Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah
Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah was born at Karachi on December 25, 1876. He was a lawyer and politician who fought for the cause of India’s independence from Britain, then moved on to found a Muslim state in Pakistan in 1947. Jinnah entered politics in India in 1905 and by 1917 his charisma and diplomacy had made him a national leader and the most visible supporter of Hindu-Muslim unity. His strong belief in gradual and peaceful change was in contrast to the civil disobedience strategies of Mohandas Gandhi, and in the ’30s Jinnah broke from the Indian National Congress to focus on an independent Muslim state. In 1940 he demanded a separate nation in Pakistan and by 1947 he managed to get it from the British and India. Through civil wars, a rotten economy and millions of displaced refugees, Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah (“the great leader”) pretty much built a country from scratch.
For more information visit Muhammad Ali Jinnah Website
Dr. Allama Muhammad Iqbal
Poet, Philosopher, and Political Leader
Alama Mohammad Iqbal was born at Sialkot on November 9, 1877 and studied at Government College, Lahore, Cambridge, and the Univ. of Munich, and then he taught philosophy at Government College and practiced law. He was elected (1927) to the Punjab provincial legislature and served (1930) as president of the Muslim League. A staunch advocate of Indian nationalism, he became a supporter of an independent homeland for India’s Muslims and he is regarded as the spiritual founder of Pakistan. Iqbal was the foremost Muslim thinker of his period, and in his many volumes of poetry (written in Urdu and Persian) and essays, he urged a regeneration of Islam through the love of God and the active development of the self.
He was a firm believer in freedom and the creative force that freedom can exert on men. He was knighted in 1922. His works include The Secrets of the Self (1915, tr. 1940), and Javid-nama (1934, tr. 1966).
For more information visit Allama Muhammad Iqbal Website
Shaheed-e-Millat Khan Liaquat Ali Khan
Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan, the second son of Nawab Rustam Ali Khan, was born on October 1, 1896, in a Madal Pathan (Nausherwan) family. He graduated in 1918 from M. A. O. College, Aligarh. After his graduation, he was offered a job in the Indian Civil Services, but he rejected the offer on the plea that he wanted to serve his nation. He married his cousin, Jehangira Begum in 1918. After his marriage, he went to London for higher education. In 1921, he obtained a Degree in Law from Oxford and was called to Bar at Inner Temple in 1922.
On his return from England in 1923, Liaquat Ali Khan decided to enter politics with the objective of liberating his homeland from the foreign yoke. Right from the very beginning, he was determined to eradicate the injustices and ill treatment meted out to the Indian Muslims by the British.
In his early life, Liaquat Ali, like most of the Muslim leaders of his time, believed in Indian Nationalism. But his views gradually changed. The Congress leaders invited him to join their party, but he refused and joined the Muslim League in 1923. Under the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam, the Muslim League held its annual session in May 1924 in Lahore. The aim of this session was to revive the League. Liaquat Ali Khan attended this conference along many other young Muslims.
During this time, Muhammed Ali Jinnah had moved to the United Kingdom, where he was disinvolved from Indian politics. Khan was instrumental in getting Jinnah back to the subcontinent, and Jinnah made Khan the Secretary of the Muslim League. Thus in the 1940s, Khan was heavily involved in convincing the British of the need for a separate Muslim homeland in India.
This work helped lead to the formation of Pakistan in 1947, and Liaquat Ali Khan was made the first Prime Minister. During his time in office, he had to deal with the setup of a new government that was plunged into a war with neighboring India, and that faced a refugee crisis due to the Partition.
Jinnah died in 1948, leaving Khan at the helm of Pakistan, he began to work on a constitution, and began building foreign relations with western nations, culminating with a trip to the United States. In 1950, he worked out an agreement with Nehru that sought to ease tensions between India and Pakistan.
He also managed to quell the 1st coup attempt in Pakistan to overthrow his Government by Major General Akbar Khan in the famous or rather infamous Rawalpindi Conspiracy Case 1951.
Khan’s time as Prime Minister was cut short by an assassin’s bullet. On October 16, 1951, he had been scheduled to make an important announcement in a public meeting of Muslim City League at Municipal Park, Rawalpindi. Upon his death, Liaquat Ali Khan was given the honorific title of “Shaheed-i-Millat“, or “Martyr of the Republic“.