During PM Shehbaz Sharif’s day-long visit to Karachi on Saturday, an MQM delegation met him and complained that its agreement made with the PML-N, of which the premier was the president, was not being kept.
The MQM delegation was led by its convener Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, who was accompanied by Federal IT Minister Aminul Haque, Amir Khan, Kanwar Naveed Jamil and Wasim Akhtar. It met the premier at the Faisal Base before his departure for Nawabshah.
It also discussed the appointment of a new Sindh governor with PM Shehbaz as well as development projects in Karachi.
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The premier told the delegation that the government was working on the current economic challenges facing Pakistan and the country could not develop without the uplift of Karachi. He also told them that he was focusing on all the issues.
The premier was accompanied by Federal Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique. After the meeting, PM Shehbaz left for Nawabshah to offer condolences to PPP Co-Chairperson and former President Asif Ali Zardari on the demise of his mother.
Earlier while addressing a passing out parade of 117th Midshipman and 25th Short Service Commission course at the Pakistan Naval Academy, the premier said Pakistan believed in peaceful co-existence and wanted to promote friendly relations with other countries as it did not harbour any designs against anyone.
However, he added that Pakistan’s desire for peace must not be taken as its weakness.
The premier said the entire nation was proud of its armed forces for their continuous vigil to foil enemies’ designs and rendering huge sacrifices in the fight against terrorism.
Lauding the contribution of Pakistan Navy, the prime minister said it had a legacy of valour and professionalism. He hoped that the newly commissioned cadets would further strengthen that legacy.
The premier observed that Pakistan Navy had been effectively playing its part to the overall deterrence and national security with the available resources.
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He underscored that the maritime domain was continuously shifting, mainly due to technological advancement and power re-shuffle globally.
“Only those navies would prevail and prove effective that would align with ever evolving geo-strategic spectrum and modern trends of warfare,” he added.
He said that the three services had proved their mettle against all threats at the borders.
“The whole nation pays tributes to all martyrs and their families, who have secured the country against all threats with their ultimate sacrifices,” he added. He further said the nation saluted the martyrs and their families.
The prime minister said Pakistan was blessed with a large coastline, which held vast potentials. “It can be utilised by further strengthening of the defence capabilities and boosting of the maritime economy.”
PM Shehbaz said Pakistan’s economic future hinged upon the success China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). “Gwadar port is its [CPEC’s] major project.
He underscored that Pakistan Navy had even more important role to play in the present age of ever growing blue economy, marine security and strategic defence.
The prime minister said Pakistan Navy with its available resources continued to fulfil and perform well to meet the international obligations, besides countering multiple challenges.
He said equipping Pakistan Navy with the latest technology for safeguarding maritime borders of the country was a priority of the government.
Congratulating the newly commissioned cadets and midshipmen, he said that it was an auspicious occasion in the lives of these young people to start their wonderful naval career with a sense of great achievement and pride.
Extending felicitations, the prime minister advised the young officers to lead by their conduct, character, knowledge and foresight.
The prime minister said it was matter of great satisfaction for him that female cadets also formed the part of today’s parade that signified their innate strength and confidence.
“They would serve as role model for the Pakistani girls and inspire them to pursue their dreams and acquire success in their chosen fields.”
PM Shehbaz said Pakistan was also extending quality cadet training to the brotherly countries including Bahrain, Palestine and Qatar.
The prime minister also congratulated officers from friendly countries on being commissioned in forces of their respective countries.
The commissioning contingent comprised of 23 midshipmen including four from Pakistan, 14 from Bahrain Defence Forces, three from the State of Palestine, two from Qatar along with 19 officers from SSC Course.
The prime minister congratulated the commissioning term for successful completion of training and highlighted the modern warfare dynamics, while underlining challenges of responsibility for newly commissioned officers.
The ceremony was attended by a large number of senior military officers, ambassadors, defence attaches of various countries, civil dignitaries and parents of passing out midshipmen and cadets.
Earlier, the premier reviewed the guard of honour.
Later, the prime minister gave away awards to the distinction holders. The prestigious Quaid-e-Azam Gold Medal was awarded to Lt Syed Irtaza Haider Naqvi for his Overall Best Performance.
Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi and Sindh Chief Minister Sindh Murad Ali Shah also attended the passing out parade.
(With input from APP)