The Birth of a Nation
On 14 August 1947, just 10 minutes before midnight, All India Radio (AIR) broadcast its last programme and thereafter, a song composed by Khawaja Khurshid Anwar was aired by the Lahore radio station. Then a minute before midnight a broadcast (in English by Mr Zahoor Ahmed and in Urdu by Mustapha ali Hamadani) informed the awaiting listeners that exactly at midnight Pakistan will emerge as an independent state on the world map. Then at exactly at midnight 14-15 August 1947, a broadcast in English, followed by in Urdu reached the listeners “This is Pakistan Broadcasting Service”. This broadcast was followed by recitation of Holy Quran (Surah Al Fatah 1-4) by Maulana Zahir al Qasmi. This was followed by a “na’at” by Muhammad Azam Chishti, a “qaseeda” by Hafeez Jalandhari (later the architect of Pakistan National Anthem), an orchestra composed by Khawaja Khurshid Anwar and a “qawwali” by Santoo Khan and others.14 August 1947, a day in the history when a new nation was carved out of the British India after a long and tiring struggle of Muslims of India. For years since 711 AD, when Muhammad Bin Qasim invaded the Indian sub-continent, Muslims had been the rulers till subjugated by the British in 1857. Therefore, the independence in 1947 from the British yoke was a God-given opportunity to live as per the aspirations of Islamic values. From 1947 till date, Pakistan’s history has seen many ups and downs, finally losing half of it in 1971. The history of Pakistan can easily be divided into roughly 10-years brackets, each having own peculiarities and repercussions on its future.