Alert Sign Dear reader, online ads enable us to deliver the journalism you value. Please support us by taking a moment to turn off Adblock on

Alert Sign Dear reader, please upgrade to the latest version of IE to have a better reading experience


Smokers’ Corner: Refiguring Jinnah

Published Nov 10, 2012 09:05pm


Your Name:

Recipient Email:

Illustration by Abro

Today many Pakistanis are aware of Jinnah’s August 11, 1947, speech in which he clearly explains Pakistan to be a democratic Muslim majority country where religion has nothing to do with the business of the state.

Well-known historians have all maintained that to Jinnah the Muslims of undivided India were a separate cultural entity requiring their own homeland.

Jinnah’s desire to see this through was born from his awkwardness with the idea of a post-colonial India subjugated by the ‘Hindu-dominated’ Indian National Congress: even though the Congress was almost entirely secular.

However, there is absolutely no evidence that Jinnah’s push to carve out a separate Muslim country was made in order to construct an Islamic state.

For years Pakistanis have debated about how Jinnah went about claiming Pakistan. Was he able to think it through, or did he fail to perceive the vulnerability of his claim?

Many also believe that his claim in this respect was too open-ended. That’s why it was easily exploited by some who eventually turned it into a monolithic entity and a militaristic bastion of Islam.

It is ironic that the first Pakistani head of state to sincerely try to realise Jinnah’s concept of Pakistan was a military dictator. Field Marshal Ayub Khan’s regime (1959-69) still remains perhaps the most secular in the country’s history.

Apart from, of course, sidelining the democratic aspects of Jinnah’s concept, Ayub otherwise went about defining (through legislation) his understanding of Jinnah’s Pakistan.

To him it was about a secular Muslim majority state sustained by the genius of entrepreneurial action, a strong military, and the spirit of modernistic and progressive Islam of the likes of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, Iqbal and Jinnah.

However, in a naturally pluralistic society like Pakistan with multiple ethnicities, religions and Islamic sects, if one takes out democracy from the above equation, one would get (as Ayub did) ethnic strife, religious reactionary-ism and class conflict.

The class-based and multi-ethnic commotion in this respect opened windows of opportunity for well-organised leftist groups who were not only successful in forcing Ayub out (1969), but they also eschewed the religious opposition to the Field Marshal’s government.

Left parties like the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), National Awami Party (NAP), and student groups like the National Students Federation (NSF), in the former West Pakistan, achieved this by attacking Ayub’s ‘pro-rich policies’ (state-facilitated capitalism), and, on the other hand, neutralised the Islamic fundamentalists by adding a new twist to Jinnah’s image.

For example, the PPP advocated Jinnah to be a progressive democrat whose thinking was close to the ideas of ‘Islamic socialism’ first purported (in the region) by such leaders of the Pakistan Movement, as Chaudhry Rehmat Ali, and Iqbal.

After the breakaway of East Pakistan in 1971, and the coming to power of the PPP (led by Z A. Bhutto), the authoritarian centre-right secularism of the Ayub era (and concept of Jinnah), moved towards the populist left.

But the Bhutto regime was highly mutable. Though it remained populist, it regularly shifted from left to right on an issue to issue basis.

A study of Jinnah’s quotes used on state-owned media of the period suggests a regime trying to push Jinnah as a democrat who was not secular in the western sense, but a progressive Muslim whose faith was pluralistic in essence and ‘awami’ (populist).

Such quotes, that became a mainstay just before the main 9pm news bulletin on the state-owned PTV, suddenly changed track when Bhutto was toppled in a reactionary military coup by General Ziaul Haq (July 1977).

From 1977 onwards, no more was Jinnah being bounced between Ayubian secularists and Bhutto’s Islamic Socialists. He now became the property of the ‘Islam-pasand’ (pro-Islamic state) lot.

PTV and Radio Pakistan were ordered to only use those quotes from Jinnah’s speeches that contained the word ‘Islam’.

A concentrated effort was made to remould him into a leader who conceived Pakistan as an Islamic state with a strong military.

In 1978, the order of Jinnah’s celebrated motto, ‘Unity, Faith, Discipline,’ was reshuffled to put the word ‘faith’ first instead of the middle.

Then Zia’s information ministry suddenly unearthed a diary kept by Jinnah in which he had supposedly expressed his desire to see Pakistan as a country run on Islamic laws (instead of democracy), and emphasised the political and ideological role of the military. The diary turned out to be a desperate forgery.

Also, Jinnah’s August 11 speech was expunged from the school textbooks, as if it never existed.

By the end of Zia’s dictatorship (1988), Jinnah had been turned into a pious, 20th century caliph of sorts who presided over the creation of a ‘citadel of Islam’.

However, a decade later during the self-contradictory military dictatorship of General Parvez Musharraf: who was advertising himself as an updated version of Ayub Khan: Jinnah was made to slightly shed the facial hair that Zia had hung on him. Jinnah now became an enlightened moderate.

But Jinnah’s emergence of (now) becoming a moderate Muslim, at once clashed with his more pious, quasi-Islamist image that was cultivated for more than a decade by the Zia regime. This reignited the debate about exactly who or what Jinnah really was.

Today, with Pakistan facing the deadly spectre of Islamist terrorism, growing societal conservatism, a free (and somewhat anarchic) media, an activistic judiciary and the steady resurgence of the secular Muslim intellectual: all trying to figure (or refigure) Jinnah, something unprecedented happened.

Not since the Ayub dictatorship and during the early years of Bhutto’s government has a mainstream political party openly described Jinnah as a progressive, secular Muslim. But recently the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) did just that.

Well, this means at least in Karachi, the Jinnah who wanted a progressive, secular and democratic Muslim majority country is back. And this time he’s not confronting grumpy Islamic parties, but a monster that not only considers him a heretic, but a majority of Pakistani Muslims too.


Your Name:

Recipient Email:

Author Image

Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and He is also the author of two books on the social history of Pakistan, End of the Past and The Pakistan Anti-Hero.

He tweets @NadeemfParacha

The views expressed by this writer and commenters below do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.

