Iqbal and Pakistan Movement

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Allama Muhammad Iqbal was one of the greatest thinkers and poets of the Muslim world. He was not only a sage, a revolutionary poet-philosopher, an extraordinary scholar and harbinger of Islamic renaissance but also a political thinker and seer of Pakistan. From the outset he took keen interest in the political situation of India and in 1908 while he was still in England, he was selected as a member of the executive council of the newly-established British branch of the Indian Muslim League. In 1931 and 1932 he represented the Muslims of India in the Round Table Conferences held in England to discuss the issue of the political future of the Indian Muslims

A brilliant intellect from the beginning, Allama Iqbal’s devotion to knowledge and intellect verily attributed to his academic achievements:

Bachelor’s degree from the Government College Lahore, then another Bachelor’s from the Cambridge University, Master’s degree from the Punjab University, Law degree from the Lincoln’s Inn London, and a PhD from the University of Munich. In recognition to his remarkable scholastic work and extraordinary poetry, the British Crown knighted him in 1922. His works and inspirations cover a wide range of topics, e.g., Religion, Islam, Quran, Philosophy, Metaphysics, Art, Politics, Law, Economics, Universal brotherhood, the Revival of Muslim glory. The Encyclopedia Britannica appropriately entitled him as “the greatest Urdu poet of the century.”

Iqbal was immensely inspired with political wisdom and divinely insight. He was deadly against atheism and materialism and discarded the European concept of religion as the private faith of an individual having nothing to do with his temporal life. In his view, the biggest blunder made by Europe was the separation of Church and State. His prophecy that he had made in the following verse of a ghazal written in March 1907:

Your civilization will commit suicide with its own dagger

Because a nest built on a frail bough cannot be durable

came absolutely true in 1914 when the European war broke out because of the European nations blunder of separating the Church from the State. In the same ghazal he had also said:

I will take out my worn out caravan in the pitch darkness of night

Lo! My sighs shall emit sparks and my breath will produce flames.

This again proved to be a wonderful foresight as in a Presidential Address delivered at the annual session of the all-India Muslim League on December 29, 1930, Iqbal demanded in the best interests of India as well as Islam the creation of a separate homeland for the Indian Muslims. Let us delve into this monumental and historic document of great importance, which like Rousseau Social Contract is most widely quoted but rarely studied in full. Expressing his views as a student of Islam, its laws and polity, its culture, its history and its literature, Iqbal believed that Islam was the major formative factor in the life history of Indian Muslims; it adequately furnished those basic emotions and loyalties which gradually unify scattered individuals and groups and finally transform them into a well-defined people,

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