Recently during one debate a religiously minded member of the group (not this one) referenced Quaid-e-Azam’s State bank speech for the basis of Islam for Pakistan. But that member is not alone in this. I have seen many secular minded people quoting Quaid-e-Azam’s speeches and his life to state that Pakistan should be secular. These arguments are mostly ranging from his chosen speeches, his dress, his choice of language, his food, his pictures with dogs, etc…. The religious ones will totally ignore all other aspects and stick to some of their chosen speeches, our text-books quote his sherwani, when he read Namaz, etc…
And I always end up questioning Why are these people only referencing this one person?
Why is not any one else, who was part of ML, important?
Why dont people quote how the population felt, what were their demands? If Quaid-e-Azam wanted secular Pakistan, did people wanted Secular Pakistan, did they voted for secular Pakistan. Or people were not thinking in terms of religion but in terms of economics and administration? Did Quaid-e-Azam told them 3 years before independence that it will be secular country?
What was Muslim League promising, a religious state, a secular one, or just a state for Muslims and not of Muslims?
Most importantly Why is not anyone talking about what people want now? Why should I stop demanding something because Quaid-e-Azam did or did not wanted it?
America is similar, they mostly end up having their discussions what their Founding fathers said and why America was created. Abortion Law, same sex marriages, immigration, poor souls get dragged every time. But atleast they quote about 7 people. Even some of them go to extent of including many others of the era as the key people in framing the constitution. Their reasons are discussed, the time, atmosphere and the results are discussed. You hear “What Founding Fathers meant” when they stated this or that. Most importantly not every idea of every Founding-Father is welcomed today. It is their joint wisdom that is relished.
On the other hand, we have everyone else on back-stage, the lime light is only on one person Quaid-e-Azam. Not that he does not deserve that light, if we have to pick only one person as leaders of modern Muslim world I will pick him; rather I will say everyone will pick him. But we are not nominating someone for the presidency here, many people can share the stage.
I know only one can be hero but there can be many strong supporting roles, instead we have made all the rest as the extras. Their faces are blurred up, their voices are just the background noise representing busy street.
Some how, Our beloved Jinnah has been evolved into alone Samurai, a James bond, a Warrior who can himself defeat the enemy, he only needs the foot-soldiers no commanders.
Being Pakistani, I see the plans and wrong intentions everywhere, just part of nature I think. I suspect we have given him center stage only because postthumously he cannot sue us for mis-representation and so we can manipulate the situation. By having his colleagues up there with him, will make more difficult of misrepresenting the history. By having mood of hundreds of thousands of people represented will make us understand better what people wanted not what few leaders wanted and that might not be what we want to hear. Why is there deficiency of quotes from the articles and editorials of that time?
I am not against quoting Quaid-e-Azam, I do all the time, I am requesting to quote other people also.
Having Founding Fathers as guidance is good, it works a inertia that keeps society from wiggling around here and there, as the situation changes. It keeps you solid on the ground, but it should not be restricting force. We should take their word as what their meant given the situation and atmosphere of that time, they are direction for future, not as dictation of future.
Why we should not have religious state, if people want it? And why we should not have Secular state if people want it? Are we not Democracy?
Most importantly if we want a mixture of Religious and Secular State, like the society we have, why dont we get it?