Comments (188) Closed

Casino1127 Nov 11, 2012 06:59pm
The idea of Pakistan was mainly for economic reasons. Jinnah wanted the Muslims of India to be free of the "hegemony" of Hindus in their economic development. Religion was secondary, and has been exploited by all of Pakistan's rulers to this day, except the most enlightened, moderate and progressive of them all.........Field Marshal Mohammed Ayub Khan .
Erum Rahim Nov 11, 2012 11:54am
NFP great article once again. You're doing a great service to the youth of this confused country. However, I have always wondered why you still havn't written a book? With the kind of big following you have, isn't it time that wrote one? Also, please also elaborate on why it was now MQM that turned to be the party that began advocating Jinnah as a secular after so many years. Thanks.
rahul Nov 11, 2012 08:33am
pak must look to future...this can be done by removing hate from text books..atleast that is easy to do than declaring secularism...once that is done..common people will be more open to the idea of secualrism..bangladesh has done well by de-focussing religion and emphasizing ethnicity and language.
Ahmed j Nov 11, 2012 01:22pm
"It is ironic that the first Pakistani head of state to sincerely try to realise Jinnah
Aquarian Truths Nov 11, 2012 07:01pm
ip Nov 12, 2012 09:14am
Good Lord...!
NFP Fan Nov 11, 2012 12:18pm
I don't think Jinnah had any idea what would become of the country he was suggesting.
Kumar Nov 11, 2012 12:20pm
After reading all the comments by Pakistanis , I think After some odd 60 years, pakistanis are still confused about how and why they got a country . Who created the country and what was his motive ?Facts are like this. 1>Who created the country :Mr.Jinnah 2>Why he created : he created a country for Indian muslims and for their interests. 3>What was his main argument : Muslim minority can't coexist with Hindu majority.(It is In records) 4>What did he do to silence the critics: Non Muslims can stay in harmony in Pakistan , can go to churches and temples. Everyone agrees to it .Right ? But What Indians ask : 1>If non-Muslims can stay in harmony in Pakistan (according to Jinnah), they why didn't Muslims stay in harmony with non-Muslims in pre-partioned India ? 2>Where is this harmony mentioned by Jinnah right now . Indian Muslims have become the size of Pakistan population , but non Muslim population in Pakistan has become peanuts .Even some sects of Muslims are being butchered everyday. Conclusion : Pakistan was a mistake and this kinds of things shouldn't happen again . I think I didn't do any bias and presented views of both the sides . Conclusion was mine and everyone is free find out the conclusion.
Common Man Nov 11, 2012 08:39am
What people are not able to grab is quite a fundamental rule of Islam that allows minoroities to observe their religious rituals and may live according to their practices .....wonder why we still have an identity crises and our print and electronic media is not doing the justice to the fact that Pakistan ideation was based to the Modern Islmaic State and after 65 years we are criticising Mr. Jinnah for this tireless efforts to make it happen , an independent country that once was a dream. This is really disappointing that we as a nation are not a nation . We are confused , we are detracked , we are directionless and bunch of orthodox minds ..... I am not aware to the sequential course of historical events and thereby I request to the writer to immediately invoke a debate on the national level which include most of the reliable scholars of this time to investigagte it once for all and let the people know what was the Pakistan of Jinnah....... Even after 65 years we are asking each one of us , who we are are , why did we get this country ......jinnah never wanted Pak "an islamic state" ...... what I think that most of the people do not really know what Islam is and what secularism is ... this is just a facsion to talk more secular and in our country secularism is known as religion less that i think is wrong. We thought that Islam is what one tribe of media potrays " an extreme version" where there you can not even breath freely ". The other tribe lies on the other extreme of libralism where they say that we are free and we are free to do everything , we have no set limits .... we are as free as birds.....wonder where goes the real Islam.... wonder where goes the understanding of Islamic prudence that once drived the major part of the world and that neither was first extrem like i said before nor the second modern so called melo dramatic religion free extreme . we are using our energies to prove that Jinnah was not right , he was confused .....Alas , a nation that does not really identify who helped the nation or rather who collected people on the single idea of an independent country , is a nation that eventually becomes a loser in the end if keep going the way it has been from the last 65 years ......
cybage Nov 11, 2012 08:38am
I do agree . Well It will be difficult for Pakistanis to digest it , even if I were in their position , I couldn't have believed it .Fact is he did it for Muslim majority where a non-Muslim can't be state head . If he was secular , why did he make it Islamic republic ? Why did he order direct action on the day of Islamic festival to show arrogance of his power , when poor Gandhi was visiting Bengal for unity among community and some mislead Hindus lastly killed Gandhi because Gandhi was the champion of unity in which he was failed .India had not faced any major communal violence before that and so he sowed the seed of hatred among each other after Mughals ?He also coined the term Hindustan for India , which most Indians generally don't use and I frankly hate this word to use ?Things will be more cleared as we move on the path of future .
Posti Nov 11, 2012 01:42pm
When was even once in the Islamic history of India were non-muslims free? I can't think of anything except probably Akbar. But even Akbar is not seen in a very good light for his liberal views in Pakistan. You can check out one of the episodes of 'Mere Mutabiq', in which even a person like Hassan Nisar said that Akbar did some unIslamic things in his pursuit for liberal rule. I think Hassan Nisar was pointing to Akbar allowing idol worshiping or maybe participating in some Hindu religious ceremonies.
Posti Nov 11, 2012 12:04pm
How is ban on cow slaughter communal? Please enlighten me.
Indian Nov 11, 2012 01:01pm
Very well written article.Gives piece by piece,step by step,time by time view of history of Pakistan,Jinnah,Muslim League etc .It lightens up how Jinnah changed his stance every single moment as of a typical politician,especially calling Bangla language as unislamic,which finally led to creation of Bangladesh. Twists and turns of Pakistan history is very well documented by you sir.Kudos to your knowledge of history,your command over English grammar and how beautifully you conveyed the message.
islam_means_peace Nov 11, 2012 07:10pm
It's good to see lot's of indians around, so much concerned about Pakistan's identity. well, it would be nice if you sweep before your own door first. India is so called secular democracy. Do your research and you'll find that how many mass atrocities have been committed against minorities in India and compare it with Pakistan which never claimed to be a secular state.
Yemeen Zuberi Nov 11, 2012 07:06pm
Hi BRR, you need to read history again. It was Ghandhi who introduced religion in politics. Please see film Ghandhi that confirms Ghandhi's words for Jinnah. Jinnah was trained by Parsi and Hindu lawyers and politicians. He never called Congress as Hindu; he said that only Muslim League represents Muslims of India and Congress bowed to him and accepted his argument. I started reading Jinnah when people told me that he was a British tout. I met a different personality who confronted the British on equal ground, while the Congress was behaving like Riaya of the Raj.
Gir na Nov 11, 2012 12:01pm have a very good point . But at that time he was hell bent for a separate nation and at that time 5+5 was 20 for him.
bq45 Nov 11, 2012 01:16pm
It is very interesting, yet thought provoking that whenever intellectuals in Pakistan discuss the partition of British India into two distinct entities, the response comes quickly from two particular quarters. One from the religious circles inside Pakistan who try to prove that Pakistan was created on the name of Islam and the second more furious comments come from Indian diaspora who criticize the entire idea of Pakistan. While self criticism and reflection from outside is beneficial, one should not forget two basic realities. First, Pakistan is a fact and all this negative wishful thinking on the part of Indians is harmful towards the process of bringing the people of these nations closer. Secondly, none of the statements made by any important leader of Pakistan movement and especially of Qauid-e- Azam talks of Islam as the basis for the creation of the country. No doubt the land of the pure was for the Muslim minorities of Hindustan but for socioeconomic reasons and not for religion. Mr. Jinnah actually left Congress Party because of the injection of Hindu nationalism by Gandhi, which he saw harmful for the freedom movement. People should research deeply before painting the political struggle of poor Muslims with the brush of hatred.
Yemeen Zuberi Nov 12, 2012 05:41pm
Ravi you and those whose thumbs are up, please read Indian Summer by Alex von Tunzelmann.
Yemeen Zuberi Nov 12, 2012 05:49pm
the truth is that Jinnah lived his life as an Englishman, he never hid or lied about his drinking and pork eating. He never cheated his wife, though he paid less attention to her. Gandhi deprived his wife sex for no solid reason, while Nehru never liked his own wife but others'. Please read Stainley Walpert's Jinnah of Pakistan/Summer by Alex von Tunzelmann/ Paul Johnson's Modern Times.
ROHIT PANDEY Nov 12, 2012 04:53pm
My two cents- Muslims are safer in secular societies than in Islamic ones. That would mean secularism should be constant quest of Muslim societies. Kemal Ataturk left behind an armed force-the Turkish Army= to achieve that? And,Pakistan should likewise do something to move towards Turkish way of doing things?
Hariharan.S Nov 12, 2012 04:25pm
I find it very hard that noone in Pakistan has the guts to question the policies of Jinnah...Even the fearless NFP In India,there are many Indians who question the policies of Gandhi,who is considered a saint everywhere in the world because in a free country you have the rights to express dissent... All Pakistani moderates are trying to find solace in the August 11 speech to prove that Jinnah was a secularist,when his DIRECT DAY ACTION proves totally contrary.. C'mon Pakistanis,stop defending Jinnah and two nation theory...
ROHIT PANDEY Nov 12, 2012 04:40pm
Well,it does not seem to be the vision of majority of Pakistanis,the Taliban or the mullahs?
Hariharan.S Nov 12, 2012 04:41pm
