Communicating as a Leader

The Leader

Malik Tariq Mahmood asked:

Malik Tariq Mahmood

M. Sc. Mass Communication

PGD (English Language)

Allama Iqbal Open University



It has to be remembered that it was not only Jinnah’s superb political strategy that eclipsed his Muslim opponents but, thirteen years before the birth of Pakistan, the realization dawned on the Muslim masses that Jinnah and Jinnah alone could lead them. The voice of one hundred million Muslims, fought for their religious, social and economic freedom. Throughout history no single man yielded as much power as the Jinnah, and yet remained uncorrupted by that power. Not many men in history can boast of creating a nation single handley and altering the map of the world but Jinnah did so and thus become a legend. Every person in this world has a hero. People have heroes because they really admire that person and they really look up to that person. They want to do what they have done and they have achieved in their life. Like every person, I also have a hero, and that is Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

Leadership is a comprehensive term. It denotes the character, the capacity and the will of the person chosen to lead others. Generally speaking an ideal leader is one who, throughout his life, practices what he preaches. There is no incompatibility between his words and deeds.

Father of the Nation Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s achievement as the founder of Pakistan, dominates everything else he did in his long and crowded public life spanning some 42 years. Yet, by any standard, his was an eventful life, his personality multidimensional and his achievements in other fields were many, if not equally great. Indeed, several were the roles he had played with distinction: at one time or another, he was one of the greatest legal luminaries India had produced during the first half of the century, an `ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity, a great constitutionalist, a distinguished parliamentarian, a top-notch politician, an indefatigable freedom-fighter, a dynamic Muslim leader, a political strategist and, above all one of the great nation-builders of modern times. What, however, makes him so remarkable is the fact that while similar other leaders assumed the leadership of traditionally well-defined nations and espoused their cause, or led them to freedom, he created a nation out of an inchoate and down-trodden minority and established a cultural and national home for it, and all that within a decease. For over three decades before the successful culmination in 1947, of the Muslim struggle for freedom in the South-Asian subcontinent, Jinnah had provided political leadership to the Indian Muslims: initially as one of the leaders, but later, since 1947, as the only prominent leader- the Quaid-i-Azam.

But by far the greatest contributor in his heroic war of creating moon land for the Indian Muslim was the Quaid-i-Azam. Professor Stanley Waldport, evaluating his idealistic personality and the phonemically contribution of the Quaid in this context says;

“Few individuals significantly alter the course of history. Fewer still modify the map of the world. Hardly anyone can be credited with creating a nation state. Mohammad Ali Jinnah did all three”.

He set a standard of character and moral conduct which is different from the one which, in popular view, usually goes to constitute greatness. He battled against the proud and the haughty, against those who sought to tyrannise over the weak and the oppressed and he humbled their pride. But to the common man who sought light and guidance, to the silent un-assuming workers he was the soul of courtesy and kindness. He is the father of our nation, the founder of our beloved land, demonstrated practically the true philosophy of practical politics, which only a few have done in history. His words and work go hand in hand. His golden words1 are:

“We are a nation with our own distinctive culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, names and nomenclature, sense of values and proportion, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and traditions, aptitudes and ambitions, in short, we have our own distinctive outlook on life and of life. By all canons of International law we are a nation”.

Let us make an appraisal of Quaid-i-Azam as an ideal leader. In his own words the concept of an ideal person is illustrated as “character, courage, industry, and perseverance are the four pillars on which edifice of life is built; failure is a word unknown to me”. He translated each word of his own into a reality in the form of his practical life, both private and public. Here we shall look at his public life or at him as a political leader.

The leader addressed to lower the final curtain on any prospects for a single united independent India. Those who understood him enough know that once his mind was made up he never reverted to any earlier position realized how momentous a pronouncement their Quaid-i-Azam had just made. The rest of the world would take at least seven years to appreciate that he literally meant every word that he had uttered that important afternoon in March. There was no turning back. The ambassador of Hindu-Muslim unity had totally transformed himself into Pakistan’s great leader. All that remained was for his party first, then his inchoate nation, and then his British allies to agree to the formula he had resolved upon. He maintained Democratic systems based on the concept of a homogeneous nation such as England are very definitely not applicable to heterogeneous countries such as India. He called the Hindus and the Muslims are “two different nations” with different religions and different social codes. It is obvious that by calling the Hindus and the Muslims two nations, Jinnah had reached the threshold of partition, but he was still reluctant to abandon his lifelong dream that Hindus and the Muslims would come to an understanding and in unison make “their common motherland” one of the great countries of the world.

