London: The Pakistan High Commission London held a reception at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower yesterday to celebrate Pakistan Day which was attended by a large number of Lords, MPs, the British friends and the Pakistani Diaspora in the UK. Rt Hon. Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, the guest of honour, in his address gave an overview of the friendly relations between the two countries. He particularly appreciated the constructive role played by over a million Pakistani Diaspora in British politics and economy. He assured that UK would stand by Pakistan as a firm and enduring friend as both the countries had a unique relationship, based on a shared history. Mr Pickles stated that the British government was fully supporting Pakistan’s stance on enhanced market access in the European Union.
In his welcome address Pakistan High Commissioner for UK Mr Wajid Shamsul Hasan said that the nation and its entire leadership was committed to uphold the progressive and egalitarian ideals of founding father Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. He termed the 73rd anniversary of the Pakistan Day as yet another milestone in the history of the nation when the power was going to be transferred through vote to an elected government. Speaking about Pakistan’s resolve to fight terrorism, the High Commissioner said that the sacrifices of Pakistan’s security forces and those of civilians were a testimony to Pakistan’s resolve to eliminate this scourge.
He expressed his satisfaction over strong bilateral ties as reflected in the Enhanced Strategic Dialogue between the two countries. Bilateral cooperation particularly in the areas of trade, culture, security, health and education had increased substantially, he added. He acknowledged the valuable role played by his British counterpart Adam Thomson in strengthening the bilateral relations. Mr Thomson also attended the reception. The High Commissioner thanked Rt Hon Eric Pickles for gracing the Pakistan Day Reception as chief guest which reflected the unmatchable bonds between the two countries and their people.
On behalf of the President of Pakistan, the High Commissioner conferred Tamgha-i-Imtiaz on Ms Nosheena Mobarik Chairperson of Pakistan-British Trade and Investment Forum (PBTIF) and Chairperson of Confederation of British Industries of Scotland in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the promotion of Pakistan-UK trade relations and women empowerment. Deputy High Commissioner Syed Zulfiqar Gardezi read out Ms Mobrik’s citation and conducted the ceremony.