A Pakistani View

by S.M. Ikram


On the occasion of the All India Muslim League session, 1936 On the occasion of the All India Muslim League session, 1936

Jinnah was not invited to the later sessions of the Round Table Conference, but he was now residing in England, and had opportunities of meeting the delegates from India. An important contact, which he effectively renewed during this period was with Sir Muhammad Iqbal, who had come as a delegate to the Round Table Conference. Jinnah was the principal speaker at a reception given in honour of the poet by Iqbal Literary Association and thereafter invited him to lunch at his house. Thus began a series of meetings which were to leave a mark on the course of India’s history. Jinnah was not now a delegate to the Round Table Conference, but during the first session, which he attended, he had criticised to conception of the central federation, which other delegates had supported enthusiastically. His objections were partly from the nationalist anglet (sic) – the inclusion of the autocratic princes at the centre would “water down democracy” – and partly from the Muslim point of view – a strong centre would nullify the provincial autonomy which the Muslims valued so much. Iqbal, on the other hand, had a few years before, held out his plan for a Muslim bloc in the North-West. This did not receive much consideration at the Round Table Conference, but the separation of Sind, and grant of full reforms to the North-West Frontier Province were bound to pave the way for its fulfillment. This plan, the poet discussed at length with Jinnah, and gradually convinced him that in this lay the only hope for a contented, peaceful India in general and for the bulk of Indian Muslims in particular.

Jinnah (2nd from left) Iqbal had got Jinnah seriously interested in what came to be known as the “Pakistan Scheme” but even then he did not return to India to take it up. He was biding his time, and all the time, most unhappy. During the course of a brief visit to Oxford in 1932, he said to the present writer, with great anguish of soul, “but what is to be done? The Hindus are short-sighted and I think, incorrigible. The Muslim camp is full of those spineless people who, whatever they may say to me, will consult the Deputy Commissioner about what they should do! Where is, between these two groups, any place for a man like me?”

Meanwhile he was getting reports from India that Indian Muslims were a flock of sheep without a shepherd. The Aga Khan’s leadership was ineffective, as he wanted the palm without the dust, and could not give up the health resorts of France and Switzerland. Maulana Muhammad Ali was dead. So was Sir Muhammad Shafi, and even if he had been alive, he was too closely associated with a pro-British policy to inspire general enthusiasm. The League and the Muslim Conference had become the plaything of petty leaders who would not resign office, even after a vote of no-confidence! And, of course, they had no organization in the provinces, and no influence with the masses.

It was in these circumstances that certain well-wishers of the Muslims turned towards Jinnah. They requested him to return to India, and once again lead to army, which was first becoming a rabble. Iqbal joined in these appeals. Jinnah relented, but even now he would only visit India for a few months and return to England again. In 1934, however, he was elected the permanent president of the All-India Muslim League, and finally returned to India in October, 1935.

Back in India, Jinnah began to reorganize the All-India Muslim League. Its annual session was held at Bombay in April 1936, under the presidentship of Sir Wazir Hasan, and its constitution was revised to make it more democratic and living organization. Steps were also taken, for the first time, to set up a machinery for contesting elections on behalf of the Muslim League. A central election board with provincial elections under the Government of India Act of 1935. Jinnah toured the country to convass (sic) support for the League candidates, but his efforts were only partially successful. In the Punjab, he had the constant support of Iqbal, but could not come to an agreement with Sir Fazl-i-Hussain, the Unionist leader and League fared very badly in that ‘key’ province. Experience in Bengal was similar. In the elections, the League was actively assisted by the Jamiat-ul-Ulama, and had generally the goodwill of the Congress, which had been receiving support for Jinnah’s Independent Party in the Central legislative Assembly, but it failed to make much headway against firmly entrenched provincial parities.

The Rallying-Post

The provincial elections of 1937 produced many surprises. The League had not come out with flying colours. The Congress, on the other hand, achieved a success, which neither its supporters nor its opponents had anticipated. Most provincial Governors and British officials expected at the provincial election a repetition of the previous elections to the Central Legislature, when Congress had won about 50 per cent of the Hindu seats. They looked to the provincial parites, which they had encouraged in various areas – the Unionists in Punjab, the Justice Party in Madras, the Zamindars in the Nationalist Party in U.P., the Marathas in Bombay – and were sure that although the Congress may be the largest single party, it would have to depend on others to form ministries. Here they were to be completely disillusioned. The organizing ability of Sardar Vallabhbhi Patel, who had succeeded Dr. Ansari as the Chairman of the Parliamentary Board, the army of the workers, which the Congress had built up during the previous twenty years, the magic name of Mahatma, and the whirlwind tours of the president, Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru, completely upset the official calculations. The Congress triumphed in all the Hindu provinces and even in the North-West Frontier!

There is no doubt that this unexpected success went to the head of the Congress leaders. Before and even during the elections, they were friendly to the Muslim League. Now they were cold and distant. Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru declared at Calcutta that there were only two parties in the country – the British and the Congress. The League had fared so badly at the elections that it was not necessary to acknowledge its existence. To this attitude of high disdain, two other factors contributed. The Congress president was surrounded by certain left wing – almost de-Muslimised – Muslims, who later left even the Congress fold for the Communists’ ranks. They urged on Nehru, that it was “medieval” to recognize political parties based on religions, and the Congress had only to organize a vigorous Muslim Mass Contact Movement to achieve the same success amongst the Muslims, which it had gained among the Hindus. Nehru was carried away by these visions, and an open breach occurred between the Congress and the League. While in the original elections, the Congress had supported the League in U.P. now it set up a candidate to oppose the Muslim League in Bhraich constituency of U.P. which had returned a Leaguer, who died shortly after the elections.

The personality of the chairman of the Congress parliamentary board was another factor, which drove the Congress away from the League. Sardar Patel was a great organizer but for a man of his ability and importance, he was amazingly ill-informed about the background of Muslim politics, and even otherwise perhaps freedom from communalism was not one of his many gifts. He was at this time at the summit of the Congress parliamentary board, bossed over all government in the Congress provinces. He had to decide the question of Muslim representation in provincial government, and he dealt with the problem in his usual firm and unimaginative way. If he had faced the question in a spirit of statesmanship, he could have seen that Sir Sikandar Hayat and other Muslim premiers had already tackled the corresponding Hindu problem in the Muslim provinces, in a manner which could be a very safe guide to the Congress. Sir Sikandar Hayat’s party was in absolute majority in the Punjab Assembly, but he offered the Hindu seat in the Government to the Hindu Mahasabha, and although Raja Narendara Nath, the president of the Hindu Party, was unable to accept it owing to old age, his nominee, Sir Manohar Lal was appointed a minister. There was really no other way to give honest, real, representation to the minorities. If a minister had to be taken not on account of affiliation to the party, or any other personal claim, but to represent the minorities, it was obvious that he should be their genuine representative and not a stooge of the party in power. This the iron-willed Sardar would not – or could not – grasp. Under the constitution, representation had to be given to the minorities. So he was prepared to have Muslim ministers even from the Muslim League – but then, they must resign from the League, sign the Congress pledge, and abide by its discipline. In other words, the minority representatives were not to represent the minorities but the Congress! In imposing his iron discipline, the Sardar had some initial difficulties. The Muslim League had not done well in predominantly Muslim areas, but it had won the vast majority of seats in the Congress provinces. In some of these – like Bombay – not a single Muslim had been returned on the Congress ticket. So what was to be done about the representation of the Muslims in the Governments of these provinces? The problem was somewhat complicated but the efficient, resourceful Sardar was not going to be baffled by these difficulties. He offered the ministry to any Tom, Dick or Harry amongst the Muslim members who was prepared to sign the Congress pledge and so the farce of Muslim representation was complete.

The procedure adopted was, of course, a negation of the constitutional safeguards for the Muslims, but it was also less than fair to the Muslim League. Before the elections the Congress and Jinnah’s Independent Party had closely collaborated with each other in the Central Legislative Assembly and many Congress resolutions against the Government succeeded only on account of Jinnah’s support. Their relations during the elections were also friendly. Later, when after the elections in 1937, the Congress at first refused to accept office, and the Governors called the League leaders, as representing the next largest party, to form what we called interim Ministries Jinnah would not allow this. It is known that in some cases, the leaders of the League parties in the provincial legislatures e.g. Sir Ali Mohammad Khan Dehlavi in Bombay were quite willing – even keen – to become premiers but Jinnah overruled them. He would not profit by the Congress refusal to come in, or do anything, which might jeopardise the prospects of an effective League-Congress collaboration on which his heart was set.

The Congress party leaders, however, when it was their turn to be invited by the Governors, completely ignored the Muslim League. This must have hurt Jinnah; what followed was calculated to rouse his ire still further. The Congress Government had taken one false step in taking, as Muslim Ministers, persons who did not command the confidence of the Muslims in the legislature. This false step was succeeded by many more of the same type. In the absence of a true Muslim representative in the Cabinet, the congress Government had nobody to advise them about the views of the Muslims, when they took decision affecting the general population. The so-called “Muslim Minister” knew very well that he was governed by the Congress pledge, and the iron discipline of that party. He usually represented himself alone, and lacked that moral courage which comes from having “big battalions at one’s back.” In many cases, he was just a newcomer to the Congress ranks, avowedly for the sake of the office – and did not carry with his colleague in the Cabinet, anything of the influence which a Syed Mahmud or Yaqub Hassan would carry. Bereft of any following, and any mission, that he was to watch the Muslim interests – and in many cases, even the support of a contented conscience – the Muslim Minister was a pathetic figure, and deprived of his frank advice, the Congress Governments took several steps, which caused deep resentment amongst the Muslims – as well as by Hindu untouchables – and a committee has reported on the hardships, to which Muslims were exposed under the Congress rule.

The second half of the year 1937 was one of the darkest periods through which Indian Muslims have had to pass since 1857. Their central political organization had failed to show any effectiveness at the polls. Over the greater part of the country, where the Congress ministries held sway, they felt that the Hindu Raj had come. They suddenly realized that all the fears, which Sir Syed and Viqar-ul-Mulk had expressed about their future, were coming true. They were most disheartened and sore at heart. They saw no way out of their predicament, and thought that soon the Congress, with its vast organization, and the policy of corrupting a few ambitious, un-principled Muslims, would extend its sway over the Muslim majority provinces and the while country would be come a vast prison-house for them.

The prospects for the Muslims were most gloomy and many faint hearts began to suggest that they should settle with the Congress on its own terms. There was however one light which burned bright and clear. Jinnah has been called a proud and haughty person, and this trait of character may have caused him as his people occasional difficulties. This was, however, the time when just these qualities were needed. In the midst of the storm he stood like a rock. He was the proud representative of a proud people and he hurled defiance at the pretensions and the dreams of the Congress. He was not going to lower his flag to come to terms with the Congress. Far from his accepting conditions while being offered seats in the Congress Governments, it would be he, who would impose conditions!

Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah Allama Sir Dr Mohammad Iqbal

Indian Muslims are not likely to forget the resolve stand which Jinnah, without any visible following, without much support in the legislatures, and inspired solely by his sense of duty and his faith in his people, took at this juncture. But there was another great Muslim who, although in the background, gave Jinnah powerful and effective moral support. Jinnah had written about Iqbal.

“To me he was a friend, guide and philosopher, and during the darkest moments through which the Muslim League had to go, he stood like a rock and never flinched one single moment.”

Gradually the darkness began to lift. The Muslims saw the light and rallied round. Those in the Muslim majority provinces saw what was happening to their co-religionists in the Congress provinces and were deeply touched. They now realised that except through a powerful, All-India organization they had no means of saving themselves. So after having decisively defeated the League in the elections, the Muslim premiers of the Punjab, Bengal and Sind, came to terms with Jinnah and agreed to abide by the policy and decisions of All-India Muslim League in all-India matters.

