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Pakistan Links - History

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Jat, traditionally rural ethnic group of northern India and Pakistan. In the early 21st century the Jats constituted about one-fourth of the populations of Punjab and Haryana nearly 10 percent of the population of Balochistan, Rajasthan, and Delhi and from 2 to 5 percent of the populations of Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Uttar Pradesh. The Jats of Pakistan are mainly Muslim by faith. The Jats of India are mostly divided into two large communities of about equal size: one Sikh, concentrated in Punjab, and the other Hindu.

The Jats first emerged politically in the 17th century and afterward, having military kingdoms such as Mursan in Uttar Pradesh, Bharatpur in Rajasthan, and Patiala in Punjab. Their sense of group solidarity, pride, and self-sufficiency have been historically significant in many ways. During the rule of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb (late 17th century), for example, Jat leaders captained uprisings in the region of Mathura. A Jat kingdom established at nearby Bharatpur in the 18th century became a principal rival for declining Mughal power, its rulers apparently seeing themselves as defenders of Hindu ways against the Muslim Mughals.

This article was most recently revised and updated by Noah Tesch, Associate Editor.


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Lahore, Urdu Lāhawr, second largest city of Pakistan and the capital of Punjab province. It lies 811 miles (1,305 km) northeast of Karāchi in the upper Indus plain on the Rāvi River, a tributary of the Indus.

Little is known of the history of the settlement prior to the Muslim period. Hindu legend attributes the founding of Lahore to Lava, or Lōh, son of Rāma, for whom it is said to have been named Lōhāwar. The city of “Labokla” mentioned in Ptolemy’s 2nd-century Guide to Geography may have been Lahore.

The city has had a turbulent history. It was the capital of the Ghaznavid dynasty from 1163 to 1186. A Mongol army sacked Lahore in 1241. During the 14th century the city was repeatedly attacked by the Mongols until 1398, when it fell under the control of the Turkic conqueror Timur. In 1524 it was captured by the Mughal Bābur’s troops. This marked the beginning of Lahore’s golden age under the Mughal dynasty, when the city was often the place of royal residence. It was greatly expanded during the reign of Shāh Jahān (1628–58) but declined in importance during the reign of his successor, Aurangzeb.

From the death of Aurangzeb (1707), Lahore was subjected to a power struggle between Mughal rulers and Sikh insurrectionists. With the invasion of Nādir Shāh in the mid-18th century, Lahore became an outpost of the Iranian empire. However, it soon was associated with the rise of the Sikhs, becoming once more the seat of a powerful government during the rule of Ranjit Singh (1799–1839). After Singh’s death, the city rapidly declined, and it passed under British rule in 1849. When the Indian subcontinent received independence in 1947, Lahore became the capital of West Punjab province in 1955 it was made the capital of the newly created West Pakistan province, which was reconstituted as Punjab province in 1970.

Lahore consists of an old city area flanked on the southeast by newer commercial, industrial, and residential areas that are in turn ringed by suburbs. The old city was at one time surrounded by a wall and a moat, but these structures have been replaced, except in the north, by parklands. A circular road around the rampart provides access to the old city by 13 gates. Notable structures within the old city include the mosque of Wazīr Khān (1634) and Lahore Fort. A walled complex that covers some 36 acres (14.5 hectares), the fort is a splendid example of Mughal architecture it was partially built by Akbar (reigned 1556–1605) and extended by the next three emperors. The mosque and the fort are decorated in marble and kashi, or encaustic tile work. Other historic landmarks include the Bādshāhī (Imperial) Mosque, built by Aurangzeb and still one of the largest mosques in the world the 14-foot- (4.3-metre-) long Zamzama, or Zam-Zammah, a cannon that is immortalized (along with other details of the city) in Rudyard Kipling’s novel Kim (1901) Ranjit Singh’s buildings and mausoleum the Shāhdara gardens, containing the tomb of the Mughal emperor Jahāngīr and the magnificent Shālīmār Garden, laid out east of the city in 1642 by Shāh Jahān as a refuge for the royal family. Jahān’s refuge consists of about 80 acres (32 hectares) of terraced, walled gardens, with about 450 fountains. The fort and Shālīmār Garden were collectively designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1981.

Pakistan Virtual Jewish History Tour

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan is located in South Asia and is the sixth most populous nation on earth. The historic Jewish community in Pakistan likely arrived from India but today there is no recognizable Jewish community left in the country.

From Security to Intolerance

At the beginning of the twentieth century, the largest city, Karachi, had about 2,500 Jews engaged as tradesman, artisans and civil servants. Their mother tongue was Marachi, indicating their Bene Israel origin. In 1893, the Jews of Karachi built the Magain Shalome Synagogue, and, in 1936, one of the leaders of the Jewish community, Abraham Reuben, became the first Jewish councillor on the city corporation.

Under British jurisdiction, the Jews in the area became known as Pakistant, and were treated with tolerance. In the early twenthieth century, a variety of associations existed to serve the Jewish community: the Young Man's Jewish Association, founded in 1903, whose aim was to encourage sports as well as religious and social activities of the Bene Israel in Karachi the Karachi Bene Israel Relief Fund, established to support poor Jews in Karachi and the Karachi Jewish syndicate, formed in 1918, to provide homes to poor Jews at reasonable rents.

The Jews lived primarily in Karachi, but a small community served by two synagogues lived in Peshawar in the northwest frontier province.

