The people of Pakistan celebrate the 23rd of March, every year, with great zeal and enthusiasm, to commemorate the most outstanding achievement of the Muslims of South Asia who passed the historic ‘Pakistan Resolution’ on this day at Lahore in 1940.On March 23, 1940, at Muslim League’s 27th session, under Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s dynamic leadership, Mr. A.K. Fazl-ul-Haq moved a resolution and demanded a separate sovereign state for the Muslims in the North West and Eastern Zones of the sub-continent, where they were in majority. The resolution was seconded by Ch. Khaliq-uz-Zaman and supported by several prominent leaders and members of the Muslim League party to transcribe the hopes and wishes of millions of Muslims into reality.
The words of the Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah in his Presidential address to the session carried a far deeper impression on the oppressed and demoralized Muslims at the hands of ruthless and undemocratic Congress rule. Mr. Jinnah said that, “The Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs, and literature. They neither intermarry nor inter-dine together, and indeed they belong to two different civilizations which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions”. The ‘Pakistan Resolution’ created deep down a sense of nationalism, integrity, solidarity, and enthusiasm for getting out of slavery, in the hearts and minds of the Muslims of the sub-continent, which later resulted in a preponderant movement on the basis of which Pakistan was established.
The ‘Pakistan Resolution’ paved the way for the creation of Pakistan in 1947 as a single state and provided the principles of a constitutional plan for partition of India. Muslims of India instead of seeking alliance with Hindus identified themselves with a ‘Two-Nation Theory’ which emphasized on the fact that Muslims and Hindus are two separate nations and both nations are quite different from each other. The Hindus and Muslims, in spite of having lived together for centuries could not forget their own individual cultures and civilizations and keep a distance from each other. They could not amalgamate in each other’s way of life to become one nation. Therefore, the Muslims of the sub-continent wanted a separate state where they could have an opportunity to live according to their faith and creed, based on principles of Islam.
After adoption of the ‘Pakistan Resolution’, Jinnah had a clear objective before him and he struggled hard to achieve it. He said that, “We are a nation of a hundred million and what is more, we are a nation with our distinct culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and traditions, aptitudes and ambitions. In short, as Muslims we have our own distinctive outlook of life and on life. By all cannons of international laws, we are a nation”. Mr. Jinnah’s political acumen and far-sightedness had rightly perceived the establishment of a separate state for the Muslims of the sub-continent to save them from unfair treatment by the Hindu majority.
Due to the persistent hostility of the Indian National Congress, the Muslims were left with no alternative but to demand the partition of the sub-continent through the famous resolution of 23rd March, 1940. Under the charismatic and sagacious leadership of Jinnah, the Muslims of the sub-continent were able to get a separate homeland where they could live in accordance with the tenets of Islam. The response of the millions, to the call of ‘Unity, Faith, and Discipline’ from their Quaid, firmly placed Pakistan on the world map on August 14, 1947.
The ‘Pakistan Resolution’ is believed to be the epitome of goal-orientation of untiring and unfailing struggle of Indian Muslims because it actualized the dreams of our founding fathers for an independent state for the Muslims of the sub-continent. It was the resolution which made the Muslims of India discern their own identity and spelled out destination for them to a separate Muslim-state.
March 23rd is the most propitious occasion for introspection, for a reappraisal of national objectives, for revisiting the past, for recollecting the Quaid’s inspirational words, and for delineating the train of events that led to the creation of Pakistan. The commemoration of the Day is an expression of the whole nation’s resolute determination to preserve her independence. So, let us make an effort to achieve the objective laid down by the Quaid in his broadcast to the Nation in which he said that, “Now is the time, chance, and opportunity for every Muslim to make his or her fullest and best contribution and make the greatest sacrifice and work ceaselessly in the service of our Nation and the world”.