By.Asghar Ali Mubarak
ISLAMABAD:(APS)December 23, 2016-The Minister for Railways Khuwaja Saad Rafique on Thursday inaugurated a special purpose ‘Xmas Peace Train’ ahead of Christmas festivities in the country.
The minister, while addressing the inauguration ceremony, hailed the role of minority groups, especially Christians, in the development and prosperity of Pakistan.
“The white colour of our national flag denotes minority groups, and it is incomplete without them,” he said, adding that this train would serve as a symbol of unity, tranquility and harmony wherever it would go.
Speaking of the shared religious principles and affinity that Muslims and Christians share, he said, “We Muslims can never think of committing blasphemy against any of the Messengers sent by God.”
He added that the Constitution of Pakistan provides equal opportunities to everyone, and gives legal cover to each of the communities living in this country.
The minister was accompanied by Federal Minister for Human Rights Kamran Michael and other Railway officials during the press conference.
Christmas train was launched from Islamabad as part of Christmas celebrations.
Minister for Railways Saad Rafique said the train would carry the message of inter-faith harmony and highlight the strong bonds of Muslim and Christian communities.
He said minorities have been playing pivotal role in progress, development, and prosperity of Pakistan. “The white color of our national flag denotes minority groups, and it is incomplete without them,” Saad said, adding that this train would serve as a symbol of unity, tranquility and harmony wherever it would go. The minister was accompanied by Federal Minister for Human Rights Kamran Michael Pakistan Railways Chief Executive Officer Javaid Anwar , managing director Pakistan Railways Carriage Factory Islamabad Muhammad Yousuf, divisional superintendent Pakistan railways Rawalpindi Abdul Maalik and other Railway officials during the press conference. Addressing the inaugural ceremony of the train, Minister for Minorities and Human Rights Kamran Michael said the present day Pakistan is the Pakistan of our dreams with no difference of religion, caste, color, or creed. While talking to the media on this occasion, he said: “We are peace ambassadors to the world and we have combated the wave of militancy and terrorism successfully”. He said that the Christmas Peace train will spread the message of love, peace, harmony and will help eradicate religious intolerance.
The Pakistan Railways Chief Executive Officer Javaid Anwar at the occasion of inaugurated special Christmas Peace Train aimed that the message of peace and harmony is need of the day. He said the Pakistan Constitution provides equal opportunities to everyone to live and progress. The Pakistan Railways (PR) has constituted basic infrastructure of strategic planning of the Railways up to 2040.Pakistan Railways Chief Executive Officer Javaid Anwar said that role of Railways would be important in the first transport policy of the country. He said the PR was working day and night for betterment of its income and performance. He said restructuring of the PR human resources was also underway for betterment of the department. The divisional superintendent Pakistan railways Rawalpindi Abdul Maalik said that countrywide Christmas Peace Train will start its journey from Rawalpindi and is scheduled to reach Karachi on December 31, 2016. The managing director Pakistan Railways Carriage Factory Islamabad Muhammad Yousuf while talking to media stated that the Through Christmas Peace Train we hopes to create awareness about inter-faith harmony in the country and to mark Christmas as well as the birth anniversary of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.The Christmas Train has been launched in collaboration with Pakistan Tourism Development Corporation, Pakistan Railways and Human Rights Division.