The founding of an Islamic state immediately prior to the establishment of the State of Israel created a rising feeling of insecurity within the Pakistani Jewish community. After Israel declared independence in 1948, violent incidents occurred against Pakistan's small Jewish community, which numbered approximately 2,000 Bene Yisrael Jews. The synagogue in Karachi was set alight and Jews were attacked. The plight of Jews became more precarious following disturbances and demonstrations directed against the Jews during the Arab-Israel wars in 1948, 1956, and 1967. The persecution of Jews resulted in large-scale emigration, mostly to India, but also to Israel and the United Kingdom. The small community in Peshawar ceased to exist, and the synagogues were closed.

By 1968, the number of Jews in Pakistan had decreased to 250, almost all of whom were concentrated in Karachi, where there was one synagogue, a welfare organization, and a recreational organization.

Out of Muslim solidarity with the Arab states, Pakistan did not establish any ties with Israel and frequently joined in anti-Israel moves in the United Nations and boycotts initiated by the Arab states.


Pakistan maintained a hostile stance toward Zionism and Israel. In his address as chair of the Second Islamic Summit in 1974, Prime Minister Z. A. Bhutto asserted: &ldquoTo Jews as Jews we bear no malice to Jews as Zionists, intoxicated with their militarism and reeking with technological arrogance, we refuse to be hospitable.&rdquo

Many influential political figures, including the military chief-of-staff, promoted the theory that the 1991 Gulf War was a &ldquoclear manifestation of the anti-Muslim forces at work at the behest of Israel and the Zionist lobby in the United States.&rdquo The leader of the main Islamist party, Jammat e-Islami, termed it the &ldquowar between the Jews, the worst enemy of Islam, and the Muslims.&rdquo The party has strong links with anti-government Islamist forces in Egypt and blames western lobbies, including Zionists, for attacks on religious parties and movements in all parts of the Muslim world.

In 1996 Pakistani officials continued to condemn the Middle East peace process and to declare that Pakistan would not establish relations with Israel until Israel fully implemented UN resolutions.

The media in Pakistan have provided extensive coverage of the political and personal career of the cricket star Imran Khan. Since Khan's marriage in 1996 to Jemima Goldsmith, daughter of a British industrialist and politician, Sir James Goldsmith, Khan was accused of acting as an agent of the "Jewish lobby." Jemima Khan publicly denied that her parents were Jewish. An Egyptian newpaper distributed in Pakistan accused Khan of receiving large sums of money for his election campaign from the "Jewish lobby." Following complaints from Khan, the deputy editor of the newspaper retracted the story and published an apology.

Since India established diplomatic relations with Israel in 1992, the Pakistani media have repeatedly referred to the &ldquoZionist threat on our borders,&rdquo and occasionally combine both anti-Zionist and antisemitic rhetoric. This is particularly common in the Islamist press, but also occurs in mainstream publications.

The tiny Jewish community in Karachi maintains a low profile. Despite the developments in the Middle East peace process, Pakistan's hostility toward Israel and Zionism has not waned. The increasing influence of extreme Islamists have further undermined the security of the Jewish community.

Modern Pakistan

Magen Shalome, built by Shalome Solomon Umerdekar and his son Gershone Solomon, Karachi&rsquos last synagogue, was demolished in the 1980s to make way for a shopping plaza. Most of the Karachi Jews now live in Ramle, Israel, and built a synagogue they named Magen Shalome. Some Jewish families do remain, but they prefer to pass themselves off as Parsis due to the intolerance for Jews in Muslim Pakistan. Their number is estimated to be around 200 persons.

Since 1979, Jews escaping persecution in other Arab lands, such as Iran, used a secret passage from the country through Pakistan to reach India, where Jews enjoy relative peace. The fundamentalist Iranian government, however, discovered and closed the passageway in 2000, halting the exodus of Jews to India via this route.

A citizen of Pakistan was allowed to register as Jewish in March 2017, for the first time since the 1980's. 29-year old Fischel Benkhald was notified on March 28, 2017, that he would finally be allowed to change his official religious status in his National Database and Registration Authority profile from Muslim to Jewish. Fischel, born Faisal, grew up in a Jewish home in the city of Karachi, Pakistan, and had been petitioning the government to let him legally change his religious status since 2014.

Sources: Antisemitism and Xenophobia Today
Barber, Ben." Iranian Jews barely hanging on under hard-liners." The Washington Times, (August 9, 2000)
"Pakistan." Encyclopedia Judaica
Email from Miriam Daniels, (June 1, 2005)
Siddiqi, Kamal. "In Pakistan's city of strife, 82-year-old fights for her community's dead." Indian Express, (December 17, 2000)
Belton, Patrick. "Karachi's forgotten Jews." The Jewish Chronicle, (August 17, 2007)
Pakistan allows man to register as country&rsquos first Jew in decades, Times of Israel, (March 30, 2017)

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Pakistan Links - History

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Pakistan Links - History

The answers to these questions vary widely depending on who is being asked. A large part of our national identity stems from our sense of history and culture that are deeply rooted in the land and in the legacy of the region’s ancient civilisations. Religion has also played a big part in making us what we are today. But the picture general history textbooks paint for us does not portray the various facets of our identity.

Instead it offers quite a convoluted description of who we are. The distortion of historical facts has in turn played a quintessential role in manipulating our sense of self. What’s ironic is that the boldest fallacies in these books are about the events that are still in our living memory.

Herald invited writers and commentators, well versed in history, to share their answers to what they believe is the most blatant lie taught through Pakistan history textbooks.

