Lahore: Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that political freedom cannot be imagined without economic freedom as political and economic freedom is part and parcel of each other. He lamented that despite passage of 65 years, Pakistan is still lagging behind politically and economically. He said that if the rulers should present personal examples of austerity, saving and simplicity, Pakistan can achieve its lost status and the dream of Quaid and Iqbal can be materialized. He said that hard working, trust and continuous struggle will have to be made our motto. He said that Pakistani nation can change the course of history by following the teachings and ideals of Poet of the East Allama Iqbal.
He was addressing the inaugural ceremony of paintings gallery “Iqbal Avenue” of prominent artist Sadqain based on Allama Iqbal’s philosophy at a local hotel today. Chairman Hashoo Group Sadruddin Hashwani, Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G. Ibrahim, Provincial Ministers Raja Ashfaq Sarwar, Begum Zakia Shahnawaz, Advisors Azamul Haq, Ch. Muhammad Sarwar, intellectuals, poets and the people belonging to various sections of life were also present in large numbers.
Addressing the function, Shahbaz Sharif said that the message of Iqbal is a universal but unfortunately, despite being the pupil of Iqbal, we did not follow his teachings during the last 65 years. We made only speeches but did not act upon practically. He said had we followed the teachings of Iqbal in real sense, Pakistan would have been at par with Malaysia and Turkey and got the dignified status all over the world. He lamented that at present we are known as a begging country in the comity of nations which is a matter of pondering.
The Chief Minister said that no doubt, there is new approach, new thinking and new hope in the ideals of Iqbal and we have to reform ourselves by adopting this approach and change the destiny of the country. Shahbaz Sharif said that if we decided to follow the teachings of Iqbal, the destiny of the nation and the country can be changed and rid of begging. He said that country is indebted of 60 billion dollars and IMF team is visiting Islamabad to further tighten the noose. He said that we have to march forward through collective approach, wisdom and tireless efforts for getting rid of humiliation. The Chief Minister said that it is the responsibility of all those parties to which people have given mandate in the provinces and center to make the country self-reliant. He said that Pakistan had come into being after numerous sacrifices of Muslims so that there should be rule of law, everyone should get equal justice and no thana or patwar culture.
Shahbaz Sharif said that 65 years have great importance in the life of any nation. He said that now is the time of practical work as the condition cannot be changed through making speeches and reading couplets. He said that if we decided to act upon the teachings of Iqbal, the development and prosperity like Japan, Germany, China and Turkey can be brought. He said that if China can achieve the heights of development and progress then why not Pakistan. He said that if India can make economic progress then why not Pakistan.
Addressing the function, Chairman Hashoo Group Sadruddin Hashwani thanked Chief Minister Punjab for participating in the function to pay homage to Allama Iqbal. He said that Allama Iqbal was the great Sufi and philosophy poet of modern era who created the desire of freedom among the Muslims of subcontinent. He stressed the need for creating awareness among new generation about the vision and approach of Allama Iqbal. Hashwani said that he has set up a permanent gallery of paintings of Sadqain based on philosophy of Allama Iqbal from his collection for the people in the hotel. Earlier, Shahbaz Sharif inaugurated the gallery by pressing button and witnessed paintings.