Jinnah’s Pakistan, hijacked by clerics

Published: September 19, 2011
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Jinnah founded Pakistan with the dream of it being a secular state where people could live as free citizens.However, today, Pakistan finds it hard to uphold the very ideals it was founded upon

With the partition of the Indian subcontinent, Pakistan came into existence on August 14, 1947. The valiant and astute Muhammad Ali Jinnah led the minority Muslim community of united India to a separate homeland to fulfill the demand for freedom of religion, profession, and speech.

Jinnah was an outstanding lawyer who had studied law in London. He had a modern outlook on the world and was strongly secular. Part of the oath under which he took office reads:

“No subject … in Pakistan shall, on grounds only of religion, place of birth, descent, color or any of them be ineligible for office.”

He was absolutely clear that the new state he was founding would accommodate people of all faiths and descent without any prejudice. To assert this point, he appointed a non-Muslim as his first law minister. The Muslims in his cabinet consisted of Sunni, Shia, and Ahmadis alike. He believed that Islam endorsed a secular democracy and the two were perfectly compatible.

“The great majority of us are Muslims. Consequently, we have a special and a very deep sense of unity. But make no mistake: Pakistan is not a theocracy or anything like it” he said in an address in 1948.

He believed in a Pakistan wherein the mosque would be separate from the state.

“You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place of worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the State” he said.

In the struggle for Pakistan, Jinnah was not faced with the Indian Congress and the British alone. He also had to endure intense animosity from hard-line Muslim clerics and counter their vile propaganda. He was accused, by the ultra right-wing, of blasphemy, and they considered him a great heretic for his secular ideology.

Prominent clerics like Maulana Maududi urged common Muslims not to side with Jinnah. Maududi wrote:

“It is forbidden to vote for [Jinnah’s] Muslim League.”

Despite this, the resolute Jinnah was successful in garnering support from the masses in most Muslim-majority areas.

Today, the nation finds it hard to uphold the very ideals it was founded upon. As it passes through dangerously volatile times, it has forsaken its founding principles of freedom and secularism.

But how and why did Pakistan turn against itself?

Even though he tried his best to steer it toward a secular democracy, Jinnah did not live long enough to see it become one. Over the coming years, Pakistan took a very troubling turn. In a matter of nine years, it became an “Islamic Republic,” and in a little over two decades, it had essentially become a theocracy.

The same extremist clerics who had opposed Jinnah and his struggle for Pakistan gradually claimed ownership of the State. They formed political groups that used religion to amass public support. Their demonstrations of street power, frequently violent, meant that sectarian hatred and intolerance was the order of the day.

Even governments avoided a clash with the radical right and became increasingly wary of arousing any negative religious sentiment and consequently losing popular vote. This only furthered the extremist cause, and in time, the original path Pakistan started on was completely forsaken. Pakistan, it is now said, was formed for the Muslims and is meant to become an Islamic theocracy where the Shariah, as interpreted by the hard-liners, is to be the ultimate law.

One tragedy after another, Jinnah’s Pakistan was dealt with massive blows. His Pakistan was no more his; it had been hijacked by forces of extremism and intolerance.

Non-Muslims could not hold the highest office in any of the core institutions anymore.

In 1953, there were widespread riots against the Ahmadi Muslims, a sect that extremists considered heretics.

The harassment of Shia Muslims and other minority groups also increased and went largely unchecked.

In 1974, the government yielded to intense pressure and declared the Ahmadiyya sect non-Muslim. 

Tout de suite, the State had taken authority to decide its people’s religion, and the two were no longer separate.

General Zia ul Haq took over the country and became its third military president in 1977. To legitimize his dictatorship, he sought to please the right-wing and set to Islamize Pakistan. Amongst other things, he introduced the controversial blasphemy laws that stated death as the punishment for any derogatory remark against the Quran, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and other Islamic holy personages.

For Ahmadis, Zia also promulgated an ordinance in 1984 that criminalized the practice of their faith. Zia’s rule was the toughest for citizens who did not adhere to what had now become the state-backed perversion of Islam. Jinnah’s secular Pakistan had drifted into the hands of his enemies.

Jinnah had warned of this in his August 11th, 1947 address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan. He said:

 “As you know, history shows that in England, conditions, some time ago, were much worse than those prevailing in India today. The Roman Catholics and the Protestants persecuted each other. Even now there are some States in existence where there are discriminations made and bars imposed against a particular class. Thank God, we are not starting in those days.” He continued: “Today, you might say with justice that Roman Catholics and Protestants do not exist; what exists now is that every man is a citizen, an equal citizen of Great Britain and they are all members of the nation.”

In the same address, he said:

 “My guiding principle will be justice and complete impartiality, and I am sure that with your support and cooperation, I can look forward to Pakistan becoming one of the greatest nations of the world.”

Jinnah knew that a secular form of government could bridge differences and bring together people of all faiths and backgrounds to build a strong Pakistan. Just as the Catholics had learned to live with the Protestants, he was optimistic that the Pakistan he was founding would be a successful nation, a beacon of tolerance and an example of unity in diversity. However, the men who opposed Jinnah’s ideals before partition stood in his way yet again.

Founded on freedom of religion and practice, Pakistan is one of the biggest violator of religious freedom today. For Pakistan to succeed, it will have to reverse the dangerous turn it took and get back on the path that Jinnah laid before it. The blasphemy laws must be amended, everyone must be equal citizen of the state, the anti-Ahmadi laws must be revisited and the state must remain separate from the mosque at every cost. Pakistan must educate itself and look for the unity that Jinnah so cherished in the diversity across the land.

In February 1948, Jinnah said in an address:

 “You have to stand guard over the development and maintenance of democracy, social justice and the equality of manhood in your own native soil. With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.”

Unfortunately, recent events have shown that Pakistan is still far away from taking that vital turn. The government has shown little resolve to go after the perpetrators of religious hate and violence and definitely no will to even trigger a dialogue on the controversial laws of the land. With Pakistan headed toward a steep decline, the solution lies in bold courage and reform. Jinnah’s Pakistanis will have to wake up sooner than later and reclaim the land from his opponents. Pakistanis must bring about a rebirth of Pakistan – Jinnah’s Pakistan.