Abbas, You should also remember that Medina in 7th century was a small city that if u walk for 15 mins from one corner of the city,you can reach the other corner... Its not difficult to rule such a city if the ruler is a just man... Besides,how come you cannot accept Democracy and republic where representative of us form the law,but believe in a dictatorial ruler who was making his own laws everyday as he wished.... Besides the martyrdom of Socrates under Demos is similar to the martyrdom of 'Asma' bint Marwan under Prophet...Both were murdered for challenging against the present system.. Besides,if you despise democracy and republic so much,why are u still in Canada and enjoying their social security benefits..You can move to Syria where u have a dictator
abc Nov 12, 2012 07:36pm
"Pakistan has been going through a war for the last 30 years, external and internal, and managed to survive." Correction!!!!! for the last 65 years. The great resilient Pakistan lost half of its country within the first 35 years of its inception, and seems to be going strong to repeat itself in the next 35 years. Good going by India's "ideological leader".
Akram Nov 12, 2012 04:50pm
you have not understood the issue, the issue was not that Muslims cannot live with hindus, it was that we Muslims are a nation in our own right and we should not have to live in our own land as a minority with rule from some far off hindu dominated land. If you understood indian history better you would understand the indian subcontinent has always been a collection of sovereign independent states. The concept of a 'united india' is essentially a creation of the British by force. Yet indians cannot read their own history and realise they are propagating essentially a British concept. they think india has always been one country, it has not! read your history!
Faraz Nov 12, 2012 07:50am
"The problem in running a country on sharia law is that it denies people any meaning in their lives." Can you share the meaning of your life?
Faraz Nov 12, 2012 07:42am
Yes.. I'm sure about India and Bangladesh..
Indian Nov 12, 2012 07:34am
I feel Muslims are happy enough to live with fellow Hindus in India than Hindus living with fellow Muslims in Pakistan.The reason is Muslim population in India is rising and many Muslims occupy top positions in Secular and not Hindu Indian democracy,unfortunately that is not true with Hindus living in Pakistan.Hence I would say the fellow Hindus in Pakistan who are treated unequally as second or nth grade citizens to come to India and lead a successful,peaceful and prosperous life.
Faraz Nov 12, 2012 07:31am
All Indian historians agree.. right?
Faraz Nov 12, 2012 07:28am
Personally, I believe muslims would be much more happy in a state governed by muslims.
Cynical Nov 12, 2012 07:25am
A refreshingly bold perspective. Sounds sensible too.
Faraz Nov 12, 2012 07:22am
Muhammad Asif Nov 12, 2012 07:22am
"Jinnah did envision that the PAKISTAN HE CREATED would be a HEAVEN FOR THE MUSLIMS to LIVE IN PEACE with any type of aqliats in Pakistan": Agreed bro, you got it right, a heaven for Muslims, not a Muslim State. If it were to be, most of Ulema-i-Hind including JI of Modudi would have backed Jinnah for Pakistan, which they did not.
ROHIT PANDEY Nov 12, 2012 08:44am
Unless Pakistanis/Muslims reshape their thinking about their religion and role of religion in public life the state of affairs in Pakistan is hardly likely to improve. Muslim societies in their seek of a better life are going to go through a series of schools of hard knocks before they modernize! TOO MUCH of religion and TOO LITTLE of rationality.
Pakistan Nov 12, 2012 06:53am
It was not Islamic(Taliban) Pakistan,but a Pakistan where Muslims can have equal opportunity as Hindus,this was the vision of Jinnah's Pakistan.
GoodCop Nov 12, 2012 03:11pm
I think you meant to say present day Pakistan..because in India people of all faiths go to their respective worship places without any bomb blasts or mass killings..
observer Nov 12, 2012 03:28am
My comment was directed at someone using nickname Kumar (not a Muslim name for sure). My comment also did not suggest that MG Ghandhi was murdered by a Muslim. Then why your correction? I wish you read things properly before passing comments.
JustSaying Nov 12, 2012 03:27am
The United States then must be a very uneducated country. It has started all the wars of the last 61years.
observer Nov 12, 2012 03:21am
Isn't good an understatement?
observer Nov 12, 2012 03:17am
I strongly wish there is a debate about true value and use of Objectives Resolution. It paves the way towards a theocratic state. It is about time to define boldly and clearly that Objectives Resolution should be taken out of 1973 Constitution (both preamble and main body of the Constitution). Also, institutions like Islamic Ideology Council, Sahriat courts, and the alike are not truly useful any more. Hence justice must be done to all such steps taken mainly in Zia era.
observer Nov 12, 2012 03:08am
Pardeep, you know what: if Pakistan was not created on Aug 14, 1947 I can assure you we would still be fighting for a country. So, Jinnah was a sage and a true visionary to strike when the iron was hot (that is, to accept Pakistan with some not-so-suitable borders).
sunny Nov 12, 2012 03:00am
Exactly! Let us live in peace. I hope Dawn will let my post to appear. It is deleting all my innocent posts like this.
Anwar Amjad Nov 12, 2012 02:53am
It does not sound logical to create a secular country Pakistan out of secular India. It defeats the very objective for which this country was created. Pakistan was created to provide a homeland to the Muslims. Of course it never meant that non-Muslims could not live in the country. It is correct that Quaid-i-Azam said that people would be free to practice their religion which is in accordance with the teachings of Islam too. He, however, never said that Pakistan would be a secular country. He never objected to the slogan
observer Nov 12, 2012 02:51am
Thank you Dawn for publishing my comment as above. I do admit the comment is selfish, insecure, emotional, and somewhat harsh. But it is guaranteed to be my deep, honest feeling. My apologies to those that find it offensive. I am deeply hurt every single day when I read about killings and oppression happening in Pakistan. That is the reason why everybody finds it so convenient to speak against my country. Even Afghanistan spares no opportunity to bash Pakistan. Inshallah Pakistanis will learn from this down phase and emerge as a better nation. Please Pakistani nation, learn to value the independece we have and work towards a better country.
Pia Nov 12, 2012 01:15am
Where do Muslims get all this stuff?
Lahore_Mass_Transit Nov 12, 2012 01:08am
So you mean Democratic Republic of Congo is an oxymoron :-) This is a selective definition of Republic that is devised to remain confused It was an agreement not a Constitution if you know the difference Secular means where affairs of the State are kept seperate from the Religion of its people. To have that distinction , many more centuries of hard work is required.
Joe Nov 12, 2012 12:44am
Your doctrine should be read in madrassahs to show innocent youths the version of history that is dictated by "absolute truth". Ooops, it already is there.
abbastoronto Nov 12, 2012 12:40am
Myths, once created, get their own lives. A few of such are that Gandhi freed India from the English, or that the division of India was based on religion, or that Pakistan is doomed. In 1947, while India was already semi-industrialized, Pakistan was an industrial backwater. Compared to 180 textile mills alone in 1899 in India, Pakistan had only 7 in 1947 (3 jute, 4 rice, all in East Bengal). During 1914-45 while Europe was de-industrializing itself and committing suicide (killed 120,000,000 of its own in 31 years, concentration camps, gulags, forced collectivization), India was rebuilding. During the
sja Nov 12, 2012 12:36am
Yes as always, something to REFIGURE and something to DISFIGURE, alongwith envision, smoke fusion, cornerstone, blind vision, sectarian divisions, discard religion, secular vision, separation, aggression, suppression, and as you said "Today, with Pakistan facing the deadly spectre of Islamist terrorism, growing societal conservatism, a free (and somewhat anarchic) media, an activistic judiciary and the steady resurgence of the secular Muslim intellectual: all trying to figure (or refigure) Jinnah, something unprecedented happened.""""""------------------ in Urdu it is very summed up ------ EK HI HAMMMAMMM MAIN SAB NANGAAAAY. There is no concept of self evaluation, that would include you NFP too, what have we done to PAKISTAN, and now they want referendum, to refigure, but first they disfigure, dismantle, and break and Play with JINNAH's Pakistan, and then they demand, to refigure or disfigure or divide more of what if left of JINNAH's ORIGINAL PAKISTAN. It is all about VISION that ALLAMA IQBAL and JINNAH HAD, that was made into envision, for a big division, and now to revision for a referendum and NFP refigure ---ment. or whatever.
sja Nov 12, 2012 12:14am
and like Britishers eat our cakes tooo.
Bitter_Truth Nov 12, 2012 12:16am
The truth is always bitter. 'Islam-means-peace' in writing will not make it any better, but show to the world, Then all the prejudices would naturally will erase.
Ahmad Rana Nov 12, 2012 12:05am
Jinnah was personally secular, indeed. But that doesn't mean that he did not lead the cause of a fundamentalist Islamic state. He was a lawyer by training, and took up the case of an Islamic state. Being a professional lawyer, his personal ideology/ philosophy did not influence the cause he took up. He was 'hired', or to put it in politically correct terms (at least in Pakistan), 'persuaded' by the likes of Iqbal (who himself was a genius, but suffered from identity crisis - read Aik falsafa-zada syed zadey ke naam in Zarb-e-kaleem: Main asal ka khas Somanti; Shikwah etc. etc.) to lead the cause for a fundamentalist Islamic state. He took it up, and being a genius and an obsessive-compulsive professional, delivered. So stop apologizing on his behalf, and accept that creation of Pakistan was a setback to secularism for Indian Muslims. Accepting the fact also doesn't mean that Pakistanis have to backtrack, and somehow re-unite with Hindustan. It was a choice that Indian Muslims made. They took a different path, and whether they like it or not, they're now set on this path. There are fundamental differences between Islamic and Hindu cultures. Even though it can be argued that the present day Hindustan comprises of a much larger variety of distinct cultures, and one more sub-culture wouldn't have done it any harm, being a philosophically inferior culture, Indian Islam would have, in time, merged back into larger, secular culture of India. That didn't happen, and now the path that Pakistani society has taken is different from that of the Hindustanis. Their society has to go through the turmoil that it is going through right now, and come to equilibrium in its own time. Wishing that since Jinnah was secular, Pakistan should also become secular is not going to help. Just personal opinion. -Ahmad
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:54pm
