Azadi Festival 2023 Celebrated at Multan and Okara Garrison
Report by PRO Multan & Okara
In connection with the 76th Independence Day celebrations, Azadi Festival was organized at Multan and Okara Garrison with full zeal and vigour. The festival encompassed various sports and training competitions for officers and troops. Independence Day was celebrated at Army Public School and Al-Noor Special Children School and College at Multan and Okara. The events and functions were aimed at expressing and projecting national harmony. Lieutenant General Akhtar Nawaz, HI (M), Commander Southern Command and 2 Corps and Major General Ahmed Bilal, General Officer Commanding 40 Division, graced the occasion as the Chief Guest at Multan and Okara Garrison, respectively. The embellished and impressive display of the Azadi Band was supplemented with Azadi Walk, led by Lieutenant General Akhtar Nawaz. Trophies and prizes were distributed amongst the best performers in various competitions. On this auspicious occasion, Lieutenant General Akhtar Nawaz addressed the August gathering in Multan, which included veterans, civilian guests, civil administration officials, army officers and troops. He emphasized on promoting national unity.
76th Independence Day Celebrations in Balochistan
Report by PRO Quetta
76th Independence Day was celebrated with national spirit, traditional enthusiasm and patriotic fervor in Balochistan. On this occasion, government and private buildings, houses and roads were adorned with vibrant green and white lights, along with the display of national flags. Posters and banners of the founders of Pakistan and Shuhada were seen everywhere to pay tribute to them.
Independence Day celebration started on August 13, with Azadi Polo and Cricket matches followed by a spectacular fireworks display at Bolan Cricket Stadium and Railway Station, Quetta. Military and civil persons were invited from within and outside the Cantonment, who highly appreciated the event. Different events were organized where notables of the area and students were invited. August 14 started with 21-gun salute at the provincial capital, followed by prayers for the prosperity and safety of the country, and flag hoisting ceremonies. Different events were organized in the city, e.g., such as declamation contests at schools and colleges, tableaus, sports events, interaction with locals/jirga and notables, along with Independence Day rallies.
The excitement of Independence Day was visible in the people of Turbat and Kech as well, where they organized a car rally and functions, where students sang national songs and performed tableaus, while different orators delivered speeches about Pakistan at the end of the ceremony. The Chief Guest, IG Frontier Corps, said, “The youth of Balochistan is Pakistan's future and they will be a source of pride for Pakistan.”
The events paved the way to invoke the national spirit and portray a soft image of Pakistan Army. This Independence Day was celebrated with a resolution to protect our homeland from internal and external enemies for progressive Balochistan and Pakistan.
Celebrating Independence Day in Azad Kashmir
Report by Mehtab Zahra
Independence Day is a momentous occasion that reverberates with patriotism, unity, and gratitude across nations. It marks the triumph of a nation's struggle for freedom, symbolizing the birth of a new era. In Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), August 14 holds exceptional significance as it commemorates their journey towards independence and affirms the resilient spirit of its people.
Independence Day in AJK is celebrated with tremendous enthusiasm and genuine fervor. The region's diverse cultural heritage comes to the fore during this joyous occasion. The day is marked by hoisting the national flag, an essential symbol of sovereignty and freedom. Decorative lights, fireworks, and patriotic songs fill the air, resonating with the undying spirit of the Kashmiri people.
This year, the celebration started with fireworks on the main Naluchi Bridge, Muzaffararabad. Mesmerizing and vibrant colorful lights cast their enchanting glow throughout the night sky. This tradition has persisted for numerous years. The people of AJK express their deep connection with the cherished homeland through various activities. An Azadi festival was organized at the University Ground, featuring artists showcasing their talents. Alongside the ground, a street adorned with stalls added to the festive atmosphere, and a delightful food street offered a variety of Kashmiri dishes to satisfy the cravings of both tourists and locals.
August 14 started with a guard of honor and flag hoisting ceremonies. New promises, new dreams and new hopes were seen everywhere. In schools and colleges, the day was celebrated with zeal and zest. One thing which must be appreciated is the tradition of plantation all over AJK on August 14. The natives take part in plantation activity, planting trees at different places. It’s a gesture of care from households of Kashmir for their homeland. They are well aware that their existence and freedom in this world are because of their country, Pakistan, and the selfless efforts of Pakistan Army.
Pakistan Army has always worked and contributed to the welfare of the natives of Kashmir. Whether it's the field of education, health, sports or other economic activities, Pakistan Army is always working hard to provide ease and comfort to the entire Kashmir. Following the legacy, all brigades working in Azad Kashmir celebrated the day with natives and made this year's celebration memorable with festive colors. These brigades organized Leepa Youth Festival in Leepa Valley on Independence Day. The six-day festival started the ceremony on August 8 in Army Public School, Leepa. There were performances of APS students who presented different national songs and tableaus. There was a weapon display for the audience in APS, Leepa Valley. Different matches of tug of war, volleyball, kabaddi, gatka bazi and jeep rallies were held during the festival. There was also a cultural show in which Kashmiri costumes, handicrafts, and musical instruments were displayed. The final ceremony was conducted on August 14, when all the position holders of different contests received shields and certificates. Such activities, led by army units, contribute significantly to promoting tourism and healthy activities in AJK, and have a peaceful and progressive impact on the world.
Independence Day in Army Public School, Muzaffararabad, under the brigade, was also observed with many activities. Flag hoisting ceremonies, stage performances and national songs added colors to the festive day. 75 AK brigade is running two APS campuses successfully, named Army Public School, Garhi Dupatta, and Army Public School, Leepa. Army Public School, Jhelum Valley, under the 1AK Brigade, celebrated the day with zeal and zest. 2 AK brigade also observed it in all five army public school campuses. The unit arranged the celebration at Chirikot Headquarters, where students of an Army Public School visited the place and saw many weapons displayed by the team. 6 AK Brigade arranged it in all the three APS campuses. They promoted plantations in Bagh and Bedori bulge sectors.
The August 14 celebrations across Pakistan encapsulate its people's indomitable spirit, commemorating their journey towards freedom and self-determination. The festivities serve as a powerful reminder of the country’s vibrant cultural heritage and the aspirations of its inhabitants. In the face of ongoing challenges and unresolved disputes, the celebration demonstrates unity, resilience, and hope for a prosperous future. It serves as a platform to convey the heartfelt sentiments of the people of AJK towards their sacred homeland, Pakistan, and the Pakistan Army.
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