Prime Minister Imran Khan has said the government is endeavouring to develop the country as a true Islamic welfare state and establish a society based on compassion and justice.In his message to the nation on Pakistan Day observed on Saturday, the prime minister said today’s Pakistan is a ‘Naya Pakistan’ and the current government is resolved to establish a society where every person can contribute towards socio-economic development to the best of his ability. He said March 23 is a historic day in the national history when the Muslims of sub-continent determined their destiny in line with the vision of Allama Iqbal in 1940. The prime minister said on the very day, the Muslims of sub-continent, under the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam, had resolved to establish an independent Muslim state for themselves thus breaking the shackles of slavery and putting an end to tyranny of the Hindu majority.He said the creation of Pakistan enabled the Muslims secure their rights, religious freedom and socio-economic opportunities which were being denied to them by the Hindu majority who also threatened their cultural identity. He said the resolution passed on March 23 was aimed at creation of a state where the citizens could enjoy equal opportunities irrespective of caste and creed and where they could play their due role in the progress of the country.He said Pakistan desires friendly and peaceful relations with all its neighbours, based on the principle of equality. He also urged the regional countries to join hands for eliminating poverty and help their people achieve socio-economic prosperity. He categorically said that Pakistan’s quest for peace should not be construed as its weakness. Pakistan reserves the right to take every step for its defence, he remarked. He said Pakistan’s defence was impregnable and it is proud of its gallant armed forces.He said the courage of Pakistan’s armed forces, the capability of its national security institutions and their countless sacrifices have foiled nefarious designs of the enemies of Pakistan. The entire world witnessed it during the recent Indian aggression and Pakistan emerged from the situation even stronger than before, he added. He said on Pakistan Day, we should not forget Kashmiri people who have long been victim of Indian state terrorism and are forced to lead a life of misery.Expressing solidarity with the Kashmiri people on the occasion, he saluted their courage and acknowledged their sacrifices, besides reaffirming Pakistan’s resolve to continue its political, diplomatic and moral support to Kashmiris at every international forum. The prime minister said Pakistan is at a critical phase of its history when it is struggling to get rid of corruption and malpractices. He said the country is also striving for economic stability and assured that it will succeed despite all odds.Published in Daily Times, March 24th 2019.