Pak today is much better than in past: Ahsan Iqbal

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NBF’s National Book Day festivities conclude

Zubair Qureshi

Today’s Pakistan is much better than that of past as economic indicators are moving in positive trajectory, investment is coming, festivals are being organized, film production has started again and people are going to cinemas.
These positive remarks were made by Federal Minister for Planning & Development Ahsan Iqbal on Monday at the concluding ceremony of the 3-day National Book Day festivities organized by the NBF under the National History and Literary Heritage (NHLH) Division.
The Minister as chief guest on the closing day paid rich tributes to men of letters, thinkers and writers for their contribution in leading the nation. “We owe a great deal to our thinkers and intellectuals who through their writings gave us message of hope, life and light which also happen to be the theme of the book day festivities,” he said. Prof Ahsan Iqbal also spoke on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) which he said would help the country achieve key status in the region.
In his address, PM’s Advisor on National History & Literary Heritage (NHLH) Irfan Siddiqui said promotion of knowledge, literature and book reading culture was the government’s top priority. “We must pay focus on character building of our younger generation through instilling book reading habit in them,” he said. Earlier in a meeting with the Book Ambassadors, he while expressing gratitude to them, appreciated their active participation in the book fair and other Book Day activities. Irfan Siddiqui asked them to send their valuable suggestions directly to him regarding possible steps for promoting of book reading culture. We consider private literary organizations as part of our division as the NHLH Division and these departments share similar objectives, he said. Irfan Siddiqui was of the view that the government was taking steps to expand the network of Pakistan Academy of Letters (PAL)’ offices too, to different cities for recognition of local writers’ work. “After Multan, PAL’s office will soon be established in Peshawar”, Irfan Siddiqui said. Irfan Siddiqui said the government was also envisaging a plan to provide royalty and other facilities to the writers’ community so that they could continue their noble task with more dedication. On the closing day, Mayor of Islamabad Sheikh Anser Aziz was also among the noted guests. Paying tributes to writers and poets on the occasion, he announced soon an avenue in federal capital will be renamed as “Ahmad Nadeem Qasmi Avenue” to acknowledge the literary contribution of the great writer and intellectual.

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