MESSAGE FROM MR. MAMNOON HUSSAIN PRESIDENT OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF PAKISTAN (ON THE OCCASION OF MINORITIES DAY, 11TH AUGUST, 2017)

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NOT TO BE PUBLISHED, BROADCAST, TELECAST BEFORE THE MORNING OF DAY AUGUST 11, 2017

             August 11 is a special day in our national Calendar when we reaffirm our commitment to fulfil the promise made to our non-Muslim brethren by the Founder of the State Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah to continue striving for protection of the rights of the followers of all faiths and bring them in the mainstream of national life. On this day we reiterate the pledge made by our great leaders of according equal treatment to all our citizens irrespective of their religion, caste and creed. The observance of Minorities Day today is an occasion to recognize the important role played by the minorities in Pakistan in nation building, the sacrifices rendered by them and to focus on addressing the problems faced by them.

It was on this day in 1947 when Quaid-e-Azam in his historic address to the Constituent Assembly outlined the contours of a modern and tolerant Pakistan in which people of all faiths will have equal rights and opportunities. This vision of a tolerant and modern Pakistan was also embodied in the consensus Constitution of 1973. Let us reiterate today that we will uphold the ideals of equal rights and complete freedom to every citizen to freely profess and practice his or her religion.

The present democratic Government is driven by the vision of the Quaid-e-Azam to protect the rights of all minorities in the country and in this regard has already taken a number of steps for welfare of non-Muslims. The observance of Minorities Day reflects our commitment to integrate people of all faiths in the national life. We need to protect and promote democratic values and culture as an important tool to promote tolerance and harmony by ending extremism, intolerance and sectarianism. On this occasion I urge the religious leaders and indeed every citizen of Pakistan to promote the values of forbearance and open-mindedness towards people of different faiths by spreading the message of peace.

Let us rededicate ourselves to the ideal of a modern and progressive Pakistan as envisioned by the Quaid-e-Azam. On this day I felicitate all the non-Muslims of Pakistan and wish to renew our commitment towards a tolerant society and to work for protection of their rights as equal citizens of the state.

NOT TO BE PUBLISHED, BROADCAST, TELECAST BEFORE THE MORNING OF DAY AUGUST 11, 2017

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