ISLAMABAD: National Resilience Day is being observed on Thursday to mark the 15th anniversary of the tragic earthquake of 2005 that struck the northern parts of Pakistan.
The 2005 earthquake claimed thousands of lives besides causing massive damage to infrastructure especially in Azad Kashmir and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Different events are being organized in different parts of the country including Azad Jammu and Kashmir to express solidarity and sympathies with the victims of calamities.
The day dawned with special prayers in mosques for the martyrs and prosperity of the country. A one-minute silence will be observed at all district headquarters at 08.54 am. Radio stations and TV channels will broadcast special programmes to mark the day.
The main ceremony will be held at university ground Muzaffarabad today. Azad Jammu and Kashmir Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider will lay floral wreath at Martyrs’ Memorial.
Many victims would stage protest rallies on the anniversary of the devastating earthquake. Traders in Balakot would observe shutter down and take out rallies to pay homage to those who lost their lives in the tragedy. Traders will observe a shutter-down strike and take out a rally to mark the anniversary of the devastating earthquake in which over 18000 people perished in Balakot.
Traders and people who lost their loved ones in the tragedy would also take part in the prayer ceremonies at the mass graves in Balakot. The New Balakot Tehreek, which has been staging a sit-in for the last few days demanding the allotment of plots at New Balakot city would also hold a protest.
On October 8, 2005, at 8:50 AM local time, a magnitude 7.6 earthquake struck Azad Kashmir. The earthquake epicenter was located approximately 9 km north northeast of the city of Muzaffarabad and also affected Balakot city
The government’s official death toll stood at 87,350 although it is estimated that the actaul figure was over 100,000 while 2.8 million people were displaced.