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Hilal English

March 23, 1940: Charting the Course for Pakistan's Future

March 2024

Annually observed on March 23, Republic Day in Pakistan commemorates the historic Lahore Resolution, which was formally adopted during the 27th Session of the All India Muslim League (AIML) held from March 22-24, 1940, at Minto Park (now Iqbal Park) in Lahore. This significant event, attended by over 100,000 participants, unfolded in close proximity to the renowned Lahore Fort and Badshahi Mosque.
Quaid-i-Azam's anticipation of organizing the largest gathering of Muslims in the Indo-Pak subcontinent aimed at providing an official identity to Muslim India, aligning with Iqbal's vision. The Resolution of 1940, spearheaded by Maulvi A. K. Fazlul Haq, called for geographically contiguous units to be demarcated into regions where Muslims held a numerical majority, constituting independent and sovereign states. Prominent leaders endorsing this resolution included Liaquat Ali Khan, Chaudhry Khaliquzzaman, Maulana Zafar Ali Khan, among others, culminating in its unanimous adoption.
The nomenclature designating youngsters as the 'future of Pakistan' finds its roots in the Pakistan Movement, where student federations played a substantial role. In a speech to the Punjabi-Muslim Students Federation in Lahore in 1947, Jinnah underscored the pivotal role of disciplined education and self-control. He urged students to prioritize academics, building a robust intellectual foundation while acknowledging their responsibility to themselves, their parents, and the state. “Pakistan takes great pride in its youth, especially the students, who have consistently been at the forefront during times of necessity. As the future architects of our nation, it is imperative that you diligently prepare yourselves with discipline, education, and training to tackle the challenging responsibilities that await you effectively.” He also highlighted, “Acquire strong self-control, moral integrity, proactiveness, and a robust educational foundation. It would be best to fully commit yourself to your academic pursuits, as it is your primary responsibility to yourself, your parents, and the state.”
The youth's contribution to national progress is considered an invaluable asset, shaped by the profound guidance of leaders like Jinnah and Iqbal. The fusion of their practical and philosophical advice forms the basis for the emerging youth leadership in Pakistan, leaving a lasting impact on the nation. Jinnah's emphasis on cohesion, self-control, and education harmonizes with Iqbal's promotion of creativity and critical thinking. This influence is palpable in the present, resonating through the emerging leaders steering Pakistan towards progress.
The imperative to empower the younger generation holds significance for societal advancement and national growth, fostering economic development, unity, creativity, and shared accountability. Jinnah's stress on the education and development of leadership skills among the youth reflects optimism regarding their role as the future architects of Pakistan.

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