This post was originally published here.

kashif.chaudhry

Kashif Chaudhry

A graduate of King Edward Medical University, Lahore and Mt Sinai University Hospital in New York, Kashif is currently completing his Cardiology fellowship in Boston, USA. He writes for various American newspapers and Pakistani publications and blogs at the Huffington Post. His interests include medicine, human rights and interfaith dialogue. He tweets @KashifMD (twitter.com/KashifMD)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Daggardalla

    Nice Article!
    No doubt Jinnah was a secular person & he wanted a secular Paistan.Recommend

  • Farrah Arif

    Criticizing and maligning clerks is in fashion these days… and for the right reasons… as they did not fulfil their duties that they wilfully accepted… However, Jinnah’s Pakistan and Jinnah’s people have always proved that they are progressive… They never elected so called ‘religious parties’ to represent them… (in most of the cases). They always trusted in the so called ‘progressive leaders’… But unfortunately, these so called liberals ditched them for their own interests and the majority is pushed to the wall… so stop whining about Jinnah’s Pakistan and raise your voice against the current corrupt political system… And injustice towards minorities is not because of Islamic Ideology but because of not adhering ‘Rule of Law’… and another reason is rogue polices… again to achieve vested interests by corrupt politicians…

    What is secularism? Again the most mistreated term by so called liberals of Pakistan… These people also love to stress upon ‘Democracy’… I thought democracy means that the policy decisions will be made according to the wishes of majority… If majority of Pakistan is Muslim… then what is the issue? Pakistan has to be a Muslim state… and people have to live their lives within the acceptable norms of their society… set by majority… So neither we accept Taliban’s version nor so called liberal version imported from the West….

    What liberals of Pakistan have to say about the current example of ‘Minarets in Switzerland’… the issue in the most cherished democracy… When the majority agreed that they didn’t want Muslims (who are in minority) to built minarets, government had to make the decision despite the fact that it was against the freedom of speech of minorities… so stop making fool out of Muslim Pakistanis… who are happened to be in majority… Recommend

  • Ahsan Iftikhar

    SaluteRecommend

  • Ali

    You are right.Recommend

  • hassan

    One more article on this Founding Father nonsense.

    Jinnah wanted a country for Muslims, by Muslims and of Muslims. His Aug 11 speech was just a politically correct speech. He did not mean it in his entire career. That is why all his colleagues recognized it as a necessary hypocrisy and promptly junked his ‘vision’.Recommend

  • Ali Tipu

    Its ironical how people do everything possible to make the world believe about what Jinnah wanted for Pakistan and NOT of what Jinnah asked from Pakistanis.After years of observing the supporters of both the ideologies closely, I have finally stopped listening to what distorted and sometimes pretty useless speeches these guys have to offer. So here is a thing. Instead of wasting time on proving this or that, proving whether Jinnah wanted Pakistan to be Islamic state or not, why not to highlight his other important messages. For example why not to highlight or talk about his enthusiasm, passion and devotion for work? Why not to talk about his famous quote of ‘Kaam, Kaam and Kaam’ and why not to follow this particular path and take our nation to the heights of glory through our dedication, devotion and love for the job we do.Why not to prove ourselves to be the best of the best in whatever the thing we do or the profession we are in. I can tell you the problem doesn’t lie in Pakistan being Islamic or not. The problem is we just want to talk,talk and talk and do nothing, do absolutely nothing ! If this unfortunate country is till fighting over it being Islamic or not, it will continue fighting over it even in the next century with ‘0’ result in the end. I am sure Jinnah would have been more interested in what Emerson had to say instead of clarifying his position over religion.:

    ‘Men who for truth and honors sake
    Stand fast and suffer long
    Brave men, who work while others sleep
    who dare while others fly
    They build a nation’s pillars deep( and ofcourse not just talk)
    and lift them to the sky’Recommend

  • http://arabstudies.webs.com maawa

    Look at the words of Iqbal, the real think tank of Pakistan.
    “Happily there is a solution in the enforcement of the Law of Islam and its further development in the light of modern ideas. After a long and careful study of Islamic Law I have come to the conclusion that if this system of Law is properly understood and applied, at last the right to subsistence is secured to everybody. But the enforcement and development of the Shariat of Islam is impossible in this country without a free Muslim state or states.” Iqbal’s letter to Quaid, 28th May, 1937.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    Mr Jinnah was a good statesman very secular in dress in talk because after high school
    he did all his education in england and this is true too most of maulana hazraath also
    were against him even they called him kafir one point but why did he seprated country
    even though he was more indian nationalist than any congress leaders why he join muslim
    leaque and the area where he made pakistan punjab was unionist north west bacha khan
    was sarhadi gandhi only sindh and baluchistan fuedals were with jinnah what i think is it
    was a Allama Muhammad iqbal vission and he called Mr jinnah in one point he left the india and iqbal knew that if some one can get pakistan its gonna be only jinnah why getting land from hindus and english makaar was easy you need some body who understand there lang and culture. Jaye Jinnah Jaye Pakistan..Recommend

  • Jamshed

    another wannabe blogger … Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    I like it when abu bakr agha said pakistan with secular constitution islamic coutry
    what we need to do make pakistan wellfare state no body think that way only is jinnah
    was secular ok man iif he was its over now can we give something to poors of this country
    jobs, education, hospitals, homes, why these feudals and rich give back to country where
    they lived and make furtune why they dont wanna be like staneford and bill gates these
    peoples doing too much for society unlike our eastren afsos just afsos.Recommend

  • http://arabstudies.webs.com maawa

    Some people also try to create confusion by saying that Iqbal never presented the idea of Pakistan.
    “To my mind the new constitution with its ides of a single Indian federation is completely hopeless. A separate federation of Muslim provinces reformed on the lines I have suggested above, is the only course by
    which we can secure a peaceful India and save Muslims from the domination of non-Muslims. Why should not the Muslims of North-West India and Bengal be considered as nation entitled to Self-determination just as other nation as in India and outside India are?” Iqbal to Quaid, June 1937.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    I hope Express Tribune publishes this comment.

    I differ with the writer on a few points:

    1.In a theocratic state, a priestly class claiming to have divine authority runs the government. In Islam there is no theocracy, for the revelation has ended with the Holy Prophet pbuh.

    2.When the Quaid-e-Azam said that everyone is go to visit their places of worship, it did not mean that he was talking about a secular state. He only echoed the principle of the Noble Quran, which is let there be no compulsion in religion.

    3.Quaid-e-Azam did not make only 1 speech in his life. The 11th August speech, which is most used by liberals, and is taken out of context by them, does not mean he supported secularism. The following are some speeches he made which show his idea of Pakistan.

    Address to Civil, Naval, Military and Air Force Officers of Pakistan Government at Kahliqdina Hall, Karachi on October 11, 1947

    “It is my belief that our salvation lies in following the golden rules of conduct set for us by our great lawgiver, the Prophet of Islam. Let us lay the foundations of our democracy on the basis of true Islamic ideals and principles.”

    Speech at a Mammoth Rally at the University Stadium, Lahore on 30th October, 1947

    “All I require of you now is that everyone of us to whom this message reaches must vow to himself and be prepared to sacrifice his all, if necessary, in building up Pakistan as a bulwark of Islam and as one of the greatest nations whose ideal is peace within and peace.”

    Address to the officers and men of the 5th Heavy and 6th Light Regiments in Malir , on 21st February, 1948

    “You have fought many a battle on the far-flung battle fields of the globe to rid the world of the Fascist menace and make it safe for democracy. Now you have to stand guard over the development and maintenance of Islamic democracy, Islamic social justice and the equality of manhood in your own native soil. You will have to be alert, very alert, for the time for relaxation is not yet there. With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.”