Jinnah with Raja of Mahmudabad These decisions which were announced at the annual sessions of the League, held at Lucknow, toward end of 1937, not only opened a new chapter for the League but marked a turning point in the history of Muslim India. The session was held in the face of heavy odds but, thanks to the help of the young Raja of Mahmudabad the arrangements were perfect, Jinnah, in his presidential address hurled defiance at the Congress, but now it was not the defiance of one who had nothing but faith and courage, to succour him. He had the premier of the Punjab and Bengal on his right and left and he knew that he had the support of almost every selfrespecting Muslim. The Muslim India had relied the round the rallying-post!

Search For Security

The significance of the Lucknow session of the League was not on the Congress leaders. They realize that their treatment of the Muslims in the Congress provinces had been taken as a challenge by the entire Muslim India, which was prepared to meet it. The firm, disciplinarian policy of the iron dictator – the Sardar – had given results, quite different from what he expected. Thinking Hindus began to criticize the want of statesmanship shown by the Congress leadership in dealing with the Muslims. Tairsee, president of Hindu Gymkhana of Bombay, criticised, in the columns of Bombay Chronicle, the unstatesmanlike attitude which the Congress leadership had shown in refusing genuine representation to the Muslims in Congress Cabinets. Sardar Sardhul Singh Caveeshar of the Punjab expressed the same view in a long letter to Mahatma Gandhi. Sir Chiman Lal Sitalved criticised the unhappy development in the presidential address delivered in December 1937 at Calcutta session of All-India Liberal Federation and contrasted the unwise rigidity shown by the Congress leaders with the statesmanship displayed by the Muslim premier like Sir Sikandar Hayat.

The Congress leaders realized that they had blundered and appeared willing to take Muslim representatives in the Congress Cabinet on less exacting terms. Now it was Jinnah’s turn to be firm and unbending. The numerous unity talks which started between him and the Congress leaders, usually broke down on the question of the representative character of the Muslim League. His plea was that in 1916, when alone there was an agreement between Hindus and Muslims, the League had been taken as the sole and the authoritative representative of the Muslims and the Congress should now acknowledge its position in the same way. This, the Congress considered incompatible with its claim of speaking on behalf of entire India, and the negotiations broke down. Perhaps the truth in that what had happened in 1937, had not only embittered Jinnah but had finally convinced him that there was no safety for the Muslims in the goodwill of the Congress or the Hindus.

S.M. Ikram was a member of the Indian civil service and after partition held a number of important positions in the civil service of Pakistan. He has also published books in both Urdu and English on a variety of topics related to the history and culture of the Muslims of the subcontinent. In the excerpt quoted above, taken from a series of biographical sketches of Indian Muslim leaders, he discusses of the re-organization of the Muslim League in the thirties under the leadership of Jinnah.

Source: Muhammad Ali Jinnah Makers of Modern Pakistan. Edited by: Sheila McDonough (Sir George Williams University) D.C. Health and Company, Lexington, Massachusetts, USA.

Letters from Allama Iqbal to Quaid-e-Azam

Allama Dr. Sir Mohammad Iqbal Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah

23rd May, 1936

Dear Mr. Jinnah,

Thank you so much for your letter which I received a moment ago. I am glad to see that your work is progressing. I do hope that the Punjab parties-specially the Ahrar and the Ittihad Millat-will eventually, after some bickering, join you. A very enthusiastic and active member of the Ittihad told me so a few days ago. About M. Zafar Ali Khan the Ittihad people do not themselves feel sure. However there is plenty of time yet, and we shall soon see how the electorate generally feels about the Ittihad sending their men to the Assembly.

Hoping you are well and looking forward to meeting you.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal



9th June, 1936

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

I am sending you my draft. Also a cutting from the Eastern Times of yesterday. This is a letter from an Intelligent Pleader of Guradspur.

I hope the statement issued by the Board will fully argue the whole scheme and will meet all the objection is so far advanced against it. It must frankly state as present position of the Indian Muliins as regards both the Government and the Hindus. It must warn the Muslims of India that unless the present scheme is adopted the Muslims will lose all that they have gained during the last 15 years and will seriously harm, and in fact, shatter their own solidarity with their own hands.

Yours etc.,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal

p.s. Will feel much obliged if you send the statement to me before it is sent to the press.

Another point which should be brought out in the statement is as follows:

1. Indirect election to the Central Assembly has made it absolutely essential that Muslim representatives returned to the Provincial Assemblies should be bound by an All-India Muslim policy and programme so that they should return to the Central Assembly only those Muslims who would be pledged to support the specific Muslim questions connected with the Central subjects and arising out of their position as the Second great nation of India. Those who are now for Provincial policies and programme were themselves instrumental in getting in direct elections for the Central Assembly introduced into the constitution obviously because this suited a foreign Government. Now when the community wants to make the best use of this misfortune (i.e indirect elections) by proposing an all-India scheme of elections (e.g. League scheme) to be adhered to by the Provincial candidates the same men, again, at the instance of a foreign Government have come out to defeat the community in their effort to retain its solidarity as a nation.

2. Question of Wakf Law arising out of Shahidganj, culture, language, mosque and personal law.

Private and Confidential,



25th June 1936

My dear Mr. Jinnah

Sir Sikandar Hayat left Lahore a day or two ago. I think he will meet you at Bombay and have a talk with you about certain matters of importance. Daultana saw me yesterday evening. He tells me that the Muslim members of the Unionist Party are prepared to make the following declaration

“That in all matters specific to the Muslim community as an all-India minority they will be bound by the decision of the League and will never make any pact with any nom-Muslims group in the Provincial Assembly.”

“Provided the League (Provincial) makes the following declaration:

That those returned to the Provincial Assembly on the League ticket will co-operate with that party or group which has the largest number of Muslims’.”

Please let me know at your earliest convenience what you think of this proposal. Also let me know the result of your talk with Sir Sikandar Hayat. If you succeed in convincing him he may come to our side.

Hoping you are well,

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal

Mayo Road, Lahore


23rd August, 1936

M dear Mr. Jinnah,

I hope my letter reached you all right. There is some talk of an understanding between the Punjab Parliamentary Bard and the Unionist Party. I should like you to let me know what you think of such a compromise and to suggest conditions for the same. I read in the papers that you have brought about a compromise between the Bengal Proja Party and the Parliamentary Board. I should like to know the terms and the conditions. Since the Proja Party is non-communal like the Unionist, your compromise in Bengal may be helpful to you.

Hoping you are well,

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal

Strictly Confidential.


20th March 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah

I suppose you have read Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru’s address to the All-India National Convention and that you fully realise the policy under-lying it in so far as Indian Muslims are concerned. I believe you are also aware that the new constitution has at least bought a unique opportunity Indian Muslims for self-organisation in view of the future political developments both in India and Muslim Asia. While we re ready to co-operate with other Progressive Parties in the country, we must not ignore the fact that the whole future of Islam as a moral and political force in Asia rests very largely on a complete organisation of Indian Muslims. I therefore suggest that an effective reply should be given to the All-India National Convention. You should immediately hold an All-India Muslim Convention in Delhi to which you should invite members of the new Provincial Assemblies as well as other prominent Muslim leaders. To this convention you must restate as clearly and as strongly as possible the political objective of the Indian Muslims as a distinct political unit in the country. It is absolutely necessary to tell the world both inside and outside India that the economic problem is not the only problem in the country. From the Muslim point of view the cultural problem is of much greater consequence to most Indian Muslims. At any rate it is not less important than the economic problem. If you could hold this Convention, it would test the credentials of those Muslim Legislators who have formed parties contrary to the aims and aspirations of Indian Muslims. It would farther make it clear to the Hindus that no political device, however subtle can make the Indian Muslim lose sight of his cultural enilty. I am coming to Delhi in a few days time and hope to have a talk with you on this important matter. I shall be staying in the Afghan Consulate. If you could spare a few moments we should meet there. Please drop a line in reply to this letter a early as possible.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal


p. s. Please excuse me. I have got this letter written by a friend as my eyesight is getting bad.


22nd April 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah

I do not know whether my letter which I posted to you about two weeks ago ever reached you. I posted it to your address at New Delhi and when I went to Delhi later I discovered that you had already left Delhi. In that letter I proposed that we should hold immediately an All-India Muslim Convention, say at Delhi, and once more to restate the policy of Indian Muslims both to the Government and to the Hindus.

As the situation is becoming grave and the Muslim feeling in the Punjab is rapidly becoming pro-Congress for reasons which it is unnecessary to detail I would request you to consider and decide the matter as early as possible. The session of the All India Muslim League is postponed till August, and the situation demands an early restatement of the Musllm policy. If the Convention is preceded by a tour of prominent Muslim leaders, the meeting of the Convention is sure to be a great success. Please drop a line in reply to this letter as early as possible.

Yours sincerely

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal




28th May, 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

Thank you so much for your letter which reached me in due course. I am glad to hear that you will bear in mind what I wrote to you about the changes in the constitution and programme of the League. I have no doubt that you fully realise the gravity of the situation as far as Muslim India is concerned. The League will have to finally decide whether it will remain a body representing the upper classes of Indian Muslims or Muslim masses who have so far with good reason, taken no interest in it. Personally I believe that a political organisation which gives no promise of improving the lot of the average Muslim can not attract our masses.

Under the new constitution the higher posts go to the sons of upper classes; the smaller ones go to the friends or relatives of the ministers. In other matters too our political institution have never thought of improving the lot of Muslims generally. The problem of bread is becoming more and more acute. The Muslim has begun to feel that he has been going down and down during the last 200 years. Ordinarily he believes that his poverty is due to Hindu money-lending or capitalism. The perception that it is equally due to foreign rule has not yet fully come to him. But it is bound to come. The atheistic socialism of Jawaharlal is not likely to receive much response from the Muslims. The question therefore is: how is it possible to solve the problem of Muslim poverty? And the whole future of the League depends on the League’s activity to solve this question. If the League can give no such promises I am sure that Muslim masses will remain indifferent to it as before. 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. This has been my honest conviction for many years and I still believe this to be the only way to solve the problem of bread for Muslims as well as to secure a peaceful India. If such a thing is impossible in India the only other alternative is a civil war which as a matter of fact has been going on for some time in the shape of Hindu-Muslim riots. I fear that in certain parts of the country, e.g. N.-W. India, Palestine may be repeated. Also the insertion of Jawaharlal’s socialism into the body politic of Hinduism is likely to cause much bloodshed among the Hindus themselves. The issue between social democracy and Brahmanism is not dissimilar to the one between Brahmanism and Buddhism. Whether the fate of socialism will be the same as the fate of Buddhism in India I can not say. But it is clear to my mind that if Hinduism accepts social demopracy it must necessarily cease to be Hindaism. For Islam the acpeptance of social democracy in some suitable form and consistent with the legal principles of Islam is not a revolution but a return to the original purity of Islam. The modern problems therefore are more easy to solve for the Muslims than for the Hindus. But as I have said above in order to make it possible for Muslim India to solve the problems it is necessary to redistribute the country and to provide one or more Muslim states with absolute majorities. Don’t you think that the Lime for such a demand has already arrived? Perhaps this is the best reply you can give to the atheistic socialism of Jawaharlal Nehru. Anyhow I have given you my own thoughts in the hope that you will give them serious consideration either in your address or in the discussions of the coming session of the League. Muslim India hopes that at this serious juncture your genius will discover some way out of our present difficulties.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Muhammad Iqbal

P.S. On the subject-matter of the letter I intended to Write to you a long and open letter in the press. But on further consideration I felt that the present moment was not suitable for such step.


