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Creation and aim of Pakistan- Two main Views

By Anwar Jalal • Aug 14th, 2009 • Category: Politics, Worth A Second Look • 7 Comments

The causes  of  the  division of India and  creation of Pakistan  have been debated by  the  intellectuals and political thinkers  since  the  day one , Though there  are more  then one  views  regarding  the  causes of division of India  in 1947 however  here  the  topic  would  be  confined to  the  aims and  concept  of Pakistan.

The  main  causes  of  the  struggle for  Pakistan  by  Muslim League  under Quaid-e-Azam  leadership  are  being  stated by  different  Pakistani  intellectuals  as freedom  from  foreign  rule ,fear of Hindu dominance in united  India ,establishment   of Islamic  system in the  newly  created  state ,and India muslims  identity  question in united India  etc. Though  there  were many  who did not agree  with the  logic of two nation theory  but  few  could  dispute  that  Pakistan   came  into  existence  on the basis  of it .However  what  was  the real aim of  Pakistan  it  is a disputed and  is  being debated  since  its inception .There are mainly two views in this regard.

One view contends that Pakistan was created for Islam. The other one argue that its purpose was to safeguard the  political., religious. cultural  as  well as economic  interests of the muslims of  India  In  simple  words  the  first  view  is  that  Pakistan  meant to  be religious  state while  the other insist  that Pakistan  was  to be a  muslims well being  state.

The  supporters ( who are mainly the religious political parties ) of  the  first  view base  their  arguments  by  referring  to  the   thoughts  and  concept  of Allama  Iqbal  and  some  speeches  of  Quaid  Azam and  also  refer to some   well  known  slogans  raised  and  chanted  during  the  struggle  for  Pakistan ( Pakistan Ka  Matlab Kia ? La  Illaha  Illa Allah ,chanted during Pakistan movement ) Like wise they contend  that Allama  Iqbal,  considered as the creator  of concept of  Pakistan, demanded  in  his  address  a separate state  for  the  muslims  of  north  India  so  that they  could  adopt  a  system  according  to  Islamic laws .About Quaid Azam concepts they refer some of his following like statements

(1)We have to fight a double edged battle, one against the Hindu Congress and the British Imperialists, both of them being capitalists. The Muslims demand Pakistan where they could rule according to their own code of life and according to their own cultural growth, traditions and Islamic laws.”

(Speech at the Frontier Muslim League Conference on November 21, 1945)

(2) In August 1941, Quaid-e-Azam gave an interview to the students of the Osmania University to a question  that   What are the essential features of religion and a religious state?

Quaid-e-Azam   replied  that - In other words, the Islamic state is an agency for enforcement of the Quranic principles and injunctions. The contender of  the second  view–Muslim well being  state–have  their  own   arguments  and they too quote  from Quaid Azam  views  and  speeches  meant to say  that  Q .A  never worked for Theocratic  state “Pakistan is not a theocracy or anything like it. Islam demands from us the tolerance of other creeds and we welcome in closest association with us all those who, of whatever creed, are themselves willing and ready to play their part as true and loyal citizens of Pakistan.”

(Feb. 1948 in his broadcast to the people of Australia)

In  refutation  of the  former  view ( Religious they put  the  following counter  arguments

(1) If Pakistan was  being created  for  Islam  why  the  religious   political  parties  and most  of  Ulema opposed it  ?

(2) Quaid Azam  and  other League  leaders  were  though  muslims  but  they  were all secular regarding  politics

(3)If one goes through the Muslim League Council records from 1906 to 1948, there is no reference to a theocratic Pakistan. The repeated reference (and there are a multitude of these) was that Pakistan was to be a homeland for the Muslim minority of British India.

(4)– Quaid Azam well known speech  of 11 August 1947  to  the  constituent  assembly  in which  he   declared  that   religion has  nothing  to  do  with the  affairs  of  the  state, “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. ”

(5)- The  first  Law  minister  of  Pakistan  appointed  by  Quaid Azam  was Mundle  ,a  Hindu. IF  Quaid Azam  meant  to  make  Pakistan  as  religious  state he  would  have appointed  some  muslim  scholar instead  of  him on that  very  important  post

About  the  Islamic  factor  in the  movement  they  are of the view  that  the slogan of  Islam  raised  during  the  movement of Pakistan  was , in the  first  place , not  the official  slogan of  Muslim league as  nor  Quaid Azam  nor the  top leaders  of  the movement raised it , rather  it was being chanted  by  the  workers  at  the  lower level   and  secondly  it was just  for  motivating the  muslim masses  and  mustering their  support  while  basic end  was  protection of  political  cultural  and economic  interests of the  muslims of  north  India .Regarding  Allama  Iqbal  concept  they  argue   that  of  course  he did  talked  about  Islamic state  but  he  never  meant  it  to  be  theocratic  state  if  looked  in  proper context of his  thoughts and philosophy No doubt he dreamed  and wished for such  independent  muslim  state  in the  muslim  majority  areas of India  where  the Islamic  principles and laws  may  be applied in such way  where  it should  also be  compatible with the  modern thoughts and  requirements .However except some random excellent  views and comments  neither  he  had  sorted out  a detailed and  feasible  plan  for it  at  the  moment ( though he  did  urge the need for Ijthihad in this  regard )  and  nor  Jinnah  was  his  like  idealistic  views  about  the  future  of muslims  of India.