The fundamental divide between Hindus and Muslims

The most blatant lie in Pakistan Studies textbooks is the idea that Pakistan was formed solely because of a fundamental conflict between Hindus and Muslims. This idea bases itself on the notion of a civilisational divide between monolithic Hindu and Muslim identities, which simply did not exist.

The stress on religion ignored other factors that could cut across both identities. For instance, a Muslim from most of South India had far more in common, because of his regionally specific culture and language, with Hindus in this area than the Muslims in the north of the Subcontinent.

Similarly, the division of the historical narrative into a ‘Hindu’ and ‘Muslim’ period, aside from the ironic fact that this was actually instituted by the British, glosses over the reality that Islamic empires also fought each other for power. After all, Babar had to defeat Ibrahim Lodhi, and thus, the Delhi Sultanate, for the Mughal period to begin.

Therefore, power and empire building often trumped this religious identity, that textbooks claim, can be traced linearly right to the formation of Pakistan.

These textbooks tend to have snapshot descriptions of the contempt with which the two religious communities treated one another. This is specifically highlighted in descriptions of the Congress ministries formed after the elections of 1937.

Other factors that contributed historically to these shows of religious ‘contempt’ in South Asian history are often ignored. Indeed, Richard Eaton’s classic study of temple desecrations shows that in almost all cases where Hindu temples were ransacked, it was for political or economic reasons.

In most cases, it was because the Muslim ruler was punishing an insubordinate Hindu official. Otherwise, the Mughals protected such temples. Jumping ahead, this sort of inter-communal cooperation aimed at maintaining political control could also be seen in the Unionist Party, which was in power in Punjab all the way up until 1946.

As Pakistan was formed barely a year later, the notion that its formation was based on a long-standing and fundamental conflict between Hindus and Muslims is deeply problematic.

— Anushay Malik holds a PhD in history from University of London and is currently an assistant professor at the Lahore University of Management Sciences

Eulogising leaders

In his preface to the Muqaddimah, Ibn Khaldun warned of seven mistakes that he thought historians often committed. One of the seven is “the common desire to gain favour of those of high ranks, by praising them, by spreading their fame.”

This particular mistake, or lie rather, has plagued history writing for school texts in Pakistan since the 1950s and has been used as a political tool to project successive rulers – whether civilian or military – in a eulogistic format.

Moreover, another mindless inaccuracy is the absence of the ‘other’, where India and Congress are needlessly ignored and a one-sided version of history is deemed necessary for creating a nationalistic mindset.

This gap continues in the historical narrative for school students post-partition. Hence, some of the most blatant lies and subversion of historical facts exist in the textbooks mandated by the federal and provincial textbook boards.

Furthermore, maligning the ‘enemy’ is done quite overtly and mindlessly in official history school texts which, unfortunately, is also the case with some Indian school texts documented by discerning authors on both sides of the border.

Most nation states during the 19th and 20th centuries used official versions of history in order to create a homogenous and nationalistic identity. Pakistan’s first education minister, Fazalur Rehman, set up the Historical Society of Pakistan in 1948 so that history for the new nation could be rewritten in a fair and balanced manner using authentic and reliable sources.

Successive governments did not further this goal and history written for schools in Pakistan became the victim of fossilised textbook boards ratifying the work of unethical and unscholarly authors for public school consumption. Vested interests continue to triumph despite the open door policy since 2004 for private publishers to bid for quality textbooks.

— Ismat Riaz is an educational consultant and author of the textbook, Understanding History

Excluding and manipulating historical periods

The most blatant lie in textbook accounts of Pakistan’s history is by virtue of omission, which is in effect the denial of our multicultural, multi-ethnic and multi-religious past. It is a common complaint that Pakistan’s history is taught as if it began with the conquest of Sindh by the Umayyad army, led by the young General, Muhammad bin Qasim in 711 AD.

Most textbooks in Sindh at least do mention Moenjodaro and the Indus Valley civilisation, but it is not discussed in a meaningful way and there is no discussion about its extent and culture. Important periods and events during subsequent centuries are also skimmed over, like the Aryan civilisation which introduced its powerful social system and epic poetry (Mahabharata in which Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa play important roles), the Brahmin religion, a thousand years of Buddhism with its universities and the Gandharan civilisation which was spread throughout present day Pakistan.

No students of Pakistani schools can tell us that Pakistan was once part of the empires of Cyrus the Great and Darius of the Achaemenid Dynasty and later of the Sassanian Empire with the legendary rule of Naushirwan, “the Just”. Similarly, hardly anyone would be aware that Asoka whose capital was in Pataliputra in the east of the subcontinent also counted Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab as part of his domain.

The result of these omissions is disastrous on the minds of the youth in Pakistan. Instead of seeing themselves as heirs of many civilisations, they acquire a narrow, one-dimensional view of the world. This is contradicted by what they subsequently see in this global world of information technology and shared knowledge. That this is also in direct contravention of Islamic teachings does not occur to the perpetrators of a lopsided curriculum in our schools.

The first assertion in the Holy Quran is Iqra bi Ism I Rabik [and no restrictions are put on the acquisition of knowledge].

Instead, we have bans on books, digital platforms such as YouTube and even newspapers in this Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

— Hamida Khuhro is a historian and former education minister for Sindh

The other view

To say a large part of Pakistan’s history is shared with India would be stating the obvious. Yet it is this period of both our histories, or the portrayal of such, that is tampered with the most and has been used as a political tool by either side. The Herald invited renowned Indian historian and currently a Jawaharlal Nehru Fellow, Mushirul Hasan, to give his take on the lies taught through textbooks on both sides of the border.