Indians do have a snooty, superior attitude they learned from the British. Muslims believe others should be directed according to their religious insights. All ultra religious people are masters at both defining and limiting God's will. These religious pecking orders leave God no room to breathe on His own.
Judeo-Christian Foundation__US Nov 11, 2012 11:52pm
11 September 2012 2130 hrs. Declaration of War We, the citizens of the Free and Independent Republic of America do hereby announce on this 11th day of September, 2012, on the 21st and one-half hour, a pronouncement and acknowledgement of a Declaration of War against Islam. We, the citizens of the Free and Independent Republic of America shall defend our nation, our constitutional government, our Judeo-Christian foundation, our citizens, our borders and all assets herein. This Proclamation includes the defense of our allied nations and their citizens, as well. Any and all entities, cumulative or acting individually against the aforementioned, will be deemed enemy combatants of the Free and Independent Republic of America, considered aiding and abedding the enemy and will be addressed and engaged accordingly. Signed, The Citizen
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:42pm
There are always two nations. The Republicans make a living for themselves, and the Democrats make a living for others.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:38pm
No. He did not, because like most true Muslims he made the mistake of believing that everyone is good. He dreamed of Pakistan as a utopian future for all. . "East is East and West is West and never the two shall meet. KIPLING
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:21pm
"The whole Nazi stuff was being inculcated into us at school," One of his teachers had made pupils draw a large swastika in pencil on the first page of their exercise book. On another page they had to draw up a list of Germany's enemies - chief among them, Britain, Russia and the US." . "Now pupils let us draw up a list of Islam's enemies."
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:14pm
The Mahatma Gandhi was not murdered by a Muslim.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:10pm
"War games are preparation for a time when war is no longer a game." Jan de Hartog
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:06pm
We hear you. . Britain had a deal with the Iranians for oil all the way back in 1901, when the Anglo-Iranian Oil company was chartered.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 11:01pm
You will have to go back to the time of Caliph Othman to find the Rightly Guided Police.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:54pm
Fortunately, the Saudi Royal Family don't do anything un-Islamic.
Ravi Nov 11, 2012 10:49pm
Gandhi introduced spirituality into politics. not dogma. You can see the evidence in including prayers from all religions and focus on truth, love and non violence which are espoused by all religions. Jinnah is the one who used religion. You may want to ponder on the difference between spirituality and religion.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:48pm
Good people make mistakes. Evil people correct those mistakes.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:49pm
Under sharia people are murdered for petty reasons.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:46pm
(His lecture to the peasants) "You always look for strong leaders. There aren't any. They get old, they desert, they die. There are only men like yourselves. A strong people is the only lasting strength." (Marlon Brando as Zapata)
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:40pm
The problem in running a country on sharia law is that it denies people any meaning in their lives. It is fine for the Saudis because they can break the rules and make money alongside the West. They do what they want because they are rich. The poor are bound down by the chains of religion and the ayatollahs, imams and mullahs are encouraged to keep them in chains by their own governments. "All men are born free, and everywhere they are in chains." . We are in chains of our own making. Obama said, "Yes, we can." Wrongly guided imams tell us "No. we can't. Success is not permitted."
akil akhtar Nov 11, 2012 10:25pm
Are you sure, what about Israel and Hindustan.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:24pm
People have been talking about getting rid of hate for 6,000 years. It's all talk. "The questions of the day are not decided by speeches and majority votes, but by blood and iron." You know why? Because everyone wants to talk and not to listen. Muslims believe it is their duty to instruct everyone else.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:19pm
When a buffalo is worth more than a person no country can be united. The idea is to keep the buffaloes away from the beans. "Some people are more equal than others." Especially in Asia. The poor exist because someone has to bring order to chaos.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:13pm
When people cannot agree the only way out is war. The uneducated are easily led to war.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 10:08pm
Jinnah was a lawyer in London.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 09:59pm
He probably just wants to bomb Canada.
Cyrus Howell Nov 11, 2012 09:55pm
"We should be critical, but criticism should not mean mutual destruction." Bronislaw Komorowski, Polish president
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 09:47pm
Beautifully said. Cheers from a hindu.
BRR Nov 11, 2012 09:46pm
And how exactly will that help Pakistan? If India goes to the dogs, will that make Pakistan any better? Any wiser? If India collapses, does that make the current Pakistan a heaven on earth? rather silly of you to make such comments. Those that say Pakistan is here to say should realize no Indian in his right mind would want this version of Pakistan ever to get together - no one would want to even deal with such a creature it has become, no one would want to even be its neighbour.
Abdul Rehman Nov 12, 2012 11:18am
Umm, all "intellectuals" who keep on portraying Quaid-e-Azam as a secularist should see the speech of October 1947 in which he called Pakistan a Bulwark of Islam. Of course, our "intellectuals" conveniently forget to mention that, though always mention the forged diary.
sja Nov 11, 2012 09:26pm
"""""Jinnah wanted Pakistan to be like UK(United Kingdom) which he envisioned as idol and wanted Pakistan to be in the future""""". Jinnah did not envision that there would be people in Pakistan who would smoke in corners and then blow smoke all over Pakistan. Jinnah also did not envision that a wadera family of Sind will turn through magical and tactical methods break Jinnah's Pakistan into HALF. Jinnah also did not envision that DAWN, that was founded so proudly by him, would preach idolism of NFP and mixed oranges and apples with pineapples so as to make it all pure and with full secular fervor. Jinnah also did not envision that the religious scholars would make safe heavens with arab of rupees and these turn this country into ruthless denominations. Jinnah also did not envision that there would be army generals in Pakistan Army, like Yahya Khan, Ayub Khan, Asghar Khan, Ziaul Haque, Pervaz Musharaf, who will take the oath but remain under dictation until full rendition of foreign agendas. Jinnah also did not envision that the nation he build and fought for so hard would have leaders who would live in LONDON and dictate their mandates, for the poor masses to execute. Jinnah also did not envision that the ample resources of the country would be so confiscated in the hands of Memons, and the like, who will take over the Pakistan STOCK EXCHANGES. Jinnah did not envision that the people would loot, rob, kill, ask for ransom for kidnappings, in the name of leaders where ever they dictate from for all the TEHRIKS, SIPAHS, Brailvis, wahabis, deobandis, quadianis, PPP will create and produce peoples of the caliber of Jehangir Badar, Kaira and company. Finally, Jinnah did no envision that the MEDIA in PAKISTAN will produce anchors, who will be caught on video tape and record, setting up stages, taking money from any sources, to further the special interest, in the name of MINORITIES, creating controversies, misleading as much as they can, in the name of pursuit of their kind of TRUTH. It can go on but Jinnah did envision that the PAKISTAN HE CREATED would be a HEAVEN FOR THE MUSLIMS to LIVE IN PEACE with any type of aqliats in Pakistan. Islam also guarantees, peace to all but why then the secularists like NFP have so much to right about anybody's vision when his own vision is so obscured in the SMOKERS' COLUMN ____ DARK SMOKE.
Abdus Salam Khan Nov 11, 2012 09:12pm
Mr. Observer, I refer you to the Objectives Resolution and the Constitution of Pakistan that envisages a Paksitan run in accordance with the dictates of the Quran and the Sunnah. If you are so keen to have a secualr Paksitan, go ahead and amend the Cosntitution. So far no government has even considered such an amendment, for the estblishment realizes that it is now a settled question.
abc Nov 11, 2012 08:34pm
Absolutely correct Mr khan. "the people of Pakistan want their lives and their government to be regualted in the light of the Quran and the Sunnah" My simple question is, how and why do you think that your interpretation of "islam" is correct, and taliban's interpretation of islam is not acceptable to most people of this country". I think it is an excercise in futility to argue over the question
Saurabh Nov 11, 2012 08:28pm, you can't feel the emotions of Indian Muslims,they are the happiest muslims in the world,I known you would like to rememberise me the gujrat's incident,but its a decade old accident,and I also known that even after 50 years you remember that incident because such type activity happened once in 50-60 year,which I accepted as a failure of states department. But one thing you don't want to accept that the growth and progress of Indian Muslims in almost all fields.In Arts(like movies,music,painting,poetry,literature,etc) they show their class in India and appreciated by all,in politics they achieved almost all positions(even president),In business one of the most wealthiest person is azeem premji,IT giant Wipro owner,and many-many more top 100 companies also founded and run by Indian Muslims like Cipla,Wockhart,hamdard,etc even I don't known the names because this not matters to me.
Batkhal Awam Nov 11, 2012 08:26pm
Muslim league election campaign heard in the streets of Madras province in 1946 general elections : "Pakistan ka matlab kya illahi illallah". Out of the 28 "communal" (meaning 'reserved') seats for muslims, the league won all of them defeating the congress...imagine in Madras, which would not become a part of Pakistan in the wildest dreams of its voters. The people were so frenzied. And you get support like these and then tell these people... "Free to temples, free to mosques..."...makes no sense.
abc Nov 11, 2012 08:20pm
So, we need to respect everyone's sovernity and not, bring out he same topic over and over again. "Partition" is the best thing happened to the subcontinent, and we need to realize that it is an undisputable fact, and learn to moe forward without the backlog.
