PALANDARI: Sardar Masood Khan, President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir paid glowing tributes to the renowned social reformer, Col Khan Muhammad Khan, popularly known as Khan Sahib for his multifaceted services to the people of Jammu and Kashmir.
The legendary freedom fighter and icon of valour and optimism was remembered at his 57th death anniversary function organized at his native Palandari town, which was also addressed besides others by Azad Jammu and Kashmir President, Sardar Masood Khan, AJK Minister for Health, Dr Najib Naqi, Member of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Council Sardar Abdul Khaliq Wasi, Col Aurangzeb, Sardar Muhammad Hafiz Khan Advocate, President District Bar Association Palandari, Sardar Khaliq-ur-Rehman, Ms Tahmina Sadiq and Haji Mansha Khan.
Speaking on the occasion, AJK President, Sardar Masood Khan, who was chief guest at the event, said Col Khan Muhammad Khan, popularly known as Khan Sahib was symbol of courage, dedication and selflessness, who fought both politically and militarily for the rights of his people.
Sardar Masood Khan stressed the need of following footsteps of leaders like Col Khan Muhammad Khan for early success of Kashmir Liberation Movement and establishment of an enlightened welfare society.
“Khan Sahib of Poonch was not only a legendary freedom fighters of Kashmir’s liberation struggle but was also a great politician, a social reformers and an ardent campaigner for the education, especially education of women, President Masood said
He said that services rendered to nation by Col Khan Muhammad Khan in Kashmir liberation struggle, education of the people of his area and reformation of society by eradicating social evils would remain matter of great pride and inspiration to the present and coming generations.
The President said that Col Khan dedicated his entire life and resources for improving the lot of the people of Kashmir in general and for the people of Poonch in Particular.
He said in addition, Khan Sahib was an educationist par excellence, a military strategist, a freedom fighter, an accomplished politician and a polished law maker.
His role to get the people of Poonch liberated from the oppressive rule Mahraja of Kashmir would never be overlooked or forgotten in the history of Kashmir, Masood Khan said.
Highlighting the political contribution of Col Khan Muhammad Khan, President Masood said he had served as member Kashmir Legislative Assembly from 1934 to 1946 and relentlessly fought for the political, social and economic rights of his constituents and founded the Sudhan Educational Conference to motivate his people to acquire both religious and modern education.
Terming Col Khan Muhammad Khan as exceptionally brave, intelligent and visionary, President Khan said it was because of people like him that today we live in an environment of independence and freedom.
Terming late Col Khan as Sir Syed Ahmed Khan of Kashmir and true follower of Dr. Allama Muhammad Iqbal, President Masood urged the youth of Azad Kashmir to familiarize themselves with the various aspects of the life of Col Khan Muhammad Khan and play their role in the ongoing Kashmir Liberation struggle and progress and prosperity of Azad Kashmir.
The president suggested that a memorial with a public library should be built to commemorate the legendary freedom fighter and give him honour and respect
Speaking on the occasion, AJK Minister for health and grandson of Col Khan Sahib, Dr Najib Naqi said that Khan Sahib was multifaceted personality who was politician, law maker, educationist, social reformer and military commander at the same time.
He was the first of his time who not only advocated for women education but also involved the womenfolk in decision making in the matters related to community and setup separate educational institutions for women and floated the idea of women’s empowerment by equipping them with education almost eighty years ago.
Other speakers also paid rich tributes to Baba-e- Poonch for his estimable services he rendered for the general welfare well- being of the Kashmiri Muslims.
Earlier President Sardar Masood Khan visited the mausoleum of Col Khan Muhammad Khan and laid floral wreath on his grave and offered Fateha for the departed soul.