History is only of use for its lessons, and it is the duty of the historian to see that they are properly taught. Very few in the subcontinent heed this advice. Both in India and Pakistan the intellectual climate has thrown the historical profession into disarray.

Such is the power and influence of the polemicists that a growing number of people are abandoning the quest for an objective approach. With the recent appointment of a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)-oriented Chairman of the Indian Council for Historical Research, liberal and secular historians are worried about the future of their discipline.

The diversity of approaches has been the hallmark of Indian historiography. As a result, the making of Pakistan and its evolution as a nation state is interpreted differently in various quarters.

The ghosts of partition was put to rest and not exhumed for frequent post-mortems. Moreover, the liberal-left historians did not repudiate the idea of Pakistan. On the contrary, they criticised the Congress stalwarts for failing to guide the movements they initiated away from the forces of reactionary communalism.

This was true of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad and Ram Manohar Lohia, the Socialist leader. The Maulana, in particular, charged Nehru for jettisoning the plan for a Congress-Muslim coalition in 1937 and the prospect of an enduring Hindu-Muslim partnership.

Tara Chand’s three-volume History of the Freedom Movement in India held its ground until the Janata government decided, in 1977, to rewrite the secular textbook. With the establishment of the BJP-led government in October 1999, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-RSS combination began its subversion of academia through its time-tested method of infiltration and rewriting of textbooks and ‘fine-tuning’ of curricula.

Saffronisation of education will breed fanaticism, heighten caste and communitarian consciousness, and stifle the natural inclination of a student to cultivate a balanced and cautious judgement. Increasingly, it may be difficult for some of us to establish historical truths or to defend the cult of objective historical inquiry.

As the radical currents are being swept aside by the winds of right-wing discourse, it is pertinent to recall the Saidian (Edward Said) dictum that “nothing disfigures the intellectuals’ public performance as much trimming, careful silence, patriotic bluster, and retrospective of self-dramatising prophecy.”

The story in Pakistan runs on different lines. Starting with I.H. Qureshi and Aziz Ahmad, scholars in our neighbours have tenaciously adhered to the belief that the creation of the Muslim nation was the culmination of a ‘natural’ process.

They have pressed into service the ‘two-nation’ theory to define nationality in purely Islamic terms. In the process, they have turned a blind eye to the syncretic and composite trajectory of Indian society, which began with Mohammad Iqbal’s memorable lines Ae Aab-e-Rood-e-Ganga! Woh Din Hain Yaad Tujh Ko? Utra Tere Kinare Jab Karwan Humara [Oh, waters of the river Ganges! Do you remember those days? Those days when our caravan halted on your bank?].

The same poet talked of “Naya Shiwala”, a temple of peace and goodwill. Again, the same poet gave lessons of religious understanding and tolerance in yet another poet.

Sadly, these thoughts are hardly reflected in our textbooks. We don’t emphasise the virtue of living with diversity and sharing social and cultural inheritances. We don’t introduce our students to the vibrant legacy of Kabir, Guru Nanak, Akbar, and Dara Shikoh. Instead, we dwell on the imaginary kufr-o-imaan ki jung, on the destruction of temples and forcible conversions. Increasingly, young students are introduced to the Islamist or the Hindutva world views that have caused incalculable damage to State and civil society.

Saadat Hasan Manto described an existentialist reality – the separation of people living on both sides who had a long history of cultural and social contact – and the paradoxical character of borders being a metaphor of the ambiguities of nation-building. He offered, without saying so, a way of correcting the distortions inherent in state-centered national histories.

Ayesha Jalal is right in pointing out that as “old orthodoxies recede before the flood of fresh historical evidence and earlier certitudes are overturned by newly detected contradictions”, this is the time to heal “the multiple fractures which turned the promised dawn of freedom into a painful moment of separation”.

In the words of the poet Ali Sardar Jafri:

Tum aao gulshan-e-Lahore se chaman bardosh, Hum Aayein subh-e-Benaras ki roshni le kar, Himalaya ke hawaaon ki taazigi le kar, aur uss ke baad yeh poochein ke kaun dushaman hai? .. [You come forward with flowers from the Garden of Lahore, We bring to you the light and radiance of the morning of Benaras, The freshness of the winds of Himalayas, And then we ask who the enemy is?].

Wars with India

The most blatant lies in Pakistani history textbooks are about the events that are still in our living memory. Among the many examples, the three given below are about the wars of 1965 and 1971, and the partition carnage of 1947. The reason for the falsehood lies in our distorted view of nationalism. Rather than letting children learn from our historical mistakes, we show them a false picture. Thus we are doomed to repeat these mistakes generation after generation.

The following excerpt regarding the 1965 war is taken from fifth grade reading material published by the NWFP Textbook Board, Peshawar in 2002 — “The Pakistan Army conquered several areas of India, and when India was at the verge of being defeated she ran to the United Nations to beg for a cease-fire. Magnanimously, thereafter, Pakistan returned all the conquered territories to India.”

The Punjab Textbook Board published the following text on the causes for the separation of East Pakistan in 1993 for secondary classes — “There were a large number of Hindus in East Pakistan. They had never truly accepted Pakistan. A large number of them were teachers in schools and colleges.

They continued creating a negative impression among students. No importance was attached to explaining the ideology of Pakistan to the younger generation.