Private and Confidential,

June 21st, 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

Thank you so much for your letter which I received yesterday. I know yan are a busy man; but I do hope you won’t mind my writing to you so often, as you are the only Muslim in India today to Whom the community has a right to look up for safe guidance through the storm which is coming to North-West India, and perhaps to the Whole of India. I tell you that we are actually living in a state of civil war which, but for the police and military, would, become universal in no time. During the last few months there has been a series of Hindu-Muslim riots In India. In North-West India alone there have been at least three riots during the last three months and at least four cases of vilification of the Prophet by Hindus and Sikhs. In each of the four cases the vilifier has been murdered. There have also been cases of burning of the Quran in Sind. I have carefully studied the whole situation and believe that the real cause of these event is neither religious nor economic. It is purely political, i.e., the desire of the Sikhs and Hindus to intermediate Muslims even in the Muslim majority provinces. And the new constitution is such that even in the Muslim majority provinces, the Muslims are made entirely dependent on non-Muslims. The result is that the Muslim Ministry can take no proper action and are even driven to do injustice to Muslims partly to please those on whom they depend and partly to show that they are absolutely impartial. Thus it is clear that we have our specific reasons to reject this constitution. It seems to me that the new constitution is devised only to placate the Hindus. In the Hindu majority provinces, the Hindus have of course absolute majorities, and can ignore Muslims, altogether. In Muslim majority provinces, the Muslims are made entirely dependent on Hindus. I have no doubt in my mind that this constitution is calculated to do infinite harm to the Indian Muslims. Apart from this it is no solution of the economic problem which is so acute among Muslims. The only thing that the communal award grants to Muslims is the recognition of their political existence in India. But such a recognition granted to a people whom this constitution does not and cannot help in solving their problem of poverty can be of no value to them. The Congress President has denied the political existence of Muslims in no unmistakable terms. The other Hindu political body, i.e., the Mahasabha, whom I regard as the real representative of the masses of the Hindus, has declared more than once that a united Hindu-Muslim nation is impossible in India. In these circumstances it is obvious that the only way to a peaceful India is redistribution of the country on the lines of racial, religious and linguistic affinities. Many British statesmen also realise this, and the Hindu-Muslim riots which are rapidly coming in the wake of this constitution are sure further to open their eyes to the real situation in the country. I remember Lord Lothain told me before I left England that my scheme as the only possible solution of the troubles of India, but that it would take 25 years to come. Some Muslims in the Punjab are already suggesting the holding of a North-West Indian Muslim Conference, and the idea is rapidly spreading. I agree with you, however, that our community is not yet sufficiently organised and disciplined and perhaps the time for holding such a conference is not yet ripe. But I feel that it would be highly advisable for you to indicate in your address at least the line of action that the Muslims of North-West India would be finally driven to take.

To my mind the new constitution with its ides o 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?

Personally I think that the Muslims of North-West India and Bengal ought are present to ignore Muslim minority provinces. This is th best course to adopt in the interest of both Muslim majority and minority provinces It will therefore be better to hold the coming session of the League in the Punjab, and not in a Muslim minority province. The monhth of August is bad in, Lahore. I think you should seriously consider the advisability of holding the coming session at Lahore in the middle of October when the weather is quite good in Lahore. The interest in the All-India Muslim League is rapidly growing in the Punjab, and the holding of the coming session in Lahore is likely to give a fresh political awakening to the Punjab Muslims.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal



11th August, 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

Events have made it abundantly clear that the League ought to concentrate all its activities on the North-West Indian Musalmans. The League office bf Delhi informed Mr. Ghulam Rasool that the dates of the sessions of the Muslim League have not been fixed as yet.

This being so I fear it will not be possible to hold the sessions in August and September. I, therefore, repeat my request that the League sessions may be held in Lahore in the middle or end of October. The enthusiasm for the League is rapidly increasing in the Punjab, and I have no doubt that the holding of the session in Lahore will be a turning point in the history of the League and an important step towards mass contact. Please drop a line in reply.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal



Private and Confidential

7th October, 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

A strong contingent from the Punjab is expected to attend The Lucknow Session of the League. The Unionist Muslims are also making preparations to attend under the leadership of Sir Sikandar Hayat. We are living in difficult times and the Indian Muslims expect that your address will give the clearest possible lead in all matters relating to the future of the community. I suggest that the League may state or restate its policy relating to the communal award in the shape of a suitable resolution. In the Punjab and I hear also in Sind attempts are being made by misguided Muslims themselves to alter it in the interests of the Hindus. Such men fondly believe that by pleasing the Hindus they will be able to retain their power. I personally believe that since the British Government wants to honour the Hindus who would welcome the upsetter of the communal award they (the British Government) are trying to get it upset through their Muslim agents.

I shall prepare a list of 28 persons for the vacancies in the League Council. Mr. Ghulain Rasool will show you this list. I do hope that this choice will be carefully made. Our men will leave Lahore on the 13th.

The Palestine question is very much agitating the minds of the Muslims. We have a very fine opportunity for mass contact for the purposes of the League. I have no doubt that the League will pass a strong resolution on this question and also by holding a private conference of the leaders decide on some sort of a positive action in which masses may share in large numbers. This will at once popularise the League and may help the Palestine Arabs. Personally I would not mind going to jail on an issue which affects both Islam and India. The formation bf a Western base on the very gates of the East is a menace to both.

With best wishes.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal


P.S. The League should resolve that no province should come to any understanding with other communities regarding the communal award. This is an All-India question and must be settled by the League alohe. Perhaps you may go further and say that the present atmosphere is not at all suitable for any communal understanding.


Private and Confidential,

30th october; 1937

My dear Mr. Jinnah,

I suppose you have already read the resolution passed by the A.-I.C C. Your move in time has saved the situation, and we are all waiting for your observations on the Congress, resolution. The Tribune of Lahore has already criticised it and I believe Hindu opinion will generally be opposed to it. However it should not act as an opiate as far as Muslims are concerned. We must carry the work of organisation more vigorously than ever and should not rest till Muslim Governments are established in the five provinces and reforms are granted to Baluchistan.

The rumour is that part of the Unionist Party does not mean to sign the League creed. So far Sir Sikandar and his party have not signed it and I heard this morning that they would wait till the next sessions of the League. The idea as one of themselves told me, is to slacken the activities of the Provincial League. However I shall place you in possession of all the facts in a few days’ time and then ask your opinion as to how we should proceed. I do hope that before the Lahore Session you would be able to tour in the Punjab for at least two weeks.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal




1st November 1937

My dear Mr Jinnah,

Sir Sikandar Hayat Khan with some of the members of his party saw me yesterday and we had a long talk about the differences between the League and the Unionist Party. Statements have been issued to the press by both sides. Each side putting its own interpretation on the terms of Jinnah-Sikandar agreement. This has caused much misunderstanding. As I wrote to you before, I will put you in possession of all those statements in a few days’ time. For the present I request you to kindly send me as early as possible a copy of the agreement which was signed by Sir Sikandar and which I am told is in your possession. I further want to ask you whether you agreed to the Provincial Parliamentary Board being controlled by the Unionist Party. Sir Sikandar tells me that you agreed to this and therefore he claims that the Unionist Party must have their majority in the Board. This as far as I know does not appear in the Jinnah-Sikandar agreement.

Please reply to this letter as early as possible. Our men are touring in the country and forming Leagues in various places. Last night we had a very successful meeting in Lahore. Others will follow.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad Iqbal



Strictly Private & Confidential

10th Nov., 1937

My Dear Mr. Jinnah,

After having several talks with Sir Sikandar and his friends I am now definitely of the opinion that Sir Sikandar wants nothing less than the complete control of the League and the Provincial Parliamentary Board. In your pact with him it is mentioned that the Parliamentary Board will be reconstituted and that the Unionists will have majority in the Board. Sir Sikandar tells me that you agreed to their majority in the Board. I wrote to you some time ago to enquire whether you did agree to the unionist Majority in the Board. So far I have not heard from you. I personally see no harm in giving him the majority that he wants but he goes beyond the pact when he wants a complete change in the office holders of the League, especially the Secretary who has done so much for the League. He also wishes that the finances of the League should be controlled by his men. All this to my mind amounts to capturing of the League and then killing it. Knowing the opinion of the province as I do I cannot take the responsibility of handing over the League to Sir Sikandar and his friends. The pact has already damaged the prestige of the League in this province; and the tactics of the Unionists may damage it still further. They have not so far signed the creed of the League and I understand do not mean to. The session of the League in Lahore they want in April instead of February. My impression is, that they want to gain time for their own Zamindara League to function in the province. Perhaps you know that on his return from Lucknow Sir Sikandar constituted a Zamindara League whose branches are now being made in the province. In these circumstances please let me know what we should do. Kindly wire your view if possible. If this is not possible write a detailed letter as early as possible.

Yours sincerely,

(Sd.) Mohammad, Iqbal



Foreign Policy of Pakistan: 1947-48

by Saeeduddin Ahmad Dar

Pakistan Foreign Office, Islamabad Pakistan came into being under most unfavourable circumstances. Few weeks before independence, anti-Muslim riots broke out in East Punjab and a number of adjoining princely states. The riots which were “long planned and directed from a very high level”, were nothing less than “a war of extermination against the Muslim minority”.1 Soon the riots spread to Delhi, where it became impossible for a Muslim “to move freely without risk to his life”.2 Consequently, millions of Muslims from India were forced to take refuge in Pakistan. The immediate problem of the Government of Pakistan, was, therefore, to provide them food and shelter. It was by no means an easy task for a state, which had literally started from a scratch. At the same time, the planned migration of the Hindus, who controlled the economic resources of the areas constituting Pakistan before independence, crippled Pakistan’s economy.

The problems of the new state were enhanced by the hostile policy of the Government of India. In October 1947, Field Marshal Claude Auchinleck reported to the British Prime Minister Attlee: “The present Indian cabinet are implacably determined to do all in their power to prevent the establishment of Dominion of Pakistan on a firm basis”.3 To another foreign observer India seemed hell bent on “to destroy Pakistan as rapidly as possible so as to restore it to the dominion of Delhi”.4 Such conclusions were strengthened by actions of Government of India. For instance, India retained much of Pakistan’s share of the assets of the undivided India.5 She refused to deliver more than ninety seven percent of Pakistan’s share of military stores.6 The Government of India instructed its Reserve Bank (which according to an agreement made at the time of partition, was supposed to act as banker as currency authority both for India as Pakistan up to 1 October 1948) not to credit the Government of Pakistan with 550 million rupees of cash balance, which was due to her out of her share of 750 million rupees.7

The Indian occupation of the princely states of Junagadh, Manavader and Mangrol, which had acceded to Pakistan, and the dispatch of Indian troops to Jammu and Kashmir posed serious threat to the security of Pakistan. India seemed to be on war path. Even Gandhi, ‘the great apostle of non-violence’ talked about war with Pakistan.8

To deal effectively with these colossal internal problems and a hostile stronger neighbour the new state required a large army efficient and experience Civil Service. But at the time of independence , Pakistan had no army worth the name or even a civil service. In the latter category, in particular, there were not many senior officers. Amongst the officials who had ‘opted’ for Pakistan there was hardly any Muslim I.C.S. officer above the rank of a Deputy Secretary.

The situation in the newly created Ministry of External Affairs and Commonwealth Relations was even worse.9 Amongst the one hundred and fifty odd officials of the three major departments – the Political and State Department, the Department of External Affairs, and the Department of Commonwealth Relations – who came to the same of Pakistan, more than a third were peons. Among the officers only four Muslims and five British nationalists came to Pakistan. When the Foreign Office was established, there was only one Joint Secretary and two Deputy Secretaries and they were all British nationals. Later, two Muslim I.C.S. Officers who had served on the Partition Committee, were also taken in as a Deputy Secretaries. Ikramullah, who held the rank of a mere Deputy Secretary in the Government of India, was exalted to the position of Foreign Secretary. He had not experience of international relations or the working of a department dealing with external affairs. The result was that Joint Secretary, T.B. Creag Coen, who had served in the Indian Political Service, dominated the Foreign Office and his opinion was regarded as the last word.

