Winnipeg (Canada), Dec 04 Pakistan’s High Commissioner to Canada Raza Bashir Tarar has said that the situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir remains grave and the Indian government’s portrayal of normalcy was mere an eye-wash.
Addressing at the Jinnah Awards ceremony organized by the Jinnah Society of North America at Winnipeg, Manitoba, the High Commissioner said the Modi government was propelling the extremist ‘Hindutva’ ideology and pointed at the concerted efforts to settle people from outside in order to change demographics of the region in violation of the international law.
Ambassador Tarar said Pakistan remained steadfast in regarding self-determination an inalienable right of the people of Kashmir, says a message from Canada received in Islamabad.
Paying tribute to the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the High Commissioner said the great leader overcame the seemingly insurmountable obstacles to carve out the independent state of Pakistan, where Muslims of the sub-continent could lead their lives according to their own religion and cultural values.
At the same time, the Quaid made it clear that minorities in Pakistan would be afforded equal opportunities and protection, he said.
High Commissioner Tarar said the government of Pakistan led by Prime Minister Imran Khan was focusing on harnessing the potential of expatriates and taking several initiatives to improve economy of the country.
He mentioned that the government was focused on strengthening governance, accountability and transparency, poverty alleviation and tourism.
On opening of Kartarpur Corridor, he said the step would promote inter-religious harmony and mentioned that a large number of Canadian Sikhs attended the inaugural ceremony.
High Commissioner expressed the confidence that Pakistani community in Canada would continue to introduce its rich and diverse cultural values to promote mutual understanding and goodwill.
“Over half a million Canadians of Pakistani origin are a strong bridge between the two countries and can play a pivotal role in further cementing the existing bonds of friendship, economic interaction, trade and development cooperation including in health and education sectors”, he concluded.
Terry Duguid and Kerry Lamoureux, Members of Canadian Parliament attended the Jinnah Awards ceremony. In their separate meeting with the High Commissioner, they discussed issues of mutual interest to both the countries and expressed the desire to further enhance cooperation during the new Liberal Government in Canada.
Sikh Community leaders of Manitoba province also attended the Jinnah Award ceremony and appreciated Prime Minister Imran Khan’s initiative to provide visa-free access to Gurdwara Dera Sahib for Sikh pilgrims. They presented an award to the High Commissioner for the Prime Minister of Pakistan for his dedication towards religious minorities.