    As you can all see, the Quaid-e-Azam never supported secularism, he openly talked about democracy within the framework of Islam, and where minorities are given their rights. Most of his speeches have an Islamic tone within them. I want to ask the liberals, give me one speech where he even used the word “secular”?

    And as far as clerics are concerned, if the Quaid had really been secular, he would have not got the support of prominent Ulema like Shabbir Ahmad Usmani (who led Quaid’s funeral prayer and hoisted the first flag of Pakistan), Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi, heads of Muslim shrines and personalities like Pir of Manki Sharif. Recommend

  • Ahmad

    @hassan:

    Jinnah wanted a country for Muslims, by Muslims and of Muslims. His Aug 11 speech was just a politically correct speech. He did not mean it in his entire career. That is why all his colleagues recognized it as a necessary hypocrisy and promptly junked his ‘vision’.

    You could not be more wrong here. If you properly read Jinnah’s whole history (Stanley Wolpert would be a good start) you will realize there’s a duality about Jinnah. Up until 1940, he never said anything about religion at all. In fact, bringing religion in to politics is why he criticized Gandhi repeatedly. When questioned about Gandhi in 1920 regarding the non-cooperation movement, Jinnah had this to say:

    “I will have nothing to do with this pseudo-religious approach to politics. I part company with the Congress and Gandhi. I do not believe in working up mob hysteria. Politics is a gentleman’s game.”

    (Source: In search of Saladin, Page 62)

    But when he realized that he too smart for his own good, and that ordinary people would never understand what he was trying to achieve, he appealed for the lowest denominator, religion. From 1940-47, religion figures prominently in his speeches, although always in a very abstract sense. As soon as he had achieved his goal, independence, the very first speech he made was that 11th August one, the one you so casually dismiss as political correctness.
    And by the way, people keep highlighting the “You are free to go to…” and the “Religion has nothing to do with the state” part, but it is equally important to highlight one more thing:

    “Now I think we should keep that in front of us as our ideal and you will find that in course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, BECAUSE THAT IS THE PERSONAL FAITH OF EACH INDIVIDUAL, but in the political sense as citizens of the State.”

    And this, which alot of people miss out because they only mention the few fashionable lines that suits their purpose:

    “The Roman Catholics and the Protestants persecuted each other. Even now there are some States in existence where there are discriminations made and bars imposed against a particular class. Thank God, we are not starting in those days.”

    If you still don’t get it, catholics and protestants were persecuted where they were in a minority because religious law prevailed. This is especially relevant because Jinnah himself was a Khoja, a minority within a minority.

    Forget his words for a minute, and look at his actions. Here’s what he DIDN’T do:
    1) Name the country Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
    2) Ban alcohol or gambling.
    3) Pass the objectives resolution.

    Do you get it yet? The mullah-military complex started very early on. In fact, right after Jinnah passed away. Which is the only reason the objectives resolution even exists. It should be repealed as soon as possible.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    @ Abdul Rehman Gilani
    Like allways man god bless u.Recommend

  • Amtul Aala

    “The constitution of Pakistan has yet to be framed by the Pakistan Constituent Assembly. I do not know what the ultimate shape of this constitution is going to be, but I am sure that it will be of a democratic type, embodying the essential principle of Islam. Today, they are as applicable in actual life as they were 1,300 years ago. Islam and its idealism have taught us democracy. It has taught equality of man, justice and fairplay to everybody. We are the inheritors of these glorious traditions and are fully alive to our responsibilities and obligations as framers of the future constitution of Pakistan. In any case Pakistan is not going to be a theocratic State to be ruled by priests with a divine mission. We have many non-Muslims — Hindus, Christians, and Parsis — but they are all Pakistanis. They will enjoy the same rights and privileges as any other citizens and will play their rightful part in the affairs of Pakistan.” — Broadcast talk to the people of the United States of America on Pakistan recorded February, 1948.

    Jinnah understood the true ideals of the Quran were equality of man, justice and fairplay to everybody and he stated that it wouldnt be theocratic! That says it all, good piece!Recommend

  • Waseem

    Greate article,
    Thank for pointing out and educating the people of Pakistan, as we can see there are still some people commenting against the secular Pakistan, or should i say (Non terrorizing Pakistan, or non hypocraite Pakistan) but there are always few bad apples in the bucket.
    Thanks again for a greate peice of writing there. Recommend

  • M Ali Khan

    Not just mullahs, we also have that Laal Topiwala Baloongra claiming the same nonsense about Jinnah as the mullahs of today!Recommend

  • http://lonepkliberal.wordpress.com LoneLiberal PK

    Well said.
    Pakistan was made for Muslims, but not ONLY for Muslims. Non-Muslims are just as Pakistani as the rest of us, and they do not have to bow their heads, seal their lips, and silently accept the punishment for being born in a minority group.

    Secularism will allow Muslims as well as non-Muslims to practice their religion freely. Excuse me if I fail to see anything horribly wrong with that.Recommend

  • Sana

    @Farrah Arif:
    I liked your comment more than the actual article.Recommend

  • woohoo

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    Let us lay the foundations of our
    democracy on the basis of true Islamic
    ideals and principles

    Akin to saying, “let us make oil…..therefore, here’s some water”Recommend

  • Bigboy

    Those who claim Jinnah wanted a ‘secular’ state have only one speech to quote. He was the leader of the ‘Muslim’ League, not the leader of a ‘Secular’ League or a ‘Minorities’ League. So Pakistan was and is of, for and by Islam. Nowhere in his speeches, writings has he used the word ‘secular’.Recommend

  • Salman

    People lile the weirder beleive the world is bipolar, you are either secular by US defination or a Taluban illetrate Mullah. No ground for middle class
    If you want to analysis Jinnah u need to look at his personal life as well not just his speeches. Jinnah was so liberal that when his daughter told him she want to marry a Parsi, he disowned her. Please open your eyes and read Jinnahs final will. You will see he did not even leave a penny for his daughter and left money for Islamic schools.
    Let’s go back and look at young Jinnah who fell in love with a young Parsi girl and married her after she ran away from her house. But Jinnah married Rutti when she converted to Islam and changed her name to Ayesha. Recommend

  • nayla

    @Farrah Arif:
    Very well said Farrah…Recommend

  • Najaf Afghan

    Very well written, this is actual Pakistan Studies!!Recommend

  • Parvez

    Very well thought out and nicely written. Jinnah’s Pakistan is as good as dead. The religious hard liners are systematically usurping state organs. You have called for a reversal of this process which seeing our leadership options, is highly improbable. It will take its natural course and implode, then may be, a sensible direction will emerge.Recommend

  • faraz

    If he wanted to enforce religious laws, then why did he appoint a Hindu as law minister? His eating and drinking habits had nothing Islamic about it. His foreign minister was Ahmadi. He himself didnt follow the sect of the majority. He even accepted the idea of autonomy inside United India under the Cabinet Mission Plan 1946, and thus negated the two nation theory.Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    He show us our promissed land may god bless Muhammad Ali Jinnah.Recommend

  • http://facebook.com/arieskhan Nouman Khan

    Heyi you ignorant, stop maligning my true Jinnah. Please read him hereRecommend

  • Doctor

    Let’s be honest, the Jinnah we know also partied, drank, and didn’t really want to live in Pakistan. Many of the original Indian Muslims who pushed for Pakistan, didn’t emigrate. Many of those that did, the Muhajirs, are treated awfully and subject to persecution in the city they made: Karachi.