Mr. Jinnah always had his hand on the pulse of his people and could feel the vibrations of their hearts. He knew how to express the stirrings of their minds in the form of concrete propositions. His faith in his people was unflagging and it was proved true. Mr. Montagu (1879 – 1924), Secretary of State for India, at the close of the First World War, says:

“Mr. Jinnah “perfect mannered, impressive-looking, armed to the teeth with dialectics ….. “Jinnah, he felt, “is a very clever men, and it is, of course, an outrage that such a man should have not change of running the affairs of his own country”.

For about three decades since his entry into politics in 1906, Jinnah passionately believed in and assiduously worked for Hindu-Muslim unity. Gokhale, the foremost Hindu leader before Gandhi, had once said of him, “He has the true stuff in him and that freedom from all sectarian prejudice which will make him the best ambassador of Hindu-Muslim Unity: And, to be sure, he did become the architect of Hindu-Muslim Unity: he was responsible for the Congress-League Pact of 1916, known popularly as Lucknow Pact- the only pact ever signed between the two political organisations, the Congress and the All-India Muslim League, representing, as they did, the two major communities in the subcontinent.”

To him, character is the first pillar of the edifice of life. The soul and substance of a character is honesty. To form an idea of the character of a person is types: moral and intellectual. Moral honesty is concerned with avoidance of material gains by unfair means. Intellectual honesty pertains to such devotion to an impersonal cause as to completely transcend self. Mr. Jinnah was an embodiment of honesty both morally and intellectually. His moral honesty is to much establish that even his most staunch opponent
s admitted him as an upright and incorruptible person. Throughout his life he remained hones to hi
s nation and sincere to his cause. On various occasions he was tempted to accept the most prestigious posts but he, looking through the evil designs of the offer-makers.

Intellectually he was so exclusively committed to his cause that he sacrificed all his private and personal interests. His mind was always occupied with the idea of Pakistan. His thoughts were lucid and clear about it. Whatever he said was supplemented by a comprehensive rational argument. Indeed, he always stood on high pedestal of moral and intellectual honesty. Mr. Jinnah devoted himself with singleness of purpose of organizing the Muslims on one platform. He embarked upon country-wide tours. He pleaded with provincial Muslim leaders to sink their differences and make common cause with the League. He exhorted the Muslim masses to organize themselves and join the League. He gave coherence and direction to Muslim sentiments on the Government of India Act, 1935.

As a result of Jinnah’s ceaseless efforts, the Muslims awakened from what Professor Baker calls (their) “unreflective silence” (in which they had so complacently basked for long decades), and to “the spiritual essence of nationality” that had existed among them for a pretty long time. Roused by the impact of successive Congress hammerings, the Muslims, as Ambedkar (principal author of independent India’s Constitution) says, “searched their social consciousness in a desperate attempt to find coherent and meaningful articulation to their cherished yearnings. To their great relief, they discovered that their sentiments of nationality had flamed into nationalism”. In addition, not only had they developed” the will to live as a “nation”, had also endowed them with a territory which they could occupy and make a State as well as a cultural home for the newly discovered nation.

The Leader was an embodiment of courage. We are greatly accustomed to praise physical courage. “But Courage”, says great philosopher, “in fighting is by no means the only form, nor perhaps even the most important. There is courage in facing poverty, courage in facing decision, courage in facing the hostility. And above all there is courage to think calmly and rationally in the face of danger and to control the impulse of panic fear or panic rage.” The Leader had utmost courage of conviction. He displayed fearless courage as a lawyer as well as a leader. His life, in this respect, is exemplary. He was mocked and ridiculed by some of his contemporaries. He bore it patiently. He faced fierce hostility from the Congress and the British Government. He showed matchless courage while talking to the last viceroy of British India, during the days when establishment of Pakistan was being finalised.

He was never ruffled. At every moment he remained calm and composed because he had courage of conviction and firm faith in the truthfulness of his stand. We maintain and hold that Muslims and Hindus are two major nations by any definition or test of a nation. We are a nation of a hundred million, and, what is more, we are a nation with our own distinctive culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, names and nomenclature, sense of value and proportion, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and traditions, aptitudes and ambitions. In short, we have our own distinctive outlook on life. By all canons of international law we are a nation, he said:

“We are a nation”, they claimed in the ever eloquent words of the Quaid-i-Azam- “We are a nation with our own distinctive culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, names and nomenclature, sense of values and proportion, legal laws and moral code, customs and calendar, history and tradition, aptitudes and ambitions; in short, we have our own distinctive outlook on life and of life. By all canons of international law, we are a nation”.