The Hindus sent a substantial part of their earnings to Bharat, thus adversely affecting the economy of the province. Some political leaders encouraged provincialism for selfish gains. They went around depicting the central Government and (the then) West Pakistan as enemy and exploiter. Political aims were thus achieved at the cost of national unity.”

“While the Muslims provided all sorts of help to those non-Muslims desiring to leave Pakistan [during partition], people of India committed atrocities against Muslims trying to migrate to Pakistan. They would attack the buses, trucks and trains carrying the Muslim refugees and murder and loot them.” The latter excerpt was taken from an intermediate classes textbook — Civics of Pakistan, 2000.

Some more examples of totally contorted and misleading, yet ingenious and amusing, narrations of the history of Pakistan can be extracted from a single text, A Textbook of Pakistan Studies by M. D. Zafar.

“Pakistan came to be established for the first time when the Arabs led by Muhammad bin Qasim occupied Sindh and Multan. Pakistan under the Arabs comprised the Lower Indus Valley.”

“During the 11th century the Ghaznavid Empire comprised what is now Pakistan and Afghanistan. During the 12th century the Ghaznavids lost Afghanistan and their rule came to be confined to Pakistan”.

“By the 13th century Pakistan had spread to include the whole of Northern India and Bengal. Under the Khiljis Pakistan moved further South to include a greater part of Central India and the Deccan”.

“During the 16th century, ‘Hindustan’ disappeared and was completely absorbed in ‘Pakistan”.

“Shah Waliullah appealed to Ahmad Shah Durrani of Afghanistan and ‘Pakistan’ to come to the rescue of the Muslims of Mughal India, and save them from the tyrannies of the Marhattas…”

“In the Pakistan territories where a Sikh state had come to be established, the Muslims were denied freedom of religion.”

“Thus by the middle of the 19th century both Pakistan and Hindustan ceased to exist instead British India came into being. Although Pakistan was created in August 1947, yet except for its name, the present-day Pakistan has existed, as a more or less single entity for centuries.”

— A. H. Nayyar is a physicist and retired professor. He co-edited an SDPI report titled “The Subtle Subversion: The State of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan.

Pakistan was made for Muslims

The most blatant lie that covers page after page of history textbooks is that Pakistan was created for the promotion and propagation of religion. In fact, when the Muslim League was established in Dhaka in 1906, one of the foremost principles was the creation of loyalty to the British rulers and to promote greater understanding between Muslims and the British government.

The idea of religion barely entered the discourse of the Muslim League until the elections of 1937, when the League lost elections and the Congress won decisively. It was at that time that religious nationalism was invoked vigorously to create a feeling of unity among the Muslims of Uttar Pardesh (UP), Bengal and Punjab in order to provide the League an ideational basis of support. ↵

↵ Pakistan was mainly created for the protection and promotion of the class interests of the landed aristocracy which formed the League. The meeting at which the League was formed was attended mainly by the landed elite which feared that if the British left India and representative government was established, the traditional power of the loyal Muslim aristocracy would erode, especially since the class composition of the Congress reflected the educated urban and rural middle classes seeking upward mobility and a share in political power.

The peasant movement in Bengal was mobilised for purely political purposes since its aims and ideology conflicted radically with those of the landed aristocracy.

The urban educated middle classes of UP which joined the League later and enunciated the Hindu-Muslim difference argument in 1940, eschewed Muslim nationalism soon after independence because it had outlived its political use. The nature of the state outlined by the educated urban class in 1947 was based on a pluralistic vision of a state based on religious and citizenship equality.

— Rubina Saigol is a scholar and has authored several books on education and society and co-edited books on feminism and gender.

History and leadership of Pakistan

A Leadership Odyssey

Muslim Separatism and the Achievement

Of the Separate State of Pakistan

This book offers a unique historiography of the phenomenon of Muslim separatism as it affected and shaped modern South Asia. It describes the journeys of six prominent Muslim leaders of British India: Syed Ahmad Khan, who laid the foundation of the Muslim separatist political movement Sultan Muhammad Aga Khan III, Syed Ameer Ali, and Maulana Mohamed Ali, who strengthened and developed it in their own ways Allama Muhammad Iqbal, who took its cause further and formulated the idea of a separate state and, of course, Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, who, after making the demand for a separate state, transformed it into the nationalist Pakistan Movement and led it successfully to achieve the separate state of Pakistan. Previous studies have not explained Muslim separatism in such a leadership framework. In this book, based on an ‘instrumentalist’ approach, Muslim separatism has been analysed through the contributions of a host of Muslim leaders, one after the other, helping and reinforcing each other, and thus leading all the way to the achievement of Pakistan.

A Concise History of Pakistan

This comprehensive one-volume history of Pakistan covers contemporary crises in the perspective of the subcontinent’s ancient and medieval history. It sheds light on how Muslim nationalism emerged and how the community interacted with other communities in the region. The author breaches the confines of political history to depict the intellectual, economic, diplomatic, and cultural history of Pakistan. The book also provides personality profiles of individuals who shaped the course of events over the centuries such as Amir Khusro, Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Nehru, MA Jinnah and ZA Bhutto.

The Betrayal of East Pakistan

Lieutenant General AAK Niazi of the Eastern Command was the man whose fate it was to direct the operation which resulted in the dismemberment of Pakistan. Many books have been written about that unforgettable year in Pakistan’s history, 1971, and the terrible events that it spawned. But finally one of the main actors of the drama has volunteered his own account of the events leading to the disaster. This book fills a huge gap in the recorded history of the period, which could hardly be considered complete or authentic without the contribution of such a major protagonist.