    Where does this leave us? Who cares what Jinnnah wanted?

    How about where does Pakistan want to go today? Does Pakistan want to be the butt of the world’s jokes as it is today and a basketcase of a country with a crumbling economy, awful infrastructure, medieval education system, and have no peace or safety for its citizens? Or does Pakistan want to be like Turkey or Malaysia or even dare I say our neighbor India?

    Right now, most Pakistanis don’t seem to care enough to get us in the right direction. Even as many commenters above point out, they would rather live in an ultra-religious society that is as sad and dangerous of Pakistan than live in a secular, peaceful Pakistan.

    People get the government they deserve. Recommend

  • Naveed Salman

    The concept of Islamic Republic of Pakistan is flawed because of several reasons
    An Islamic State (or any other religious State) makes no sense because it requires the head of State to be a Muslim, a requirement that is absurd for two reasons.
    Firstly, we need the best person for the job and the only condition needed along is that he or she is should be sincere and patriotic. His religious beliefs have nothing to do with his leadership qualities. When one is ill, he or she visits the best doctor to get treated, irrespective of his faith.
    Secondly, religion is inside one’s head and no one else knows what is inside the person’s head. I am an atheist but on official documents I am still a Muslim (by virtue of birth) and hence eligible for all the privileges that a Muslim of Pakistan is eligible for. Those who declare openly they that are non-Muslims get discriminated on the basis of their faith, while closeted atheists like me enjoy full privilege simply because Pakistani State think we are Muslims!!

    Jinnah was a secular Muslim with rudimentary knowledge of Islam, who thought Islam is a secular religion. We can accept an Islamic State that is in accordance with Jinnah’s interpretation of Islam, but will it be acceptable to Muslim of Pakistan? No! While they always say that Jinnah wanted an Islamic State for Muslims of India but they will never ever agree on having a State is so liberal and secular that Jinnah wanted. The Sharia based Islamic State is not acceptable to us, because it is discriminatory and secondly we believe it is incompatible with modern World. (Leaving aside the fact those Islamic clerics will fight for implementation of their own version of Sharia).
    An overwhelming Muslim majority nation like Pakistan would mostly makes laws that are in conformance of Islam. So what is the need of Objective Resolution to completely block any legislation that doesn’t conform to Islam? Why not allow non-Muslims of Pakistan a chance to democratically enact laws that they want. Being a small minority they will always lose in their quest, unless majority themselves opt to support them.

    Jinnah was a human and was fallible. Despite extreme reverence we have for him, we should not blindly follow his ideals if we find that they flawed. The kind of Pakistan Jinnah envisioned is not as important as his dream to see Pakistan as one of the Greatest Nation of the World. So for me whether he wanted an Islamic State or a Secular State is immaterial, what is important is how to achieve his dream of a tolerant , progressive and pluralistic Pakistan, and in my opinion only a secular Pakistan can achieve it.
    Lastly many people say Pakistan was created as a nation for Muslims as they couldn’t live with Hindu majority India. This is a flawed argument, because if it is true, then it implies that Islam is a very segregating religion that simply can’t accommodate itself with people of other religion.
    We must not forget that the failure of ABC plan of 1946 paved the way for creation of Pakistan. Had that plan succeeded there would have been no Pakistan. Pakistan was created to safeguard the rights of Muslims of Subcontinent, and not as a nation where Muslims would subjugate its minority, in the same way they though Hindu majority India would do to them.Recommend

  • Adil

    If one needs to understand what sort of Islam Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah wanted to implement in Pakistan,then he must read books and journals written by Allama Ghulam Ahmed Pervaiz of Tolu-e-Islam.

    Pervaiz was a prominent Islamic scholar. He urged the Muslims to ponder deeply over the Message of the Quran. He considered Islam a din (way of life), a form of government, a system of government like democracy, autocracy, or socialism. He proclaimed that according to Islam all authority rests with “the law of God” as given in the Quran, whereby food and wealth are to be distributed equally to everybody. He preached that Islam was not a typical religion of rituals and superstitious beliefs but was a challenge to the very institution of organized religion.

    Pervaiz condemned the Mullahs for “always serving as agents of the rich people” and being “promoters of uncontrolled Capitalism.” In 1951, Parvez criticized Jamaat-e-Islami through several articles in Tolu-e-Islam. “The mullahs have hijacked Islam,” he said.
    After the independence of Pakistan in 1947, he worked in the Central Government and was also a counselor to Jinnah; but took early retirement as assistant secretary in 1955 to focus more on the religious work.

    I would call Ghulam Ahmed Pervaiz an unsung hero of our history.Recommend

  • S.

    Jinnah belonged to a minority sect within Islam. One of the most cherished ideals of this particular Islamic sect is ‘pluralism’. Pluralism demands acceptance and co-existence from followers of different religions in a peaceful way. There is no way Jinnah would have ever wanted to make Pakistan a “religious state” because he knew very well the results were going to be devastating. Recommend

  • Born Again Pakistani

    Jinnah was an articulate lawyer but very dubious in explaining what he wanted. He spoke the language of who was in front and hence everyone quotes him to make their point. He created a messed up ideology which has destroyed the nation.
    We should stop romanticizing with what he said and look at what his action actually have led to. In the current pile of poop that we sit in there is no room for romantic notions and we need to dissect every ideology and chart our courseRecommend

  • http://www.salmanzq.com salman qureshi

    I would love it if all Pakistanis would just keep their religion in thier homes to themselves. Don’t tell me or force me what to do – you have no right! I hope to see Pakistan become secular so that the average person can lead a good life in my country. So sick of these mullahs and overly religious ‘we’re too good for the world’ people!Recommend

  • Karachite

    @hassan:
    You seem very confused with no eye on history. Recommend

  • Karachite

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    What a cliched response. Islamic ideals and a country governed through sharia is entirely different, You need to learn to differentiate. What do you think secularism means ?? Can you please look that up before coming up with a typical right wing conservative response.Recommend

  • Awais Khan

    The radicals have taken over the secular ideology of Jinnah and it is our duty to revive and protect it.Recommend

  • Farrukh

    what a beautiful ,well written and clear article.I want to send this article to every mullah in this very very nd very islamo republic.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Ahmad:

    Quaid-e-Azam was a man who believed in Islamic democracy, a state governed by the principles of Islam, which I have pointed out in my comment through his various speeches. Fact is that the Quaid did not enforce his own vision, but allowed the Constituent Assembly to frame a constitution, so claiming that because Quaid did not ban alcohol, call Pakistan an Islamic republic or pass the Objectives Resolution(which the Quaid’s right hand man passed) shows he was secular is a fallacy.

