default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Logout|My Dashboard

Pakistani Independence Day noted in Lodi with park picnic, barbecue

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Monday, August 15, 2005 10:00 pm | Updated: 8:34 am, Fri Mar 21, 2014.

About 200 people gathered over the weekend at Blakely Park to mark Pakistan's Independence Day with a picnic and barbecue.

With the once-annual celebration at Lodi Lake called off earlier this month, several members of the Lodi Muslim Mosque on Friday began to make preparations to honor Pakistan's 58th anniversary since independence from England.

Pakistani and American flags flew side by side at the park as celebrants dined on Pakistani food and listened to music.

Pakistan gained independence in 1947. Though he no longer has family there, Mohammad Shoaib said he wishes the best for his native land.

"Every day they move toward democracy, prosperity -- and we pray for that," said Shoaib, president of the Lodi Muslim Mosque and one of the organizers of Sunday's event.

Attendance could have been affected because organizers got the idea for the picnic on Friday, said Shoaib. He had to attend court in Stockton for a hearing on a lawsuit that seeks to remove him as president, and that took what little time there was to publicize the picnic, he said.

Nick Qayyum, a member of the mosque board who also helped organize the picnic, called it "unfortunate" that the larger independence celebration was canceled.

Earlier this month, organizers for that celebration at Lodi Lake, which would have been in its fourth year, canceled their plans because there was no coordinated effort to put on the event.

The South Asian Culture Club and the Community Partnership for Families had organized three prior Independence Day celebration which were heavily attended.

Still, "It came out a pretty good day," Qayyum said of the independence day picnic.

Qayyum said organizers may plan a larger, better-planned celebration next year.

Some in the community wondered if the event at the lake was called off due to the arrests in June of five Pakistani men in an investigation said to be linked to terrorism.

Three of those men -- two former imams and one of their sons -- have agreed to be deported. The others -- father and son Umer and Hamid Hayat -- remain in custody, awaiting trial on charges they lied to federal agents.

Shoaib said organizers wanted to mark the occasion, despite the arrests.

"We do not want to mourn for those two people who are in jail," Shoaib said. "This is a ridiculous thing, to think that we don't want to celebrate."

Contact reporter Jake Armstrong at jakea@lodinews.com.

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.


Popular Stories


Should graduations return to the Grape Bowl?

Lodi Unified leaders are moving Lodi and Tokay high school graduations from the Grape Bowl to the Spanos Center at UOP in Stockton. They cite limited seating, costs and unpredictable weather at the Grape Bowl. But others say graduations at the Grape Bowl are an important Lodi tradition, and one reason many supported renovating the stadium. What do you think?

Total Votes: 100


Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists