ISLAMABAD: Recalling the recent remarks by two leaders of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Friday conveyed the sentiments of Pakistanis about rising Islamophobia in India to US Ambassador Donald Blome.

According to the Prime Minister’s Office, the US ambassador called on the prime minister and discussed bilateral relations.

“Sacrilegious remarks by two BJP leaders about the revered personality of the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) have deeply hurt sentiments of Muslims,” the PM said while highlighting the rising wave of Islamophobia in India.

He said Delhi was also committing grave violations of human rights in India-held Kashmir.

While reiterating Pakistan’s commitment to promotion of peace in the region, he stressed the importance of peaceful resolution of the Jammu and Kashmir dispute.

In this context, he called upon the international community to discharge its moral and normative obligations, while also calling upon India to adhere to UN resolutions.

The prime minister highlighted the longstanding US-Pakistan relations and underscored Pakistan’s desire to further develop this relationship on the basis of mutual respect, trust and interest.

The prime minister emp­ha­sised that given Pakistan’s economic and demographic potential, US companies needed to be encouraged by the Development Finance Corporation of the US to invest in Pakistan’s large markets.

This year marked the 75th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Pakistan and the US.

Mr Sharif expressed the hope that the two countries would celebrate this historic occasion in a befitting manner.

On his part, Ambassador Blome thanked Pakistan for its prompt assistance in facilitating evacuation of US and its allies’ nationals from Afghanistan after the fall of Kabul to Taliban.

Innovative ideas

Earlier, Mr Sharif said the government would set up special cells for the talented youth in all ministries to encourage them to work on their innovative ideas for national policy-making.

Speaking at the launch of Innovation Hub, he said the step was aimed at encouraging the youth to involve in national development.

Being set up under the prime minister’s vision, the Innovation Hub will play an important role in harmonising policy-making with the requirements of the country by incorporating views of all stakeholders, particularly the country’s talented youth and manpower.

PM Sharif said the innovative project would receive valuable feedback from all stakeholders to help the government improve and refine its national policies.

He said that modern education and technology had immense significance in today’s world and urged experts, intellectuals and youth to connect with the government through their suggestions.

Meanwhile, Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, on Friday called on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and held a discussion with him on the country’s security situation. adds PPI.

Army Chief Gen Bajwa and Prime Minister Shehbaz held a one-to-one meeting at Prime Minister House. They discussed matters related to the army’s professional preparedness. They also held consultation for internal affairs of the country’s security situation.

The prime minister also presided over a meeting to use Information Technology (IT) to boost up exports of the country from the existing $2.5 billion to $15bn.

The meeting was attended by Junaid Qureshi, President of Silicon Valley, California. The prime minister expressed satisfaction over the volume of IT exports and stressed the need for giving it a further boost.

Also on Friday, the prime minister congratulated Chin­ese President Xi Jinping and the people of China on the 25th anniversary of the ret­urn of Hong Kong to China.

Published in Dawn, July 2nd, 2022

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