    @Ali Tanoli:

    Your welcome. Lets just hope that liberals realize the mistake they are doing in following a perverse ideology. Islam is the solution.

    @Karachite:

    Dear fact is liberals dont know what is a state that is run by TRUE Islamic principles, as the Quaid said, and equate it to theocracy.Recommend

  • Asif

    Jinnah was a brilliant man and I find it insulting that we try to allude him with the bigotry of the apartheid that exists in Pakistan today. I find it even more ridiculous that this jaahil tareen qom finds tolerant secularism mutually exclusive with Islam. A country made for Muslims apparently HAS to be treated like their inheritance. Always blindly parroting the same agendas of the clergy that strongly opposed the creation of Pakistan to begin with. God forbid true democracy and egalitarianism. Na pak liberal bull hai jee.

    Good article, I always found it endearing that Jinnah’s daughter was known to have nicknamed her father ‘the gray wolf’….

    The gray wolf was Mustaka Kemal Attaturk. Recommend

  • umar

    I second on Gillan’s comment
    Where Quaid said “Let us lay the foundations of our democracy on the basis of true Islamic ideals and principles” was that a lie to you?Recommend

  • Harsh Srivastava

    “Jinnah was not faced with the Indian Congress and the British alone”

    When did he ever face British as a ML leader? Britishers and Jinnah worked in collaboration ever since Jinnah joined ML.

    Not a single ML leader ever went to jail in freedom struggle.Recommend

  • Harsh Srivastava

    How is Jinnah secular “personally” when he gets a non-muslim girl convert to Islam before marrying? How is Jinnah personally secular when he disowns his daughter when she marries a non-muslim?Recommend

  • Ali Tanoli

    The question is pakistan we got it how why who is not a matter now can we do something
    good for its peoples can we make these khaki man and fuedals plus industrialist under control and under law can some one come out like jashuah who can lead us to reach
    promissed land.Recommend

  • Ahmad

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    When the Quaid-e-Azam said that everyone is go to visit their places of worship, it did not mean that he was talking about a secular state. He only echoed the principle of the Noble Quran, which is let there be no compulsion in religion.

    He indicated his secularist vision when he said that in time, hindus will cease to be hindus and muslims will cease to be muslims. He indicated his non-religious approach to state building when he told Mountbatten that

    “Your Excellency doesn’t understand. A man is a Punjabi or Bengali before he is a Hindu or a Muslim. They share a common history, language, culture and economy. You must not divide them. You will cause endless bloodshed and trouble.”

    He indicated his secular vision when he said all the things I mention in my previous comment.

    Fact is that the Quaid did not enforce his own vision, but allowed the Constituent Assembly to frame a constitution.

    But he did give it direction no? And as I have already said that direction was somewhat confusing, but one logical way to explain it would be that he used religion to get a state that he knew he couldn’t achieve by any other means. This is what M.J.Akbar says in Tinderbox:

    ‎”Jinnah clearly believed that he could exploit a slogan he had once warned against, ‘Islam in danger’, and then dispatch it to the rubbish bin reserved for the past when it had outlived its utility.”

    And the constituent assembly that was left to frame the constitution is now the national assembly, elected by the people, who have consistently rejected the religious right. The religious parties got 2% of the vote in 2008. They did their best in Musharraf’s fixed election of 2002. Since you are so keen on the whole constituent assembly bit, hear the people’s message. They don’t want shariah law, which is why they have never elected the religious right to power, ever.
    Bhutto also came to power promising “Islamic Socialism” yet nobody calls him right of centre. Because its a useless slogan the politicians employ, to be forgotten when power is achieved. Or in the case of Jinnah, when Pakistan was achieved. There is no fallacy in my argument. You just need to read a bit on history(Murder of History, K.K.Aziz), and see how it has been systematically manipulated to suit mullahs and dictators both at the same time ironically, because the only ‘party’ in which the mullahs have been relevant is in dictatorships.That 11th August speech was expunged from the official record during Zia’s dictatorship. It officially did not exist for a decade. Why do you think that is? In any case, democracy has ALWAYS, WTHOUT FAIL, rejected theocracy or shariah law. Thats a fact, not my opinion.Recommend

  • Cynical

    I guess, the search for ‘secular Jinnah’ will continue for another 64 years.
    As an astute lawyear he has left enough arguments for both his supporters and detractors to keep this debate on and on. Recommend

  • Abhi

    @Cynical
    There is no search, it is only few people who do not want to accept truth. He was not a religious man but used religion to achieve his goal.Recommend

  • TightDhotiWithNoBrain

    This article is based on incomplete research and therefore is a useless article.Recommend

  • http://asianoutlook.com shahid malik

    excellent article,well researched and thought out,
    Pakistan is a beautiful country and most people are peace loving people but mullahcracy has taken over even the courts are scared to make a decision unless extremism is put to rest nothing will improve in pakistan.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Ahmad:

    Please tell me the date in which Jinnah said those words to Mountbatten. And the source as well. And as far as K.K. Aziz is concerned, his book is regarding the incorrect things taught in history, which does not necessarily imply that Quaid-e-Azam wanted a secular state.

    Dear, what M.J. Akbar says is his own opinion, NOT a fact, the facts are the speeches which I have quoted,, and am quoting them again, which really show that Quaid-e-Azam wasnt a secular, and what his vision of Pakistan after its creation was, and which he said in open public.

    Address to Civil, Naval, Military and Air Force Officers of Pakistan Government at Kahliqdina Hall, Karachi on October 11, 1947
    “It is my belief that our salvation lies in following the golden rules of conduct set for us by our great lawgiver, the Prophet of Islam. Let us lay the foundations of our democracy on the basis of true Islamic ideals and principles.”

    Speech at a Mammoth Rally at the University Stadium, Lahore on 30th October, 1947
    “All I require of you now is that everyone of us to whom this message reaches must vow to himself and be prepared to sacrifice his all, if necessary, in building up Pakistan as a bulwark of Islam and as one of the greatest nations whose ideal is peace within and peace.”

    Address to the officers and men of the 5th Heavy and 6th Light Regiments in Malir , on 21st February, 1948
    “You have fought many a battle on the far-flung battle fields of the globe to rid the world of the Fascist menace and make it safe for democracy. Now you have to stand guard over the development and maintenance of Islamic democracy, Islamic social justice and the equality of manhood in your own native soil. You will have to be alert, very alert, for the time for relaxation is not yet there. With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.”

    The Quaid’s vision was clear, though if the liberals twist it to further their own agenda, then its their wish.

    The 1973 constitution said that any law contradictory to Noble Quran or Sunnah wont be passed, and Pakistan was made an Islamic Republic. Ironically, when Ayub declared Pakistan a Republic only, it was due to tremendous public pressure that he took the words back.