The Unplanned Revolution

Observations on the Processes of Socio-economic Change in Pakistan

This book identifies past socio-economic conditions in the different ecological regions of Pakistan as viewed by the communities the author has worked or interacted with, present conditions, and emerging trends. It also identifies the actors of change and their relationships with each other and with the larger physical and political context. The volume is divided into six sections, the Mountains, Indus Plains and Western Highlands, the Desert, the River, the Coast, and the City. The social, economic, physical, and governance-related changes that have taken place in each are described through extracts from reports, field notes for different development-related work, articles prepared by the author, and extracts from his personal diaries. The section on the city deals with the informal sector in the provision of land and services and the impact of globalization on culture and development. It also contains geographies of resistance by communities to ‘insensitive’ development projects.


A Disputed Legacy 1846-1990

The Kashmir dispute has dominated India-Pakistan relations ever since the Transfer of Power in 1947. Alastair Lamb examines the history of this dispute from its remote origins in the first half of the nineteenth century-when the State of Jammu and Kashmir was created by the British sale of Kashmir to the Raja of Jammu-until the spring of 1990, when India and Pakistan appeared to be on the verge of a fourth armed conflict over this contested inheritance from the British Raj. A formidable body of myth has accumulated concerning the chain of events which, starting with the Partition of the Punjab by the Radcliffe Commission in August 1947, culminated in the overt Indian intervention in Jammu and Kashmir. In this book, Lamb provides a detailed account of the history of the Northern Frontier in the final years of the British Raj and he shows how this may well have set the scene for British policy towards Jammu and Kashmir in 1947. The book also deals with Jammu and Kashmir since October 1947 and includes a detailed history of UN participation, Indo-Pakistani negotiations, Chinese involvement, the State’s internal politics, and the origins of the insurgency. It delves into the details of the armed bilateral conflict over Kashmir, the three successive wars, the standoff at the Siachen Glacier and Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, all of which provide an essential background to the present situation in Kashmir.

Vishay suchi

Pakistan aik democratic country ha or yaha py Parliamentary system nafiz ul Aml ha jis system ma waeer e azam srbrah e hukmt or Sadar srbrah e mamlikt hota ha. Pakistan me 4 provinces,Territories or special administrative areas Govt FATA ,PATA, Shamali waziristan. Pakistan ka 27 divisions hain or 111 Districts hain. District ka under Tehsil and union council hain.

  1. Northern Areas(FATA)
  2. Raqbay ka lihaz sa Balochistan Pakistan ka sb sa bara soba(Province) ha or abadi ka lihaz sa Panjab sab sa bar soba (Province) ha.Pakistan ka log (People) Jaga (Places) apni apni jaga pa munfarid hain or puri dunyia main mashoor hain.

Geography ka lihaz sa pakistan ma Pahari,Mahdani or sharai elaqy shamil hain, Pahari silsaly m sakht patherily pahar be shamil ha. Pahari silsaly ma Dunyia ke 2sri bari Choti K2 pakistan ma ha. Pahari silsaly m ko-e-suliman be shamil ha, duniya ka 7van bra Ajooba shahray Qaraqrum Pakistan Main ha, ya shahra pakistn ka pahari silsaly s hoti hua china ko jati ha, Season (mohsam) ka lihaz sa Pakistan main 4 season aty ha Mohsam Garma, Mohsam sarma, Mohsam Bahar or Mohsam Khazan.Pakistan ka north main Kaghan Naran jalkhad Kashmir Gilgit wqia ha jin ma aksar barf bari sa dahkay rahty ha.

Pakistan officially ek federal jamhuuriya hae lekin iski history me 3 dafe military rule Kar chak hae.

Pakistans ke 10 barri political he,

Pakistan Muslim League N Pakistan peoples Part Pakistan Tahreek e Insaf

  • 1958 se 1973 talak koi bhi Prime Minister nai rahaa, Martial Law ke kaaran.
  • 5 July 1977 se 24 March 1985 talak fir se martial law ke kaaran koi P.M. nai rahaa..
  • 9 June 1988 se 17 August 1988 talak P.M. fir se koi nai rahaa
  • 12 October 1999, ke Pervez Musharraf, Nawaz Sharif ke hatae ke apne se Chief Executive ban ais.
  • 10 October 2002 ke election ke baad abhi ke Prime Minister elect bhaes.

Pakistan me dher uncha uncha pahaarr hae jismr tourist log aae ke charrhe hae. K2 mountain, jon ki dunia me duusra sab se uuncha pahaarr hae bhi Pakistan me hae. Jab k Sindh me Mohan Jo Daro Umar kot , Rani kot , Makli hills or us pass qaberstan . swat , hunza, Gilgit Lahore bhot mashor jgha h tourist ke leye .

Pakistan ke 96.4% log Muslim hai. Pakistan me Isaaii, Hindu aur Animist log bhi hae . Fiji me bhi 50 Pakistani rahe hai. Is kay ilawa wo bhi log hae jo india partition say pelay yahan aaya hae.

Urdu , Pakistan ke official Zuban hae lekin bahut kamti log ke mother tongue Urdu hae. Bahz log Hindko,Punjabi, Sindhi, Pushto or Balochi me baat kare hae.

Punjabi, Punjab ke provincial bhasa, Pashto or Hindko NWFP (khaber pakhtoon khawa ke, Sindhi, Sindh aur Balochi, Balochistan ke provinicial Zubanain Hain.

