Gilgit: Key officials of the Gilgit-Baltistan government and administration paid rich tributes to His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan for his leadership and services during an event, “Aaghaz-e-Jubilee”, held as part of the Diamond Jubilee commemoration.
Members of the Shia Imami Ismaili sect of Islam are celebrating the 60th year of their spiritual leader, Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Aga Khan’s Imamat (leadership).
Governor Gilgit-Baltistan, Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan, Chief Minister Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman, Commander FCNA Major General Saqib Mehmood Malik, Senior Minister Haji Akbar Taban, Deputy Speaker of GBLA Jafarullah, Gilgit-Baltistan Council Member Arman Shah, Information and P&D Minister Iqbal Hassan, Tourism and Culture Minister Fida Khan Fida, other cabinet members, legislators, bureaucrats, poets, civil society leaders and representatives from various sectors of life were present during the event.
Speaking at the occasion, Mir Ghazanfar Ali Khan, GB Governor, said that the AKDN’s work has significantly changed the social and economic situation of Gilgit-Baltistan, by lifting hundreds of thousands of people out of poverty. He said that the GB government is grateful to His Highness the Aga Khan for making all out efforts to contribute towards the region’s development.
Echoing similar feelings, the Chief Minister of Gilgit-Baltistan, Hafiz Hafeezur Rehman said that the Aga Khan’s leadership is a source of inspiration for those working for development of the society. He said that the AKDN’s global, national and regional development interventions are remarkable. He said that the efforts of the Aga Khan, as expressed through the AKDN, for improving education, health, culture, sanitation and water, and the environment, are praiseworthy.
The Chief Minister further said that the AKDN’s interventions in the past provided vital safety nets for the populace, by rendering services in health, education and economic development. He said that the AKDN started development work in the area when the government had limited resource.
He also hailed the AKDN for restoring forts in the region and saving the historical heritage.
Hafeez added that his government is working with various AKDN agencies to implement projects under the Public-Private Partnership arrangement. He congratulated on the Aga Khan on his Diamond Jubilee.
Commander FCNA, Major General Saqib Mehmood Malik congratulated the Ismaili community on the occasion of the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee. He said that the Ismailis are a peaceful community, and live in a harmonized manner in different valleys that he has visited. He praised the Ismailis for their military services, saying members of the community have sacrificed a lot for the country’s defense.
Renowned scholars and poets, Fida Ali Aisar, Jamshed Khan Dukhi and Ghulam Abbas Nasim, read poetry showing praise for the Aga Khan, and acknowledgement of his leadership and services. They also read poems reflecting love for the land and the country.
The Ismaili Regional Council’s President Naeem ullah Baig thanked the dignitaries and guests for attending the event.
Souvenirs were presented to the dignitaries at the occasion.