    Likewise, wasn’t it the strong opposition by religious parties that forced Bhutto to promulgate ahmedis as non-Muslims, and declare Friday a holiday as well as take other steps towards Islamization? If the religious parties had no power, how could they force Bhutto to do such things! Recommend

  • Sohaib

    It is fashion now a days to spit on clerics, deny Ideology of Pakistan and Two nation theory. Now they are doing this in the name of Quaid-e-Azam that he wanted a secular Pakistan and he didn’t want religion to be involved in social and state affairs.
    These points have been well cleared by Farrah Arif and Abdul Rehman Gilani. Thanks to both of you to represent the other side here.

    There is a flood of seasonal bloggers from Elite educational institutions, who are just taking advantage of their linguistic skills in English. In one of my friend’s words: “A good command of written English and having a logical thinking style (I see Bertrand Russell coming handy in here), and shaboong you have the perfect recipe for getting attention from confused Pakistani youth”. I would add “picking any controversial topic” in the list.

    @writer:
    Can you refer with context where Maulana Moududi mentioned “It is forbidden to vote for [Jinnah’s] Muslim League.” ?Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Sohaib:

    Absolutely correct. Using ornate expressions does not prove you are a great intellectual, whose every word is correct.Recommend

  • Ahmad

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    And as far as K.K. Aziz is concerned, his book is regarding the incorrect things taught in history, which does not necessarily imply that Quaid-e-Azam wanted a secular state.

    One of those incorrect things was that Jinnah wanted an Islamic state. So of course this is relevant. And I would trust M.J Akbar far more than any pseudo-intellectuals that our side of the border has produced in great numbers. Unfortunately for you, the remaining sane ones all agree with me. And it is very interesting to note that you completely ignored my point about religious parties getting 2% of the vote in 2008. Why is that? Why is it that every time a relatively free and fair election has been held (1970 and 2008 come to mind) that religious parties have come up empty handed. It seems that, given this information, you can either have a non-Islamic democracy or a dictatorial theocracy (Like Zia). So which one is it? Are you going to listen to the voice of the people, or what ignorant maulvis tell you is the wish of God? Because, under current conditions, you cannot have an Islamic set up by democratic means.
    So, please enlighten me as to what Islamic democracy means here, since the people clearly don’t want it.

    The 1973 constitution said that any law contradictory to Noble Quran or Sunnah wont be passed, and Pakistan was made an Islamic Republic. Ironically, when Ayub declared Pakistan a Republic only, it was due to tremendous public pressure that he took the words back.

    Did Jinnah make the 1973 constitution? The only reason Bhutto reaffirmed the Islamic part was because he wanted the constitution passed by unanimous consent. And the maulvis refused to support the constitution without that. And Ayub was a dictator, who needed the religious right to perpetuate his own rule, so as much as he hated them, he had to appease them. I bring up this point in my earlier post. Its just another example of the military-mullah complex.

    Likewise, wasn’t it the strong opposition by religious parties that forced Bhutto to promulgate ahmedis as non-Muslims, and declare Friday a holiday as well as take other steps towards Islamization? If the religious parties had no power, how could they force Bhutto to do such things!

    Of course they have power, but their power is limited to the ignorant people on the street who always rally to the cause of “saving Islam” whatever that means. Look in the National Assembly or the provincial assemblies. How much representation do religious parties have in the houses of government? Almost zero. So they use their power on the street, power given to them by Pakistan’s military to reign in the civilian governments when not in power and to prop the army up when they do decide to rule directly.

    As for my source for my quote, it is the Jinnah Papers, the chapter on April 1947, when Jinnah met multiple times with Mountbatten to convince him to undo the eventual partition of Punjab and Bengal. Now you really can’t in your right mind dispute the Jinnah Papers.

    And see how i say Jinnah ‘indicated his secular’ vision while you say that he for sure ‘wanted’ Pakistan to be Islamic in nature. In fact, my very first post also said this when I talked about the duality of Jinnah. That, ultimately is the difference between you and me. I am at least willing to consider I may be wrong, you are not. And while, among liberals, I may be in a minority by keeping an open mind, you, by your myopic analysis and refusal to address my points, fit the mullah brigade stereotype perfectly.Recommend

  • Raja Islam

    @Farrah Arif:

    First of all it is not clerks but the word is cleric. If the majority of the population of Pakistan is of the Muslim faith, it does not necessarily mean that Pakistan should be governed by Shariah law. That is not democracy. This is like saying that the majority of the people in the USA are Christians so they should throw out the constitution and follow the Bible.

    Democracy means rule of the majority through their representatives, who in turn will legislate and create policies in accordance to the mandate given to them.

    No one is trying to make a fool out of Pakistanis, it is the Pakistanis who are making fools of themselves by not recognizing the evils within the society and playing a blame game. If you want progress stand up and speak against injustice and don’t blame others.Recommend

  • Sara Khan

    Its time that people start talking about Pakistan as a secular state! People should stop supporting any party that has ethnic leanings or sounds vaguely religious (basically every party in this country). The youth of Pakistan need to create new parties where every type of pakistani (Punjabi, Baluchi, Sikh, and Hindu etc) can join them. That way the focus can actually be reforming the country > socially, academically, sound economy policies…basically a secular Pakistan where everyone can live peacefully..U know why people from around the world (esp. Pakistanis) are after the american visa?! Because America offer freedom of expression, freedom of religion.. the religion and state are separate! No one forces you to except Christianity over there but here all people talk about all the time is islam, islam, islam..they think that God will run the country for them…FOOLS! GOD GAVE U BRAINS, USE THEM! After all, we have to live in this world too! Don’t prepare for afterlife before you prepare for this life. Recommend

  • Charagh

    If Jinnah wanted a secular state, why would he lead a movement for separate country out of combined India, when he was wise enough to foresee that whenever British leave India would become a true secular state (Like today every secular gives example of India as successful secular state and talk about erasing border line and mix of cultures)
    Further, religion has never been involved or had enough power for policy making on national and international level and deciding state affairs, then why would blame them for our current predicament? To blame them is just to find a logical sanctuary to satisfy our inner self for our incompetence, corruption, conspiracies etc. You are prioritizing secularism over Islam when you have not tried and implemented the later truly.
    We need to understand Islam first. I believe extremists on both sides (Secular & Fundamental) will never go through Quran & Hadith and try to understand logic and ‘Hikmat’ behind Islamic Laws. We never refer to original text for criticism. Our blaming and criticism is based on criticism by others. How dishonest it is!Recommend

  • Ali

    was’nt jinnah the first person who used religion for political gains read some real history dude.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Ahmad,

    Your comment is a typical reflection of the snobbish attitude “liberals” possess. So kindly don’t declare yourselves as the oasis of culture and intelligence, and all the majority disagreeing with you as fools and ignorant. Your comments are exuding nothing more than narcissist demeanour which I have noticed is an innate quality of the “liberals”!

    My point is simple, I have presented the speeches which are all after the creation of Pakistan, which point out his vision, there is nothing obscure in.them So whatever Jinnah said to Mountbatten was irrelevant as Pakistan had been created, and Jinnah had no choice but to accept it as truncated one.

