Articles

Ideology of Pakistan-Secular Government And Laws
With Islamic Ideals For Social Justice And Morality

by Shah N. Khan

M.Jinnah
M. A. Jinnah (1876-1948)
First Governor General (1947-48)
Liaqat A. Khan
Liaquat Ali Khan (1895-1951)
First Prime Minister (1947-51)
Fatima Jinnah
Fatima Jinnah (1893-1967)
stateswoman
Begum Liaquat Ali Khan
Fatima Jinnah (1893-1967)
stateswoman
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Most of the Muslim leaders in British India apprehended that after independence of India, it would become a Hindu tyranny and they would get worse treatment than that given by Hindus to Dalits under India?s Hindu cast system. Thus the idea of a separate homeland for Muslims of South Asia gained impetus.
The constitution, inter alia, provided for the principles of democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice and adequate provision tp protect the rogjts of the minorities to profess and practice their religions freely and develop their cultures.

Pakistan ideology evolved from the concept of unity of Muslims a single Brotherhood as mentioned in Holy Quran (49.10). In 20th century the remnant of the Caliphate was abolished after collapse of Ottoman Empire and Muslim territories had disintegrated and became more concerned with independence from foreign occupation and economic problems, and abandoned the idea of the restoration of the caliphate. However, the Muslims in India under the leadership of Nawab Bahadur Yar Jung of Hyderabad, Deccan started campaigning for restoration of Caliphate. The response from the Arab world and Turkey was disappointing. Arabs were disintegrated in various kingdoms and emirates. Turkey became a secular state. Most of the Muslim leaders in India apprehended that after independence of India, it would become a Hindu tyranny and they would get worse treatment than that given by Hindus to Dalits under India?s Hindu cast system. Thus the idea of a separate homeland for Muslims of South Asia gained impetus.

Mohammad Ali Jinnah before becoming founding father of Pakistan had first joined All India Congress but soon formed the impression that the in the garb of secularism the congress would establish Hindu Raj in India usurping the rights of Muslims. He broke with the congress in 1920 and was persuaded to join All India Muslim League to strive for independent Pakistan. As a mark of devotion the Muslims of India gave him the title of Quaide Azam -the great leader
In the general elections of 1937 the victorious Congress refused to form coalition governments with the Muslim League. This proved to be the final Hindu-Muslim break. In 1940 the league passed the Pakistan resolution, demanding a separate state for Indian Muslims. However, in 1946 there was a British plan guaranteeing regional autonomy to the Muslims within a territorially united India, but the plan failed due to
inflexible attitude of the congress, and Muslim League continued with its demand for a separate state of Pakistan.

Teething Problems

After great sacrifices of the Muslims in all the Provinces of India and relentless efforts of All India Muslims League the state of Pakistan was allowed to be formed on August 14, 1947, by the British Government but Pakistan did not get fair share in territorial distribution of the provinces of Punjab and Bengal and other resources of British India due to partial attitude of Lord Mountbatten towards the congress who accepted him as the first Governor General of independent India. Louis Mountbatten, (1900-1979), who was the great-grandson of Queen Victoria. Mountbatten served as British viceroy of India in 1947, and governor-general of the independent dominion of India in 1947 and 1948. In 1979 Mountbatten was killed when a bomb, planted by terrorists of the Irish Republican Army (IRA), blew up his fishing boat in Ireland waters.

As the treasury of Pakistan had meager resources, the Muslim businessmen who migrated from India helped the new Government. Mass scale migration of Muslims from India and exodus of Hindu and Sikh population from Pakistan to India created numerous social and economic problems. Because of dislocation of Government offices, Pakistan Central Government Secretariat had to be established anew in Karachi with inadequate resources. There were problems in the distribution of assets of Central Reserve Bank of United India and establishing State Bank and mint and printing of currency note had to be planned and implemented besides the postal tickets.

Objectives Resolution Passed By The First Constituent Assembly In 1949

The first Prime Minister of Pakistan. Liaquat Ali Khan presented the "Objectives Resolution" that was passed by the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1949. The ideology of Pakistan is embodied in that resolution, which inter alia, provided that the principles of democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice as enunciated by Islam shall be fully observed in framing the constitution and laws.

The first Prime Minister of Pakistan. Liaquat Ali Khan's presented the "Objectives Resolution" that was passed by the first Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1949. The ideology of Pakistan is embodied in that resolution, which inter alia, provided that the principles of democracy, freedom, equality, tolerance and social justice as enunciated by Islam shall be fully observed in framing the constitution and laws. It also mentioned that the Muslims shall be enabled to lead their lives in the individual and collective spheres in accordance with the teachings and requirements of Islam as set out in the Holy Quran and the Sunnah.

