President Arif Alvi awards gold medal to a graduate at the convocation in Gilgit on Wednesday.—APP
President Arif Alvi awards gold medal to a graduate at the convocation in Gilgit on Wednesday.—APP

GILGIT: President Arif Alvi on Wednesday declared Gilgit-Baltistan the most beautiful part of the world.

Addressing the ninth convocation of Karakoram International University here as its chancellor, the president said he had visited many countries but he hadn’t seen such a beautiful area anywhere.

He said better road infrastructure promised the development of tourism but GB lacked good roads.

The president said whenever he met foreign dignitaries, he informed them about GB’s beauty.

“Once Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman invited me to a tourist destination in his country and I replied I will go there after you visit GB,” he said.

President attends varsity convocation in Gilgit

The president said GB had huge potential for tourism and mineral development.

He asked the local students to acquire knowledge of tourism and help promote ecotourism to protect the region’s beauty.

The president welcomed ban on plastic bags in Hunza district as a good step for environment protection and said the international standards of tourism and hospitality should be introduced in the region.

He praised the residents over peaceful environment saying it is imperative for tourism development.

The president said it was encouraging to see over 20 million Pakistani and foreign tourists visit the region.

He asked graduates to use their knowledge for social development.

“Whatever you have learnt and whatever degree you’ve obtained should have a market value so that no one of you remains jobless,” he said.

The president said in collaboration with the Higher Education Commission, he was working on a plan to adjust new graduates in their respective fields.

He said he would work for the promotion of tourism sector in GB.

The president conferred degrees on 700 graduates and distributed silver and gold medals to over 100 high-achievers.

Earlier, Vice-Chancellor of the university Dr Attaullah Shah said GB was blessed with unique geographical location.

“GB is considered the jewel crown of Pakistan and gateway to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. This region has got international significance,”he said.

He said KIU was contributing to the socioeconomic development of GB and that its 12,000 students had graduated.

GB Chief Minister Hafeezur Rehman,GB Assembly Deputy Speaker Jaffarullah Khan, lawmakers, Baltistan University Vice-Chancellor Dr Naeem Khan,officials, and students and their parents attended the event.

Published in Dawn, July 4th, 2019