    Jinnah did not make the 1973 constitution, but had clearly indicated in a speech that the Constituent Assembly will, and in the same speech said that it will embody the principles of Islam. So disowning the constitution doesn’t make your case any strong.

    I do not say Jinnah was a mullah, he himself said that he wasn’t, but claiming he was a secular, that is historically inaccurate. His public speeches themselves had a tone of Islam in them. If M.J. Akbar says anything, it is his opinion, and if you want you can accept it. But declaring that all other people disagreeing with him are pseudo-intellectuals is not an argument.

    Kindly tell me, if the opposition parties had actually succeeded in the 1977 elections instead of rigging by Bhutto, who would have won? Fact is, that Islamization is not dependent on Islamist Parties. Didn’t Benazir validate the Blasphemy Law? And didn’t Nawaz Sharif present a bill in 1999, which if passed, would have had Shariat laws implemented in Pakistan? So declaring people don’t want Islamic democracy is a contradiction!Recommend

  • Ahmad

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    You seem to be offended. I only made a judgement call from your own words. Now maybe if they had been different i would have come to a different conclusion. So, next time, maybe you should think about what you’re writing instead of taking undue offense at something that was a derivative of your own views.

    I like your response, this bit specifically:

    My point is simple, I have presented the speeches which are all after the creation of Pakistan, which point out his vision, there is nothing obscure in.them So whatever Jinnah said to Mountbatten was irrelevant as Pakistan had been created, and Jinnah had no choice but to accept it as truncated one.

    Now who will decide which bits of Jinnah’s views are relevant and which not? By the same logic I could selectively declare every speech where Jinnah mentioned Islam as irrelevant. Do you see where I’m going with this?

    Jinnah did not make the 1973 constitution, but had clearly indicated in a speech that the Constituent Assembly will, and in the same speech said that it will embody the principles of Islam. So disowning the constitution doesn’t make your case any strong.

    Now how is it that you have consistently ignored my point about this part? The 2008 elections gave 2% of the vote to Islamic parties. Parties whose manifesto includes trying to implement Sharia Law. Need I say more. And I never disowned the Constitution, I just gave you some reasons for certain clauses in it.

    But declaring that all other people disagreeing with him are pseudo-intellectuals is not an argument.

    Who is saying this(The Jinnah was a Islamist bit)? You? The majority of comments on this blog? Is this your great example to rival M.J.Akbar? Yourself?

    Kindly tell me, if the opposition parties had actually succeeded in the 1977 elections instead of rigging by Bhutto, who would have won?

    Bhutto would have won no question. Historical opinion is almost unanimous on this. But his party people got over-zealous. Just witness the support he had at his trial if you doubt this. There’s a reason people remember Bhutto and not Zia or Ayub.

    Didn’t Benazir validate the Blasphemy Law? And didn’t Nawaz Sharif present a bill in 1999, which if passed, would have had Shariat laws implemented in Pakistan? So declaring people don’t want Islamic democracy is a contradiction!

    Benazir was wrong to do that. My opinion, obviously, but she needed a coalition to keep herself in government, a coalition that would have broken had she not supported the law. And forget about what almost happened in 1999. Where does the National Assembly stand on this issue today? Its a moot question because you’re never going to answer it, because it doesn’t fit with your narrative. There is no contradiction here. Elections happen. New governments come into power, and the present one has no interest in implementing Sharia Law. Get the picture? Or did i offend you some more?Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Ahmad

    Your trying to show that the liberals, who are in paucity, are beings with superior intellect whilst all the rest who dont accept the liberals are ignorant. Its a comment which deeply offends any person and I dont understand how you reached that erroneous conclusion from my comment.

    Fact is, that Quaid-e-Azam had at least 14 times clarified after the creation of Pakistan, that the constitution of Pakistan, and the foundation of the structure of the state will be on Islamic principles, whilst also declaring that the people of Pakistan will decide what type of constitution they want. I have presented extracts of these speeches, which you havent cared to answer to, and are not denying! And the 1973 constitution embodied alot of these principles.

    But when the liberals are asked to prove that Quaid-e-Azam declared Pakistan a secular state, the only response is a twisted interpretation of the 11th August speech. Nothing more.

    Now, I want to present a point. Quaid-e-Azam was an advocate of Hindu-Muslim unity, and was also against separate electorates. But when he realized through his dealings with Congress, that Hindus and Muslims are 2 Separate Nations, and that separate electorates was a safeguard for the Muslims, then he supported them. Now tell me, which of the Quaid’s views are important and will get precedence? Obviously it does not take much comprehension that the latter are.

    Likewise, whatever the Quaid said to Mountbatten, became irrelevant after the creation of Pakistan, with the truncation of Punjab and Bengal. You dont have to need a higher intellect to comprehend this. So declaring who will declare what views of Jinnah are relevant or not is itself an extraneous argument.

    Whatever M.J. Akbar said is his own opinion, the facts I have presented when I quoted the speeches. If you treat his opinions as facts, its your wish to do so. But I reiterate, declaring people who dont reaffirm Akbar are pseudo-intellectuals, thats something anyone wont agree to.

    And regarding the 1977 elections, Bhutto would not have won a majority, the fact that the opposition was strong in itself that Bhutto had to rig, as well as torture his opponents is historical evidence that he wouldnt. Yes, he would have had influence, but no, he wouldn’t have won a majority. And when people remember Bhutto, they also remember him as a person who was also responsible for the break-up of Pakistan for his stubbornness. As well as destroying Pakistan’s educational system by nationalizing institutions. There are 2 sides of every coin.Recommend

  • Ahmad

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:

    Your trying to show that the liberals, who are in paucity, are beings with superior intellect whilst all the rest who dont accept the liberals are ignorant.

    Actually a conservative can be a liberal, but a liberal can’t be a conservative. The underlying value of liberalism is freedom of expression, NO MATTER WHAT THAT OPINION IS. Liberals can be pretty stubborn idiots as well, but at last checking they didn’t resort to violence to get their point of view across.

    I have presented extracts of these speeches, which you havent cared to answer to, and are not denying!

    Exactly. Not denying at all. Thank you so much for proving my point. And I did answer them. You just couldn’t be bothered to read my replies it seems.

    But when the liberals are asked to prove that Quaid-e-Azam declared Pakistan a secular state, the only response is a twisted interpretation of the 11th August speech. Nothing more.

    Go read the entire speech, because that one line, the religion has nothing to do with the state line, comes up REPEATEDLY in that speech, using different words. It is not being taken out of context. Your now, i want to present a point para is just useless rambling. A Muslims majority state does not equal an Islamic one. Surely you can appreciate the difference between the two?

    Whatever M.J. Akbar said is his own opinion, the facts I have presented when I quoted the speeches. If you treat his opinions as facts, its your wish to do so. But I reiterate, declaring people who dont reaffirm Akbar are pseudo-intellectuals, thats something anyone wont agree to.

