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Pakistan Association of Australia Celebrates Pakistan Day 2014
Molana Nazeerul Hassan ThanviThe Pakistan Day event was held on 23 March 2014 at Himalaya Palace, Granville. High Commissioner of Pakistan H.E. Abdul Malik Abdullah was the Chief Guest for the event along with the Council General Abdul Aziz Uqaili. Numerous MP’s and /or their representatives graced the occasion with their presence. The program started with recitation of Holy Quran by Maulana Nazeer ul Hassan Thanvi
Miss Mehreen Javed
followed by the National Anthems of the two countries by our young start Mehreen.
President PAA Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary
Welcome speech was given by Mr. Shahid Iqbal, President of the Pakistan Association of Australia. While welcoming the guests, he gave a brief background and spoke about the significance of the day. His brief but to-the-point speech was highly admired by the audience. Kalam-e-Iqbal (her lehza hai momin ki nai shaan nai aan) was sung by another young performer Khurram Murtaza and it was yet another brilliant performance by a youngster.
MC of the Pak Day Dr. Abbas Rizvi
Dr. Abbas Rizvi requested Mr. Uqaili to not only say a few words relating to the occasion but also introduce the last speaker of the night, Chief Guest H.E Abdul Malik Abdullah.
Mr. Vic, Chair of Community Relation Commission of NSW
Chairperson Community Relations Commission of the New South Wales Mr. Vic Alhadeff spoke about the role of the CRC and highlighted the need for coordination between his office and the local Pakistani community.
Hon. Tony Issa, Member of Parliament for Granville
The Premier Hon. Berry O’Farrell, MP sent his apologies for not being able to attend this prestigious event. He requested Hon. Tony Issa, MP for Granville to represent the Premier of New South Wales and the NSW Government. Hon. Tony Issa, MP in doing so, congratulated the Pakistani community on behalf of the NSW government. He reiterated that the current policies of the NSW government will go further in developing stronger ties with the local Pakistani community.
Hon. Amanda Fazio, MLC Hon. Amanda Fazio, MLC represented the State Opposition Leader Hon. John Robertson MP (as he sent his apologies). She is a long-time friend of Pakistan and her speech reflected these sentiments. While congratulating the Pakistanis on this great historical event, she also wished to see a better and prosperous Pakistan.
Consul General of Pakistan Abdul Aziz Uqaili
Consulate Office in Sydney has seen a major open-to-the-community policy change in the last few years. The man who started this change, the Ex-CG Mr. Azam Mohammad was also present along with the current Council General Abdul Aziz Uqaili (who has taken this policy to new heights).
High Commissioner for Pakistan His Excellency Abdul Malik Abdullah
Chief Guest H.E Abdul Malik Abdullah spoke briefly on the significance of this day and linked its history to the situation we are facing today. In introducing the Chief Guest, he was of the opinion the Mr. Abdullah is among the best persons that he has worked with in his professional career in addition to Mr. Abdullah being a thorough professional.
The Chief Guest spoke about the first arrivals from that region to Australia and the great work that our local community has been doing ever since.
High Commissioner also spoke about the event held on 23 March 1940 and the resolution that was presented and accepted in that particular meeting of the All India Muslim League.
At this stage, Dr. Abbas Rizvi requested the Chief Guest to present the “Life-time Service and Achievement Award” to Dr. Grace Warren. Dr. Warren is a Star of Pakistan holder (Sitara-e-Pakistan), an award that was conferred on her by the President of Pakistan acknowledging her wonderful work with the disadvantaged patients in Pakistan (and world-over). A surgeon by profession, Dr. Warren worked at the Leprosy Hospitals in Karachi and Rawalpindi as well numerous leprosy clinics in various parts of Pakistan. A regular and frequent visitor to Pakistan, she also worked with the young doctors and trained them with specialized surgical techniques.
When the Pakistan Association of Australia Award was presented to Dr. Warren by the Chief Guest, it was not a surprise that everyone in the hall was standing and applauding her work.
The moments of expression of the emotion by the guests were certainly the key highlight of the evening. Dr. Warren spoke briefly about her work in Pakistan and the role she played in bringing a change in attitude towards leprosy patients.
. Pakistan Association of Australia presented an “Excellence in Service” Award to the High Commissioner Abdul Malik Abdullah in recognition of his excellent efforts in bringing the
two countries closer as well as looking after the local community issues in a professional and efficient manner. The Award was presented by the President of the Association, Shahid Iqbal.
President PAA Shahid Iqbal and Detective Superintendent NSW Police Mr. Gavin Dengate
MC of Music Show Raja Taseer
Dr. Abbas Rizvi thanked the guests for their presence and handed over the stage to the Cultural Secretary of the Association, Raja Taseer. Raja Taseer spoke about the event and then introduced yet another upcoming young singer, Umar Hayat to perform.
While Umar is still young, he showed his class by singing some of the classics by Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Abida Parveen and other legends of Pakistan music. It was during his performance that Raja Taseer invited the guests for dinner. It was a first to have the dinner and enjoy the music at the same time, but the experiment met with great success.
It also resulted in the event to finish in-time in the same way as it started. Punctuality was highly admired by the guests in clear terms. The Association plans to continue this practice in the upcoming events. The Association also thanks its sponsors for the event as it would not have been possible to arrange such a graceful event without their help. Last but not least, Pakistan Association of Australia has always been blessed with having wonderful media partners and would like to thank Sada e Watan International (Syed Zafar Hussain Shah and his team), Media Team of Awaz Group of Publications lead by Javed Chaudhry, Pak-link Magazine (Muhammad Asif and his team) and Munir Mohammad leading the Rabitah International Team.
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