Adequate provision was made for the minorities to profess and practice their religions freely and develop their cultures as also to protect the interests of minorities and backward areas. The resolutions also made provision for forming a Federation wherein the units will be autonomous.

The resolution vowed for the full independence of the judiciary and guaranteed the fundamental rights according to Islamic as well as Universal norms, so that, as Late Liaquat Ali Khan said; ? the people of Pakistan may prosper and attain their rightful and honored place amongst the nations of the World and make their full contribution towards international peace and progress and happiness of humanity"

In his speech Late Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan said that the Father of the Nation, Quaid-I-Azam, had emphasized upon these objective on many occasions, and his views were endorsed by the nation in unmistakable terms. He said: ?Pakistan was founded because the Muslims, of this sub-continent wanted to build up their lives in accordance with the teachings and traditions of Islam, because they wanted to demonstrate to the world that Islam provides a panacea to the many diseases which have crept into the life of humanity to-day?We, as Pakistanis, are not ashamed of the fact that we are overwhelmingly Muslims and we believe that it is by adhering to our faith and ideals that we can make a genuine contribution to the welfare of the world.

The Objectives Resolution? forms a substantive part of the constitution of Pakistan, which conforms to Islamic perceptions, recognizes democracy as the only mode of government,but a democracy that does not come into conflict with Islamic ideals that are similar in many ways to the universal norms for justice and peace.

Fifth Columnists in Pakistan

The father of the nation Quide Azam had warned the nation in 1948 that fifth columnists are active in Pakistan sowing seeds of provincialism and ethnic and sectarian hatred and attempts to destabilize Pakistan were continuing from day one and it was predicted by the congress leaders that Pakistan would collapse within 25 years.

Trouble with Democracy

Quaide Azam's death in 1948 and three years later the assassination of the first Prime Minister of Pakistan Liaquat Ali Khans proved to be a great loss in solving the teething problem of the newly formed State. Due to activities of fifth columnists and lack of vision among the politicians, the nation drifted toward chaotic conditions. Political instability, illiteracy and political immaturity of the masses, inefficiency and rising corruption and influence of super powers were among the main reasons on account of which for nearly 30 years of the first six decades of its independence Pakistan was ruled by military dictators. With strained relations with India and dispute over the annexation of the state of Kashmir, Pakistan had to face the huge burden of defense expenses and became increasingly dependent on the aid of USA and its allies.

Right from early 1950s Pakistan was regarded as an important ally of US against the spread of communism. Economic aid helped in economic development to some extent but military dictators like Ayub Khan took over and imposed martial law and after few years managed to install a puppet regime in the name of basic democracy and ruled Pakistan for over 10 years. That alienated people of East Pakistan whose grievances were exploited by hatemongering of the fifth columnists, while Pakistani politicians kept on with their petty quarrels and greed for power and money. India armed Mukti Bahini - the freedom force in East Pakistan. That eventually resulted in separation of Eastern Wing after Indian army occupied it but vacated after a short while with the establishment of independent Bangladesh in 1971.

Good democracy is said to be commensurate with class, wealth, political maturity and occupational convergence. Both India and Pakistan are lacking in these respects. However, India because of its size and internal strife going on in Kashmir and Assam as well as struggle of Sikhs and low cast Dalits continued with their democratic constitution despite misrule and massive corruption among the politicians.

One of the reasons why the military dictators managed to rule Pakistan for a long time was the fact that US used them to serve their interests by providing economic aid that facilitated economic development better than India. Pakistan was used by US in forming Alliances to deter inroads of communism in South Asia and Iran and Pakistan and that allowed Ayub Khan to stay in power for more than ten years. After separation of Bangladesh, democracy returned to Pakistan under the leadership of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who introduced the 1973 constitution. He raised the slogan of Islamic Socialism and nationalized banks, schools and various industries but could not stop rising corruption and nepotism. He laid the foundation of acquisition of atomic power. But due to misrule and gross rigging in the elections of the second term of his Government, opposition parties launched campaign for fresh elections and there were widespread strikes and massive rallies against Bhutto and the danger of civil war grew. General Mohammad Ziaul Haq led the military coup d'?tat that overthrew Bhutto in 1977 and ruled Pakistan for ten years and had Bhutto executed.

Ziaul Haque managed to rule Pakistan for 10 years up to 1988 because of the situation in Afghanistan, which was invaded in 1979 by the USSR who installed a puppet regime, which had little control outside Kabul. US used Ziaul Haq and Pakistan in launching a movement to overthrow communist regime in Afghanistan. Pashtun Militia and other warlords in Afghanistan were given financial and military aid and trained in guerilla warfare.