The Leader: As Lawyer

The Leader having qualified as a barrister in England and having made his mark in India, Jinnah’s name could be justly added to the ‘list of great lawyers’ academically linked to Lincoln’s Inn. Jinnah practiced both law and politics for half a century; he made a fortune as an advocate and earned glory and gratitude of prosperity as leader of the Indian Muslims. When Jinnah left the shores of free England and voyaged to subject India in 1896, he had perhaps no idea that, one day, he would be obliged by the erstwhile Hindu leaders to make history and his biggest brief would be to win the case of the Indian Muslims for a separate homeland.

The Leader was an extremely industrious person. He worked hard day and night as a student, as a lawyer and as a leader. He did not waste even a single moment. His punctuality was proverbial. To him time seemed a stuff life is made of. It is well known that he worked still very late at night when leaders of other political parties enjoyed sound sleep. “Work, work and work” was his motto. Even in old age he continued working for more than sixteen hours a day. This diligent labour was sure to affect his health. But he did not give up working even though his health was failing. During the last days of his life, his doctors advised him to take rest but he responded that he could not accept that piece f advice as he had still to do a lot of work. He worked to the final breath of his life.

Perseverance is a quality by which a person become resolute, inspite of hardships Quaid-i-Azam possessed this quality. Throughout his life he pursued his object persistently. He faced various difficulties in his life. He suffered family problems as a student. He faced hurdles as a lawyer. He endured the sufferings of ailment and subsequently, the death of his beloved wife. He faces blames hurled upon him by his opponents. But he stood fast like a rock in the face of raging and furious waves of dangers and difficulties in the ocean of the world. It is by his perseverance that he emerged safe and sound and ultimately carried his boat to the shore of success.

Quaid-i-Azam had no such word as failure in his dictionary. He won Pakistan by virtue of his great, moral and intellectual qualities. He was really a great man. The title of the Quaid-i-Azam conferred upon him by his nation was in fact won by him. He deserved it justifiably. He was such an ideal political leader that no match of his can be found in the history of the Muslims of India in the twentieth century.

The Delhi Station of All India Radio was agog with excitement. Mountbatten was there to announce, on behalf of His Majesty’s Government, what Churchill in his inimitable style had termed, a few years back as the impending liquidation of the British Empire in India. Mountbatten spoke with poise and dignity, and millions that heard him all over India, realized that the end of a long drawn-out struggle for independence was in sight, as he declared in unequivocal terms that power would be definitely transferred by the British to two successive sovereign States. The Viceroy concluded his broadcast with the words:

“I have faith in the future of India and I am proud to be with you all at this momentous time. May your decisions be wisely guided and may they be carried out in the peaceful and friendly spirit of the Gandhi-Jinnah appeal.”

Quaid-i-Azam announcing on the All-India Radio Delhi

At Pakistan would come into being August, 1947

The great Leader addressed the Muslim Nation, and then he was the Quaid-i-Azam. His first sentence on that historic occasion was:

“I am glad that I am offered an opportunity to speak to you directly through this Radio from Delhi.”

A man such as Jinnah, who had fought for the inherent rights of his people all through his life and who had taken up the somewhat unconventional and the largely misinterpreted cause of Pakistan, was bound to generate violent opposition and excite implacable hostility and was likely to be largely misunderstood. But what is most remarkable about Jinnah is th
at he was the recipient of some of the greatest tributes p
aid to any one in modern times, some of them even from those who held a diametrically opposed viewpoint.

The Aga Khan considered him “the greatest man he ever met”, he said on his death in 1948, “was great as a lawyer, once great as a Congressman, great as a leader of Muslims, great as a world politician and diplomat, and greatest of all as a man of action, By Mr. Jinnah’s passing away, the world has lost one of the greatest statesmen and Pakistan its life-giver, philosopher and guide”. Such was Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, the man and his mission, such the range of his accomplishments and achievements.

Regarding the Plan for the transfer of power to the peoples of India, he said: had to take momentous decisions and handle grave issues. Therefore we must galvanize and concentrate all our energy to see that the transfer of power is affected in a peaceful and orderly manner. In this, his finest hour, he was meek and humble, “I pray to God that at this critical moment that He may guide us and enable us to discharge our responsibilities in a wise and statesmanlike manner. He did not forget to pay his tribute to those that had suffered and sacrificed in the struggle for Pakistan. “I cannot help but express my appreciation of the sufferings and sacrifices made by all classes of Muslims”. He gave wholehearted credit for “the great part the women of the Frontier played in the fight for our civil liberties.” He did not forget those who had died or suffered in the struggle for Pakistan, “I deeply sympathize with all those who have suffered and those who died or whose properties were subjected to destruction”.

