Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah: Aftermath (Episode 16)

Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah: Aftermath (Episode 16)

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Special services and prayers were held in the Kwitang mosque of Jakarta (Indonesia) after the death of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. Dina Wadia, Jinnah’s daughter, remained in India after independence before ultimately settling in New York City. In the 1965 presidential election, Fatima Jinnah, by then known as Madar-e-Millat (“Mother of the Nation”), became the presidential candidate of a coalition of political parties that opposed the rule of President Ayub Khan but was not successful.

The Jinnah House in Malabar Hill, Bombay, is in the possession of the Government of India, but the issue of its ownership has been disputed by the Government of Pakistan. Jinnah had personally requested Prime Minister Nehru to preserve the house, hoping one day he could return to Bombay. There are proposals for the house be offered to the government of Pakistan to establish a consulate in the city as a goodwill gesture, but Dina Wadia has also asked for the property.

After Jinnah died, his sister Fatima asked the court to execute Jinnah’s will under Shia Islamic law. This subsequently became the part of the argument in Pakistan about Jinnah’s religious affiliation. In a 1970 legal challenge, Hussain Ali Ganji Walji claimed Jinnah had converted to Sunni Islam, but the High Court rejected this claim in 1976, effectively accepting the Jinnah family as Shia. According to the journalist Khaled Ahmed, Jinnah publicly had a non-sectarian stance and “was at pains to gather the Muslims of India under the banner of a general Muslim faith and not under a divisive sectarian identity.” Ahmed reports a 1970 Pakistani court decision stating that Jinnah’s “secular Muslim faith made him neither Shia nor Sunni” and one from 1984 maintaining that “the Quaid was definitely not a Shia”. Liaquat H. Merchant, Jinnah’s grandnephew, elaborates that “he was also not a Sunni, he was simply a Muslim”. Akbar Ahmed states that there is evidence later, given by his relatives and associates in court, to establish that he was firmly a Sunni Muslim by the end of his life.

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Qaiser Rizwan Abbasi

The author is the student of bachelors in business administration. He has a keen passion for politics and current affairs and he loves to share his ideas, opinion, and understanding.

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