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Community chairman Iqbal Shah said the idea for the United Pak Community started in 2014 when he wanted to bring together the entire Pakistani community in Portsmouth.

A Facebook page has been created for people looking for jobs, looking for places to go or areas to find more information about the city.

Raising the Pakistani flag marks the inclusiveness of all Portsmouth communities

Iqbal said there was a small Pakistani community on the island and the hope was to make Portsmouth a better place by welcoming everyone together.

He said: ‘People used to go to other cities like London or Birmingham to see the flag being raised but there was nothing in Portsmouth but we took the initiative to do something thing in Portsmouth to bring everyone together.

“We asked Portsmouth council to raise the flag and they said, very kindly accepted and welcomed us.”

The flag raising, which took place on August 14, was to celebrate Pakistan’s Independence Day and signified unity between Portsmouth and the Pakistani community that lives in the city.

Cllr Asghar Shah and Mayor of Portsmouth

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Iqbal added: “I feel very welcome, and not just me, but the whole community feels very welcome and we agreed that we don’t feel like strangers, we are part of the city.”

Those present included Cllr Asghar Shah, Cllr Abdul Qadeer, Council Leader Gerald Jackson, Cllr Charlotte Gerada, Stop Domestic Abuse Hampshire and Mayor Marie Costa.

75th Independence Day Cake

As well as raising the Pakistani flag, the ceremony also saw the flag of the United Kingdom being raised.

Iqbal added: “The raising of the flag is happening because we gained independence on August 14, 1947. Pakistan became a nation and became a country, so it’s to celebrate that and to celebrate what our ancestors did for us.”

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The first Pakistani flag raising