What Iqbal was for Jinnah

Jinnah issued the following condolence message on the death of Allama Iqbal:

“To me he was a friend, guide and philosopher and during the darkest moments through which the Muslim League had to go, he stood like a rock and never flinched one single moment and as a result just only three days ago he must have read of been informed of the complete unity that was achieved in Calcutta of the Muslim leaders of the Punjab and today I can say with pride that the Muslims of Punjab are wholeheartedly with the League and have come under the flag of the All-India Muslim League, which must have been a matter of greatest satisfaction to him. In the achievement of this unity Sir Muhammad Iqbal played a most signal part.”

(Calcutta, April 21, 1938)

Quaid-e-Azam’s reported Speech at a public meeting to mourn the death of Allama Iqbal:

Mr. M. A. Jinnah said that “the sorrowful news of the death of Dr. Sir Muhammad Iqbal had plunged the world of Islam in gloom mourning. Sir Iqbal was undoubtedly one of the greatest poets, philosophers and seers of humanity of all times. He took a prominent part in the politics of the country and in the intellectual and cultural reconstruction of the Islamic world. His contribution to the literature and thought of the world will live forever. To me he was a personal friend, philosopher and guide and as such the main source of my inspiration and spiritual support”.

(Calcutta, April 21, 1938, The Star of India, April 22, 1938)

Presidential Address, 26th Annual Session of the All-India Muslim League, Patna, December 26, 1938

Quaid-i-Azam made the following comments extempore during his presidential address: “Dr. Sir Muhammad Iqbal’s death is an irreparable loss to Muslim India. He was a personal friend of mine and composer of the finest poetry in the world. He will live as long as Islam will live. His noble poetry interprets the true aspirations of the Muslims of India. It will remain an inspiration for us and for generations after us.”

Comment made after passing Lahore Resolution, March 23, 1940:

Sometime after this meeting, Jinnah turned to Matlub Saiyid, who had been present at the Lahore session, and said: “Iqbal is no more amongst us, but had he been alive he would have been happy to know that we did exactly what he wanted us to do.”

Reported presidential speech in Iqbal Day meeting, Lahore, March 25, 1940.

“If I live to see ideal of a Muslim State being achieved in India and I were then offered to make a choice between the works of Iqbal and the rulership of the Muslim state, I would prefer the former”.

(The Civil & Military Gazette, March 26, 1940)

Reported speech on Iqbal Day meeting, Lahore, March 3, 1941

 Paying his tribute to the memory of the poet, Mr. M. A. Jinnah said:

“The message of Iqbal has reached the farthest corners of the world. He was the greatest interpreter of Islam in modern times.”

“I have had the privilege and opportunity,” he added, “of being associated with him. I have never found a truer and more loyal colleague than him.”

Mr. Jinnah exhorted Muslim youth to understand the spirit of Iqbal’s message. This, he said, would show them their goal. Iqbal is going to live for ever. The coming generations will look upon him as the greatest benefactors of Muslims.”

Letter sent by Jinnah on Iqbal Day, Hyderabad (Deccan), August 9, 1941.(Facsimile included in Discourses of Iqbal by Shahid Hussain Razzaqi (1979/2003), Iqbal Academy Pakistan, Lahore)

“Every great movement has a philosopher and Iqbal was the philosopher of the National Renaissance of Muslim India. He in his works has left an exhaustive and most valuable legacy behind him and a message not only for the Musalmans but for all other nations of the world.

Iqbal was a poet who inspired Muslims with the spirit and determination to restore to Islam its former glory and although he is no more with us, his memory will grow younger and younger with the progress and development of Muslim India.

His works should therefore, be read and digested by every Musalman to create solidarity, and we should all try to organize the Muslims throughout India economically, educationally, socially and politically.”

Message on Iqbal Day being celebrated at Lahore, New Delhi, December 8, 1944 (The Dawn, December 11, 1944)

 “To the cherished memory of our National Poet Iqbal, I pay my homage on this day, which is being celebrated in commemoration of that great poet, sage, philosopher and thinker, and I pray to God Almighty that his soul may rest in eternal peace. Amen!

Though he is not amongst us, his verse, immortal as it is, is always there to guide us and to inspire us. His poetry, besides being beautiful in form and sweet in language, presents to us a picture of the mind and heart of this great poet, and we find how deeply he was devoted to the teachings of Islam. He was a true and faithful follower of the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him), a Muslim first and a Muslim last. He was the interpreter and voice of Islam.”


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