MUZAFFARABAD: Veteran Azad and Jammu Kashmir politician Sardar Abdul Qayyum Khan was laid to rest at his ancestral graveyard in Ghaziabad Dhirkot area of Bagh district on Saturday.
After the burial ceremony, a smart contingent of Pakistan Army troops presented the guard of honour and laid a floral wreath at the grave of Kashmiri politician, who served as both the president and prime minister of Azad Kashmir.
Earlier, the son of the deceased, Sardar Attique Ahmad Khan, himself a former prime minister, led the funeral prayers, which were attended by a number of high-ranking civil and military officials including Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafique.
Talking to the media after the prayers, Rafique said Sardar Qayyum was a towering political personality of the AJK from whom the present political leadership of the country had learnt a lot.
“Sardar Sahib was a real asset for Pakistan and the AJK and a role model for us. If we really want to pay him tribute then we should follow his footprints as he contributed a lot for the people of AJK for more than 50 years,” the minister said.
Opposition Leader in the AJK Legislative Assembly Farooq Haider Khan said Qayyum’s death was a big loss to the AJK. “Sardar Qayyum introduced the politics of peaceful co-existence , patience and respect for others,” he said.
Zardari offers condolences
Offering condolences, former president and Pakistan Peoples Party Co-Chairperson Asif Ali Zardari said Sardar Qayyum resolutely stood by and fought for the cause of indigenous struggle of the Kashmiris.
“In a career that spanned more than six decades Sardar Qayum fought for the Kashmir cause on multiple fronts ranging from the battle field to politics to diplomacy with tenacity and persistence that is rivalled by few,” said Zardari in a condolence message on Saturday.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 12th, 2015.