Niche ke suchi me Pakistan ke khaas Zubanain hae.

  1. Punjabi (40%)
  2. Sindhi (10%)
  3. Pashto (7%)
  4. Seraiki (7%)
  5. Hindko (2.5%
  6. Urdu (35%)
  7. Balochi (1.5%)
  8. Dusri Zubanain (rehne wala %)

Duusra Zuban me hain Hindko Aer, Badeshi, Bagri, Balti, Bateri, Bhaya, Brahui, Burushaski, Chilisso, Dameli, Dehwari, Dhatki, Domaaki, Farsi (Dari), Gawar-Bati, Ghera, Goaria, Gowro, Gujarati, Gujari, Gurgula, Hazaragi, Jadgali, Jandavra, Kabutra, Kachchi (Kutchi), Kalami, Kalasha, Kalkoti, Kamviri, Kashmiri, Kati, Khetrani, Khowar, Indus Kohistani, Koli (three varieties), Lasi, Loarki, Marwari, Memoni, Od, Ormuri, Pahari-Potwari, Pakistan Sign Language, Palula (Phalura), Sansi, Savi, Shina (dui varieties), Torwali, Ushojo, Vaghri, Wakhi, Waneci, aur Yidgha. Isme se kuch bhasa mare waala hae aur kuchh me bahut kamti log baat kare hae.

Jaada Zuban, Indo-European family ke Indo-Iranian branch ke hae, Burushaski, Balti aur Brahui ke chhorr ke.

The politics of blasphemy

The increasing politicisation of the laws has normalised their misuse and stalled attempts to amend legislation. Playing blasphemy politics has been a useful tool for former and present governments, whose support of the laws remain unwavering. Many perceive the blasphemy laws as brutal and highly divisive, often used to victimise religious minorities and human rights activists.

Online space provides a refuge where activists can voice concerns about human rights violations and hold the government and military to account however that space has become increasingly contested, with growing restrictions on freedom of expression and the policing of social media for content which may be deemed blasphemous.

In March 2017 former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif called blasphemy an “unpardonable offence,” directing the government at the time to bring anyone responsible for sharing blasphemous content on social media to justice. This step was seen by civil society as an attempt to silence dissenting voices and compromise freedom of expression.

During his 2018 election campaign, current Prime Minister Imran Khan used the issue of blasphemy to capitalise on the vote bank of the religious right. At an address to Muslim leaders in Islamabad he proclaimed: “We are standing with Article 295c and will defend it.” This uneasy relationship between the government and it’s pandering to the religious right further complicates the issue of blasphemy.

In a visit to Pakistan in 2012 former UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers Gabriela Knaul noted: “These laws serve the vested interests of extremist religious groups and are not only contrary to the Constitution of Pakistan, but also to international human rights norms, in particular those relating to non-discrimination and freedom of expression and opinion.”

This was demonstrated when Khadim Hussain Rizvi, blasphemy proponent and the leader of the Islamist group, Tehreek-i-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP), instigated protests against the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Asia Bibi’s death sentence in October 2018. Rizvi called for the judges who acquitted Asia Bibi to be killed, and encouraged the army to rebel. His supporters took to the streets, blocking major roads, causing disruption and millions of pounds worth of damage. The three-day nationwide demonstrations ended when the TLP signed an agreement with the Pakistani government, which included allowing a review petition of the Supreme Court’s judgement and placing Asia Bibi on the Exit Control List, preventing her from leaving the country.

The Misunderstood History of Pakistan-US Relations

Pakistan has sometimes been important to the U.S., sometimes not. Understanding the shifts of the past can help Islamabad plan for the future.

Writing about Pakistan-U.S. relations is like composing a piece of literary criticism of Shakespeare’s “Hamlet,” always looking for new answers to old nagging questions, and falling short. Nevertheless, a serious inquiry into the history of the bilateral relationship may help our quest for answers. The fact is that the history of Pakistan-U.S. relations is much misunderstood.

At present, Pakistan-U.S. relations are very much on Islamabad’s mind as it increasingly fears being caught in the crossfire between the United States and China, while having to cope with the impact of deepening India-U.S. relations, already reaffirmed by the Biden administration, and the looming crisis of potential civil conflict in Afghanistan following an American withdrawal.

Yet there is also Pakistan’s hope for a U.S. role in the improvement of India-Pakistan relations and for the revival of ties with Washington. Those hopes may have partly inspired the Kashmir ceasefire deal and the peace overtures pitched by the leadership at the recent Islamabad Security Dialogue . And now comes a deal between Iran and China, opening up the possibility that the United States has lost Iran to China and may not like Pakistan to be swept away into Beijing’s strategic orbit, too. These may arguably be the worst of times, and the best of times, for Islamabad.

Probing the history of Pakistan-U.S. relations will not resolve Pakistan’s policy dilemmas or realize its hopes. But it may help to understand the reality of shifting U.S. interests in the region and why Pakistan has sometimes been important and sometimes not, and what to expect from Washington, and what not to expect, as the Biden administration concludes its review of foreign policy, including the relationship with Pakistan.

Neither Strategic Nor Transactional

As Richard Armitage, then-deputy secretary of state, admitted in 2002, Pakistan was never important to the United States in its own right. It was important, he said, because of third parties. The implication was that Pakistan had no permanent value for the U.S., and its importance for Washington derived from the importance of South Asia more broadly.

