Independence Day show opens at National Museum
By: Peerzada Salman
KARACHI: Independence Day exhibitions are always interesting to see, as they highlight subjects that people are generally unaware of.
The relics and objects displayed at an exhibition organized by the National Museum of Pakistan in connection with Independence Day celebrations (which opened on Tuesday) had a fascinating combination of personal relics belonging to leaders of the Pakistan movement and documents pertaining to that movement.
The first set of objects, to the left of the reasonably big hall on the museum’s first floor, is a few copies of the welcome addresses presented to Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah in the 1940s. They are both in English and Urdu. Alongside it is a noteworthy piece of history. It is Chaudhry Rehmat Ali’s ‘pamphlet in which he coined the name of Pakistan’.
The pamphlet is in decent condition. Next to it is a set of papers also attributed to Mr Ali. It is his proposed maps of ‘Islamic states in India’.
A detailed study of the maps is required to comment on them.
No Independence Day exhibition can take place without a safely preserved Mohammad Ali Jinnah speech. So, among others, there’s one of his speeches delivered on Nov 19, 1940 in the Legislative Assembly. It might be of interest to history students who want to know the Quaid’s views at that point in time.
Then there are personal relics belonging to Mr Jinnah, Liaquat Ali Khan and Dr Mohammad Iqbal. They range from a sword presented to Mr Jinnah by the Muslim League (Aligarh) to a perfume bottle used by Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan.
Add to it a copy of Zarb-i-Kaleem personally signed by Dr Mohammad Iqbal. There are other books signed by the poet as well.
However, none of the above-mentioned, in the eyes of this reviewer, is more intellectually stimulating than a copy of Sir SyedAhmed Khan’s Asbab-i-Baghawat-i-Hind Aur Sarkashi-i-Bijnor.
Not only is it written in that delightful old Urdu, but is also a document worth musing on. This was the time when Sir Syed for the first time openly held the British responsible for the events that led to the mutiny.The exhibition will continue for a fortnight.