Have we ever asked ourselves how important freedom is? Growing up in an independent country we often take our freedom and peaceful surroundings for granted. Little do we realize the countless contributions our defense services put in ensuring our peace and security. Wars have been a part of mankind’s history, sometimes provoked other times imposed. There is a saying that weakness invites aggression and the best way to achieve peace is to prepare for war. Pakistan unfortunately ever since its inception has faced a credible threat to its security from India which resulted in three wars.
The worth and character of a nation are tested during times of adversity and war. Defense Day, as the name suggests, commemorates the day when our national armed forces successfully defended the attack of Indian forces on our country in the 1965 war. On 6th September 1965, the people of Pakistan stood united to meet the onslaught of an enemy. India that claims to be the largest democracy of the world violated the international charter of the United Nations and all norms of civilized behavior among the states, chose the cover of darkness to achieve its heinous ends of occupying our motherland. Our military not only defended the areas attacked successfully but also protected the lives of thousands of civilians and their homes. This battle lasted till September 22, 1965, when both sides accepted the United Nations-administered ceasefire.
In this battle, Major Raja Aziz Bhatti Shaheed was awarded “Nishan-e-Haider”. Flight Lieutenant Imtiaz Ahmad Bhatti and Squadron Leader Sarfaraz Ahmad Rafiqui also dealt a strong blow to the enemy in the air. Moreover, the Pak-Indo war of 1965 also reminds us of M.M Alam who got popular for downing five Indian aircraft in less than a minute. Later, he was awarded Sitara-i-Jurat. Commodore S.M Anwar led the Dwarka operation which proved to be a nightmare for the Indians.
The nation mobilized at every level, where every child, man, or woman worked towards the war effort, be it to raise funds, train as civilian guards, or as nurses in hospitals. Madam Noor Jahan and Mehdi Hassan took the airwaves to sing their inspirational war songs in praise of the defenders and instilled a new zeal in them to defend their homeland.
Brotherhood and fraternity run through our veins and the words of Jinnah: “Unity, Faith and Discipline” are imprinted on our souls. What lesson of patriotism, brotherhood, and love for one’s homeland can you get better than from 6th September 1965? But sadly, the current generation usually tends to remember and register events that are observed as a holiday. Every year 6th September quietly goes by with little celebrations across the country.
It is this nationalism that should be celebrated on 6th September. A nationalism which says put the benefit of the nation and those around you before your own. A day to renew our pledge that we are a strong, proud nation, and that we would not be intimidated by any foreign nation, no matter how strong it is.
This is the type of thinking which we need more than ever in these perilous times. Pakistan and India are standing in a face-off for seven decades and India is always seeking an excuse to violate the cease-fire agreement to keep LOC hot. After being re-elected as Indian Prime Minister, Modi made a sinister move by revoking Articles 35-A and 370 of the Constitution, which gave a special status to the disputed territory of India Illegally Occupied Kashmir (IIOK). The Kashmir dispute is not only becoming worst from bad, but it has also been holding the security of South Asia hostage. It was not without reason that the wise Quaid-e-Azam said “Kashmir is the jugular vein of Pakistan and no nation can allow its jugular vein to be held by the enemy”. Pakistan, therefore, continues to stand beside the brave Kashmiris who have given unprecedented sacrifices for freedom and lend all the support possible for their just cause.
Defense Day Celebrations are a reminder to us that India has never accepted the creation of Pakistan. Pakistan wants to live in peace with honor and dignity. Those who have their evil eyes set at our beloved country, beware! Because we fear only Allah and none else. The entire Pakistani nation is standing shoulder to shoulder with its Army to defend our sacred motherland; this feeling of national solidarity actually symbolizes the true spirit of Defense Day. We should all pray for the safety and solidarity of Pakistan and also that Allah gives us the strength, courage, and determination, to protect and safeguard our motherland at all costs. Ameen!
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Dunya News’ editorial stance.