Quaid-i-Azam ended his memorable speech by saying, extemporaneously, “Pakistan Zindabad”

The Leader addressed to the Assembly on 11th August, 1947 then he was the Governor General of Pakistan and also called “Quaid-i-Azam”. He said that the first duty of a government was to maintain law and order so that the life, property and religious beliefs of its subjects are fully protected. If Pakistanis wanted to make their country happy and prosperous they should “wholly and solely concentrate on the well being of the people, and especially of the masses and the poor.” In that historical address he remarked further: “You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or any other place of worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed — that has nothing to do with the business of the State. We are starting in the days when there is no discrimination between one caste or creed or another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one State. My guiding principle will be justice and complete impartiality, and I am sure that with your support and co-operation, I can look forward to Pakistan becoming one of the greatest Nations of the world.”

The lessons he taught his countrymen were worth remembering for the life time, especially the lesson of equality. Always a worker for Hindu Muslim unity, he served a political apprenticeship in the Congress. He said: “Whatever you may be, and whatever you are, you are a Muslim, you have carved out a territory, a vast territory, and it is all yours. It does not belong to a Punjabi or a Sindhi or a Pathan. There is white too in the lovely flag of Pakistan. The white signifies the non- Muslim minorities.” An upright man who always kept his word, he thought well before he spoke. If he made a promise he made sure he kept his word. In his last days when he was suffering from extreme illness, he went to the meetings and dinners he was invited to and made it to the inauguration of the State Bank of Pakistan because he had promised he would be there. He advised, “if ever you make a promise, think a hundred times, but once you make a promise, honor your promise.”

After the creation of Pakistan the leader said, “Our destination was not only the formation of Pakistan, our real target is a strong prosperous and stable Pakistan”. Quaid-i-Azam accepted the challenge and led the nation successfully out of despair and put them on the path of prosperity and progress. He kept up the morale of the masses high until the last moment of his life. His message, “Unity, Faith and Discipline” can play a key role in the prosperity of Pakistan. During his short period he fully devoted himself to the momentous task of consolidating and strengthening the newly born Pakistan. He was not a cold or dry man as some people mistakenly call him. In fact he was a composed man. He had calm of mind and warmth of heart. He was a man of well dressed man of Asia became the most well respected leader – the Quaid-i-Azam of the sub-continent. Yet Jinnah was more than Quaid-i-Azam for the people who followed him and more than the architect of the Islamic nation he called into being. He commanded their imagination and their confidence.

He was not bogged down by the daunting task of creating a home for Muslims in which they would be able to live in the glory of Islam. Most people also admired him and one even said, “Gandhi died by the hands of an assassin; Jinnah died by his devotion to Pakistan”. That’s why I really admire him. He is like a hero to everyone in my country. His vision is high and untrammeled by momentary vicissitudes, his speech charming and invigorating, his soul saturated with the deepest pathos. Verily it was of such a leader that the great poet said:

This is because of what he did for our country and for the Muslims. He fought so much for us and he did so much for us that no one can ever forget. You always hear about Gandhi and how he did so much for India, but you never hear about Quaid-i-Azam who did everything to get us at the point that we are right now. He is a great freedom hero for me. So, the author called without any habituation that he was really “a great and an ideal leader”. May Allah Almighty rest the departed soul in peace. (Amen)


1. Ahmed, Riaz Dr. (1989): “Quaid-i-Azam’s Role in South Asia”, Alvi Publisher, M – 1855, Murree Road, Rawalpindi

2. Ahmed Jamil-ud-Din (1960): “Glimpses of Quaid-i-Azam”, Royal Book Company, Rehman Centre, Zaibunisa Street, P.O. Box 7733, Saddar, Karachi-3.

3. Ahmad Riaz Dr. (1999): “Pakistani Scholars on Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah”, Published by Chair on Quaid-i-Azam & Freedom Movement National Institute of Pakistan Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad

4. A news journal of “Postgraduate College for Women”, (2000-01)

5. Dani, Ahmad Hasan (1981): “Quaid-i-Azam and Pakistan”, Barq Sons Printers, Islamabad

6. Ispahani, M. A. H. (1976): “Quaid-i-Azam Jinnah, As I Knew Him” 3rd edition, Elite Publishers (Private) Ltd., Karachi.

7. Internet

8. Khairi, Saad R. (1990): “Jinnah Reinterpreted”, Oxford University Press, Walton Street, Oxford OX2 6DP Oxford New York

9. Kazi Shahida (2001): “Pakistan Studies in Focus”, FEP International Pakistan Ltd

10. Newspapers (The Dawn, and The Nation)

11. Stanley Wolpert gives an interview to the American Press on 1942

12. Suleri, Z. A. (1982): “My Leader” (New Edition), The Pakistan Times Press, Lahore

13. Ibid


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