South Asia’s importance for Washington until the end of the Cold War was limited and variable. Now the region is far more relevant to the United States for geopolitical, national security, and economic reasons. This requires Washington to invest in wider and longer term regional engagement in which both India and Pakistan have a place. But that place it is not next to each other. While India occupies a strategic space, Pakistan has been on shifting sand.

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If the U.S. cannot have a strategic relationship with Pakistan , has the relationship been transactional then? Yes and no. It was transactional, but dealing with strategic issues. And even the transactional relationship has not been working well because of contradictions within it and between each side’s relationships with other countries.

Paradoxes in the Pakistan-U.S. relationship are not new. They have existed since the very beginning and lie at the heart of misperceptions about the relationship. The two countries have had very high profile relations from time to time, even bearing characteristics of close allies. And yet Pakistan suffered frequent sanctions reserved for adversaries. Periodically the U.S. leadership has praised Pakistan sky high as an ally . Yet Islamabad has also been maligned by Washington. This is all the more puzzling considering that the Pakistan-U.S. relationship has historically served some of the critical national interests of the two countries and may do so again.

A Very “Special” Relationship

In their first engagement during the early years of the Cold War Pakistan had important symbolic value as an ally both as the then-largest Muslim country with a salient geopolitical location, and as a link in the U.S. chain of alliances from Europe to the Middle East to Asia in the Cold War’s containment policy.

During each phase of their relationship thereafter — during the 1980s against the Soviets in Afghanistan and their post-9/11 engagement — the specific task given to Islamabad by Washington was critically important not only in foreign policy terms, but also politically in U.S. domestic politics.

As a result, the relationship came to have two unusual attributes. Pakistan was handled by successive administrations in the United States in ways that were far out of proportion to the country’s normal importance. Given the impact on domestic politics and nature of the relationship — most of the dealings with Pakistan related to military and intelligence cooperation — the White House was driving ties.

Secondly, focusing as it did on intelligence and military cooperation, much of the relationship with Pakistan came to have an “underworld” aspect that was beyond public view. Meanwhile, on the surface in the U.S., Pakistan’s importance was not so evident. That presented a recurring challenge for U.S. administrations to orchestrate domestic political support for Pakistan, particularly as the country also embodied some negative features.

To this end successive U.S. administrations exaggerated Pakistan’s geopolitical importance and its role as an ally and discounted the negative sides. Similarly, the Pakistani establishment — specially a military government — sexed up the relationship to broaden public support for it and blunt its own unpopularity.

The United States made its own efforts to build public support for the military governments, which were providing help that a democratic and nationalist government in Pakistan would not. President Richard Nixon called Pakistan the United States’ “most allied ally ” and announced that relations with Pakistan were a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy. President Ronald Reagan and Secretary of State George Shultz eulogized Pakistan as a front-line state, praising President Zia ul Haq highly. President George W. Bush cozied up to President Pervez Musharraf by saying he could do business with him.

All of this created serious problems. When the special need that had brought the two countries close was fulfilled, and the relationship returned to normal the U.S. side found Pakistan falling far short of its inflated image as an ally. Pakistan’s conduct came under heavy scrutiny across the board in media and Congress. And there were cries of betrayal.

There were equally strong charges of betrayal by Pakistanis. Most Pakistanis, like most foreigners, have little understanding of the formation of public policy in the United States and did not realize the American leadership’s laudatory remarks were political statements, not policy statements. They came to think of the inflated relationship with the U.S. as the natural default position, not an exaggerated position of convenience. They were then outraged when the U.S. imposed various sanctions on Pakistan, in the lull between moments of necessity in the alliance. Pakistanis strongly believed their help to the U.S. had an enormous importance, especially in the Afghanistan war of the 1980s and the war on terrorism. They feel that after 9/11 they not only gave help but also suffered horrifically from the consequences of the war in Afghanistan.

Where do we go from here? South Asia has changed and so has the way big powers relate to it. After one of the worst periods in the history of the relations recently, owing largely to the troubled Afghanistan war and the rising tide of India-U.S. relations, Pakistan-U.S. ties might see some stability and new meaning in the steadying hands of Biden. The United States may now be looking at the relationship as part of its broader interests in South Asia, which are geopolitical, regional, and security related. Some interests will be served by India , while others served better by Pakistan. These two relationships now serve different U.S. purposes, some of which conflict, and some overlap. To maximize the benefits from both the relationships, especially from the arguably more important matters with India, Washington will steer clear of India-Pakistan disputes, except for crisis management.

Pakistan needs to learn from its misunderstood history of relations and adjust according to the vastly changed times. Because of intensifying competition between the U.S. and China, Pakistan’s geopolitical location and close ties with China can work both as an asset and a liability. It depends on what Pakistan makes of it. Washington cannot leave Islamabad entirely dependent on China and useful only to Beijing’s strategic purposes. But in order to be useful to both the U.S. and China, Pakistan has to build internal strength, raise its contribution to peace efforts in region, help stabilize Afghanistan, and enhance its potential as an economic partner. Ultimately what is good for Pakistan will be good for Pakistan-U.S. relations.

Finally, Pakistan should scale down its expectations of the U.S. and try to lower Washington’s expectations for Islamabad. It should treat the relationship with the U.S. as necessary, but not critical.

Guest Author

Touqir Hussain

Touqir Hussain is an adjunct professor at Georgetown University and visiting senior research fellow at National University of Singapore. He is a former ambassador of Pakistan and diplomatic adviser to the prime minister.

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