Until December 1947, Pakistan did not have a full time Foreign Minister. Officially, Liaqat Ali Khan held the portfolio of External Affairs, but in practice all papers were put up to Quaid-i-Azam for information or decision. Quaid-i-Azam’s pre-occupation with internal problems and his failing health, did not give him to concentrate on foreign relations. Such a situation could not go on for long. Therefore, in December 1947, Zafarullah Khan, who had some experience in external affairs was appointed as Foreign Minister Zafarulla who had worked as Indian Political Agent in China, represented India in the U.N on Palestine Problem, and later on 1947 had led Pakistan’s delegation to the U.N. General Assembly. Still the policy decisions continued to rest with Quaid-i-Azam. Even during his last days at Ziarat, Ikramullah, the Foreign Secretary, regularly visited him to apprise the Quaid of the latest developments and to seek his guidance.

Due to shortage of trained personnel, Pakistan could not establish diplomatic relations with more than six countries. In the initial months Habib Rahimatulla was appointed High Commissioner in London and I.H. Ispahani, Aurangzeb Khan and I.I. Chundrigar as ambassadors to Washington, Rangoon and Kabul respectively. The embassies at Tehran and Cairo remained without ambassadors till 1948, when Raja Ghazanfar Ali and Abdul Sattar Seth presented their credentials. None of the ambassadors appointed had any experience in international politics and diplomacy.

Moreover in 1948 the Public Service Commission for the first time selected thirteen persons to be appointed as officers in Pakistan Foreign Service. In order to fill senior posts it was decided to induct officers from other departments. This group lacked experience in diplomacy and were of “uneven quality”.10 It could not be expected from these ‘diplomats’ sitting in the foreign office or serving in the mission to give a lead or even to assist the politicians in the formation of a foreign policy. No wonder, Pakistan in its first year, could not formulate a foreign policy.

However, it can be said that Pakistan carried over the policy of the All India Muslim League towards the Muslim world, and particularly towards Palestine. Muslim League’s policy was best stated by Quaid-i-Azam in October 1942, on the occasion of the Eid-ul-Fitar. He had declared: “while we are engaged in our struggle for freedom and independence, let us not forget our brethren who in other parts of the world are going likewise”.11 Regarding the Arabs he said: “The Muslims of India will stand solidly and will help the Arabs in every way they can in their brave and just struggle that they are carrying on against all odds”.12

Between 1933 and 1946 the Muslim League passed eighteen resolutions in support of the Muslims of Palestine.13 In November 1933, the Muslim League passed a resolution asking the British Government to immediately withdraw the Balfour Declaration as “it opposed the fundamental rights of the people entrusted to their British control”.14 In April 1934 the Council of the Muslim League resolved to send a deputation to wait on the Viceroy to lay before them the facts of how the Balfour Declaration would help the Jews and deprive the Arab inhabitants of their rights. The council also expressed its “whole hearted sympathy and support for the Arabs of Palestine”.15 When the Royal Commission recommended partition of Palestine Quaid-i-Azam strongly condemned it.16 The Muslim League demanded that the recommendations of the Royal Commission be withdrawn and asked the Government of India to instructs its representative as the Assembly of the League of Nations to demand annulment of the mandate and disassociate themselves from any decision tending “to perpetuate it and thus to violate the fundamental rights of the Arab inhabitants of Palestine to choose the form of Government best suited to their needs and requirements…17”. On the directive of the Muslim League the Muslims of British India, on 26 August 1938, observed ‘Palestine Day’. In October 1938 the Muslim League sent a four-member delegation to Egypt, to attend an “Arab Leader’s conference” in connection with Palestine. Two of them accompanied an ‘Arab delegation’ to London to discuss the problem with the British Government. The representatives of the Muslim League submitted a statement of the views of the Muslims of British India to the British Government. 18 Quaid-i-Azam made a strong representation to the Viceroy and had a number of interviews with him on the Palestine question.19 In July 1939 the Muslim League opened a ‘Palestine Fund’ for “the relief of the dependents of those, who lost their lives or suffered in the struggle for independence and for the protection of First Qibla of Musalmans”.20 In same year the day of Miraj was observed as ‘Palestine Day’21. On 23 March 1940, when the Muslims of British India met at Lahore and made the historic decision about their future, they expressed their concern on “the inordinate delay on the part of the British Government in coming to a settlement with the Arabs in Palestine”22. In 1945, another ‘Palestine Day’ was observed.23

Besides, Palestine, the Muslim League took up the cause of all the Muslims struggling for their independence and the preservation of their national sovereignty. In 1924, when it was speculated the Iraq would be placed under British mandate the Muslim League declared that Iraq was “a part of Jaziatul Arab and so such should not be left under non-Muslim control of the British as a mandatory power”.24 After the beginning of the Second World War when news were received that war activities might affect the independence of Egypt, Palestine, Syria and Turkey, the Muslim League proclaimed that “in the event of any attack upon Muslim countries, Muslim India will be forced to stand by them and give all the support it can”.25 The Muslim League took up the cause of Iran when Britain and the Soviet Union occupied Iranian territories during the war26. On 26 December 1943 the Muslim League passed a resolution demanding the independence of Ceraneca, Libya, Tripoli, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Moracco, Algeria and Tunis27. Quaid-i-Azam condemned the Dutch “imperialist hold” on Indonesia.28

After the creation of Pakistan the moral support given to the Muslim world by the All India League assumed the form of diplomatic support of the Government of Pakistan. The unity of the Muslim states was considered a must for the solution of their problems. Quaid-i-Azam believed that it was only by putting a united front that the Muslim states could “make their voice felt in the councils of the world”29. In order to achieve this objective, in October 1947, he sent Malik Feroz Khan Noon as his special envoy to some of the countries in the Middle East.30 This one-man delegation was the first official mission sent abroad by Pakistan. The aim of the mission was to introduce Pakistan, to explain the reasons of its creation, to familiarise them with its internal and external problems to get their support. Feroz Khan Noon, first visited Ankara, where he met President Ismat Inonu and other Turkish dignatories. He participated in the independence day celebrations of Turkey and gave an exclusive interview to the correspondent of Ulus. From Turkey he went to Syria. At Damascus he held discussions with Syrian leaders. From Damascus he went to Aman and met King Abdullah. On his way to Beirut he met Mufti Amin Al-Husaini, the Grand Mufti of Palestine, who had gone underground and was residing in the suburbs of Beirut. His next and last stop was Riyadh, where he was received by King Abdul Aziz Ibn-e-Saud. The King gave a banquet in Noon’s honour and placed his personal plane at his disposal to take him to Dahran on way to Karachi. Noon returned to Karachi in the first week of December. As there were no diplomatic channels available, Feroz Khan Noon sent his reports to his brother Malik Akbar Hayat Noon, who through Ikramullah delivered them to Quaid-i-Azam. Quaid-i-Azam did not give these reports to the foreign office and kept them with him. Unless these papers are made available nothing can be said with certainly about the extent of the success of the mission; but it is certain that this was the beginning of Pakistan’s close relations with Turkey, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, which continued to develop in the years to come.

Pakistan lent full diplomatic support to the cause of the Muslims of Palestine. When Pakistan became the member of the United Nations (30 September 1947), the Palestine question was already under active consideration of the United Nations. On the request of the United Kingdom the Secretary General summoned the first special session of the General Assembly. On 15 May 1947 the General Assembly created the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP). The UNSCOP recommended that the Mandate be terminated and Palestine granted independence at the earliest practicable date. The report contained a majority proposal for the ‘Plan of Partition’ with an ‘Economic Union’ and a minority proposal for a ‘Plan for a Federal State of Palestine’31 On 23 September the General Assembly established, the ‘Ad Hoc Committee on Palestine Question’ to consider the report of UNSCOP.

In the Ad Hoc Committee Pakistan opposed the ‘Partition Plan’. Zafarulla claimed that the Balfour Declaration was “invalid”32. He suggested that the Committee should strive “to find a solution which would be in accord with the freely-expressed wishes of the people concerned…33. He declared that Pakistan was utterly and uncompromisingly opposed to the partition of Palestine”34 He warned the Committee that the partition of Palestine “might provoke a conflict which the United Nations would find difficult to contain”35.

On 23 September 1947, the Ad Hoc Committee established two sub-committees. ‘Sub-Committee I’ was entrusted with drawing up a detailed plan based on the majority proposals of UNSCOP; and ‘Sub Committee 2’ to draw up a detailed plan in accordance with the proposals of Saudi Arabia and Iraq for the reorganisation of Palestine as an independent Unitary State36. Pakisan was a member of Sub-Committee 2’. On 28 October 1947, on the resignation of the representative of Columbia, Zafarullah was elected its Chairman. In its report ‘Sub-Committee I’ recommended “the adoption and implementation” of the ‘Plan of Partition’ with an ‘Economic Union’37. Sub-Committee 2 raised legal, constitutional and political objections and asked the General Assembly to refer them to the International Court of Justice. The Committee stressed that the United Nations had “no authority under the Charter to partition Palestine or any way to impair its integrity against the wishes of the majority of the people”38.

The Committee proposed a “unitary and sovereign” state for Palestine.39 Commenting on the ‘Partition Plan’ proposed by the Sub Committee I’ Zafarulla said that Pakistan could not accept it because “it had no legal basis and was unworkable…and instead of settling the dispute, served to add to the exciting difficulties.”40

The Ad Hoc Committee did not accept the proposals of ‘Sub-Committee 2’ and include in its repot the draft resolution of ‘Sub-Commttee I’ embodying the ‘Plan of Partition’ with an ‘Economic Union’, with various amendments.

Pakistan made an eleventh hour attempt to convince the United States, which was the main supporter of the ‘Partition Plan’ and was exerting pressure on small states, to vote for it, that the decision to partition Palestine was “ultra vires of the United Nations Charter” and was “basically wrong and invalid in law”. Quaid-i-Azam sent a cable to President Truman and appealed to him, and through him to the people of the United Sates to uphold the right of the Arabs. He wrote: “The Government and the people of the America can yet save this dangerous situation by giving a correct lead and thus avoid the greatest consequences and repercussions”41. The United States, which was more concerned with her interests in the Middle East than the moral and legal rights of the Arabs, managed to get two third votes in favour of the ‘Partition Plan’. Pakistan was one of the thirteen members which cast negative votes. Commenting on the role played by the United States Zafarulla said that “The Partition Plan could be called a United States’ rather then a United Nation’ decision.42 Pakistan did not take part in the election of the United Nations Commissions which was set up to implement the decision of the General Assembly. When Israel was admitted to the United Nations Pakistan opposed and voted against it; and refused to recognise the state of Israel.

The Constituent Assembly of Pakistan (which also functioned as its parliament) adopted a motion expressing deep sympathy with the people of Palestine in their “struggle in the cause of justice and peace in Palestine”43. Later, when foreign policy of Pakistan took a shape, support to the cause of the Muslims in general and that of Palestine in particular became its cardinal principle.

By 1949, Pakistan, to a great extent, overcame its major internal problems and for the first time gave a serious consideration to the formulation of a definite and determined foreign policy. During the formative phase Pakistan explored different alternatives. Liaquat Ali Khan’s acceptance of the Russian invitation to visit Moscow, Pakistan’s attempts to institutionalise its relations with the Muslim World, and Liaquat’s visit to the U.S.A and Canada were earliest attempt in this direction.


