President Mamnoon Hussain appreciates role of minorities in progress, defence, security of the country and social stability

Islamabad, December 21, 2015 (PPI-OT): President Mamnoon Hussain has said that the role of minorities in progress, defence, security of the country and social stability is outstanding which is highly commended by the whole nation and the government who consider them a blooming flower of society.

The President said this while addressing a Christmas celebration function at the Aiwan-e-Sadr, Islamabad on Monday. Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif also attended the special ceremony. The President and the Prime Minister along with federal ministers and Christian leaders also cut the cake to mark the Christmas.

Congratulating the Christian community all over the world including in Pakistan on the occasion of Christmas, the President in his speech said that the government of Pakistan and the people would leave no stone unturned for the welfare and protection of their Christian brethren and would stand by them through thick and thin.

The President stated that it was very saddening that in the last few years some unfortunate incidents have happened targeting the minorities in Pakistan but it is gratifying to note that a very large majority of Pakistanis rejected such un-Islamic and inhuman acts and stood by their minorities’ brothers on such occasions.

The President said that in the light of teachings of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) rights of all citizens living in Islamic state are equal without any discrimination on the basis of colour, creed and religion. “In the light of these teachings, Founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah during his speech on August 11, 2015 had declared followers of all religions equal citizens of the country.

The President stated that a handful of misguided elements are trying to vitiate the peaceful atmosphere of religious harmony warning that they should desist from such activities otherwise the government would take strict action against them. The President said that the government has taken significant measures for the welfare of minority communities including allocating seats for minorities in Parliament and Provincial Assemblies, 5% quota for minorities in all Federal services, facility of providing leave to minority employees on the occasion of their religious festivals, establishment of Minorities Welfare Fund, scholarships for minority students, setting up of National Commission for Minorities (NCM) and declaring 11thAugust as Minorities Day in Pakistan. The President stated that the government would ensure religious harmony in the country by protecting constitutional and legal rights of all its citizens.

Federal Ministers Sardar Muhammad Yousuf, Kamran Michael, Minister of State Pir Amin-ul-Hasnat Shah, Parliamentary Secretary Khalil George, distinguished religious personalities and parliamentarians attended the ceremony. The President also hosted a dinner for the minority communities at the Aiwan-e-Sadr.

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