New Delhi: Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India Sohail Mahmood has urged the both India and Pakistan to give future hope and opportunities to their next generations and opt for dialogue on issues dogging their relations atmosphere of peace and security for people on both sides of the divide. He said the 2018 marks 70 years of India and Pakistan after Independence in 1947, and it is important to reflect how the last 70 years have gone and resolve that the next 70 years would be different.
The Ambassador expressed these views while addressing the reception ceremony held at the High commission to mark the National Day on Friday. “Since independence in 1947, Pakistan and India have completed 70 years as free nations. At the time of independence, our founding fathers had envisioned an amicable relationship between the two countries. The relations, however, evolved on a different trajectory,” he said.
Ambassador Mahmood said, all outstanding issues between India and Pakistan, including Kashmir, can be resolved through dialogue, which will usher in an “era of peace and stability” in South Asia, adding that Pakistan has sought peaceful and good neighbourly relations with all countries in South Asia including India. He said that Pakistan seeks such relation on the basis of the equality and mutual respect.
Ambassador Mehmood hoped that there would be a hard reflection on the time lost, and the opportunities missed. “Building a future different from the past remains indispensible. We owe it to our next generations. We must give them a future of hope and opportunities. I hope we can prove equal to the task and work purposefully to advance the worthy goals of honourable peace, equal security, and shared prosperity.” He recalled that on March 23, 1940, a historic resolution was adopted in Lahore, which laid the foundation for the Pakistan movement.
“We have always sought solution of all outstanding disputes through dialogue and we believe that all outstanding issues including Kashmir if they are resolved through dialogue, it will usher in an era of peace, stability and prosperity in South Asia,” the Pakistani envoy said.
He said Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah had envisioned Pakistan as an economically-strong, modern, moderate, democratic, Islamic welfare state and successive generations had contributed their part towards the realisation of his vision.
“This journey continues — as we have made major strides in deepening democracy, strengthening the economy, building a free media, and nurturing a dynamic civil society. Our endeavours to fight the scourge of terrorism continue to move apace, as reflected in the success of operations Zarb-i-Azb and Raddul Fasaad.
At the Pakistan High Commission, various cultural programmes were organised to mark Pakistan National Day