  1. G.W. Choudhury, Pakistan’s Relations with India 1947-66, London, 1968, PP. 41-42.
  2. John Connel, Auchinleck, London, 1956, pp. 920-22.
  3. Ibid.
  4. Vincent Shean in New York Herald Tribune, 16 June 1948, quoted by S.M. Burke, Mainprings of Indian and Pakistani Foreign Policies, Karachi, 1957, p. 58.
  5. Ian Stephens, Horned Moon, London, 1953, p. 215.
  6. Connel, op. cit., PP. 220-22.
  7. Choudhury, op. cit., P. 63.
  8. Ibid., P. 50.
  9. The information about the condition of the foreign office is based on author’s interviews with the officials who were in the foreign office at that time.
  10. Burke, op. cit., P. 77.
  11. Jamiluddin Ahmed, ed., Speeches and Statements of Mr. Jinnah Vol. I, Lahore, 1960, P. 421.
  12. Ibid., P. 36.
  13. For the Texts of these Resolutions see; Resolutions of the All India Muslim League, May 1924 to December 1943, in Syed Sharifuddin Pirzada, Foundations of Pakisan: All India Muslim League Documents 1906-1947, Vol. II, Karachi, 1970.
  14. Resolutions of the All India Muslim League from May 1924 to December 1936, Delhi?, n.d., p. 59.
  15. Quoted by Syed Sharifuddin Pirzada, ‘Quaid-i-Azam and Islamic Solidarity’, Zahid Malik, ed., Re-Emerging Muslim World, Lahore, 1974, PP. 28-29.
  16. See. Ahmed op. cit., PP. 34-36.
  17. Resolutions of the All India Muslim League from October 1937 to December 1938, Delhi? 1944, Delhi? 1944, PP. 1-2. PP. 1-2.
  18. For details of the activities of the delegation see Chaudhuri Khaliquzzaman, Only if they know it? Karachi, 1965, PP. 15-18.
  19. Malik op. cit., p. 30.
  20. Resolutions of the All India Muslim League from December 1938 to March 1940, Delhi? N.d., p. 12.
  21. Ibid., P. 22.
  22. Ibid., P. 49.
  23. Malik, op. cit., P. 31.
  24. Resolutions of the All India Muslim league from May 1924 to December 1936, Delhi,? n.d., p. 21.
  25. Resolution of the All India Muslim League from March 1940 to April 1941, Delhi? n.d. p. 20.
  26. Resolution of the All India Muslim League from March 1941 to April 1942, Delhi?, n.d., P. 5.
  27. Resolution of the All India Muslim League from May 1943 to December 1943, Delhi,? n.d., PP. 29-30.
  28. Jamiluddin Ahmed, ed., Speeches and Writings of Mr. Jinnah Vol. II, Lahore, 1964, PP. 301-2.
  29. Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, Speeches as Governor General 1947-48, Karachi, n.d., P. 26.
  30. The information about the visit is based on author’s interview with Mr. Farooq, who accompanied Malik Feroz Khan as his Private Secretary.
  31. United Nations Special Committee on Palestine Report to the General Assembly Vol. I, New York, 1947, P. 42.
  32. U.N. Document No. A/AC-14/SR-7, 7 October 1947, P. 2.
  33. Ibid., P. 8.
  34. U.N. Document No. A/AC-14/SR-12, 13 October 1947, p. 6.
  35. U.N. Document No. A/AC-14/SR-30, 24 October 1947, P. 7.
  36. Year Book of the United Nations 1947-48, New York, 1949, pp. 237-38.
  37. Official Record of the Second Session of the General Assembly Ad Hoc Committee on the Palestinian Question, New York
  38. Ibid., P. 290.
  39. Ibid., P. 302.
  40. U.N. Document No. A/AC-14/SR-31, 24 November 1947, P. 4.
  41. Malik, op. cit., P. 32.
  42. Official record of the Second Special Session of the General Assembly Vol. II, New York, 1948, p. 51.
  43. Constituent Assembly (Legislature) Debates Vol. I, Karachi, P. 891.


Source:  World Scholars on Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
                Edited by: Ahmad Hasan Dani, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan 1979.

Extract from Biography of Sayyid Jama'at Ali Shah (rehmatullah alayh)

Quaid e Azam (left), Syed Jama'at Ali Shah (right) [May Allah Be Pleased with them Both]

Biography of Sayyid Jama'at Ali Shah (r.a)1841-1951 Part 20 Sirat Amir e Millat (r.a)

Pakistan Movement ( Tahreek e Pakistan ) 3.
Dinner in Kashmir for Quaid e Azam (r.a)

This was the last tour of Kashmir for Hazrat Sayyid Jama'at Ali Shah (r.a). Chauhdry Ghulam Abbas (r.a) was the leader of Muslim League in Kashmir and his disciple (Mureed). He invited Muhammad Ali Jinnah (r.a) to Kashmir. Hazrat Sahib was staying at the home of Dr. Abdul Ahad and asked him to invite Quid e Azam for a dinner on his behalf. Jinnah Sahib responded " Since both of us are visitors here, there is no need for dinner, I will come to meet you." Hazrat Sahib organized the dinner in a large hall which was attended by large number of guests and his fellow disciples (yaran e Tareeqat).Table clothes were spread on beautiful Persian carpets and at least 45 different dishes were prepared.,Quid e Azam arrived with Chaudhry Ghulam Abbas and Hazrat Sahib stood up to greet him.He refused to sit next to him and sat on the ground instead & stated " A person with lack of respect (Be Adab) never succeeds in his mission.My aim is to create Pakistan and therefore I do not want to be deprived of this honor." Quid e Azam used to eat very little. Hazrat Sahib insisted that he taste all the Kashmiri dishes. A special Kashmiri dish " Goshtaba " was served last. Quid e Azam enjoyed the dinner and commented " I want to steel this cook from you." Both discussed the strategy for independence of Pakistan . Hazrat Sahib gave him two flags , one green and other black and offered dua for the success of his mission." In an earlier conference at Lahore Quid e Azam stated "It is my faith that Pakistan will become a reality because Amir e Millat has said so and I am sure Allah Taala will make true the words uttered by him."

Hazrat Amir e Millat himself toured India to support Muslim League in 1946 elections and his message was " Give vote to Muslim League".Muslim League achieved great victory and Quid e Azam told Seth Mohammad Ali disciple of Hazrat Sahib in Bombay " This is all due to efforts and dua of your Pir".

Hazrat Sayyid Jam'at Ali Shah ( r.a ) wrote letter of congratulations to Quid e Azam which was published in "Jang " Karachi ,Yom e Pakistan Edition ,1970:

Quaid e Azam Sahib:
Assalam o Alaikum wa Rahmat'Allah wa Barakatu

"Last week I sent you message , congratulating you to make intension of performing Hajj.Now again I congratulate you on the success of Muslim League. Allah Taala selected you from millions of Indian Muslims for this honor.Despite strong opposition by five groups,Allah Taala granted you success.The opponents have spent millions to make Indian Muslims dogs of Gandhi as the Kashmiri say however they were disgraced and defeated .

Afreen bad bareen himmat mardana to--Ein kar az to ayed wa mardan chuneen kunad

In this message I also want to congratulate Nizam and people of Hyderabad Deccan for weighing you in gold because this honor only has been bestowed on Agha Khan and you since creation of Hazrat Adam ( alaihe as-Salam). Allah Taala selected you for this great honor from millions of Muslims.

Sayyed Jam'at Ali afi Allah unho (May Allah forgive me),
from Alipur Sayyidan,July 17,1946.

In another letter in English Hazrat explained to Quid e Azam rites of pilgrimage (Munasik e Hajj ) in detail. Quid e Azam replied on August 13,1946.

Dear Sayyid Jama'at Ali Shah Sahib:

Thank you for your letter of July 17th. As you know there are rapid political changes ocurring in India. It is difficult for me to leave India at this time.With Thanks.

Your Sincere,
M.A. Jinnah.

In response to congratulations on creation of Pakistan, Quid e Azam wrote on August 6,1947 :

10 Aurangzeb Road New Delhi
August 6 1947.

Dear Pir Sahib.

"Thank you for your duas and congratulations.I believe Muslims are very happy that after 200 years of colonial rule , they have established an independent and free Pakistan.I want also thank you for your kind gift parcel of peaches. "

With best wishes
Your Sincere
M.A. Jinnah

On the independence of Pakistan Hazrat Jama'at Ali Shah (r.a) sent messages of congratulations to Quid e Azam and other leaders. He wrote to Pir of Manki Sharif "Pir Sahib ! Pakistan is Independent. Our work is completed.Now it upto rulers to run the country"

He sent telegraph to Quid e Azam : " Mulk Geeri Asan Hay.Mulk Dari Mushkil Hay. Allah Taala Ap ko Mulk Dari ki Taufiq ata famaiy."

" It is easy to make a country but difficult to rule it. Allah Taala give you wisdom to rule the country"

Fearless Fighter of the Pakistan Movement:

Urdu Daily Newspaper' Nawa i Waqt' Lahore published an article titled " The Fearless Fighter of Pakistan Movement ( Tahreek e Pakistan Ka Nadar Mujahid ) in April 16,1970 issue " Ishat e Milli "

" Hazrat Amir e Millat Pir Jama'at Ali Shah Sahib (r.a) used to study any new movement in India with great insight . He would fight anti-Muslim movements with great courage without fear of then British Government. To make Muslims aware of importance and sanctity of mosques,he confronted Sikhs and British during Shaheed Ganj Movement . The nation honored him with the title of Amir e Millat (Leader of the Muslim Community).He challenged the Hindus during Shudi Movement and stopped their conversion of Muslims to Hinduism. He wanted Indian Muslims to understand their Islamic identity.He established many religious organizations & institutions to promote Shari'a of beloved Prophet saws. (Shariat e Mustafvi). Some of those organizations such as Anjuman Khudam as-Sufiya and Anjuman Islamia are still functioning.He supported the Lahore Resolution of 1940 and awakened Muslims to work for the success of Pakistan Movement . He worked tirelessly to make Quid e Azam's mission successful. Pir Sahib told his disciples (Mureeds) to take part in Pakistan Movement in whatsoever capacity they can, otherwise he will not offer their funeral prayers ( Namaz e Janaza ) ."

Jinnah in Retrospect

by Dr. Javaid Iqbal

The following excerpts are taken from the Legacy of Quaid-i-Azam by Javid Iqbal, the son of the poet-philosopher, Muhammad Iqbal, who was a friend and close associate of Jinnah, Javid Iqbal has published two other books in English, The Ideology of Pakistan (Lahore, 1959) and Stray Reflections (Lahore, 1961). The latter is an edition of some of his father’s notebooks.
Javid Iqbal was a member of Pakistan delegation to the United Nations from 1960-62, and at present he practices law in Lahore and teachers at the Law College. An inscription on the flyleaf of The Legacy of Quaid-i-Azam says that the book is an attempt to restate “the principle and ideals which Quaid-i-Azam left behind for Pakistanis. The need for reverting to the purity of the foundational principles usually arises when a people pass through a period of ideological decay and such principles are misinterpreted, twisted or distorted.” As this comment indicates, the interpretation of Jinnah’s attitude is still a matter of lively interest in contemporary Pakistan.

Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah The desire of the Muslims to order their lives in accordance with Islam had gradually led to the growth of Muslim nationalism, which, under the inspiring leadership of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, bifurcated the Indian nationalist movement and eventually resulted in the secession of Islam from India.

Quaid-i-Azam was the architect of Pakistan and consequently on its establishment became its first Governor-General. As the Governor-General of a newly born States, he had to tackle numerous problems, the most urgent being the settlement of the refugees and the restoration of a sense of a security and confidence among the non-Muslim minorities. He worked very hard and toured the country extensively calling upon the people to have faith, unity and discipline for they were going through fire and the sunshine had yet to come. He assured them that Pakistan had come to stay and that there was no power on earth which could undo it. But unfortunately he could not continue to retain the position of directing head of the young State for long. Thirteen months after the establishment of Pakistan, he passed away, leaving behind a legacy to Pakistanis in the form of principles and ideals.

In what sense did Quaid-i-Azam desire Pakistan to be an Islamic democracy? How much importance did he attach to the fundamental rights of the citizens? Did he want the Judiciary to be subservient to the Executive or independent of it? Did he expect Pakistan to have one man’s rule or one party government? Was he in favour of the system of indirect election or direct election?

