Elements of Ideology of Pakistan | CSS Pakistan Affairs Notes

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ELEMENTS OF IDEOLOGY OF PAKISTAN

Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophers, social customs, and literatures. They belong to two different civilizations which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions. Therefore, Muslim nation demanded a separate homeland where they could have the freedom to practice their religion and live their lives as free individuals of an independent country. There are five principles/elements of the ideological foundation of Pakistan.

  1. Islam
  2. Two Nation Theory
  3. Territory
  4. Democratic System
  5. Urdu Language

1. Islam – a Nation-Building Force

Pakistan came into being on the basis of Islam. It was only Islam, which galvanized Muslims and lined them up behind Muslim League. Other factors, political and economic ones, also played some part in uniting Muslims to struggle for Pakistan but Islam was the preponderant factor as it serves as a cementing force for Muslim society and is the primary link between Muslims the world over. Everything else follows Islam. The entire struggle of the Muslims of the subcontinent was to have a state where they could freely maintain their Islamic entity. No other factor was so clear and intelligible for Muslim masses. Muslims gradually developed a national consciousness in the Indo-Pakistan subcontinent; they collectively struggled for the right of self-determination and the establishment of an independent homeland to be carved out from those territories where they constituted majorities and where Islam could be accepted as the ideal pattern for the individual’s life. They eventually secured what they wanted. Hence, the historical fact which could not be denied is that the formation of the Muslim nation preceded the demand for a homeland. Pakistan itself did not give birth to any nation; on the contrary, the Muslim nation struggled for and brought Pakistan into being. Quaid-e-Azam said that we do not demand Pakistan simply to have a piece of land but we want a laboratory where we could experiment on Islamic principles.

Islamic ideology is not merely a matter of belief, dogma and ritual. It is a religion in the wider sense of the word. It is a way of life, a whole complex of social and moral norms entwined with theological metaphysics. The fundamental teachings of Islam are universally accepted. Belief in God, finality of prophet-hood, human rights and social justice, management of affairs through consensus, moral values of charitableness, tolerance and universal brotherhood; these are sonic of the cardinal principles enshrined by the Quran and Sunnah. The only force which keeps Muslim nation united is Islam which is the ideological foundation of Pakistan.

2. Two – Nation Theory

The Two Nation Theory was the basis of struggle for creation of Pakistan. It implies that Muslims of Subcontinent were a nation quite distinct and separate from the Hindus. They in spite of living together for centuries could not forget their individual cultures and civilization. Sir Syed Ahmed Khan was the first to give the wakeup call and decided to prepare Muslims to fight the adversity with similar weapons – modern education and knowledge, employed for domination. With him, his Aligarh Movement, his books and magazine Tahzib-ul-Akhlaq, he started an awareness movement. He prepared the ground for uniting and galvanizing Muslim community of the subcontinent. His colleagues including Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk and others created conditions which led to the establishment of All-India Muslim League in Dhaka in 1906, a landmark in the history of Pakistan Movement.

On March 22, 1940 in his presidential address to the All-India Muslim League Lahore session, the founder of Pakistan Muhammad Ali Jinnah made it plain that The Hindus and the Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs and literature. They neither intermarry, nor interdine together, and indeed they belong to two different civilizations which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions.

This was not a matter of mere hair-splitting but an everyday fact of life, which one can observe in almost every walk of human life. This then is the core of the Two Nation concept, which formed the basis of British India’s partition in two independent Hindu and Muslim States. The Hindu majority areas of India formed India and the Muslims majority regions came together under the unique name of Pakistan. On the same premises Quaid-e-Azam dismissed the wishes of the Hindu and the British colonialists for a joint Hindu Muslim nationhood as a pipe dream. With single-minded devotion be fought against this menace and succeeded in getting the idea of a separate Muslim identity recognized. In the 28th Annual Session of the Muslim League in 1941 in Madras, Quaid-e-Azam formally declared this objective as the ideology of the Muslim League. It is this very ideology which is the second important ingredient of ideology of Pakistan.

3. Territory

Amongst the fundamental elements of ideology of Pakistan, land is the third important factor. A piece of land was necessary for the existence, stabilization and promotion of Islamic ideology as soul requires body. Quaid-e-Azam said in his address to Punjab Muslim Students Federation in March 1941:

Nothing would be achieved simply by raising slogans for nation. We are one nation and the nation cannot survive in the air, it requires an independent land to settle where it can rule and our demand is the same. However, All-India Muslim League demanded a separate homeland constituting the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority such as in the North-Western and Eastern zones of India on March 23, 1940. With Jinnah’s untiring efforts, indomitable will, and dauntless courage, he united the Indian Muslims under the banner of the Muslim League and carved out a homeland for them within 7 years, despite stiff opposition from the Hindu Congress and the British Government.

4. Democratic System

In an Islamic state, all the affairs are decided on the basis of Shariat (Democracy). In other words, all the social, economic, political and the cultural affairs are operated on the basis of mutual consensus and Islamic democracy. The same system has also been referred in Surah Al-Imram, Muhammad (P.B.U.H) used to operate all the state affairs after discussing with his Sahabas (companions), when this questions rose that what would be the system of government in Pakistan, it should, no doubt, be Islamic. Islamic system of government is Islamic democracy or system of Shariah. Creation of Pakistan is the glorious example of ijma-e-ummat (national consensus). At the time of establishment of Pakistan, referendum was held in all the Muslim majority provinces to take their consent for inclusion in Pakistan. Islamic system of state, therefore, is the fundamental ingredient of Pakistan.

5. Urdu Language

Language is not a fundamental characteristic of a nation, but still remains one of the features by which a nation may be distinguished or one of the grounds on which nationalism may be founded. In the sub-continent, Urdu was considered to be the language of Muslims and Hindi of the Hindus. During the last days of the Muslim rule, Urdu emerged as the most common language of the Northwestern provinces of India. It was declared the official language, and all official records were written in this language. In 1867, some prominent Hindus started a movement in Banaras in which they demanded the replacement of Urdu with Hindi, and the Persian script with the Deva Nagri script, as the court language in the Northwestern provinces. The reason for opposing Urdu was that the Urdu was written in Persian script, which was similar to the Arabic Script, and Arabic was the language of the Quran, the Holy Book of the Muslims. The movement grew quickly and within a few months spread throughout the Hindu population of the Northwestern provinces of India. This situation provoked the Muslims to come out in order to protect the importance of the Urdu language. The opposition by the Hindus towards the Urdu language made it clear to the Muslims that Hindus were not ready to tolerate the culture and traditions of the Muslims. So Muslims also began to think about establishing a political party of their own for their survival and centralizing their efforts to have their rights. Consequently, All India Muslim League was established on December 30, 1906.

The Urdu-Hindi controversy completely altered Sir Syed’s point of view. He had been a great advocate of Hindu-Muslim unity but after this event he put forward the Two-Nation Theory, predicting that the differences between the two groups would increase with the passage of time and the two communities would not join together in anything wholeheartedly. Maulvi Abdul Haq aptly said: Urdu is the first brick in the foundation of Pakistan.

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