It gives me immense pleasure to extend my congratulations to my fellow Pakistanis on the Independence Day of Pakistan. I am happy to be celebrating the occasion with our brothers in our second home: Saudi Arabia.
This day provides us with an opportunity to reaffirm our commitment to the ideals of Quaid-e-Azam Mohammed Ali Jinnah, and to the aspirations of Dr. Allama Mohammed Iqbal. The founding father worked tirelessly for the creation of Pakistan so that the Muslims of the subcontinent could flourish in an independent homeland without any fear of oppression and injustice.
Since the inception of Pakistan, our leadership has consistently moved forward to realize the dreams of our founding fathers. We are proud to have developed into a responsible state in the comity of nations, through the untiring efforts of our people and leadership.
Pakistan, a country of more than 200 million people, is a progressive Islamic state with a functional parliament, independent judiciary, free media, vibrant civil society and resilient economy. Above all, Pakistan is endowed with abundant natural resources and inhabitants that are industrious and peace-loving.
Saudi Arabia and its leadership have a special place in the hearts of Pakistanis because of their outstanding services and guardianship of the two holy mosques. The countries have always stood by each other and the bilateral cooperation continues to grow.
We are grateful to the Kingdom for the warmth and hospitality extended to nearly 2.6 million Pakistanis, which is the largest overseas Pakistani community. Saudi Arabia has always acknowledged the contributions made by professionals and other workers from Pakistan to the development of the Kingdom. Saudi Vision 2030 provides opportunities for investors and professionals on both sides to enhance cooperation in all fields.
On this occasion, on behalf of the government and people of Pakistan, and myself, I would also like to express gratitude to the government and people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for providing free medical treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic to all Pakistanis. Further, the Kingdom undertook all necessary measures to protect the livelihoods of expatriate Pakistanis despite the economic slowdown.
Let us today renew our pledge to make Pakistan the state envisioned by its founding fathers. As ambassador, I congratulate all Pakistanis on this auspicious occasion. Let us work together to build our country and further strengthen our fraternal ties with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
May Allah bless Pakistan and Saudi Arabia with lasting peace and prosperity in the times ahead.
Long live Pakistan. Long live Saudi Arabia. Long live the Pakistan-Saudi friendship.
• Raja Ali Ejaz is the ambassador of Pakistan to Saudi Arabia