Islamabad (Staff Report/Agencies): The nation is celebrating Defence and Martyrs Day to pay tribute to the martyrs and Ghazis who became a rock solid wall to defend the motherland against aggression of enemy.

It was on this day in 1965 that Indian forces crossed international border in the darkness of night to attack Pakistan , but the nation foiled the nefarious designs of the enemy.

The day dawned with thirty-one gun salute in the Federal Capital and twenty-one gun salute in provincial capitals.

Special prayers were offered after Fajr prayers in mosques for progress and prosperity of the country.

Fateha and Quran Khawani is also being held for the martyrs.

Main ceremony of the day will be held at General Headquarters in Rawalpindi from 8 pm to 10 pm today to pay tributes to the martyrs and express gratitude with their families. Prime Minister Imran Khan will be Chief Guest on the occasion.

The ceremony will be attended by Army Chief, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, services chiefs, Ministers, Senators, MNAs, ambassadors, diplomats, military and civilian officials and people from various walks of life.

Special ceremony held at Naval Headquarters, Islamabad.

In connection with the Defence and Martyrs Day, Pakistan Navy organized a special ceremony at Naval Headquarters in Islamabad on Thursday morning.

Vice Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Kaleem Shaukat was the chief guest.

On the occasion, the message of the Naval Chief was also read out in which he highlighted the role played by Pakistan Navy in the war of 1965.

Admiral Kaleem Shaukat also laid floral wreath at the martyrs' monument.

In Lahore, change of guard ceremony was held at the mausoleum of great poet, Dr. Allama Muhammad Iqbal on Thursday morning.

Garrison Commander, Major General Muhammad Aamir laid floral wreath on behalf of the Chief of Army Staff at the Mazar-e-Iqbal and offered Fateha. Change of Guard ceremony at Mazar-e-Quaid, Karachi.

In Karachi, change of guard ceremony was held at Mazar-e-Quaid on Thursday morning. During the ceremony, a smartly turned out contingent of Pakistan Air Force assumed the guard duties.

The representatives of three armed services visite the Mazar of the father of the nation and lay floral wreath and offer Fateha.

Representatives of armed forces are also visiting the families of martyrs to express solidarity with them and to pay tribute for the sacrifice of their loved ones. Guard of Honor presented at Mazar of Havaldar Lalik Jan Shaheed in GB.

In Gilgit Baltistan, Commander Force Command Northern Area Maj. Gen Saqib Mehmood Malik laid floral wreath at the Mazar of Havaldar Lalik Jan shaheed Nishan-haider at Hundur in Ghizer.

Guard of honor was also presented by a group of Pak Army soldiers.

President Mamnoon Hussain’s Message 

President Mamnoon Hussain in his message said the sacrifices rendered by our valiant armed forces and the nation call for carrying on the spirit of September by forging unity among our ranks and fostering collective consciousness and wisdom as these traits are imperative to defeat the evil designs and conspiracies of the enemy.

PM Imran Khan’s message

Prime Minister Imran Khan in his message said that Pakistan believes in peaceful coexistence and wants to promote mutual cooperation with the world, including neighbors on the basis of equality.

He said the people of Pakistan will leave no stone unturned in defending their motherland, while standing side by side with valiant armed forces of the country.

The PM said we will face all the challenges, while following Quaid-i-Azam's principles of Unity, Faith, and Discipline.

He also paid rich tribute to all the martyrs and Ghazis for their sacrifices in defending motherland and assured their families that every possible step will be taken for their welfare.