    I never treated his opinion as fact; I merely asked you to present someone with credentials equal to M.J.Akbar who agrees with you. So far, you haven’t. Want to hear more names? Rasul Baksh Raees, Akbar Ahmad, Khaled Ahmad, Jaswant Singh, Abdul Kalam Azad, and I could go on and on with this. You, on the other hand, have exactly zero names. Nothing.

    And regarding the 1977 elections, Bhutto would not have won a majority,

    I never said he would have won a majority (though he may well have) just that he would have won the election.

    Oh, and your precious 2 nation theory died when Bangladesh became independent. They proved that something besides religion can form the identity of a majority muslim population. Their Supreme Court even passed a judgement last year that forbade any use of religion in politics. So the 2 nation theory? Dead and buried. Thats a fact, not an opinion.Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    Fact is this, that Rasul Bakhs Rais, or others can only give opinions, claiming Pakistan to be a secular state, though their arguments are all based on a twisted interpretation of the 11th August speech. Quoting opinions of M.J. Akbar doesn’t change facts, and the facts are posted in the speeches I have presented. Even if I did post the names of people agreeing with me, what would that prove? I dont understand what exactly do you want to achieve by me naming anyone! Its a useless question which has nothing to do with the Quaid’s vision!

    And by the way, I fail to understand, liberals only present one speech, didnt Quaid-e-Azam make many more speeches even after the creation of Pakistan? His vision was clear, but our liberal lobby tries in vain to make that obscure. And please, I tried as hard as I could but I couldn’t find anywhere in the 11th August speech where it was specifically and explicitly said that “religion will have nothing to do with the structure and functioning of the state“. Its amusing to see liberals place words in the Quaid’s mouth.

    And as far as Bangladesh is concerned, read history, Quaid-e-Azam had once opened the door for Bangladesh when he had agreed with the British to create an independent Bengal with Calcutta. The separation of Bengal (and its my opinion) was inevitable, but the real pain was that india conspired to do it.

    Regardless of that, fact is, that no matter how hard the liberals try, they cant remove the Two-Nation Theory from the history of Pakistan’s creation, and over here, people strongly advocate for it till today.

    And I wont comment on the SC of Bangladesh’s decision, its their wish how they want to rule the country.Recommend

  • maya khan

    Let us define what do we mean by a secular state. Would it not imply that the state wont interfere with the personal beliefs of the people; equal rights to people of all religions; equal oppertunities. . . . . What do we mean by Islamic state? Force people to practice Islam? I dont think so. So lets not get into the confusion of what certain terms mean. Do we not agree that Pakistan was made for the freedom of people. Freedom in progressing as a nation.
    For a moment ,even if we do not agree on what Jinnah wanted , we at least agree on what we want. Do we agree on progress and equal rights? Do we have any difference of opinion on that? The problem is that we as a people are one on this issue but the government is not and has not been. Lets hope for the best in the future. and Thanks Kashif.Recommend

  • http://nil Saifullah

    Pakistan is going to be Modern Islamic Democracy”-“It is my believe that our salvation lies in following the golden rules of conduct set for us by our great law giver, the Prophet of Islam. Let us lay the foundation of our democracy on the basis of truely Islamic ideals and principles”
    Quaid e AzamRecommend

  • http://nil Saifullah

    I have one underlying principle in mind, the principle of Muslim democracy. It is my belief that our salvation lies in following the golden rules of conduct set for us by our great law-giver, the Prophet of Islam. Let us lay the foundation of our democracy on the basis of truly Islamic ideals and principles. Our Almighty has taught us that ‘our decisions in the affairs of the State will be guided by discussions and consultations.’” (Sibi Darbar 1948)Recommend

  • http://nil Saifullah
  • Raja Islam

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:
    Based on your views, the concept of Pakistan failed when Bangladesh was created and the majority of the Pakistanis got independence from the minority.

    The PPP would have won hands down in 1977 without any rigging. All that the isolated case of rigging did was to inflate the gap between the winner and the loser. The threats that you are talking about only served to get individuals elected unopposed versus beating the opposition candidate.

    If the Jamatis think that they ever stood of chance of winning any national election then they are sadly mistaken.Recommend

  • Raja Islam

    @Abdul Rehman Gilani:
    Let us move away from speculating what Jinnah wanted or did not want. The gentleman is dead so let us let him rest in peace.

    The fact is that the version of Islam that the religious parties and the Taliban is one sided theocracy with a view of “either it is my way or you get killed”. That is something that is not Islamic or anything else. The other fact is that the religious parties never got any significant number of votes or seats in any election therefore, should be treated as irrelevant in terms of forming the government. Thirdly even though these parties have very little support, they have tremendous nuisance value and control a lot of armed thugs. That is why Bhutto gave in to their demands as a compromise for the sake of peace. He should have realized that there is no compromise with terrorists and criminals and they should be dealt with with a firm hand. Recommend

  • Abdul Rehman Gilani

    @Raja Islam:

    There is no need to be phobic of religion. And its not me who call the Quaid secular, its the liberals who have been making a pathetic attempt, and failed to do so, when they called the Quaid such a thing.

    I dont get your point, where did you get the idea from my comments? I only said that Quaid-e-Azam had acquiescence to the idea of an independent Bengal with Calcutta, but the suggestion was turned down. It has nothing to do with the Two-Nation Theory!

    And fact is that the ultra-liberals generalize their ideological opponents, the right wing, by declaring all of them as TTP. However, by choosing the TTP, a fringe element from amongst the right wing, the liberals have chosen the easiest ideological enemy. In fact, this choice seems quite deliberate. As the liberals want to show that the alternate to them is TTP, a black and white choice.

    So at the intellectual level there really isn’t any debate all. Because what the liberals want to do is to prove themselves right, which they arent by any means, and their paucity is further proof of it. Will the “liberals” engage in a sincere debate? Or will they opt for David Cameron’s “Muscular Liberalism”?

    And as far as Bhutto is concerned, rigging is the biggest proof of history that Bhutto knew where his totalitarian policies would lead to. Recommend

  • Trueman

    It is heartening to see sane voices with in Pakistan. The future of Pakistan lies in their hand depending on how far and how much sacrifice they are willing to pay to fight for the ideal they are preaching.I believe the author is very brave to put up such an article.

    A quick look at global political and economic system will tell you which system has offered better support of its citizen. Its definetly not military rule nor a theocratic society. The very term Islamic republic differentiates between Islam and people following other religion. No matter how strong the proponents of such rules may argue such systems can never give justice to the minority not they will be equal. The best they will be offered is asylum and nothing more. Look at Saudi Arabia which denies place of worship for other religion. How is that considered tolerant.

    No system is perfect, it is only comparative and looking around the world today, secular, democratic and tolerant societies thrive and survive. Other regimes have failed to protect itself and its citizen.

    Hopefully Pakistan will learn this lesson soon before it is too late.Recommend

  • 0m3r

    Do you think the change you are suggesting is even possible? Do you think the people who want a religious dictatorship even care what Jinnah envisioned? how can you change their minds with just words? I don’t understand the people who still believe that this country has a chance. btw its a nice article, I just think its a few decades too late.Recommend