KARACHI: Defence Day celebrations were held at the mausoleum of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah which began with 21 gun salute on Thursday morning followed by special prayers for martyrs of the nation and then the “Change of Guard” ceremony.
A contingent of Asghar Khan Pakistan Airforce Academy (PAF) Academy cadets including five women took on the guard responsibility of the Mazar-e-Quaid from the Pakistan Navy cadets who had assumed the same on August 14.
Air Vice-Marshal Nadeem Sabir, the chief guest on the occasion administered guard of honour.
In his remarks in the guest book placed at the site, he paid lauding tributes to the founding leaders of the country as well as all those who rendered huge sacrifices in its defence.
A befitting and almost day-long ceremony was held at the Malir Garrison attended by family members of the martyred soldiers as well as serving and retired army men.
National songs played on the occasion added colours among people pertaining to all age groups while special events, encompassing contest of varied forms, for children, women and youth provided added attraction to the participants.
Southern Command of Pakistan Airforce had also arranged a special ceremony to mark the occasion at PAF Base Masroor, Mauripur, largely attended by families of retired and serving personnel of the force.
Sindh Governor Imran Ismail attended the programme as the chief guest. Addressing those present on the occasion, he said the entire nation stands behind the defenders of the country and will jointly fight against those who would in any manner be a threat to the country and its inhabitants.
“Pakistan is our home and its safety, security and development is a collective responsibility of ours,” he said.
Meanwhile, Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) and District Municipal Corporations (DMC) had made special efforts to decorate the area under their respective jurisdiction to mark 53rd Defence Day.
Karachi factually presented a festive look with greenery around complemented by banners and hoarding reminding citizens of the heroes who rendered their lives for a cause close to the heart of every Pakistani.
School and other educational institutions too celebrated the day in an apropos manner ensuring almost 100 per cent attendance of the students and teaching staff.