge the nation, especially our youth, to consider this country a blessing of Almighty Allah. Value it. Never forget the sacrifices of the founding fathers as vibrant nations never do so. Follow their vision and by acting upon it, work for the development of this God-given country. Remember governments do not make nations; people, especially youth, of a nation are the architects of its destiny.

Fight against the rampant ignorance, poverty, corruption, dishonesty, terrorism, and other evils. Be proud of your cultural values and play your part in promoting them. This country has given us an identity, so serve it diligently and honestly. Negating your personal interests in favor of collective interests and rising above mutual differences, move forth in unison. Only by doing so can we claim a respectable place in the comity of the nations and add to the glory of our national flag. By adopting Quaid’s motto of unity, discipline, and faith, youth can change the destiny of this nation and make it a democratic state based on Islamic egalitarianism. The future of Pakistan lies in your hands.

Ladies and Gentlemen!

On this occasion, I want to pay tribute to the valiant people, armed forces, and Law Enforcement Agencies of Pakistan for rendering tremendous sacrifices for the protection of the country. Armed Forces of Pakistan have never let any harm come to sovereignty of the country. I salute the martyrs who laid down their lives for the protection of the motherland and the forbearance of their families. Nation will always remember their sacrifices. 

In the end, I would like to reiterate our solidarity with our Kashmiri brethren and assure them that Pakistan will advocate their cause at all fora and will never leave their side. 

Let us pledge today that we will, with mutual love and respect, unite in our efforts for the progress and development of this great country. May Almighty Allah grant us the strength to serve our beloved country and take it to the zenith of glory. 

May Allah’s blessings be with us all! 

Pakistan Paindabad!

 

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Reference:
Excerpt from Nehru’s Speech Titled “Our Pledge to Kashmir” has been taken from the Compilation Jawaharlal Nehru’s Speeches, Vol. II, (August 1949-February1953), Published by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting of India in January 1954.

URL: https://archive.org/stream/in.ernet.dli.2015.460612/2015.460612.Jawaharlal-Nehrus-Speeches-Vol-2_djvu.txt