As  for Quaid Azam views  they  argue  that  of course  he  too  had exalted the  great  and high principles  of Islam and  its  importance  and  efficacy  in his  various  statements  however  this  never  meant  that he  wanted a  theocracy. They  contend  that  his  views  are quoted   with out  context  otherwise  his  approach  was secular  and  liberal.( Secular does  not  mean  anti  religion  as  often wrongly understood mainly  due  to  the  propaganda  of orthodox )  Different  quotations from  the  speeches of Quaid Azam  are  referred  which show  that his  concept  of Pakistan was  of modern   and  liberal  state guided by the  ideal principles of Islam ..They  further  argue  that  Allama  Iqbal   had presented  his  well known  Address  in 1930  while Muslims  league  under Jinnah   for  a  long  time  continued  efforts  for reaching some  sort  of arrangement with the  congress  and the  British  government  where the  political  cultural  and  economic  rights  of  the  muslims  could   be  given  constitutional  guarantee. For  this  he  made  many  efforts  encompassing  a  whole  decade and  it was  after  league  and  Jinnah  become  convinced  that  no  such  guarantee  could  be  granted  then  in march 1940 Pakistan resolution was  passed  which stated  that in the light  of  lot  experience  ML  has  reached  to  the  conclusion that only  separate  state  could  be  the  only  solution of  muslims  political  problems. Of  course  on that  occasion  Jinnah  did  talk of  two  nations  and  elaborated  the  two nation  theory -  However  that  did  not  mean  that the  demanded  state  was  final word  .Here  it could  be  further  said  that  if congress would have not been adamant  in granting  what  the  League  were  demanding  then   league  would  have  never passed  the Lahore  resolution.

Supporters  of  this  view  further  argue  that  though   ML  did  pass Pakistan  Resolution  however as politics is the  name of seeking  different  possibilities .and  a  politician  has several  alternative  options so , being a politician  ,Quid-e- Azam  too  had several options  for  the  protection of  Indian  muslim  multiple   interests  and  preservation of their  cultural identity. Among  such options  one  was  though  division of  India  but  it  was not inflexible . Jinnah  continued  talks with  both  British  government  and  Congress  leaders  for  seeking  some  other  constitutional  ways  of  the  Indian  problem. It  means that  Pakistan  was  not  the  final  and  un negotiable  option   before  League  and  Jinnah.

Second   argument  in  support of  this view  is  that League and  Jinnah  accepted  the  cabinet  mission plan  in  which  the  demand  for  Pakistan  was  not accepted and instead  a sort of loose  federation or  say  confederation was  proposed. The  acceptance  of that plan  by  league  and Jinnah  meant  that creation of separate  state was  not their  main and  ultimate  demand .As in the  cabinet  mission plan  muslim  could  have got  the  safe  guards  of their  rights  for  which  they  were  demanding since  long  so  league  accepted it . The  arrogant  and imposing attitude  of  Nehru and congress regarding the  plan  led  Jinnah  to  withdraw his   earlier  acceptance of the  plan,  otherwise  India  would  have  not been  divided .This  explain that if  the  establishment of  Islamic state  was  his  basic  aim  he  would  have  been  totally  adamant  for  exclusively independent  muslim state  and  would  have  never shown  any elasticity.

(This  topic , though , needs a  separate  article– However  here Two  Authors, both Hindus and Indians, can be referred. One  is  H.M Seervai ( Well kmown Indian Constitutionalist ) In his  book Partition of India: Legend and Reality (1990) challenged the existing view that blamed the partition of India on the Muslim League. He argued instead that it was the latent bias on the part of Indian National Congress leadership which resulted in partition.. The  other is S. K Hindu Padaya, (congress leader).

It is  true that  Muslims  league  did  use  the name  of Islam  during Pakistan  Movement  and  for it  some intellectuals and  critics condemn this  approach  however  the  defenders have  their  own  arguments or  explanation  for it.
According  to  them  if  the  league  adopted  the slogan  of Islam  for  its  movement.  it  was justified  and  was a  proper  approach  seen in  the context of  the situation of  that  time They  argue  that   raising  of  such   slogan was  aimed for  the  success of  such  movement  which   had a very great  objective . The  objective  of  safety of muslims political  cultural  and  economic  rights  could  not  be  declared   bad as  after all this   aim was  by  itself  lofty  and  for  the  interests  of billions  of  muslims.