Karachite here Nov 11, 2012 08:20pm
Democracy has failed very badly in Pakistan. Now Pakistan needs only an islamic revolution and subsequent establishment of an islamic emirate in Pakistan. There's no other option.
abc Nov 11, 2012 08:15pm
Islm really means Peace, like no one else.
abc Nov 11, 2012 08:12pm
Yes, Mr. Abbas, what are you doing in Canada? which is a democratic country and ruled by "5% moneyed males rule over the 95% rest
Derek Nov 11, 2012 07:59pm
Nadeem, your article dosent try to unravel the myth of Jinnah. It should be remembered clearly (whether people like it or not) that Jinnah was a firm secular untill about 1930. Gandhi's entry with his own distinctive type of politics made Jinnah largely irrelevent on a larger stage. He retracted from active politics and even went back to his law practice in London. He saw everything wrong with Gandhi. His latter life can be clearly identified with anti-Gandhi agenda. The paradox of British India is that, Hindu intelectuals and leaders were very nationalists and lots of middle class Hindus were collaborators; where as muslims at large were anti-british and their leaders firm collaborators. Jinnah's achievement of creating Pakistan based on his anti-Gandhi feelings were not good reasons for such a monumental decision. Whatever inadequacies of the subsequent generation of Pakistani leaders, the fundamental mistake of Jinnha and his other contemporary leader colleagues seeing India as 2 nations based on religion will cause more pain to all the people in this region, in the decades to come.
pathanoo Nov 11, 2012 07:54pm
I don't know if Jinnah really gave a serious thought about how he will run Pakistan. He was concentrated on making sure that the Muslims had a chance to grow to their fullest potential which he thought would not be possible in undivided India. He was secular and progressive but Don't foget he wanted to be the Prime Minister of India failing that he would not settle for any thing less. So, if Pakistan was what was needed so be it. He would help create Pakistan and be the PRIME MINISTER. Had Nehru and sardar Patel acquiesced to Mahatma Gandhi's wishes, who was absolutely willing to let Jinnah become Prime Minister of undivided India in order to avoid partition, there would be no Pakistan today. AND THAT IS THE HISTORICAL TRUTH ALL HISTORIANS AGREE ON.
pathanoo Nov 11, 2012 07:44pm
You forgot to mention that Jinnah loved his WHISKEY.
feo Nov 11, 2012 07:34pm
We decided exactly what kind of Pakistan we needed. One of the most corrupt countries on the face of the Earth. Which is a reflection of what we are, the most corrupt, unfeeling, unthinking, uneducated people in the world. Nice that you are not actually living here Laeeq and still feel you can contribute to the discourse! Yawn.
feo Nov 11, 2012 07:30pm
LOL, perfect Umesh.
Atif Nov 11, 2012 07:28pm
Muhammad Ali Jinnah left India. He was asked by Aga Khan, Rehmat Ali and Allama Iqbal to return and join Muslim League. In fact it was Gandhi who supported Khilafat movement. Jinnah opposed it.
observer Nov 11, 2012 06:35pm
From my limited knowledge of histroy, I would agree with NFP. Yet, I would refrain from giving any credit to Ayub Khan for calling Quaid-e-Azam secular. I think too many people who knew too much about Jinnah were alive and Ayub Khan could not dare distort history like Zia did. Please realize Zia had the advantage of misguiding the later generations who did not know much about Jinnah. Also, perhaps Ayub Khan was less influenced by Jamaat-e-Islami than the clever Zia. Yet, Ayub Khan did enough to take Pakistan off the secular track and re-named Jinnah's Pakistan as Islamic Republic and played in the hands of those that opposed Pakistan movement with their full might. Even ZAB, being a populist, could not help but entertain mullah lobby to some extent. About MQM, it is indeed the only party at present that is openly talking about Jinnah being secular. MQM has the advantage of loyal vote bank and at the same time has enough vandetta against JI. But remember, these big political parties do not quite mean a lot of ideology even when they take clear positions. For them it is more important to keep their voters pleased. So, don't be surprised if MQM sways from its present stance about Jinnah and stops talking about this topic any more. Then there are likes of Musharraf who could take a 180 degree turn in one day. Perhaps MQM, ANP, PPP would not ditch their ideological supporters in Musharraf style but these parties have the potential to bow out to the strong right.
abbastoronto Nov 11, 2012 06:19pm
The government under our Prophet in Medina was a secular Republic. The Primal Document was the Covenant of Medina, the First Constitution. Since Hellenic Times, there have been two models of governance
observer Nov 11, 2012 06:16pm
I have met dozens of Indian Muslims in my life so far. When I observe the mental slavery they are in and the way they have accepted Indian / Hindu superiority, I feel extremely lucky to have a country of my own. Selfish but it comes straight from my heart: I would prefer to die any day than be an Indian Muslim. I do acknowledge Pakistan has a long way to go to be a good country. But at least we have a great advantage of having Pakistan. (I am not sure if Dawn's moderators will publish my comment or not, but I have expressed myself most honestly).
observer Nov 11, 2012 06:06pm
NFP is no spokesman of MQM. He is just a columnist and analyst. But if he writes a book, consider one copy sold (this will also give me a chance to call myself youth if the book is intended to educate youth).
Kumar Nov 11, 2012 06:06pm
we will be waiting and everyone would love to . But give us some deadline at least
rs24 Nov 11, 2012 06:05pm
There can not be any denying that Jinnah left congress as there was a slight Hindu tinge in the Gandhi led INC, however it would be impertinent to deny the fact that Jinnah used the Islamic nationalism as an ideology to grab power in the name of religion. Jinnah was a shrewd politician(and like all leaders a megalomaniac) and wanted to create a whole new nation because only that could serve his all personal ambitions of becoming the most respectful and delightful Quieda-a- azam. He was secular at the core too and that was also the reason why he wanted to create a secular Pakistan. However his biggest folly(more of incompetency) was that he could not reconcile the very Islamic propaganda of the land of pure to the idea of post 1947 democratic secular Pakistan. After the death of Jinnah shortly after independence, the second rung politicians could not differentiate between Islam as a tool for creating the new nation and Islam as the model of the new nation ie a political propaganda and the desired goals. This is the same contradiction that is still not acknowledged by many nationalist and right wing historians. What Jinnah wanted was a secular nation, How he brought this nation on political map was with the brush of green religion. This antagonism is the foundation of the very basic idea of the land of pure.
observer Nov 11, 2012 06:03pm
I can only agree partially with your analysis. My conclusion is that Pakistan is our country. We are fortunate to be free. We should look at the mental and social condition of Indian Muslims and thank Jinnah for giving us a free homeland. Pakistanis have every reason to make Pakistan better. What has happened so far is nothing to be proud of. Yet, Pakistanis have the potential to turn things around. If this potential is lost, we may even lose our country (God forbid). Regardless of debate on ideology of 1947 Pakistan, we have every reason to make Pakistan a progressive, secular State. If Pakistanis do this, we will be doing ourselves a big, big favor. With time, secular Pakistan has become writing on the wall. All other models have not yielded any result. But people in the media (NFP being one example) need to educate masses that secularism is different from communism and individual's right to have and practice their religion is perfectly safe under secularism.
Kumar Nov 11, 2012 06:02pm
So, It is the doubt which baffles you ? We do it to maintain harmony among communities . We also prevent Hindus and Christians to stop slaughtering of Pigs, which is the mostly eaten meat in the world and muslims hate this animal .In many states , you can't even a pig slaughtering center in radius of 5 km from mosque.It is sacrifice for each other.Your society is not that diverse to understand this fact . So you have been like a frog in the well.......
observer Nov 11, 2012 05:55pm
and then someone who thought like you do murdered Ghandhi.
observer Nov 11, 2012 05:52pm
Please don't gulp down my whole country in your greed and quest for national pride and expansionism.
observer Nov 11, 2012 05:50pm
No thanks.
AHA Nov 11, 2012 05:49pm
Education, and a very, very open mind.No easy at all.
observer Nov 11, 2012 05:46pm
What gives you the authority to conclude on the behalf of people of Pakistan that they want their government to be regulated in the light of Quran and Sunnah? This exact conclusion is the whole issue. It is up to Constitution makers and governments to make sure that such a question does not come before public. If it does, people will choose to go for Islamic type government. The Constitution must be secular and the State must be neutral towards all people regrdless of religions or sects. To date, Pakistanis have failed to carve out this type of Pakistan and therefore are facing extremely serious issues. How many more tragedies will it take for you to realize that a State based on religion cannot prosper. Particularly for Pakistan, what kind of Islam would you prefer? Of course, whatever your sect and sub-sect and school of thought are. But what will become of all other religions, all other sects, all other sub-sects, etc. Imagine if every Pakistani wants a State based on their religion, sect, sub-sect, and shade sect. Wouldn't it be chaos? If we all learn that keeping religion and State entirely separate is what State should be all about. we can start to move into the civilzed world.
observer Nov 11, 2012 05:35pm
..... and don't forget Auyb Khan's fake election victory over Fatima Jinnah. I am sure Quaid-e-Azam would not have wanted that to happen in any case.
Seeker Nov 11, 2012 05:34pm
The fact of the matter is Nation based on religion is not possible.There is no pure(100%) Muslim,Christian or Sunni ,Shia,Catholics, Protestant nation in this world. I want to put a question to some People who say Religion(Muslim,Christian,Hindu,Chinese) first and Nationality later(Pakistani,American,Indian,Chinese) If all Muslims are one why there are so many nations, all Muslim nations could have become one.All Muslims could have become friends with each other.Saudi Arabia,Pakistan,Afghanistan,Iran, Kuwait,Iraq,Lebanon,Libya etc all should have become one,but that has not happened.All Christian nations should have become one,America,Australia,UK etc.All Hindu(India,Nepal) nations and Buddhist(Srilanka,Japan,China,North Korea,South Korea etc) nations should have become one. The fact of the matter is religion cannot bind people together.Its love which binds. Dil & pyar connects too people,places,countries together not religion or sect. I may not like the Pakistani who is a Sunni sitting next to me,but I may like to be with a British Christian or Indian Hindu who is online across the border.