Quaid-i-Azam was a lawyer by profession and had been brought up under the discipline of Rule of Law. He believed in Rule of Law rather than the rule of individuals. Consequently democracy was a matter of conviction with him. Although he had shown no preference for either the parliamentary or the presidential form of democracy, his mind was absolutely clear on such basic issues as: the government should be constituted by the directly elected representatives of the people the fundamental rights of the citizens should be guaranteed, and the judiciary should be independent of the executive.

With the frame of mind, Quaid-i-Azam had approached Islam and discovered to his satisfaction that Islamic democracy was founded on the very same principles which he had upheld throughout his life. He was indeed not an academic expert in Islam and therefore did not care to find out as to how and why the “ideal” in Islam had been destroyed by the historical “real”. His main concern was a re-statement of the principles of Islamic democracy and not of Islam in history.

Quaid-i-Azam was aware that through Islam the Prophet had accomplished a religio-political revolution in Arabia. The tribes were united and the Arab emerged as a single community. (Umma). The Prophet was the leader (Imam) of the revolution, and in his person were combined a legislator, an administrator, a judge, and a military commander. He was the Prophet, he led the congregational prayers and was the supreme authority in matters connected with religion and law. Nevertheless in the affairs of the State he consulted the Companions (who formed an informal Senate) according to the Quranic injunctions: “And those who respond to their Lord and keep up prayer, and their rule is to take counsel among themselves”: and: “Therefore, forgive and ask for pardon for them and consult them in the affairs.” (42; verse 38 and 3; verse 159.) The Prophet is reported to have said: “Difference of opinion in my community is (the manifestation of Divine) Mercy”; and that “My community would never agree on an error.”

Paying tribute to the Prophet, in his address to the Bar Association, Karachi on 25th January, 1948, Quaid-i-Azam said:

Thirteen hundred years ago he laid the foundation of democracy…The prophet was a great teacher. He was a great law giver. He was a great statesman and he was a great sovereign who ruled. No doubt, there are many people who do not quite appreciate when we talk of Islam. Islam is not only a set of rituals, traditions and spiritual doctrines. Islam is also a code for every Muslim which regulates his life and his conduct in even politics and economics and the like. It is based on the highest principles of honour, integrity, fair-play and justice for all. One God and the equality of man is one of the fundamental principles of Islam. In Islam there is no difference between man and man. The qualities of equality, liberty and fraternity are the fundamental principles of Islam.

Explaining the principles of Islamic democracy in his speech at Sibi Durbar on 14th February, 1948, he said:

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 shall be guided by discussions and consultations.”

It is unanimously held by the Muslim jurists that the elections, nomination, designation or appointment of the Khalifah by a single eminent member or a restricted number of eminent members or the community was legally validated or confirmed only when the entire community had sworn allegiance to him, and it was only then that he was considered to have held his office by the approval of God. In the early practice of Islam, undoubtedly such validation or confirmation was secured in the form of acquiescence; but in those days the eminent members who elected nominated or designated the Khalifah were the Companions of the Prophet in whom the community repose confidence and trust. However, after the abolition of the Caliphate, the principle of Islamic democracy derived from this Consensus by the contemporary Muslim thinkers was that the government should be constituted by the directly elected representatives of the people. Accordingly it was maintained by Iqbal that the formation of legislative assemblies in Muslim countries were a return to the original purity of Islam and Quaid-i-Azam was not only familiar with the view-point but upheld the same in his recorded broadcast on Pakistan to the people of the United States of America (February, 1948). He said;

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 democratic type, embodying the essential principles of Islam. Today, thay are as applicable in actual life as they were 1,300 year 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 framers of the future Constitution of Pakistan.

Earlier on 25th January, 1948, while addressing the Karachi Bar Association, he had said:

What reason is there for anyone to fear democracy, equality, freedom on the highest standard of integrity and on the basis of fair-play and justice for everybody….Let us make it (the future Constitution of Pakistan). We shall make it and we will show it to the world.

Quaid-i-Azam genuinely believed that democracy was the blood of Mussalmans because they believed in fraternity, equality and liberty. (Address: Muslim League Branch in Great Britain, London 14th December 1946.) In his broadcast talk to the people of Australia recorded on 19th February, 1948, he proclaimed:

The great majority of us are Muslims. We follow the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (may peace be on him). We are members of the brotherhood of Islam in which all are equal in rights, dignity and self-respect. Consequently, we have a special and very deep sense of unity. But make no mistake: 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.

In a Press Conference held in New Delhi on 4th July, 1947, Quaid-i-Azam answered certain questions which were put to him regarding the nature of the State of Pakistan:

Q: Will Pakistan be secular or theocratic state?

Mr. M.A.J: You are asking me a question that is absurd. I do not know what a theocratic state means.

(A correspondent suggested that a theocratic state meant a state where only people of a particular religion, for example, Muslim could be full citizens and non-Muslims would not be full citizens).

Mr. M.A.J.: Then it seems to me that what I have already said is like throwing water on duck’s back (laughter). When you talk democracy, I am afraid, you have not studied Islam. We learnt democracy thirteen centuries ago.

It is generally accepted that the Fundamental Rights of the citizens were guaranteed in written form, for the first time, under the Constitution of the United States of America. But like the contemporary Muslim thinkers, Quaid-i-Azam believed that the fundamental inalienable and residual rights of Man were guaranteed in written form, under the Quran, long before the United States Constitution was conceived, long before the American constituent was discovered; nay, even long before the modern Western civilization was born.

The Quranic Rights guaranteed to Man were the basic principles of Islamic democracy. They could not be obscured or eradicated by any mortal power because they constituted the Spoken Word of God.

The following basic rights of Man can be directly traced from the Quran and the Sunna (Practice of the Prophet).

Equality of All Citizens Before Law as well as
Equality of Status and Opportunity

O Manknid; Be careful of your duty to your Lord who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate and spread from these two many men and women. (4; verse 1.) Lo! Pharaoh exalted himself in the earth and divided its people into castes. A group among them he oppressed, killing their sons and sparing their women. Lo! He was of those who work corruption. (28; verse 4).

There is no compulsion in the matter of religion. (2; verse 256).

And if thy Lord had pleased, all those who are in the earth would have believed, all of them. Wilt thou then force men till they are believers? (10; verse 99.)

Had Allah willed, idolaters had not been idolatrous. We have not set thee as a keeper over them, nor art thou responsible for them. (6; verse 108.)

And argue not with the People of the Book unless it be in a way that is fair, save with such of them as do wrong; and say; We believe in that which hath been revealed unto us and revealed unto you; our God and your God is One, and unto Him we surrender. (29; verse 46).

If God had not raised a group (Muslims) to ward off the others from aggression, churches, synagogues, oratories and mosques where God is worshipped most, would have been destroyed. (22; verse 40.)

The Right to Life

And slay not the life which Allah hath forbidden save for justice. (17; verse 33).

The Right to Prosperity

And eat not up your property among yourselves in vanity, nor seek by it to gain the hearing of the judges that ye may knowingly devour a portion of the property of others wrongfully. (2; verse 188).

No One is to Suffer for the Wrongs of Another

Each soul earneth on its own account, nor doth any laden bear another’s load. (6; verse 165.)

Whosoever goeth right, it is only for the good of his own soul that he goeth right, and whosoever erreth, erreth only to its hurt. No laden soul can bear another’s load. (17; verse 15.)

That no laden one shall bear the burden of another (53; verse 38.)

Freedom of Person

Inferred from the Sunna by Imam Khattabi and Imam Abu Yusuf. A tradition is reported by Abu Daud to the effect that some persons were arrested on suspicion in Madina in the times of the Prophet. Subsequently, while the Prophet was delivering the Friday sermon (Khutba), a Companion enquired of him as to why and on what grounds had these persons been arrested. The Prophet maintained silence while the question was repeated twice, thus giving an opportunity to the prosecutor, who was present there, to explain the position. When the question was put for the third time and it again failed to elicit a reply from the prosecutor, the Prophet ordered that those persons should be released. On the basis of this tradition, Imam Khattabi argues in his M’alim-al-Sunnan that Islam recognizes only two kinds of detention: (a) Under the orders of the Court, and (b) For the purposes of investigation.

There is no other ground on which a person could be deprived of his freedom. Imam Abu Yusuf maintains in his Kitab-al-Kharaj, on the authority of the same Tradition, that no one can be imprisoned on false or unproved charges. Caliph Umar is reported to have said: “In Islam no one can be imprisoned without due course of Justice.” (Imam Malik’s Muwatta.)

Freedom of Opinion

Allah loveth not the utterance of harsh speech save by one who hath been wronged. (4; verse 148.)

Those of the children of Israel who went astray were cursed by the tongue of David, and the Jesus, son of Mary. That was because they rebelled and used to transgress.

They restrained not one another from the wickedness they did. Verily evil was that they used to do (5; verse 78-79).

And when they forgot that whereof they has been reminded. We rescued those who forbade wrong, and visited those who did wrong with dreadful punishment because they were evil-livers (7; verse 165.)

Ye are the best community that hath been raised up for mankind. Ye enjoin right and forbid wrong. (3; verse 110).

Freedom of Movement

It is He who has made the earth manageable for you, so travel ye through its tracts and enjoy of the sustenance which He furnishes; but unto Him is the Resurrection. (67; verse 15.)

Freedom of Association

And let there be formed of you a community inviting to good, urging what is reputable and restraining from what is disreputable. (3; verse 104).

The Right to Privacy

O ye who believe! Enter not house other than your own without first announcing your presence and invoking peace upon the folk thereof. That is better for you, that ye may be heedful.

And if ye find no one therein, still enter not until permission hath been given. And if it be said unto you: Go away again, then go away, for it is purer for you. Allah knoweth what ye do. (24; verse 27-28).

Any spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of your love to eat the flesh of his dead brother? Ye abhor that so abhor the other! (49; verse 12.)

The Rights to Secure Basic Necessities of Life

And let not those who hoard up that which God has bestowed upon them of His bounty think that it is better for them. Nay, it is worst for them. That which they hoard will be their halter on the Day of Resurrection (3; verse 180).

And in the wealth of the haves there is due share of the have-nots. (51; verse 19.)

The Right to Reputation

Neither defame one another, nor insult one another by nicknames. But is the name of lewdness after faith.

O ye who believe! Shun much suspicion; for lo! Some suspicion is a crime. (49; verse11-12).

And those who malign believing men and believing women undeservedly, they bear the guilt of slander and manifest sin. (33; verse 58).

The Right to a Hearing

Inferred from the Sunna. The Prophet sent Ali to Yeman and grave him the following direction: “You are not to take decision unless you have heard the second party in the same way as you have heart the first.”

The Right to Decision in Accordance with Proper Judicial Procedure

O ye who believe! If an evil-liver bring you news, verify it, lest you smite some folk in ignorance and afterward repent of what ye did. (49; verse 6).

O man, follow not that whereof thou hast no knowledge. (17; verse 36).

Lo! Allah commandeth you that ye restore deposits to their owners, and, if ye judge between mankind, that ye judge justly. (4; verse 58).

Quaid-i-Azam was aware of these Quranic Rights although he attached more importance to the rights of equality and liberty, and the freedom of religion. In respect of the right of equality, he was obviously aware of the Quranic verse: “O Mankind; Be careful of your duty to your Lord who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate and spread from these two many men and women.” (4; verse 1.) Regarding the freedom of religion, he was acquainted with such Quranic verses as:

“There is no compulsion in the matter of religion”; and: “And if thy Lord had pleased, all those who are in the earth would have believed, all of them. Wilt thou then force men till they are believers?” (2; verse 156. 10; verse 99.) About tolerance and protection of the non-Muslims religious communities, he was familiar with the Quranic injunction; “If God had not raised a group (Muslims) to ward off the others from aggression, churches, synagogues, oratories and mosques where God is worshipped most, would have been destroyed.” (222; verse 40.) Therefore, he knew that the God of Islam enjoined not only tolerance of all the religions other than Islam but the Muslims were obliged to defend the places of worship of the non-Muslims under their protection.

