Today Pakistan is celebrating the 77th Pakistan Day with a promise to make this country and nation ever stronger by eliminating the menace of terrorism and strengthening the national security and solidarity. The day dawned with a 31-Gun salute in the Federal Capital and 21-Gun salutes in Provincial Capitals followed by a Joint Military Parade of all three forces; Pakistan Army, Pakistan Navy and Pakistan Air Force, at Shakarparhiyan Parade Avenue in Islamabad.
Main Feature of Pakistan Day was the Military Parade at Parade Avenue near the landmark Shakarparhiyan hills in Islamabad where Armed Forces conducted March Past whereas Fighter Jets presented Aerobatic Maneuvers. Another special feature of the parade this year was the participation of Tri Services of People’s Liberation Army of China, Saudi Special Force’s Contingents and Turkish Janissary Military Band.
President Mamnoon Hussain was the Chief Guest of the event. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Mohammad Zakaullah and Defence Minister Khawaja Asif witnessed the parade. Chief of South African National Defence Force General Solly Zacharia was also among other dignitaries who attended the ceremony.
Various political, social, religious, and literary organizations had arranged the functions to highlight the importance of the Pakistan Resolution that paved the way for the creation of an independent homeland for the Muslims of the Sub-Continent. Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sohail Amaan led the Fly-Past of the Pakistan Air Force and Pakistan Navy Aviation in F-16.
Troops of the Parade included contingents of the 18 Punjab Regiment, 21 Frontier Force Regiment, 10 Northern Light Infantry Regiment, Pakistan Navy, Pakistan Air force, Special Services Group (SSG), 760 Mujahid Battalion, Frontier Corps Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan Rangers Punjab, Pakistan Police (Represented by the Islamabad Police), Tri Services Lady Officers, Tri Services Armed Forces Nursing Services, Boy Scouts, Pakistan Girl Guides, Special Services Group (SSG) and President Bodyguards. Mechanized Columns of Armoured Corps, Artillery, Army Air Defence, Signals, Engineers, Army Strategic Force Command also participated in Parade.
Participation of Chinese, Turkish and Saudi Troops
In a historic first, Chinese troops also took part in Pakistan Day Parade. A 90-Member Chinese Delegation had arrived in Pakistan on Monday to participate in the parade. Prior to the parade, Major General Li Chan told Chinese Media in Pakistan that they are here as representatives of the Chinese Public and to make the Pak-China friendship stronger. He said that they received warm welcome upon their arrival in Pakistan and hoped that friendship between the two countries flourishes further.
Alongside Chinese and Turkish troops, Saudi Troops also took part in Pakistan Day Parade and expressed the strong ties between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The Turkish Military Band also participated in Pakistan Day Parade for the first time ever. The band, known as “Mehtaar” in Turkish, is considered to be the oldest Military Band in the world dating back to later thirteenth century.
Pakistan’s Defence is Strong and Invincible, says President Mamnoon Hussain
Addressing the Ceremony, Chief Guest and President of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain lauded the Military Parade and said that Pakistan’s defence is strong and invincible. He also paid tribute to all those who have sacrificed their lives for Pakistan and condemned the repeated violations of ceasefire by Indian Armed Forces at the Line of Control.
President said that Pakistan is ready for table talks with India to promote peace in the region and wants good relations with all of its neighbours. Mamnoon Hussain also vowed to extend its complete moral, political and diplomatic support to Kashmiri People on all diplomatic fronts.