Hindu Nov 11, 2012 05:35pm
Sir Burma was never part of India. rahter than trampling geo boundaries lets just talk about getting rid of hate. Boundaries are meaningless in love and affection.
BRR Nov 11, 2012 05:21pm
If Jinnah, who wanted a separate country for the muslims, who did now ant to live with Hindus, who considered even the Congress as Hindu, despite the congress having significant muslim participation and support, is a mis-reading of facts, and a wishful thinking. To call Jinnah a practicing muslim is also wrong. He was neither. He was a politician, and would do and say whatever to get into power. He may have been tolerant of hindus himself but willingly drove a wedge between hindus and muslims (unlike Gandhi, for example). He was no secularist. He was a politician, just like the others you find in Pakistan today.
Seeker Nov 11, 2012 05:19pm
The fact of the matter is Nation based on religion is not possible.There is no pure(100%) Muslim,Christian or Sunni ,Shia,Catholics, Protestant nation in this world. I want to put a question to some People who say Religion(Muslim,Christian,Hindu,Chinese) first and Nationality later(Pakistani,American,Indian,Chinese) If all Muslims are one why there are so many nations, all Muslim nations could have become one.All Muslims could have become friends with each other.Saudi Arabia,Pakistan,Afghanistan,Iran, Kuwait,Iraq,Lebanon,Libya etc all should have become one,but that has not happened.All Christian nations should have become one,America,Australia,UK etc.All Hindu(India,Nepal) nations and Buddhist(Srilanka,Japan,China,North Korea,South Korea etc) nations should have become one. The fact of the matter is religion cannot bind people together.Its love which binds. Dil & pyar connects too people,places,countries together not religion or sect. I may hate the Pakistani who is a Sunni sitting next to me,but I may like to be with a British Christian or Indian Hindu who is online across the border.
Pakistan Nov 11, 2012 05:14pm
hehehe... Pakistan to burma = great India. then we can all distribute each other's nukes like toffees....
Pakistan Nov 11, 2012 05:16pm
FORGET PARTITION!!!!!!!! PAKISTAN, INDIA, BANGLADESH are Soverign states now!!!
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 05:12pm
No. I am a hindu, who love beef and can get it in any town (big or small) in India in either Muslim hotels or big 3-4-5 star hotels. Though I am not sure about the state of Gujrat.
Ganesh (India) Nov 11, 2012 05:08pm
By and large excellent analysis. In some areas you seem too harsh on Jinnah. For example, declaring Urdu as national language can be logical move as a diverse nation need's some jelling factor's to retain a level of uniformity at national level. That move might not be because Bengali was 'Unislamic'. However Jinnah seems implemented these kind of changes rather hurriedly. How can one enforce a new language on region which is quite known for its love and take pride in its language??? A national leader ought to know these kind of intricacies rather well. Whatever history I have read about Jinnah, I am becoming more and more clear that he was not really sure what he wanted to do with Pakisthan or rather why he created one. I notice most of Pakisthani Intelligentia mentioning 11 Aug. 1947 speech of Jinnah in which he envisioned secular, liberal, democratic
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 05:02pm
I don't agree. May it's her frustration from what she (as all of us) has seen happening for last 65 years. Without the non-sense of 'Two nation theory', the violence of 'Direct action day', and the final tragedy of partition, the same person would sing a different tune. For Jinnah and his followers it was about a piece of land, for the rest of Indians it was about their mother-land. UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENCE.
Seeker Nov 11, 2012 05:02pm
If you say I am Muslim first and Pakistani later why not stay in Saudi Arabia which is the purest place for a Muslim than staying in Pakistan your homeland.
Laeeq,NY Nov 11, 2012 04:57pm
We did not decide what kind of Pakistan we needed in last 60 years of our history, what make us more determined to adopt it now ? We are already in the extreme of religious extremism with our illiteracy rate sky high, how can we explain the word "SECULAR" to a lay person? Interpretation of this word is already done by our religious scholars as committing blasphemy or may be equal to the same . Only way out is Education, Education and Education.
Sandip Nov 11, 2012 04:33pm
"Well-known historians have all maintained that to Jinnah the Muslims of undivided India were a separate cultural entity requiring their own homeland." - This statement if true then why not declare pakistani state a muslim state in line with Saudi or Kuwait or other states? Can Pakistan accept that Jinha was wrong? Being indian i accept that Nehru and Gandhi made wrong decision to allow India to divide. I am the only voice here looking to get united India again, from Pakistan to Burma.
Umesh Nov 11, 2012 06:30pm
What are you doing in Toronto ? Move to Saudi Arabia as soon as possible...
babu Nov 12, 2012 11:52am
agreed capt saab,how fast can any muslim nation ,achieve your idea,seriously i only see regression ,but in my heart i pray for your dream to come true.
raw is war Nov 11, 2012 03:55pm
grt article.
Prashant Nov 11, 2012 03:51pm
You hang people just on the suspicion of a mentally disturbed girl defaming your religion and call your neighbours communal for banning the cow slaughter. Does that mean for India to be truly secular, it has to slaughter cows?
Abdus Salam Khan Nov 11, 2012 03:29pm
I think it is an excercise in futility to argue over the question " What type of Pakistan do we want" by relying on what Jinnah said or did at any point of time, for the other side would also produce quotes from Jinnah in their favor. I think it is a settled question now that the people of Pakistan want their lives and their government to be regualted in the light of the Quran and the Sunnah. It is also a settled question that the Taliban's interpretation of Islam is not acceptable to most people of this country, so let us get on with the business of putting the Taliban jinni back in the bottle, enforcing the writ of the government and bring back peace and prosperity to this country.
Arun Nov 11, 2012 03:28pm
Seems to me that Modern Pakistanis are afraid of deciding for themselves; they need some larger-than-life figure to tell them what to think.
AHA Nov 11, 2012 03:12pm
So true. Our current miserable state is own own doing, and started with the Objective Resolution of 1949, after Jinnah had already passed away.
Allah-Bakhsh Chaudhry Nov 11, 2012 03:11pm
No one should forget the fact of history that Chaudhry Mohammad Zafarullah Khan, a devout Ahmadi Muslim was the first Foreign Minister of Pakistan, who won a conspicuous place on the map of the world for Pakistan. He most valiantly and ably fought for the just causes of Jammun and Kashmir as well as Palestine in the United Nations Security Council.
Silajit Nov 11, 2012 03:05pm
Unfortunately, Jinnah equated the Congress party with Hinduism. His inability to agree or get along with Nehru and Gandhi unfortunately got in the way of rational decision making. The partition struggle began because Jinnah wanted one party (the Muslim League which ceased to exist within a few years of Partition) to be the sole representation for Muslim votes. Such a demand is regarded as communal anywhere will not pass scrutiny in ANY secular country. It is in Pakistan's interest to see Jinnah as secular to avoid the implosion of intolerance that is gripping Pakistan. While he may not have been a perfect Muslim himself, calling him secular is a bit of stretch.
AHA Nov 11, 2012 03:00pm
I disagree. Islam allows minorities to live in Muslim states, but only subject to some condition. The non-Muslims are never treated as equal citizens even under the best of Islamic principles.
Naeem Javid M. Hassani Nov 11, 2012 02:55pm
One of the finest article.
Zeeshan Hafeez Nov 11, 2012 02:48pm
Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah created Pakistan to save the Muslims of sub continent from same mind set likes of Rani Sharma.
AHA Nov 11, 2012 02:54pm
Labad Nov 11, 2012 02:47pm
If you want a secular country, start by removing your blasphemy laws. That itself will make a big difference.
Atif Nov 11, 2012 02:47pm
is cow slaughtering in India is a crime?!!! Now that is something new for me. is it true guys?
AHA Nov 11, 2012 02:35pm
AHA Nov 11, 2012 02:26pm
Well said. I dream of such a Pakistan.
Kumar Nov 11, 2012 12:37pm
Rightly said . I also mention Mr.jinnah was a clear Winner in his diplomatic and communal game and Mr.Gandhi was a clear failure . But Whole world and History will remember Gandhi for his sacrifice for the world and Mr.Jinnah will be remembered as a opportunist.satyam eb jayate......
Posti Nov 11, 2012 12:37pm
Jinnah wasn't a pre-schooler... He was a seasoned politician. He clearly knew what he was doing - Creating a rift between Muslims and Hindus which will not fill in a long time to come. I see many issues plagued by the Indian sub-continent tracing back to 'Two-nation theory' proposed by him.
Posti Nov 11, 2012 12:31pm
Don't bother.. Pakistanis are fed via their textbooks that Gandhi was communal and Jinnah was a massiah. I don't blame these innocent souls...
Gir na Nov 11, 2012 11:41am
How come Gandhi's language and tactics were like Hindus ? You could have given some instances where he insulted any religion or supported any other .After seeing the partion , he was so sorry that he himself asked for a separate land for Muslims and that was he was murdered by some mislead youths . He had followers like Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan and other Congress Muslim leaders . before coming to India , He worked for black people in africa and poor people of UK and thrown away from running train.The only tactics he followed his non-operation and even fasted for odd 20 days after mobs burnt British police men . The only language he talked is non-violence. I think you have been mislead by your historians or leaders.
saad aziz Nov 11, 2012 09:58am
I think Jinnah wanted pakistan to be secular with a muslim majority,just as the united india was which was secular but had more hindu majority,
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 09:36am
Dawn sets a new standard of open debate, by allowing your post. For which you both deserve kudos.
Shayan Nov 11, 2012 09:31am
