August 14 is the day of Pakistan’s independence from Great Britain, obtained in 1947.
A national holiday, it is an opportunity throughout the country to organize great celebrations: flag-raising, parades, concerts, cultural events and celebrations …
The great celebration in Islamabad
The main and most important festival is held in Islamabad, where for the occasion the national flag is hoisted, green with a white side band and in the middle a waning moon and a white five-pointed star. The Flag of the crescent and the star – as it is called – stands on the seat of the Parliament and on the President’s Palace, while the notes of the national anthem resound in the background; The traditional commemorative speeches of the leading political leaders, the President and the Prime Minister, are broadcast on television.
The main streets of the city, from Shahrah-e-Faisal to Shahara-e-Quaideen in Mazar-e-Quaid, are decorated with the national flag.
The main government buildings, including the Parliament, the Supreme Court, the secretariat of the Prime Minister, are illuminated by colored lights as a sign of celebration.
A crowd of people gather in front of the main monuments to watch the changing of the guard. The whole city is celebrating.
Even in Lahore, Punjab, the festivities are impressive: the so-called “Tower of Pakistan” (Minar-e-Pakistan), a public monument that rises in the large urban park of Iqbal Park, is fully illuminated the evening before August 14th. The aim is to recall the important role that the city played in 1940 in laying the foundations, with the Lahore resolution, for the future independence of Pakistan.
The entire Pakistan party
In every city on the streets, from roofs and windows of houses, from car windows, national flags fly while TV and radio broadcast programs that tell the history and culture of Pakistan all day long. Everywhere they echo patriotic songs, interpreted by soloists and bands (Milli naghmay), like the well-known popular songs Dil Dil Pakistan and Jazba-e-Junoon. The streets are lit by candles, oil lamps, creating a suggestive atmosphere.
August 14th is a beautiful day of celebration: the Pakistani meet in the mosque in the morning to pray; then they go all together in the squares to watch the parades, wearing traditional clothes or clothes whose colors, green and white, refer to the official colors of the country.
Celebrate at the table
Pakistan ‘s Independence Day is also an opportunity to visit friends and relatives, sit down with them and enjoy traditional Pakistani dishes. On the table you can not miss, for example, the byriani (spicy basmati rice) that accompanies eggs, fish, vegetables or meat; in particular the roast chicken or the korma chicken. And then dahi bhalla, samosas and aloo tikki, for a quick snack in the name of tradition. For dessert, kheer, a traditional dessert of South Asia made from rice, sugar and milk, made even tastier by adding cardamom, saffron, raisins , pistachios or almonds.