Again  if  some one criticize M league  for using the  name of Islam  for  politics  why  such  persons , they  argue ,justify the movement  launched  against  Bhutto by  the  nine  parties alliance (PNA) on the  name of Nizame  Mustafa  and ironically  Nawab Zada  Nasrullaha khan , Wali Khan , Pir Pagara  and Asghar  khan like  purely  secular  leaders  were  part of that alliance  and movement .If  these  leaders ,according to  them, can be  justified  for  employing  the name of  Islam  for  much petty  cause – over throwing  Bhutto  government– then   why  Quaid Azam  and  league could  not be  exonerate as he was struggling  for   more  lofty   cause –achieving a  separate  state  for  the interests of muslim.

Quaid Azam  never  claimed nor thought of  himself  any saintliness or  holiness, Though  the  truth is that he  was a true believing Muslim, but  not  the one who wore his religion on his sleeve. He was  fighting  for  the  rights  of  muslims of  India  since  his  early  practical career  with all sincerity  which  even  his  worst opponents  can not  deny , provided  such persons  honestly judge  Quaid Azam character  Quaid Azam did state  about  Islam being  a  complete  code  of life and no  muslim can disagree  with it . He did  believe  that Muslims were  separate  nation  and  had  different interests   from  those  of  Hindus- and  thus  was  his  slogan  of two nation theory . Like  wise  about  Islamic  ideal and principles ,.in particular related  with  social  economic  aspects ,his observations  were  that  it  were  not  only  fully  compatible  with the   modern  world but  were also more  better and  suitable  compared  to  westerns  ones  Of  course  his  approach towards  religion was not  orthodox  like  the religious  class , who  mainly  confine   Islam  to the  petty  Fiqi issues or  Hadood laws or insist  only in  its  form , but  for  Quaid Azam, the  spirit  of  Islam  was  of  real  importance . In this  regard  his  views  were  in line  with  that of  Iqbal, though  he  was  not   scholar  of  Iqbal  caliber  however  the  source  of his  Islamic  insight  was,  besides his  own  personal reading  , the  views of Allama Iqbal and some other  enlightened  scholars  In nut shell Quaid  Azam  political struggle  was  for  the  interests of  Indian Muslims   when  he  realized  ,after exhausting all options , that they  could  not  be better  protected  and served  in united  India he  opted  for  a separate  state,- Pakistan  which  was  essentially  meant  mainly  for  the  interests  of  Muslims  but  not  for  the  cause  of Islam .in the  sense the religious  class claimed. and perceived.

Quaid Azam  approach  was  secular to  the  extent that  in his  view  the  system of Pakistan would  be  not run by  the  religion as  meant  and  interpreted by  the orthodox  religious  class . However  Quaid Azam  was also a  muslim  in heart and as stated  above he was of the  belief that Islamic  ideals  and  principles   related  in  particular, with the  socio and economic  aspects  and  rule  of  justice  etc had  great  value  and  importance   so he  sincerely thought  that these  principles  and  ideals  must  be guiding  source  for  the  constitutional set  up of Pakistan.

In Feb. 1948 in his broadcast to people of United States of America,”The Constitution of Pakistan is yet to be framed by the Pakistan Constituent Assembly. I do not know that the ultimate shape of this Constitution will be, but I am sure that it will be of the democratic type, embodying the essential principles of Islam. Today they are as applicable in actual life as they were 1300 years ago. Islam and its idealism have taught us democracy. It has taught equality of man, justice and fair play to everybody. We are the inheritors of these glorious traditions, and are fully alive to our responsibilities and obligations as the framers of the future Constitution of Pakistan.”

For  further   support  of  it  the  opinion of Fatima Jinnah  as  quoted  in  a  book    Memories of Fatima Jinnah  by Sorayya Khurshid is also  referred  as much  reliable   authority – According  to  it, Ms Jinnah believed Jinnah stood for Islamic socialism and wanted the Constitution framed on those lines and didn’t like feudalism (p.63). Similarly at  another place  the authors  stated  about her  views  thus

-About artists she said, ‘I feel they will not be treated well here. Some people want to color Pakistan with Mullahism by hook or by crook although the Pakistan Movement mentioned only Islamic socialism’ (p125).

