For the first time in the history of Pakistan, the country will enjoy public holidays on Holi, Diwali and Easter after Pakistan’s parliament on Tuesday adopted a landmark resolution to this effect.
The resolution, which was moved by lawmaker Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, was adopted by the National Assembly to take steps to declare the festivals as holidays for minorities,The Huffington Post reports.
According to The Tribune, the Pakistan government has agreed to accept the resolution. Ramesh Kumar, a PNL-N MNA elected on a seat reserved for minorities in Tharparkar district of Sindh, presented the resolution which said, “This house is of the opinion that the government should take steps to declare Holi, Diwali and Easter as closed holidays for minorities.”
Ramesh Kumar, who is also patron-in-chief of the Pakistan Hindu Council, was of the view that the announcement was inevitable for the good image of Pakistan as such holidays were also being observed in the United States on Eid, and in India on Muharram.
State Minister for Religious Affairs Pir Aminul Hasnat Shah said that the Interior Ministry has already given permission to heads of federal organisations, departments, and institutions to grant leave to minorities on their religious festivals.
While the Federal Minister for Laws and Justice Pervaiz Rashid said that the number of holidays in Pakistan are more than any other country, he didn’t object to the resolution either. The minister also said that all Pakistanis equally share each others joy and sorrow and there is no discrimination on the basis of religion and faith. “Every citizen is enjoying religious freedom,” he said.
According to Dawn, Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Sardar Muhammad Yousif and Parliamentary Secretary of Interior Minister Maryum Aurangzeb also did not oppose the resolution.