"He" did not declare Pakistan to be an Islamic Republic ever. That was decided two years later with the Objectives Resolution in 1949 and implemented in1956 and then turned to "Republic of Pakistan" by Ayub Khan and then again converted to "Islamic Republic" by him and Bhutto, since everyone other than Jinnah in the parliament in 1947-1951 was a feudal with no vision, interested only in protecting their property rights, and they eventually cowed down to the "Deoband" lot which had now started owning the country as its "own". Yes there were exceptions in the parliament who spoke out against the OR, like the Hindu community in East Pakistan and Leftists like Mian Iftikharrudin from Lahore and female parliamentarians such as Begum Shah Nawaz from Lahore. As for Gandhi being an ideal "secularist", although I'm a huge fun, his language and tactics during the independence struggle were quintessentially Hindu, and he and congress called for the Partition of Bengal and Punjab, while Jinnah wanted to integrate Bengali Hindus and Punjabi Hindus and Sikhs into Pakistan. It was very hypocritical of him to ask for separate electorates for Hindus and Punjab and Bengal, and reject it for Muslims in the rest of India.
observer Nov 11, 2012 09:25am
While I personally agree with some points, I will have to do more research to be able to make overall conclusion that Jinnah was unclear in his mind about structure of the country he had founded. Remember that Jinnah was surrounded by people he did not trust very well. So, some of his actions may look arbitrary. But majority of Pakistan's problems came from 1958-1968 Ayub Khan rule. Jinnah had already told Pakistan's young army officers passing out after independence that their role was to safeguard the frontiers and not indulge in politics. Doesn't that indicate that he smelled some 'tendency' in armed forces? By and large, Jinnah was a democratic man. You can refer to a number of speeches he made before independence. Whatever Jinnah did in his short life after independence did not justify Ayub Khan (first non-British Commander in Chief) usurping power and keeping it with him for 10 years (during which mental separation of East and West Pakistan happened, only to be materialized in 1971). I cannot prove it as it is a matter of historical fact but despite linguistic issue, Pakistan would not have broken down if it was not for heavy handed rule of Ayub. Subsequently, ZAB did some good and bad things till Zia's martial law doomed almost everything for us. Only recently, some semblance of military receding from politics is being seen. I am sure, Pakistan have Turkey-like reforms and complete transfer of power to civilian politicians. Problems like sectarianism and terrorism (however unfortunate) are just a temporary waves and eventually sanity will prevail.
Iqbal Nov 11, 2012 08:43am
If Hinduism is inherently secular and India is a secular state, slaughter of cow would not be a crime (carrying a sentence of 7 years and a fine of 100,000 Rupees) in majority of the states in India. I find it highly hypocritical of Indian nationals or people of Indian origin living in Europe and USA, criticising Pakistan. They should clean up their house first.
Pradeep Nov 11, 2012 08:43am
Excellent insight into pages of history.... I should mention that yours is the longest comment that was ever posted on this website....
Ali S Nov 11, 2012 08:10am
To-the-point and insightful article by Mr Paracha but I think it's important to emphasize that we should decide Pakistan's future looking forwards instead of looking back to Jinnah at every step of our search for identity. What Pakistan needs right now could be different from what Jinnah (who, in my opinion, was a somewhat contradictory personality who shouldn't be above criticism) wanted back then and we should be doing what the needs of the moment call for.
Hindu Nov 11, 2012 08:04am
WOnderful assessment and knowledge of history. thanks for sharing all this with us. Your are very right in your assessments. What do you think about 1905 partition of Bengal? It is possible that the thought of Pakistan was actually subconsiously created at that time?
Guest63 Nov 11, 2012 08:08am
in my humble opinion , Jinah was Pure ( pre partitioned ) as every one of us 180 millions Pure ( post partitioned and post the thumbing of 1971 ) we have become ( add with a pinch of salt ) the Hypocrite . Every one used then and now the religion to divide then and even today . Ayub did it too perhaps you are forgetting the famous quote from him " he told the gathering of so called ulemas from various spiritual thinking , define what is a Muslim and what is the Sharia , I will put that into the Law just now ! offcourse not 2 of the so jayyad aalms could agree on this basic defination of a Muslim " so Ayub was not a secular but a cunning wizard who also used the religion to propagate and strengthen his own rule .........
Wasif Nov 11, 2012 07:47am
excellent insight
Wasif Nov 11, 2012 07:43am
of course it makes sense - it made sense because under Jinnah's state people were free to go to their temples without the fear of persecution, which in Jinnah's mind was the single biggest issue remaining unresolved with the united india model.
Ahmad Khanzada Nov 11, 2012 07:09am
Mr. Jinnah was a hypocrite. He divided India on the basis of religion and then before dying said that "you are free to go to your temples". How does that make sense? Besides, his legacy of Pakistan is a failure. To prove my argument I suggest you look at the murders of Shia, Ahmadi, Hindu, Chrisitans, Bohra, Sikhs, Sindhi and Baloch nationalists.
ss Nov 11, 2012 07:05am
Jinnah's misfortune was that he thought he will be able to create a secular country whose very foundation defied every logic of secularism (two nation theory). One statement (Aug 11, 1947) in a house of landlords and opportunist can not make a movement secular. I will like to ask you why entire leadership of Muslim League was unaware about the modern secular vision of Jinnah, why Objective Resolution was passed with overwhelming majority in the house immediately after death of Jinnah. I will hold Jinnah responsible for running a confused Pakistan movement wherein his followers had no clue about his own vision about polity of Pakistan. This is a myth that had Jinnah lived longer Pakistan would have been different. Lets take a look at the brief tenure of Jinnah as "Governor General of Pakistan" Jinnah lived for only one year after the birth of the nation, but in that time he set the standard of a top-down administration, adopting the style of Moghul emperors, not democratic leaders. To begin with, Jinnah decided not to become the country
observer Nov 11, 2012 06:46am
Excellent piece as usual. I so wish that Pakistanis stop confusing Jinnah to be a mullah. He was not. Simple.
shanawer hussain Nov 11, 2012 06:23am
The word secularism is the most miss-interpreted. According to Oxford dictionary, it means the attitude or way of life without religion or heavenly guidance. I think Mr jinnah , who was a practicing Muslim, never used this word in this sense . It is very strange that we are being confused that as Muslims what will be our politics, economy, laws, which were decided some 1400 years ago, according to Mr jinnah.
rahul Nov 11, 2012 06:23am
secularism is not in line islamic principles and hence you cannot blame muslims...those dreaming of secular pak must improve their knowledge of islam india this debate never arises coz hindu philosphohy states there can be multiple paths to god and hence inherently secular..
muhammad Nov 12, 2012 02:15pm
Then why Quaid-e-Azam was labelled as Kafir-e-Azam by the than clergy and still a considerable section of our clergy say that Quaid-e-Azam was an infidel
raghu Nov 11, 2012 05:52am
What pakistan is today is what jinna set the tone for though he may not have expeced this , just because it looks ugly with all inter muslim violence and terrorism one cannot absolve jinna from this mess he is culpable . pakistan will be like this since this is what subcontinental muslims wanted unknowingly. Inspite of indians being tamil. matai, bihari and what not its a secular country....and pakistan inspite of being entirely islamic is still not what it was.Some direct action is need within pakistan now.
suleman Nov 11, 2012 05:44am
Highly insightful article, especially for people like me who suffer from a lack of historical research..
Pradeep Nov 11, 2012 05:42am
History will, in decades to come, conclude that the tragedy of Pakistan was rushing through a process that should necessarily have been longer and guided by less extreme elements. The entire concept and raison d' etre for establishing Pakistan was (if one discounts far fetched and fond ideas) thought out and pushed through within two or three decades. Then instead of post 1947, an essential period of incubation with final interpretation of the 'correct' method by the Qaid e Azam, when conflicting ideas emerged, the wisdom of Jinnah was unfortunately unavailable barely a year into the existence of Pakistan. Much as the Islamic version of the Sub-continent's history would brusg aside, this was a land populated by non-Muslims for several millenia. The process of conversion and assimilation of the local population into Islam would take centuries, involving overwhelming local customs and beliefs, as it did. As a smaller, but no less vital a corollary, changes in deeply held beliefs of sects like Ismailis and Ahmadiyas (much less Shias and Sunnis) have yet to be addressed or reconciled. We will never know how the Qaid would have dealt with problems that face Pakistan today, though in all fairness most of them are creations of rulers who followed his demise. But what is a bitter truth is that many - if not most - of these problems would have not occurred in the first place had the Qaid's idea of a secular Islamic state, where "the state has no business in religion" been scruplously followed. The Hindus were, reviled as they are, essential to Pakistani society - a necessary 'inert' component in what emerged as an explosive mix of inconsistencies within Islam.
kamakazi Nov 11, 2012 05:39am
We as a nation even after 65 years remain in identity search. ? muslim first then pakistani or ? pakistani first then muslim, ? secular pakistani muslims or ? non-secular pakistani muslims. With every year passing buy the whole picture is getting more and more confused. Anyway, brilliant and thought provoking article.
Mobeen Shah Nov 11, 2012 05:15am
Maybe even Jinnah didn't know who Jinnah was. Nevertheless, a insightful article looking at how he was shaped and then reshaped by various regimes.
Gir na Nov 11, 2012 05:04am
@Paracha Saheb I wonder How long will you and your country men defend Mr.Jinnah . Jinnah craved out a state for only muslims , yet he wanted it to be a secular ,he wanted religion not to play a role in state business ....How is it possible ?A common logical person can say that if a group of people of same mindset or any other similarity flock together , they will be monolithic and won't allow other opinions to pop up .Secularism is a thing which you can't impose on society , for that either you have to educate your society or make your society diverse .But for some moment , If I believe you , then I come to conclusion that Mr.Jinnah didn't think about the future before doing this .
Yawar Nov 11, 2012 05:03am
Good to see that some politicians and intellectuals are once again trying to revive Jinnah as a progressive. He's been disfigured a bit too much in the last thirty years. A very interesting article again NFP.
Rani Sharma Nov 11, 2012 11:29am
