People across Pakistan come out as nation observes Kashmir Hour

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Shafaqna Pakistan:On the appeal of Prime Minister Imran Khan, Pakistanis on Friday came out to observe ‘Kashmir Hour’.

In the federal capital, the main event is being held outside the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) where a large gathering is being addressed by the prime minister. Along with the premier, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Information Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan and Prime Minister’s Special Assistant Naeem ul Haque are also in attendance.

“Today all of Pakistan, wherever there are Pakistanis, whether they are our school students, or shopkeepers or labourers, today all of us are standing with our Kashmiris,” the premier said.

“Our Kashmiris are going through a very tough time,” he added.

The premier said that the ideology of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) had taken over India, “the way the Nazi party had taken over Germany.”

“They think that Muslims should be taught a lesson, that they are not equal citizens,” he said, adding: “Today the whole world is seeing what is happening in Kashmir.”

Prime Minister Imran said that he had told all the leaders he spoke to that if the international community did not stand up to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “fascist government” the effect would be felt in the whole world.

The national anthem and Kashmir’s anthem were played at the start of the event.

Another event is being held at the Aiwan-e-Sadr.

Education institutions, government and private offices, banks, traders, lawyers and military authorities are taking part in the events.

While addressing the nation on Monday, Prime Minister Imran had announced that an event will be held every week to show solidarity with the Kashmiri people, starting from August 30.

According to the railways ministry, all trains were to stop for one minute and all railway workers were to take part in Kashmir Hour events.

Similarly, officials and employees of the National Highway Authority (NHA) were set to gather at the NHA headquarters and attend a ceremony in which national anthems of Pakistan and Kashmir were to be played.

The officials of the secretariat blocks/ministries would gather at R-Block to attend a Kashmir Hour event.

The Punjab government had also issued a ‘Friday Plan’ as a part of Kashmir Mobilisation Campaign beginning with standing in respect of the country’s national anthem. Punjab Governor Chaudhry Sarwar and Chief Minister Usman Buzdar were scheduled join a procession at Charing Cross

According to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Kashmir day ceremonies will be attended by civil and military officials across the country.

ISPR Director General Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor urged the youth, particularly students, to attend the Kashmir Hour events to express solidarity with Kashmiris.

Read: Pakistani celebs rally in support of Imran Khan’s call for Kashmir Hour tomorrow

Celebrities and cricketers have also appealed to the public to come out for Kashmir Hour.

‘Strong message of solidarity’
India’s government, led by the Hindu-nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, decided on August 5 to repeal of Article 370 of the Indian constitution, that granted occupied Kashmir special status. The government instituted a security lockdown and communications blackout to avoid violence. The clampdown is now on its 26th day.

Ahead of today’s events, the premier on Thursday called on all Pakistanis to take part in Kashmir Hour to send a strong message of solidarity to Kashmiris.

“I want all Pakistanis to come out tomorrow 12 noon-12.30pm to show solidarity with the Kashmiri people and send the Kashmiris in Indian-occupied Kashmir a clear message that the entire Pakistani nation stands in solidarity with them and against Indian fascist oppression, the inhumane 24-day curfew, the daily injuring and killing of Kashmiri civilians, including women & children — all part of the ethnic cleansing agenda of the Modi government and its illegal annexation of IoK,” the prime minister said via Twitter.

“We must send a strong message to Kashmiris that our nation stands resolutely behind them. So I am asking all Pakistanis for half an hour tomorrow, stop whatever you are doing and come out on the road to show solidarity with the Kashmiri people,” he urged.