ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif hosted dinner in honour of English and Pakistan cricket teams on Monday and congratulated the visiting players for outplaying Pakistan in their first test match at Rawalpindi.
The prime minister said, “This is a historic moment, as after 17 years, we are having English team in Pakistan.” Unfortunately, their last visit was in 2005 when Pakistan was facing unbearable extremism and terrorist attacks, he said, adding that Pakistan was able to beat terrorism after paying huge sacrifices as tens of thousands of Pakistanis, including soldiers and civilians, laid their lives.
Mr Sharif said Pakistan enjoyed wonderful relations with Britain at different levels and cricket was one of them. He said the United Kingdom had always supported the people of Pakistan and their well-being. He expressed hope that the cricket team visit would go a long way in building bridges between Pakistan and the UK.
He expressed gratitude to the British High Commissioner and British government for supporting Pakistan cricket. He also hailed efforts of PCB Chairman Ramiz Raja to restore cricket in the country.
Congratulates English team on winning Pindi test
He appreciated English team’s capacity and wonderful cricket spirit.
On the occasion, Mr Sharif paid tribute to Pakistan’s cricket legends, including Fazal Mahmood, the hero of Oval and Hanif Mohammad, known as Little Master.
Earlier, the prime minister in a meeting with a delegation of the Dawoodi Bohra community called for joint efforts to purge the society of intolerance and for the promotion of brotherhood.
He said religious tolerance and harmony were the golden principles of Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and were also part of Pakistan’s foundation and its foreign policy.
The delegation was led by Kumail Younus, the representative of the spiritual leader of Dawoodi Bohra community Mufaddal Saifuddin.
Calling it peace-loving community, Mr Sharif lauded their welfare services for Pakistan. He also appreciated the Bohra community’s role in the promotion of religious harmony and in socio-economic development of the country. He urged the community to fully take part in the relief and rehabilitation efforts for the flood victims.
Published in Dawn, December 6th, 2022