ISLAMABAD: Minister for Safron Shehryar Khan Afridi Wednesday asked youth to stand united and become social media ambassadors of Pakistan, engage the world and reflect true image of Pakistan, its culture and religion of Islam.
He expressed these views while addressing thousands of students here at the Social Media Conclave 2019 held here at Aiwan-e-Quaid under the aegis of Volunteers Pakistan.
Flanked by prominent social media activists Cynthia D. Ritchie, Ali Moeen Nawazish, Mir Mohammad Ali Khan, IJT President Mohammad Amir, President of Volunteers Pakistan Usman Raza Joulaha and others, the minister gave a motivational speech to the young bloggers and social media activists who had gathered from across country to explore new ideas and trends to promote Pakistan on social media.
Afridi said that unity among all segments of Pakistan was paramount so as Quaid’s vision of unity, faith and discipline could be materialized.
“We need to recognise our origin, heritage, ethics and our roots. We need to get united and stand together to compete in a polarised world. We need to synergise our forces and focus. If you want to survive, stay attached to your roots and never compromise on your ethical values and social fabric. Don’t let the world to divide you see what happened to Syrians, Iraqis, and even with Afghans,” the minister said.
Afridi said that the west distorted our social fabric and we need to become one body and soul and then the whole world respect us. He said that youth was country’s most precious asset and they should realise their potential and make an impact on social media.
The Minister said that the state institutions should not be blamed for individual miscalculations and mistakes. He said that individual failures are used to mock and blame Pakistan for which our forefathers gave their lives.
In her speech, eminent American blogger and tourist Cynthia D Ritchie said she had extensively travelled across Pakistan and had developed an attachment to Pakistan and its loving people.
“The way all Pakistanis are not terrorists, all Americans are not agents. Americans are a peaceful and loving nation. I came to Pakistan and was taken aback to see such a diversified and loving thriving nation,” she added.
She said that why I am promoting Pakistan’s true image and also promote people to people contacts.
“Social media is a platform to link people from various backgroubds and synergise different nations and we must use this social media platform to unite people rather than dividing them. I travelled Pakistan extensively from Fata to Kashmir, Balochistan and Sindh. I have been to South and North Wazisristan and there were groups who trolled me on social media for telling truth about Pakistan. But I need to tell them I am going to stay,” she added.
Cynthia said Pakistan has a lot of work to do to learn to tailor its narrative.
“We should welcome different narratives but what I have seen is that Pakistan lacks unity, faith, discipline. Individuals at helm need to leave their egos aside and put Pakistan first in their priorities. On social media, ask anyone engaging with you if they are interested in conflict or a conversation. Make your own decisions and determine if they’re interested in creating a conflict out of a conversation,” she advised youth.
Mir Mohammad Ali Khan said that he had spent most of life overseas and he literally missed everything about Pakistan.
“Patriotism is like loving your mother. You don’t need to justify loving your mother. But if you don’t love your mother, you need to justify it. Mere criticising your country is not enough, you need to come up with solutions too,” he added.
Ali Moeen Nawazish said social media is also a huge economic capacity and it can help promote the entrepreneurial sector. He said when computers came, they were not taught at education institutions. Today, social media is also being taught in various institutions and social media has also an empowering aspect. We need to use all digital tools to promote our business and careers, he added.
Usman Raza Joulaha said that Pakistani youth strongly believes in the cause of Pakistan and Volunteers Pakistan would keep promoting youth so as the true voice of Pakistan is heard and promoted across the world.