Unwittingly Jinnah was the best friend of the non-Muslims of India. Prior to Partition Muslims were about 25% of all of India but their percentages varied by region. In what is now Bangladesh Muslims were 67%. In Punjab they were 55% but more on the west side than on the east side of Punjab. In Sindh Muslims were between 55% and 60%. It was in the rest of India other than Balochistan and NWFP that theye were a significant minority, hovering around 10%. That is why it was Muslim population of what is now India that was most passionate about Pakistan. But after Partition, as usual, Nehru proved to be the true friend of Muslims and the true enemy of non-Muslims. He signed a Pact with Liaqat Khan that forbade the automatic migration of Muslims to Pakistan and of Hindus and Sikhs to India. This was in 1951. But by then most Hindus and Sikhs had already fled to India and they were less than 1% in Pakistan. But most Muslims in India were in the interior and could not go to the land they had fought so hard for. had all Muslims left for east and West Pakistan India would be a truly secular and prosperous non-Muslim country. But now Muslims have grown from 9-10% after Partition to perhaps 20 and another Partition of India is inevitable.
babu Nov 11, 2012 11:20am
capt saab , with the present brand of Islam, true Muslim democratic state will be oxymoron.
babu Nov 11, 2012 11:17am
pls post my comments
Rani Sharma Nov 11, 2012 11:32am
Jinnah again and agin said that Muslims will live in Pakistan and non-Muslims in India. This was in response to questions as to how he would move all Muslims to Pakistan when there Muslims in every village. he may not have wanted to have a theocratic Pakistan because he himself did not practice Islam and had non-Islamic habits. But he did want all Muslims to move to Pakistan.
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 11:19am
He raised the bogey of 'Direct Action Day'; That was a purely communal call. That started the mayhem, a million people died, lost home and honour. He never said a word to condemn or regret 'direct action day'.
Capt C M Khan Nov 11, 2012 12:30pm
Babu bhai any brand of islam that does not target the monorities, respects other humans and religions, excells in accademic education, brings economic oportuniteis for it's citizens would be the ideal one today i guess.
waqar Nov 11, 2012 09:18am
Any references ? it would help me on passing on these things
Bashir Manzar Nov 11, 2012 10:02am
Excellent piece by NFP. Without going into the debate that whether Jinah really wanted a separate Muslim state or whether such a demand was a folly, fact of the matter is that the man was a secularist to the core. During his entire career, one can't cite even one example wherein he could be seen as something propagated by people like Zia. True, Pakistan need to look toward future but it can have a better future only if the real Jinah is introduced to Pakistanis. MQM deserves a pat!
indian Nov 11, 2012 10:11am
Well NFP, in the last few months I have read a few articles in Pakistani newspapers regarding whether Mr. Jinnah was secular or not. I don't know what he actually was, but as an outsider, one thing is clear to me.......the very reason that even after 65 years you guys are still debating on what he was means.....either Jinnah had a lot of contradicting beliefs in his mind and he himself did not really understand the deep implication of what he was speaking( the various speeches and notes of him that different groups in Pakistan are referring to to define Jinnah) OR he was very smart and clearly understood the implications of what he was speaking and hence he played to the gallery by giving all kinds of speech to all kind of people so that everybody will see him according to his/her own belief system ( i.e secular/non secular/religious/non religious etc). I will not get into debate of defining secularism or whether Jinnah was secular or not. But i would point out two of his contradictory beliefs..... 1. Muslim minority can not stay in social harmony with Hindu majority in undivided India. But, 2. Hindu/Sikh/Christian minority will stay in social harmony with Muslim majority in Pakistan Are not the above two beliefs contradictory ?
Sameer Nov 11, 2012 11:25am
I think Jinnah saahab wanted a secular nation. PERIOD. I am with MQM on this.
Zaheer Nov 11, 2012 08:39am
A very interesting observation by NFP at the end. I too didn't realize what he pointed out: i.e. No mainstream party or government ever since the Ayub regime and the early years of the Z A Bhutto government described Jinnah as secular. Not until MQM did it many decades later.
Capt C M Khan Nov 11, 2012 08:30am
Mobeen Jinnah exactly knew what he wanted? He was a khoja shia and never wanted a Wahabee/deobandee islamic state where shias would be called non-muslims and killed day and night. Jinnah wanted a TRUE muslim democratic state where not only Shias lived freely but also other minority religions, the white portion in our flag was put for them.
Moon Nov 11, 2012 08:19am
My dear friend I'm totally disagree with your thoughts because These sectarian and extrajudicial killings have got nothing to do with Mr Jinnah, you might have known that Mr Jinnah was passed away in very next year when Pakistan came in to being, so it was our duty to fulfil his dream of literate and moderate Pakistan, but unfortunately we fail to do this and now we are blaming him for everything, isn't it called hypocracy?
observer Nov 11, 2012 09:07am
and the cunning of them all (Zia ul Haq) took this further by patronizing armed extremist organizations.
Cynical Nov 11, 2012 09:12am
You mean to say under united India (under the British) people were not free to go to their mosques, temples, churches etc. And secondly, in present day India (with lesser number of Muslims than that was in British India) people are not free to go to their mosques, temples, churches etc. He was wrong on the first count and on the second, history proved him wrong.
Aamir Nov 11, 2012 09:11am
A good article
Pakistan Nov 11, 2012 12:22pm
Is Pakistan Progressive,Secular,open Vs Regressive,Conservative,closed society? The Famous speech gives you the answer. Transition and transformation of Jinnah(Secular/Liberal/Progressive,open) Pakistan to Taliban(Fundamental/Radical/Extremist/Terrorist/Militant/Sectarian/castist/creedist/closed) Pakistan took place after Jinnah's period. Let get into and understand Jinnah and his vision of Pakistan just few days before independence. The Famous speech on August 11, 1947 address of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, to the members of the Pakistan Constituent Assembly, to the status of a national covenant,Is as follows.
Posti Nov 11, 2012 12:21pm
Biggest irony of the whole situation is that Jinnah feared for Muslim minority in a Hindu majority India but look at what happened to minorities in a 'Muslim majority' Pakistan. Every day Pakistanis are discovering new minorities in their country to persecute. Truth and Right will always prevail and people like Jinnah will damned by history for their short-sightedness and causing destruction in order to serve their vested interests. ....Satyamev Jayate...
islam_means_peace Nov 11, 2012 06:49pm
well, what your tendencies are that doesn't matter much, what matters is, what Allah wants and he clearly says that muslims should join hands with muslims.
Aquarian Truths Nov 11, 2012 07:04pm
Mr. Hindu, get your facts right, culturally Burma (Brahmadesh of ancient times) has shared same ideology with today's India, their oriental looks doesn't differentiate us from them, we are one in flesh and blood, just like Sri Lankans, Bangladeshis, Pakistanis, Nepalis.
cybage Nov 11, 2012 08:54am
See...I also don't agree with those who says Britain educated Jinnah wasn't secular . But He decision was wrong . He couldn't see the implications of his decision.He put a Muslim majority in a place, created it for Muslims in the name of Islam(Islamic republic) following a violent path and expected his country men to behave with others in a secular manner .So I would say he couldn't think like a visionary at that moment .When Gandhi had started non-cooperation with British with few of his friends , a Muslim asked him How can you fight with mighty British with handful people.Gandhi replied if Mohammad could defend Kaaba with only 26 soldiers , then Why can't I ? Visionaries live in this way , but I reject those who say Jinnah wasn't secular.
muhammad issa Nov 11, 2012 01:19pm
i love islam before i love pakistan,islam is not pakistan and pakistan is not islam. pakistan is not only for muslims it is equally for other religious peoples as they are also national .we are still unable to choose islam for our personal life at individual level,whereas we are talking islamisation at national level ridiculous because we caught in propogandas. every pakistani can lead the nation collectively if one faithfully desire so.look at the police ,the health departments,the revenue departments,the the railways, the education depat. especially and the govt at general. they have no ethics, no morality no collective benefit, no gud real people, it means we are proving as selfish, less educated, less responsible and less national. no one is working for the natonal unity, for ethinc tolrence, for national interest, every socalled intellectuals are just critising the founder, the govt. the islamic values, the religion but alas< no one thinking positively . pakistan has been created: its over now. we now have a country/ please love her in letter and spirit ,it is non of our business to decide that wether it was secular or non secular. mr JInnah was intelligent and good person, its all about. Now the Question is with pakistanis the living ones not with the freedom would be very applauded if we, the pakis try to work effeciently in individual capacity than criticizing the old versions. Islam is a way of life for muslims to succeced in their earthly matters as wel as unearthly life.we can implement the most worthwhile philosophy of islam in every walk of life at natonal level ,if possible otherwise practise it at personal level
muhammad Nov 12, 2012 02:21pm
I am really amazed by the illiterate literates who are still living in utopia which Islam you are talking about and please also let us know that which interpretation of Quran and Sunnah is acceptable to all in Pakistan
Blue in the face Nov 11, 2012 12:54pm
Never has a speech without any action has been analysed more may be Abraham Lincoln speech should be a guide. Mr. Lincoln are emancipation but personally wanted all black slaves to go back to Africa. It seems Pakistanis don't know why Pakistan was created. It was created because Britain wanted a buffer state between Iran and India so India couldn't get to Iran's Oil. It is a true shame that after 65 years you are still trying to imagine like the American conservatives do to the founding fathers of America on issue like "Right to bear Arms", "Separation of Religion and State, etc.
Rome Nov 11, 2012 12:44pm
How does it matter what Jinnah wanted? What do you Pakistanis want? To me, blindly following Jinnah's 1947 vision whatever it is is as rigid as blindly following 7th century Islamic laws. Things change and societies must adapt.