KARACHI: Political parties, whether in opposition or in government, left their differences aside and showed rare unity on Wednesday as their representatives jointly participated in a Kashmir Solidarity Rally to condemn the completion of one year of the siege imposed by Indian forces in India-held Kashmir.
The civil society as well as political parties also organised their separate programmes across the city to mark Yaum-i-Istehsal-i-Kashmir.
Governor, CM lead rally
Sindh Governor Imran Ismail and Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah led the rally organised by the Karachi commissioner. The rally started on the Seaview road up to the Nishan-i-Pakistan monument.
Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Firdous Shamim Naqvi of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf, provincial lawmakers belonging to both ruling and opposition parties, ministers, civil society activists, women and children also participated in the rally.
The CM said that atrocities against Muslims of India-held Kashmir (IHK) were unleashed when the Pakistan movement was in full swing.
In 1946, Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had taken up the issue of brutalities against people of Kashmir when elections were held. “This shows that people of Kashmir being Muslims were unacceptable to the extremist Hindus,” he said.
He said that in the instrument of independence, it was decided that the Muslim-majority areas would accede to Pakistan but contrary to the agreement the Indian government landed their forces in the valley and occupied it. Since then, the people of Kashmir were struggling against the illegal occupation, he added.
He said in 1948 the UN passed a resolution giving the right of self-determination to the people of Kashmir.
Mr Shah said ever since Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had come into power he intensified the state-sponsored terrorism not only in Kashmir but against the Muslims of India as well.
Several events held across the city to observe Yaum-i-Istehsal-i-Kashmir
“The military siege imposed last year on Aug 5 in IHK has turned to be the longest military siege in the human history but it has failed to weaken the spirit of the people of Kashmir,” he said.
“We all, politicians, bureaucrats, women and children have gathered here in the rally to support their brothers and sisters in Kashmir and expose India’s illegal actions before the international community,” he said.
Amid loud chants of Kashmir banega Pakistan, he said that time was not far when Kashmiri people would get freedom from India.
World reaction to siege ‘disappointing’: governor
Addressing the media, Governor Ismail said that the federal and provincial government, opposition and treasury and all citizens were on the same page about expressing solidarity with Kashmiri people and condemning India’s illegal actions.
“The hearts of Pakistani people beat with their Kashmiri brethren and we will not leave them alone in any circumstances,” he said.
He said India had converted IHK into one of the biggest prisons by imposing a military siege since last year.
“The reaction of world community towards the siege is very disappointing. It must act now to stop grave human rights violations in Kashmir,” he said.
He said that it was a clear message to India that each and every political and religious outfit of Pakistan has the same policy and perception over Kashmir. There was no difference of opinion between them over the Kashmir dispute as the entire nation wanted to see end of Indian illegal action and military siege in the held valley.
He said that the Indian government was using every tactic to suppress the freedom movement but Kashmiris would never give up.
More steps need to be taken globally: MQM-P
The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan organised an event to mark Yaum-i-Istehsal-i-Kashmir at a park close to its Bahadurabad headquarters.
MQM-P convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said that India’s attitude towards Kashmir was a real threat to all the Muslims living in India.
He said that India could not hold any longer its occupation on Kashmir.
He asked the Pakistan government to take a step like the one India had taken for Kashmir.
Dr Siddiqui said that Pakistan was the only country that was working hard for resolving the Kashmir issue, but more steps needed to be taken on the world stage in this regard.
Kashmir & Pakistan inseparable, says Kamal
A solidarity programme was also organised by the Pak Sarzameen Party at its Pakistan House headquarters in which a large number of workers, including party president Anis Kaimkhani, were also present.
PSP chairman Syed Mustafa Kamal said: “Kashmir and Pakistan are inseparable, Kashmiris are our brothers, their love and devotion to Pakistan is eternal. They chant slogans of Pakistan, they raise Pakistani flag and wrap their martyrs in it. The Indian unending atrocities on Kashmiris are due to their unequivocal association with Pakistan.”
He said the people of Pakistan must realise the plight of Kashmiri people and the government must take practical steps in this regard.
He said his party would fully support every positive step taken by the federal government to resolve the issue of Kashmir and entire Pakistani nation, especially the people of Karachi, stood shoulder to shoulder with the Kashmiri people.
PTI train march leaves for Sukkur
The Sindh chapter of the PTI organised a train march from Karachi to Sukkur to register a protest against illegal Indian actions and atrocities in IHK.
Sindh Governor Ismail bid farewell to the participants of the train march which departed for Sukkur from the Cantt railway station.
The train march was led by PTI leader Haleem Adil Sheikh. Opposition leader Naqvi, PTI lawmakers, notables and people belonging to different walks of life were also present on the occasion.
The participants were carrying flags of Kashmir and were chanting slogans against Indian atrocities.
Tribute to Kashmiri women
Women MNAs and MPAs of the PTI held a candlelit vigil to show solidarity with Kashmiri brothers and sisters and to create awareness about Yaum-i-Istehsal-i-Kashmir outside the Karachi Press Club (KPC) on Wednesday.
MNAs Nusrat Wahid, Saima Nadeem, MPAs Dua Bhutto, Sidra Imran and others paid tributes to the Kashmiri mothers, sisters and girls on their struggle against the military siege.
They also chanted slogans against the military siege and saluted the struggle of Kashmiri females for standing shoulder to shoulder with male Kashmiris.
Published in Dawn, August 6th, 2020