According to the Quaid-i-Azam, the demand and struggle for Pakistan had ensured mainly because there was a danger of denied of these fundamental human rights in the Indian sub-continent. In his speech at Chittagong on 26th March, 1948, he stated clearly.

You are only voicing my sentiments and the sentiments of millions of Mussalmans when you say that Pakistan should be based on sure foundations of social justice and Islamic socialism which emphasize equality and brotherhood of man. Similarly you are voicing my thoughts in asking and in aspiring for equal opportunities for all. These targets of progress are not controversial in Pakistan, we struggled for it, we achieved it so that physically as wel as spiritually we are free to conduct our affairs according to our traditions and genius. Brotherhood, equality and fraternity of man – these are all the basic points of our religion, culture and civilisation. And we fought for Pakistan because there was a danger of denial of these human rights in this sub-continent.

In a speech at the University Stadium, Lahore on 30th October, 1947, he said:

The tenets of Islam enjoin on every Musalman to give protection to his neighbours and to the minorities regardless of castle and creed…. And 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 peace without.

Earlier on 11th August, 1947, in his Presidential Address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, he had proclaimed:

You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other places 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….We are starting in the days when there is no discrimination between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State.

….Now, I think we should keep that in front of us as our ideal and you will find that in the 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.

Although in his Presidential Address. Quaid-i-Azam had illustrated two fundamental principles of Islamic democracy, namely, equality and freedom of personal faith, a campaign was started against him by his enemies to the effect that he was a nationalist and that he would make Pakistan a secular state. He was very distressed as it appears from the following interview reported in the Press on 25th January, 1948:

M.A. Jinnah said that “he could not understand a section of the people who deliberately wanted to create mischief and made propaganda that the Constitution of Pakistan would not be made on the basis of Shariat….” The Governor-General of Pakistan said that he would like to tell those who are misled – “Some are misled by propaganda” – that not only the Muslims but also the non-Muslims having nothing to fear.

Quaid-i-Azam obviously stood for a strong, independent and irreproachable judiciary because human rights could not be protected and enforced without such a judiciary. In this respect also he followed one of the basis principles of Islamic democracy, namely, the traditional independence of the Qaza (judiciary). The Qaza had existed as an independent institution in Islamic polity since the times of the Prophet. In the later centuries, the Qazis (Judges) came to be regarded as the “Successors of the Prophet” because they interpreted and enforced the Law of God. Once a Qazi was appointed, he became entirely independent from the executive, so much so that even the Head of the State could be summoned and tried in his Court. Everyone came under the Rule of God’s Law, including the Head of the State. And in case the Executive Head issued an ordinance was declared null and void by the Qazi. Undoubtedly many Qazis suffered for their integrity and independence at the hands of autocratic and tyrannical rulers, but the principle of supremacy of God’s Law was upheld at all costs.

Throughout his life, Quaid-i-Azam believed that the law courts alone should decide the question of a citizen’s rights. He always found against any move the object of which was to make the judiciary subservient to the executive, or to grant arbitrary powers regarding the liberty of a citizen to the executive.

On 19th September, 1948, attacking the Press Act, 1910, he said:

Sir, this Act has the defeat of all measures which do not come under the purview of judicial supervision, because it is a measure which has got to be administered by the Executive…The Act has been administered in a most arbitrary manner, and you cannot prevent it, you cannot avoid it, because you must remember that we are all human beings and when such arbitrary powers are given to Heads of Departments and Executive Officers, it must be remembered that they are human, they have got likes and dislikes and they have their prejudices.

Opposing the Rowlatt Bill in the Legislative Council on 6th February, 1919, he demanded:

I am a firm believer – I do not care how many Rowlatt Committees will decide and recommend – I am a firm believer that no man’s liberty should be taken away for a single minute without a proper judicial inquiry.

In the same speech he further observed:

It is obvious that his measures is of a most serious character. It is dangerous. It imperils the liberty of a citizens and, my Lord, standing here as I do, I say that no man who love fair-play, who loves justice and who believes in the freedom and liberty of the people can possibly give his consent to a measure of his character.

On 23rd March, 1925, opposing the Bengal Criminal Law Amendment Supplementary Bill, he declared:

What is your ground? Your ground is a petty ground that a few lives are in danger of being shot at…a few lives of officials are endangered; they may be shot at or shot down. Now I ask a simple question, Sir, of myself and my answer is that If I were an official and if I felt that my life was in danger and I was going to be shot down, even like a dog, I should never be a party to a measure which will endanger the life and liberty of the innocent population as this measure undoubtedly does…. But rather I would stand to be shot down by the wicked gang, than give power to the Executive and the Police which can be abused and has been abused in the past.

Again on 28th January, 1925, speaking in the Central Legislative, he said:

My liberty should not be taken away without a judicial trial in a proper court where I have all the rights to defend myself. Under this Ordinance, if I were a citizen of Calcutta, I should have to transfer my allegiance to Mr. Tegart, the Commissioner, because he is the only man who can give me protection and not His Majesty’s High Court or His Majesty’s Courts.

It was with this mental background that in the course of clarifying various aspects of Pakistan, he explained in an interview to the representative of Associated Press of America on 8th November, 1945.

The theory of Pakistan guarantees that federated units of the National Government would have all the autonomy that you will find in the Constitution of the United States of America, Canada and Australia. But certain vital powers will remain vested in the Central Government such as the monetary system, national defence and other federal responsibilities. Each federal state or province would have its own legislative, executive and judicial systems, each of the three branches of Government being constitutionally separate.

Quaid-i-Azam was indeed a firm believer in a strong Centre. But he was, at the time, aware of the lesson of Islamic history that the Centre which gained its strength through the force of a strong man was doomed to collapse and perish on the removal of the strong man. Therefore, he firmly believed that the source of the strength of the Centre should be the will of the people. Accordingly he was opposed to one man’s rule or one party government in Pakistan, as it is clear from the reports of his interview to the representative of Associated Press of America dated 8th November, 1945: “Mr. Jinnah said that he did not expect that Pakistan would have one party government and that he would oppose one party rule. ‘An opposition party or parties are good correctives for any party which is in power, ‘he said.”

According to Quaid-i-Azam, the will of the people could be ascertained only through the system of direct election. In other words, it was only through direct election that right and proper men could be taken as the representatives of the people.

In 1931, Lord Peel had maintained that the “natives” of India was illiterate and they were incapable of electing proper representatives for the Central Legislature. He regarded the system of direct election as unsuitable and dangerous for India, and instead, recommended the adoption of the system of indirect election for the election of the representatives of the Lower House. Lord Lothian, approving the scheme, argued that the election of the representatives of the Lower House by indirect election did not mean that they would not be the representative of the people. Lord Reading, however, suggested that the matter should be referred to a Commission. But Quaid-i-Azam vehemently opposed the adoption of indirect system of election. The following discussion ensued on 2nd January, 1931, in the subcommittee which was considering this question:

Mr. Jinnah: I have all along understood the point which Lord Lothian has just put before us. I quite appreciate that the election of the representatives to the Lower House by indirect election does not mean that they will not be the representatives of the people or the nation. We have had that system in India. As a matter of fact, we had that system for our provincial bodies in the old days, and so we have tried it and had experience of it; and it is not my opinion only, but the general opinion that it has been found wanting.

Lord Lothian: What was the size of the electorate, may I ask?

Mr. Jinnah: We had electoral colleges.

Lord Lothian: Yes, but what was the number of the electorate?

Mr. Jinnah: I could not give you that.

Lord Lothian: But that is the point, surely?

Mr. Jinnah: It did not give us satisfaction; we did not get the right men as our representatives. It was found wanting, and therefore, we had to change that system, even with regard to our local legislatures… The representatives must be elected, in our judgment, by direct election. As it is, the franchise is very high and the number of electors very limited, and therefore, Sir, I am not satisfied that any useful purpose would be served by adopting the suggestion of Lord Reading to refer the matter to a Commission, and I agree entirely with Lord Peel that this is a question of principle, or at any rate a question which much be determined by this sub-Committee and by Plenary Conference; I agree with him there. But while I agree with Lord Peel on that point, I totally disagree with him as to his other conclusions. After listening very carefully to his forcible arguments, I am not satisfied at all that he has made out a case that there will be any such danger as he apprehends in a system of direct election. I think that is more the fear of a conservative mind, which naturally dreads democracy.

Yes, indeed, Quaid-i-Azam definitely differed from such conservative minds which dreaded democracy. It was precisely for this reason that he upheld the principles of Islamic democracy.

It has already been pointed out that according to Quaid-i-Azam, the basic principles of Islamic democracy are equality of man, freedom of private faith, and justice and fair-play to every one without distinction and discrimination. God had command the Muslims to be just and equitable. He says in the quran: “O you who believe: be maintainer of justice, bearers of witness for God’s sake, though it may be against your own selves, or (your) parents or near relatives; if he be rich or poor, God is most competent (to deal) with them both; therefore do not follow (your) low desires, lest you deviate; and if you swerve or turn aside, then surely God is aware of what you do.” (4; verse 135).

Islamic state can obviously not be a theocracy because there is no priesthood in Islam. Muslims are forbidden to renounce the world and Islam lays down principles as to how they should conduct themselves in their worldly life. Therefore, in the words of Quaid-i-Azam, Islam is not only a set of spiritual doctrines but a code which regulates the life and conduct of a Muslim even in politics and economics and the like.

There exists a unanimity among the Muslim jurists of the past regarding the distinction between a secular state and an Islamic State. According to this Consensus, the secular state is founded on principles derived through human reasoning, and therefore, it promotes the material advancement and welfare of its citizens only in this world. On the other hand, the Islamic state is based on principles derived through Revealed Law, and therefore, it promotes the material advancement and welfare of its citizens not only in this world, but also prepares its Muslim citizens for the Hereafter through promoting their spiritual advancement and welfare. In other words, the Islamic state embraces the qualities of an ideal secular state, but in addition to it, endeavours to promote the spiritual advancement and welfare of its Muslim citizens. It was precisely in this sense that Quaid-i-Azam desired Pakistan to be an Islamic democracy – a democracy embracing the qualities of an ideal secular democratic state and at the same time endeavouring to promote the spiritual advancement and welfare of its Muslim citizens.

What were Quaid-i-Azam’s views regarding the development of commerce and industry? Was he a supporter of the Western economic theory and practice or did he advocate the adoption of socialization based on the Islamic concepts of equality and social justice?

Quaid-i-Azam was the first to proclaim that Pakistan would be based on the foundations of social justice and Islamic socialism which emphasized equality and brotherhood of man. (Chittagong speech, 26th March, 1948.) Therefore, he had aspired to do away with the obvious manifestations of gross inequality through making Pakistan a Welfare state. He was indeed aware that Islam regarded private ownership as a sacred trust. However, he was also conscious that according to Islam the social rank of an individual was not determined by the amount of wealth he owned, but by the kind of life he lived. Islam recognized the worth of the individual, but at the same time, it disciplined him to give away his all to the service of God and man. It was precisely for this reason that he had rejected the Western economic theory and practice. In his speech at the opening ceremony of the State Bank of Pakistan on 1st July, 1948, he declared:

The economic system of the West has created almost insoluble problems for humanity and to many of us it appears that only a miracle can save it from disaster that is now facing the world. It has failed to do justice between man and man, and to eradicate friction from the international field. On the contrary, it was largely responsible for the two world wars in the last half century. The Western world, in spite of its advantage of mechanization and industrial efficiency is today in a worse mess than ever before in history. The adoption of Western economic theory and practice will not help us in achieving our goal of creating a happy and contented people. We must work our destiny in our own way and present to the world an economic system based on true Islamic concepts of equality of man and social justice. We will thereby be fulfilling our mission as Muslims and giving to humanity the message of peace which alone can save it and secure the welfare, happiness and prosperity of mankind.