* All this  mean  that  Jinnah,s  concept of  Pakistan was  both against  Mullahism  and western type  of secularism in which  no  regard  is  given  to ethical  or spiritual  values However  as balanced and realistic  person  he did  believe  in the  importance  and  utility  of many Islamic ideals  and  values  particularly  in the  context  of  Muslim  culture  and belief  so  he  could  never  ignore  or set aside  them   in spite  of his  not being  personally religious  in the  traditional  sense.

In view of many sober and balanced  intellectuals if  Quaid Azam  had been  alive  for  a year or  so  he  would  have  defiantly helped in  inculcating  those  great  principles  of Islam  in the  constitution ..Moderate  intellectuals  are of the view  that Quaid Azam and Iqbal were never in favor of such religious  state  the  like  of  which  existed  in  Europe   during middle  ages  ,governed   by  the  clergy  or of  which  latest  example  is  the  one set  up  in Afghanistan by  Taliban . However Quaid Azam  had  had  his  own version of Islam .He  and  Iqbal  had a view of such state which would be guided by the ideal and principles of Islam never meant to be  ruled  by Mullahs — NEVER-. IT is one of misfortunate that most of the Pakistan muslims think that only the  traditional religious  class  can be the interpreters of Islamic teachings. And  another  misfortunate of  Pakistan  was  that the  then  religious  leaders  did prevail when  the  constitution was  being made  and  under  their  pressure  Objective  resolution was  passed which  in the  course  of  time  has been  exploited both  by  the religious  and the  ruling   junta   for  their  own vested  and short term  political interests  It is  assumed that  if  Jinnah  were alive  at that time  he,  with his  extra ordinary  sagacity  and wisdom would  have  fond out  a way and Pakistan would  have  a very feasible  and  agreed political system.

In the conclusion it could  be  said  that Pakistan was mainly created for the  multiple rights of Muslim of India in the name of Islam- Though Sharia as understood and preached by Mullahs was never the aim of Quaid-e-Azam however in spite of his all secularism he was also not averse to the Ideals of Islam It is  reasonably supposed that  had he been  alive for some time he would have recommended such political and constitutional set up for Pakistan where both the Islamic ideals and modern thoughts had been fully accommodated and Pakistan  would  have been   such  state  which  would  be  defiantly  having  the  best   principles , values  and ideal of Islam in  its  system  but  would  have never been theocratic  state  And there would  perhaps  have no intellectual  confusion  regarding the  aim , political  system of Pakistan  and nor,  thus,  there would  have been  the  religious  extremism  being  espoused  by the  religious  political parties  who  were  totally against the  creation of Pakistan till 14 August 1947.


 
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7 Responses »

  1. If (though it wasnt) Pakistan was created to become an Islamic State, even then Islam teaches welfare of the people of the state, protection of minorities, honesty and democracy. What we are seeing is a manipulation of Islam by the religious extremists. Their views are not any thing close what our religion Islam preaches.

  2. Good and well argued article

  3. Dear Anwar,
    AIM of PAKISTAN is in its name. PURE LAND OF ISLAM. iT IS THIS craving for recognition from socalled PURE ISLAMIC NATIONS LIKE SAUDI ARABIA,TURKEY, sHA’S IRAN which were actually POODLES OF USA that you lost sight of your own intellectual capablity and immense wealth of INDIAN MUSLIM. you have heard of DEOBAND, It is still in India.Your first President of United Nations Zafrullah Khan was considered an authoriry on Islam that world leaders of Islam used to take his advice.
    Today pakistan does not even know that India in its bosom holds more Muslims than your country.For you they are slaves of hindu majority. But you cannot understand why they didnot run to Pakistan when the worst communal riot happenned in Gujerat in 2002.

  4. Johann
    What i have highlighted in the article is that In the first case Pakistan was created for the rights of muslim not for islam . Divsion of India and creation of Pakistan was the alst option with Quaid Azam. If Congess and Nehru were not imposing in their stunt Q A would have never insisted on divsion of India .
    Secondly
    when pakistan was created its system would have been amlagmation of ideal proinciples of islam and of modren progressive thoughts had Quaid Azam been alive
    As for Indian muslim are concerend who are heppily living in INdia that is so fine
    However it also be in your knowldge that many Hindus and other non muslims are also living in Pakistan and have no big problem and they consider Pkaistan as their home
    For them Quaid Azam has declared in his speach of 11 August 1947 to the constituent assembly ” that religion has nothing to do with the affairs of the state, “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. ”

  5. No need to debate…. India was devided according to Muslim majority and Hindu majority…. There was nothing mentioned about sharia…. however there is a solution and our mullahs have capability to craft…err.. sorf of a “secular sharia.” :)

  6. Well this site realy help me in my study it is realy an amazing and easy way to learn….
    but i think u wrote alot u realy waste ur and readers time ,,,its my suggestion that write a little which is understood,….i appriciate ur work but please try to write little stories and make them interesting as well ,,,

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