Economic Development and High Cost of Intervention

Up to 1996 Pakistan?s per capita income was higher than India. But Pakistan faced economic sanctions because of its nuclear program in response to India?s success in becoming a nuclear power.

Further, Pakistan?s indirect involvement in Afghan war and exodus of over two million Afghan refugees in Pakistan threw economic strain and also created law and order as also social problems. Enemy agents disguised as Afghan refugees infiltrated and carried out terrorist attacks to ignite sectarian and ethnic riots by firing at Mosques and Imam Bargahs besides activists of ethnic political parties. These things have retarded Pakistan?s development and Pakistan was on the verge of bankruptcy when President Pervez Musharraf took over deposing Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Secular Government and Laws with Islamic ideals for social justice

Like many other Islamic States, the government of Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a secular government. Its legislators, bureaucrats or the ministers do not have to be a qualified Aalim (scholar of Islam) but now they must have the bachelor's degree in liberal arts or science or mathematics. But they do get opinions of such religious bodies like Islamic Ideological Council having representation of different sects and a Shairate Bench has been formed in over all jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Many of Pakistanis laws do not conform to Sharia that is silent on many aspects of modern life and there is no standardized version of Shariah acceptable to different sects of Muslims.

In Pakistan like most Islamic but a few secular countries there is a ban on prostitution, alcohol as also homosexuality, adultery and fornication, blasphemy and nudity. There was some criticism in the West when General Ziaul Haque in his process of Islamisation of laws in 1970s had introduced punishment of Sharia for crimes like adultery, fornication, rapes, blasphemy and thievery. Such criticism is based on double standards, as in many European countries even the denial of holocaust is a crime. Blasphemy laws exist in UK as well as many states of USA though their execution is rare. However, the Hudood Laws initially introduced did not prove to efficacious as they were drawn hastily. Inefficiency and corruption in law enforcement was, however, the major cause. In 2006 they were amended and replaced with a set of new laws.

Women

Women in Pakistan like most of the Islamic countries enjoy equal rights and are not forced by the State to wear veil or burqa as was made mandatory by Taliban regime in Afghanistan. The sister of the father of the nation Fatima Jinnah and wife of the first Prime Minister of Pakistan Begum Rana Liaquat Ali Khan and many other women took active part in politics and did not wear Burqas. Women have been free to engage in any profession they like including fashion designing, modeling, acting, dancing and singing but not prostitution. But persecution of women takes place among ignorant and backward classes of the population. Quite a few organizations have sprung up for emancipation of women.

However, it is sad that the objectives for which Pakistan was formed not only remain un-fulfilled, but also have been forgotten by our politicians, religious teachers, feudal lords, businessmen and industrialists and the image of Islam around the world due to intolerance, fanaticism and extremism among a small but vocal segment of our population stand tarnished. As our military dictators, feudal lords, industrialists and greedy politicians flouted the objectives of democracy, independence of judiciary, honest dealings and autonomy for the Federating units, the nations could not achieve the level of political maturity and prosperity that was envisaged in the Pakistan ideology. And our people fell under the spell of selfish and greedy demagogues that paved the way for the Easter wing breaking away as independent Bangladesh. The Indian Muslims who had migrated to East Pakistan from nearby provinces of India, wanted to come to Pakistan after fall of East Pakistan, but the PPP Government as well as General Ziaul Haq were unable to accommodate them as there was strong opposition in Sindh. That was a serious blow to the ideology of Pakistan and some people became disillusioned with the ideology as General Ziaul Haq allowed exodus of over 2.50 million Afghan refuges when Soviet Union occupied Afghanistan. That created numerous social and economic problems and Pakistan became more dependent on the aid of the Western powers whereas people in Northern Areas hated foreign policies of the Western nations towards Palestine and Middle East.

The enemies of Islam and Pakistan have succeeded to some extent in fomenting trouble and fanning sectarian and ethnic hatred to destabilize the only Muslim country with nuclear power. However, our people realize that the nations have to face such ordeals and they are confident that the aims of the enemies to prove that Pakistan ideology and partition of India in 1947 were wrong would be frustrated and to achieve that aim we must continue with relentless and persistent efforts to educate the common man so that bigots, despots and fanatics do not succeed in exploiting our masses.


Shah Nawaz Khan has vast experience in marketing and supervising life insurance sales force besides underwriting and advertising. He retired as Executive Director of State Life Insurance Corporation. He is now editing the weekly ezines that go to thousands of people around the world. You can post your views in Pakistan Post the leading discussion group of Pakistan.