The birth anniversary of Allama Muhammad Iqbal was observed on Friday with events in several cities across the province.
The Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry organised an event at Iqbal Manzil. SCCI President Shaikh Abdul Majeed cut a cake to mark the poet’s 135th birth anniversary. District Coordination Officer Zahid Saleem Gondal also visited Iqbal Manzil.
The Muslim Students Federation organised a Fikr-i-Iqbal Conference at Anwar Club Auditorium.
An exhibition of photographs of Iqbal and his family, books and household items used by the poet was also held at Iqbal Manzil. A pen and an inkpot that Iqbal had used were also displayed at the exhibition.
An event was also organised at the Sialkot Press Club with Chairman Anwar Hussain Bajwa in the chair. A cake was also cut at the Press Club. District Bar Association President Shahid Mir, Advocate Muhammad Asif Bhalli and Advocate Hamid Ali Khan also spoke at the event.
Syed Riaz Hussain Naqvi, caretaker of the Iqbal Manzil, told The Express Tribune that the building remained open for public the entire day. It was illuminated the previous night with colourful lights.
In Faisalabad, the day started with Quran khwani at major mosques of the city. The clerics urged the citizens in Friday sermons to commit to transform Pakistan into a progressive Islamic state of Iqbal’s vision.
Political and social organisations also arranged special functions to celebrate the Iqbal Day. The speakers at the ceremonies paid tributes to the national poet.
At an event organised by the Voice of City, a non-profit organisation, Hamid Sultan Dawoodi, convener of the Faisalabad Citizen Forum, said, “Our educational system lacks the spirit of Iqbal’s philosophy.” He urged the people to reorganise the social system particularly by taking help from Iqbalyat.
Dawoodi said that Iqbal was a great educationist but it was regrettable that the educational system in Pakistan was lacking the teachings of Iqbal. He said Iqbal taught the nation to develop a balance.
He said, “His teaching do not promote a western image of Islam, neither favours Talibanisation.”
Dawoodi said it was unfortunate that in the country advocated by Iqbal, Islam had been ruthlessly exploited by extremists and militants to foist their narrow agendas on the people.
He stressed the need for understanding Iqbal’s concept of the message of Islam and works for the elimination of corruption, extremism and malpractices from the society.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 10th, 2012.