Punjab is the largest province of Pakistan. Lahore is the capital of Punjab. Lahore is an historical city. Lahore has always been the centre of political activity. So this province is called elder brother. This province played an important role in the existence of Pakistan.
Strong Support for Pakistan
Punjab took active part in every political or non-political activity. In the same way in Pakistan Movement, Punjab played its important role.
Allama Iqbal took part in practical politics and created the wave of freedom in the Muslims. He was the member of Provincial Council of Punjab. In 1930 he gave the sketch of separate homeland for the Muslims in his Allahabad session. That is why he is called the Painter of Pakistan. He gave very useful suggestions to Quaid-e-Azam and showed his complete confidence in his leadership. Quaid also respected Allama Iqbal. He said during Pakistan Movement,
“If we succeeded in getting a separate homeland for the Muslims and at one side I am given the president-ship and at other side the books of Iqbal; I will select the books of Iqbal.”
In 1931-1932 in London, Iqbal joined Round Table Conference so that the political problems of sub continent could be solved.
Maulana Zafer Ali Khan
Zafar Ali Khan also belonged to Punjab. He was a high rank generalist, national hero and a great poet. “Zamindar” was his famouse newspaper in Urdu. He founded “Majlis-e-Ahrar”. This party launched a movement against Kadiyanis. He stated the aims of Muslim League well by his pen and tongue when he joined it. In 1936 elections, he was elected as the Member of Assembly on Muslim League ticket and after this he remained on the front in the struggle for independence.
Iqbal said about Zafer Ali Khan:
“What work Mustafa Kamal Ataturk did for Turkey by his sword, Zafer did the same work for the Muslims by his pen.”
Chaudhry Rehmat Ali
Chaudhry Rehmat Ali who suggested this name for Pakistan in 1932 lived in Punjab. In those days he was studying in London. He made Muslims emotional by his pamphlet, “Now or Never”. He invented Pakistan by : P for Pakistan, A for Afghani, F for Frontier Province, K for Kashmir, S for Sindh and Tan for Baluchistan.
Muslim League slowly set its feet in Punjab. In the beginning some local and provincial political parties opposed Muslim League but later on, Muslim League became the most effective political party of Punjab under the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam. On 23rd March 1940, there was held a meeting in Lahore in which Pakistan Resolution or Lahore Resolution was passed in which Pakistan as a separate homeland for the Muslims was demanded. Now-a-days Minar-e-Pakistan is standing at that place.
Lahore As the Heart of Pakistan
Quaid-e-Azam rightly said “Lahore is the heart of Pakistan.”
Effective Pakistan Movement
Muslim League became the most active emotional party in Punjab under the leadership of Quaid-e-Azam. People from all groups of Punjab joined Pakistan Movement.
Muslim League in Punjab Assembly
Muslim League took part in 1945-46 elections on the basis of demand for Pakistan and won particular seats in the central assembly for Punjab. In provincial elections, Muslim League won 75 seats out of 86. After this four other members joined Muslim League. So Muslim League got 79 seats, in this way Muslim League became the biggest party in Punjab. But the English governor of Punjab, instead of offering the Muslims League to make government, offered the government to Congress and Unionists party by conspiracy. Because of this, government did not have the support of the people. Muslim League launched “No Confidence Movement” and as a result, it had to resign soon.
Wrong Division of Punjab
It was decided that the province of Punjab should be divided between India and Pakistan. For this purpose an English Judge Radcliff was appointed as president of Commission that by conspiracy with Mountbatten and Congress gave most fertile areas of Muslim majority to India and the population of those Muslim areas left their homes and had to migrate to Pakistan.
Disturbances and the Problem of Immigrants
When Hindus and Sikhs saw that sub-continent is being divided against their interest they started disturbances in some regions of Punjab in which thousands of Muslims were killed and injured. In this play of fire and blood, the Muslims of Punjab proved very courageous and welcomed the refugees coming from India and proved that the Muslims are brothers of each other in the hour of need.