According to him, Pakistan must develop industrial potential side by side with its agriculture and give its economy an industrial bias. In respect of commerce and trade, he preached that the traders of Pakistan must maintain the Islamic standards of honesty and integrity while dealing with others. In his address to the Karachi Chamber of Commerce, on 27th April, 1948, he said:

Commerce and trade are the very life-blood of the nation. I can no more visualize a Pakistan without traders than I can one without cultivators or civil servants…

Commerce….is more international than culture and it behoves you to behave in such a way that the power and prestige of Pakistan gain added strength from every act of yours.

In the same speech, he declared:

I would like to call your particular attention to the keen desire of the Government of Pakistan to associate individual initiative and private enterprise at every stage of industrialization. The number of industries Government have reserved for management by themselves consists of Arms and Munitions of War, generation of Hydro Power and manufacture of Railway Wagons, Telephones, Telegraph and Wireless apparatus. All other industrial activity is left open to private enterprise which would be given every facility a Government can give for the establishment and development of industry. Government will seek to create conditions in which industry and trade may develop and prosper by undertaking surveys of Pakistan’s considerable sources of minerals, schemes for the development of country’s water and power sources, plans for the improvements of transport services and the establishment of the ports and an Industrial Finance Corporation. Just as Pakistan is agriculturally the most advanced country in the continent of Asia…I am confident that if it makes the fullest and the best use of its considerable agricultural wealth in the building up of her industries, it will, with the traditions of craftsmanship for which her people are so well known as with their ability to adjust themselves to new techniques, soon make its mark in the industrial field.

He always insisted on the industrialists to provide for residential accommodation and other amenities for the workers when planning their factories. On the occasion of laying the foundation-stone of the buildings of textile mill on 26th September, 1947, he said:

By industrializing our State, we shall decrease our dependence on the outside world for necessities of life, we will give more employment to our people and will also increase the resources of the State…I hope in planning your factory, you have provided for proper residential accommodation and other amenities for the workers, for no industry can thrive without contented labour.

But in spite of the above statements, Quaid-i-Azam was for the socialization of certain industries and public utilities. Clarifying various aspects of Pakistan in an interview to the representative of Associated Press of America on 8th November, 1945, he had said:

You are asking me to interpret what the Government will do. But personally I believe that in these modern days essential key industries ought to be controlled and managed by the State. That applies also to certain public utilities. But what is a key industry and what is a utility service are matters for the law-makers to say, not for me.

In short, the principle laid down by Quaid-i-Azam was that Pakistan must achieve a balance between private enterprise and State control industries and public utilities, but he left it to the National Assembly to decide as to which industries and public utilities ought to be controlled and managed by the State and which by private enterprise.

According to him, what were the requisites of national consolidation? Was he for or against the emancipation of Muslim women?

Islam has acted as a nation-building force in the Indian sub-continent, and its was on the basis of “Two nation” theory that Quaid-i-Azam had demanded, struggled for and achieved Pakistan as the homeland of the Muslims. The basis of nationalism in Pakistan, therefore, could only be Islam – particularly when the Muslims of Pakistan descended from different racial stock, spoke different languages and were geographically non-contiguous. Hence, in order to secure national consolidation, Quaid-i-Azam felt that the barriers of regionalism, provincialism, sectarianism and tribalism must be demolished. At a public meeting in Dacca, held on 21st March, 1948, be warned:

As long as you do not know off this poison (provincialism) in our body politic, you will never be able to wield yourself, mould yourself, galvanise yourself into a real true nation. What we want is not to talk about Bengali, Punjabi, Sindhi, Baluchi, Pathan and so on. They are of course units. But I ask you: have you forgotten the lesson that was taught to us thirteen hundred years ago? If I may point you, you are all outsiders here. Who were the original inhabitants of Bengal – not those who are now living. So what is the use of saying “we are Bengalis, or Sindhis, or Pathans, or Punjabis.” No, we are Muslims. Islam has taught us this, and I think you will agree with me that whatever else you may be and whatever you are, you are a Muslim. You belong to a Nation now; you have now carved out a territory, vast territory, it is all yours; it does not belong to a Punjabi, or a Sindhi, or a Pathan, or a Bengali; it is yours; you have got your Central Government where several units are represented. Therefore, if you want to build up yourself into a Nation, for God’s sake give up this provincialism. Provincialism has been one of the curses and so in sectionalism Shia, Sunni etc.

Quaid-i-Azam obviously desired that the Pakistanis should demolish the barriers which hindered their development as a single nation. It was with this object in view that he wanted Pakistan to have Urdu as its State language. At the same public meeting in Dacca he declared:

Ultimately it is for you, the people of this province, to decide what shall be the language of your province. But let me make it clear to you that the State language of Pakistan is going to be Urdu and no other language. Anyone who tries to mislead you is really the enemy of Pakistan. Without one State language no nation can remain tied up solidly together and function.

He was aware that there were countries in the world which had two State language; but all such countries were geographically contiguous. Therefore, is spite of two State languages, they remained tied up solidly and functioned. Pakistan, however, was geographically non-contiguous, and in addition to it, was an ideological State. It had to have, according to him, only one State language. On 24th March, 1948, at the Dacca University Convocation, he again proclaimed: “There can be only one State language, if the component parts of this State are to march forward in unison, and the language, in my opinion, can only be Urdu.”

It was also necessary for national consolidation that the Muslim women should work side by side with men. In a speech at the Jinnah Islamia College for Girls, Lahore. On 22nd November 1942, he said: “If Muslim women support their men, as they did in the days of the Prophet of Islam, we should soon realize our goal.”

He preached to the Muslims to emancipate their women. Addressing the Muslim University Muslim League meeting at Aligarh on 10th March, 1944, he said:

Another very important matter which I wish to impress on you is that no nation can rise to the heights of glory unless your women are side by side with you. It is a crime against humanity that our women are shut up within the four walls of the houses as prisoners. I do not mean that we should imitate the evils of Western life. But let us try to raise the status of our women according to our own Islamic ideas and standards. There is no saction anywhere for the deplorable conditions in which our women have to live. You should take your women along with you as comrades in every sphere of live avoiding the corrupt practices of Western society. You cannot expect a woman who is herself ignorant to bring up your children properly. The woman has the power to bring up children on right lines. Let us not throw away this asset.

What changes did he want to see in the system of education?

Quaid-i-Azam was aware that under the political subjugation and servitude of the British, the character of the Muslims as a nation had been completely destroyed. They had lost respect for piety, for character, for knowledge or even for wealth, and were taught to respect nothing but power. A people with slavish mentality naturally respect power because they dread it. But a free nation can only achieve greatness if it possesses the strength of character.

Hence Quaid-i-Azam desired that the educational policy of Pakistan should be brought on the lines suited to the genius of the nation, consonant with its history and culture, and having regard to the modern needs and requirements, and vast developments that had taken place over the world. He told the students at Dacca University Convocation on 24th March, 1948 that there was no shame in doing manual work and labour for the building up of Pakistan.

In a message of All-Pakistan Educational Conference held at Karachi on 27th November, 1947, he worte [sic]:

Education does not merely mean academic education, and even that appears to be of a very poor type. What we have to do is to mobilze our people and build up the character of our future generations. There is immediate and urgent need for training our people in the scientific and technical education in order to build up our future economic life, and we should see that our people undertake scientific commerce, trade and particularly, well-planned industries. But we do not forget that we have to compete with the world which is moving very fast in this direction. Also I must emphasize that greater attention should be paid to technical and vocational education. In short, we have to build up the character of our future [sic] generations which means highest sense of honour, integrity, selfless service to the nation, and sense of responsibility, and we have to see that they are fully qualified and equipped to play their part in the various branches of economic life in a manner which will do honour to Pakistan.

What ideals did he set before the services?


The British had organised the administrative and Police services in accordance with the colonial services’ principle, i.e., the officers should regard themselves [sic] as belonging to the ruling class and therefore they should remain detached and aloof from the common people, with the result that they developed a sense of social superiority bordering on arrogance. They constituted a bureaucracy that ruled and was feared and respected.

Quaid-i-Azam wanted to change this mentality. Accordingly he set three ideals before the officers: First, that they should regard themselves as servants of the people and believe in “service” as their ideal; second, that they should be just and impartial in dealing with the people; and third, that they should not accept political pressure under any circumstances because it eventually led to corruption, bribery, favouritism and nepotism.

Addressing the Gazetted Offices at Chittagong on 25th March, 1948, he declared:

Those days have gone when the country was ruled by the bureaucracy. It is the people’s Government, responsible to the people…. Now that freezing atmosphere must go; that impression of arrogance must go; that impression that you are rulers must go and you must do your best with all courtesy and kindness to try to understand the people.

In the same speech he said:

Wipe off the past reputation; you are not rulers. You do not belong to the ruling class; you belong to the servants. Make the people feel that you are their servants and friends maintain the highest standard of honour, integrity, justice and fair-play.

He again emphasized in the saem speech:

You must do your duty as servants; you are not concerned with this political or that political party; that is not your business…You are civil servants, Whichever get the majority will form the Government and your duty is to serve that Government for the time being as servants not as politicians. How will you do that? The Government in power for the time being must also realize and understand their responsibilities that you are not to be used for this party or that. I know we are saddled with old legacy, old mentality, old psychology and it haunts our foot-steps, but it is up to you now to act as true servant of the people.

He told the Civil Officers at Government House, Peshawar on 14th April ,1948.

You may even be put to trouble not because you are doing anything wrong but because you are doing right. Sacrifices have to be made and I appeal to you, if need be, to come forward and make the sacrifice and face the position of being put on the blacklist or being otherwise worried or troubled.

….It is you who can give us the opportunity to create a powerful machinery which will give you a complete sense of security.


Quaid-i-Azam also addressed the Military Officers frequently and set before them the ideals of faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty. Addressing the Officers and Men of the 5th Heavy Ack Ack and 6th Light Ack Ack Regiments in Malir on 21st February, 1948, he said:

Nature’s inexorable law is “the survival [sic] of the fittest” and we have to prove ourselves fit for our newly won freedom. You have fought many a battle on the far flung battlefield 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 mankind 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.

According to him, the Defence Forces’ responsibilities included the study of the Constitution and obedience to the commands and orders which had the sanction of the Executive Head. In his address to the Officers of the Staff College, Quetta on 14th June, 1948, he pointed out:

One thing more, I am persuaded to say this because during my talks with one or two very high-ranking officers I discovered that they did not know the Implication of the Oath taken by the troops of Pakistan. Of course, an oath is only a matter of form; what is more important is the true spirit and the heart. But it is important form and I would like to take the opportunity of refreshing your memory by reading the prescribed oath to you: “I solemnly affirm, in the presence of Almighty God, that I owe allegiance to the Constitution and the Dominion of Pakistan (mark the words Constitution and the Government of the Dominion of Pakistan) and that I will as in duty bound honestly and faithfully serve in the Dominion of Pakistan forces and go within the terms of my enrolment wherever I may be ordered by air, land or sea and that I will observe and obey all commands of my officer set over me….”

As I have said just now the spirit is what really matters. I should like you to study the Constitution which is in force in Pakistan at present and understand its true constitutional and legal implication when you say that you will be faithful to the Constitution of the Dominion. I want you to remember and if you have time enough you should study the Government of India Act, as adopted for use in Pakistan, which is our present Constitution, that the executive authority flows from the Head of the Government of Pakistan, who is the Governor-General and therefore, any command or orders that may come to you cannot come without the sanction of the Executive Head. This is the legal position.


The legacy of Quaid-i-Azam is undoubtedly precious. But is depends upon the legatees to make the best use of this treasure of principles and ideals.

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