SIALKOT: The 73rd death anniversary of Dr Allama Iqbal, the Poet of The East, was observed on Thursday in his native city Sialkot to acknowledge his services for getting a separate homeland for the Muslims of sub-continent.
The day was begun with the special prayers and a Quran Khawani for the eternal peace of the parted soul of Allama Iqbal in all the mosques.
Special Quran Khawani was also held at the Iqbal Manzil Sialkot which is the birthplace of Allama Iqbal in which a large number of the public participated.
People also visited the Imam Sahib Graveyard at Sialkot and laid floral wreathes at the graves of the parents and other family members of Allama Iqbal, besides, offering Fateha there.
Allama Iqbal is officially recognized as the national poet of Pakistan and known as Muffakir-e-Pakistan, Shair-e-Mashriq and Hakeem-ul-Ummat.
Speech competitions, Kalam-e-Iqbal contest, seminars, symposiums that cover all the aspects of the life and philosophy of Allama Iqbal, were held at the auditorium of Government Murray College Sialkot and Seerat Study Center Sialkot Cantt here today.
Various social, political and cultural organisations arranged special programmes to pay homage to the poet of the East while debate competitions, seminars and conferences were arranged in schools and colleges.
The speakers including Allama IqbalIs grandson Khalid Nazeer Sufi said that the teachings of Allama Iqbal are like a beacon of light to maintain tolerance, peace and stability in the society.
He said that youth of the nation should transform themselves into Iqbal's `Mard-e-Momin' and strive for self reliance within our resources and emphasized austerity envisioned by Allama Iqbal.
He stressed that Pakistan can only be redeemed through emulation of Iqbal's vision on democracy, human excellence and self reliance as perpetual rule of dictators weakened the national institutions, especially democracy.
He further said that Iqbal was one of the great men of Islam and Pakistan, who dreamt for Pakistan, where brotherhood, social and economic justice would prevail.
We must create a society according to the vision of great poet, who gave the idea of separate homeland for the Muslims of the sub-continent where they can practice their Islamic values and culture, he urged.
Iqbal's philosophical and human approach to save the Muslims from degradation, deprivation and destitute living is still a source of strength and guidance for us, he maintained.
Syed Riaz Hussain Naqvi (Incharge Iqbal Manzil Sialkot) said that the nation owed freedom and independence to the vision of the great visionary Allama Muhammad Iqbal and the best way to pay tributes to Iqbal was to understand his message and imbibe his teachings.
The need for understanding Iqbal's concept of the message of Islam and the need for forward movement in human thought was never as great as it is today, he said. He added that it was unfortunate that in the country envisioned by Iqbal, Islam has been ruthlessly exploited by extremists and militants to foist their narrow agendas on the people in the name of religion.
He said Iqbal believed that nothing remained static and stationary. He believed in and advocated forward movement in human thought, he said and added, we need to encourage forward movement in philosophical thought instead of abandoning the interpretation of Islamic teachings to any individual or group.
He said forward movement in human thought and interpretation is most relevant in the present day as extremists and militants selectively quoted scriptures and verses to advance their own political agenda behind the cloak of religion.
One of the most important intellectual challenges faced by us was to move forward according to the changing requirements of the time while retaining the fundamentals of our great religion, he said.
Iqbal's grandson Khalid Nazeer Sufi said "we must meet this great challenge of our time for confronting the militants and militancy".
For this we need to imbibe the teachings of Allama Iqbal, he said, adding this indeed is the best tribute we can pay to Iqbal today.