On February 4th, the Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan His Excellency Liu Jian held a New Year’s reception for the Pakistan-China Institute at the Embassy in Islamabad. He welcomed the Chairman of PCI Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed, Chairman Pakistan Muslim League (Q) Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain who was the Chief Guest on the occasion, and other PCI members to the reception held in PCI’s honour. The event was a prelude to the celebrations of the Chinese New Year, which falls on February 10th this year.
For the occasion, the venue had been delightfully adorned with red flowers, oranges, red tanglung, and other stunning ornamental items. Before the festivities began, Ambassador Liu Jian and Senator Mushahid addressed the audience. Senator Mushahid congratulated all the Chinese friends on the occasion of the New Year - the Year of the Snake. He referred to 2012 as an 'historic year for China with the successful 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China' and acclaimed the 5th generation transition of leadership under CPC General Secretary Xi Jinping. He warmly welcomed the 'peaceful rise of China as a source of strength for Asia as a whole, and Pakistan in particular, given our close, strategic, all-weather relations'. He lauded the role of Ambassador Liu Jian in broadening this bilateral bond.
Earlier, welcoming the guests, Ambassador Liu Jian, said 'Pakistan and China were closer to each other, and theirs is a model relationship, based on principles'. He said that the Pakistan-China Institute had emerged as a pivotal player in the non-governmental sector in promoting Pakistan-China relations, and welcomed its various initiatives. He stated that China was embarked on a path of progress and stability under the leadership of the CPC, and China was keen to learn from the experiences of its friends like Pakistan.
The program was hosted by two Chinese presenters, and included traditional Chinese dances, singing, as well as games with prizes for the winners. All the performances, particularly the graceful steps of the ladies performing Uyghur dances, were given with gusto and poise and won the admiration of the audience. The highlight of the evening was the famous Urdu song “Neele Neele Ambar Par” sung by a Chinese young man, who delivered a charming performance and seemed at complete ease singing in a foreign language. In closing, the students of The Roots International School, clad in beautiful regional attire, performed the dances of all four provinces displaying the colors of Pakistan. Confident and lively, the children made the audience sway in tune with them. There were also several rounds of Lucky Lottery draws in which the Pakistani audience members won elaborate prizes.
The program was followed by a delicious dinner, a feast of traditional Chinese delicacies. PCI presented a New Year’s cake decorated with the Chinese and Pakistani flags, to the Embassy. Senator Mushahid thanked the Ambassador for the beautiful evening that had been organized on behalf of the PCI team, and asserted that PCI would continue its work on Pakistan-China relations in the new year.
After a thoroughly enjoyable evening, the guests departed, with generous gift bags presented to them as they left.
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