14th August: Why is Pakistan’s Independence Day celebrated a day before India’s Independence Day?

Raba NoorWeb Editor

13th Aug, 2021. 12:09 am
Pakistan's Independence Day

More than 72 years have passed since Pakistan became independent, and all along we have remained unaware of many aspects of our history.

We celebrate our Independence Day on 14th August every year and our neighboring country India, which became independent with us, celebrates the same on 15th August every year and every year the question arises that the two countries which became independent together on their Independence Day, why the difference of one day?

In this video, we have tried to solve this puzzle.

The elders tell us that Pakistan became independent on the 27th night of Ramadan and that the day Pakistan became independent was the happy day of Jumu’ah al-Wada ‘.

Then we are told that this day was August 14, 1947, and we are one day older than the country that became independent with us. However, when we look at the calendar of August 14, 1947, it is known that this day was Thursday and Hijri date. It was not 27 but 26 Ramadan.

Then we see the first stamps of Pakistan which were issued on July 9, 1948, 11 months after the independence of Pakistan. On these stamps, Pakistan’s Independence Day is clearly printed on August 15, 1947.

Then we come to the conclusion that Pakistan’s Independence Day is not 14 but 15 August 1947, then why the first anniversary of Independence Day was celebrated on 14 August 1948? Thus the mind is once again confused as to when Pakistan became independent: on August 14, 1947, or on August 15, 1947.

If we became independent on 14th August 1947 then why the date of Independence Day was written on the postage stamps issued 11 months after independence on 15th August 1947 and if Pakistan became independent on 15th August 1947 then we celebrated the first anniversary of independence on 15th August 1947. Why celebrate August 14, 1948, instead?

And most of all, why are these birthdays still being celebrated on August 14 instead of August 15?

The most important document in this regard is the Indian Independence Act of 1947, which was passed by the British Parliament and ratified by the British Emperor George VI on 18 July 1947.

A copy of this law was sent to Quaid-e-Azam on 24 July 1947 by the Secretary-General of Pakistan, Chaudhry Muhammad Ali (who later became the Prime Minister of Pakistan).

This law was enacted on page 234 of volume 12 of The Transfer of Power, a document published by the British Government in 1983 and translated by Jinnah Papers published by Quaid-e-Azam Papers Project, Cabinet Division, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad. (Urdu translation of K) can be seen from page 45 to page 72 of volume III. This is clearly stated in the law.

From 15 August 1947, two independent sovereign states will be established in British India, which will be named India and Pakistan respectively.

Later in the law, ‘these states’ means new states, and ‘fixed day’ means August 15.

The original text on page 234 of Transfer of Power, Volume 12 is as follows:

Here are a few more orders issued in continuation of this law, the excerpts and translations of which were published by Zia-ud-Din Lahori in his article ‘Independence Day: Happy Friday 27th Ramadan or 15th August’. Department of Writing, Compilation and Translation has been included in Karachi University.

August 12, 1947 Excerpt from the press release of the Secretariat of the United Nations Memorandum on the Privilege of Membership of India and Pakistan

The Indian Independence Act states that on 15th August 1947, two independent states will be established in India under the names of India and Pakistan respectively.

The British government announced that both Pakistan and India would be free at the same time, on 15 August 1947 at zero hours, but the problem was that Lord Mountbatten visited India in New Delhi on the night between 14 and 15 August 1947. Was to declare independence.

The elected government was to transfer power and become the first Governor-General of independent India.

The elected government was to transfer power and become the first Governor-General of independent India.

The solution was for Lord Mountbatten to visit Karachi on August 13, 1947, and address the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan on the morning of August 14, 1947, to complete the transfer of power and announce that on that night, August 14 and 15. By the middle of 1947, Pakistan would become an independent state.

So that’s what happened. On August 13, 1947, Lord Mountbatten visited Karachi and on the same night, dinner was given in his honor at the Governor General’s House in Karachi. Addressing the gathering, Muhammad Ali Jinnah said:

I am very happy to suggest the health of the country. This is a very important and unique opportunity. Today, full power is about to be transferred to the people of India and on the appointed day of 15th August 1947, two independent and sovereign states Pakistan and India will come into being. This decision of the Prime Minister’s Government will achieve the lofty goal that was declared the sole purpose of the Commonwealth.

The next day, Thursday, August 14, 1947, according to the 26th of Ramadan 1366 AH, a special session of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan began at 9 am in the present Sindh Assembly Building in Karachi.

Enthusiastic people had gathered in front of the building since morning. When Pakistan’s nominee for Governor-General Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Lord Mountbatten arrived in the Assembly Hall in a special carriage, the people greeted them with enthusiastic slogans and applause. All the seats in the assembly were full.

The gallery was attended by a large number of prominent citizens, politicians, and local and foreign journalists. The chair was presided over by the President of the Constituent Assembly, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, and next to him was Lord Mountbatten. The operation was formally launched when the two dignitaries took their seats.

First, Lord Mountbatten read out a message from the King of Britain, addressing Jinnah:

“I extend my heartfelt congratulations to you on the great occasion of the formation of the new Commonwealth of Independent States of Britain. The way you have achieved freedom is an example of freedom-loving people all over the world. I hope that all members of the British Commonwealth will support you in upholding democratic principles.

After the message, Lord Mountbatten delivered a farewell speech and prayed for the security of Pakistan and the Pakistani people.

In his speech, Lord Mountbatten made it clear:

“Today I am addressing you as your Viceroy. Tomorrow the reins of the new Dominion Government of Pakistan will be in your hands and I will be the constitutional head of your neighboring Dominion of India. The leaders of both governments have invited me to be the neutral chairman of the Joint Defense Council, an honor I will strive to fulfill.

Tomorrow, two new sovereign states will join the Commonwealth. These will not be new nations, but they will inherit an ancient proud civilization. The leaders of these completely independent states are very resourceful, respected in the eyes of the world. His poets, philosophers, scientists, and forces have made an unforgettable contribution to the service of humanity. The governments of these states are not inexperienced and weak but have the potential to live up to their responsibilities for peace and development around the world.

After Ard Mountbatten, Quaid-i-Azam began his speech. He first thanked the King of England and the Viceroy and assured them that:

“We will never lose the spirit of better and friendly relations with our neighbors and we will remain friends of the whole world.”

After the proceedings of the Assembly and the Declaration of Independence, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, accompanied by Lord Mountbatten, returned to the Governor General’s House in the royal carriage. At two o’clock in the afternoon, Lord Mountbatten left for New Delhi, where at 12 o’clock that night, with the proclamation of India’s independence, he was received by the Governor-General of that country.

According to Ard Mountbatten’s Declaration of Independence, at midnight on August 14 and 15, 1947, at 12 midnight, a free and independent and the largest state in the Islamic world appeared on the world map. Whose name was Pakistan

At the same time, Pakistan’s independence was announced from Lahore, Peshawar, and Dhaka by the Pakistan Broadcasting Service.

Earlier, on the night between 14 and 15 August 1947, the All India Radio Service had broadcast its last announcement from Lahore, Peshawar, and Dhaka stations at 11 pm.

A few moments before twelve o’clock, the introductory tune of Radio Pakistan was played

The announcement was made in English by Zahoor Azar and in Urdu by Mustafa Ali Hamdani.

Immediately after this announcement, Maulana Zahir Al-Qasimi recited the verses of Surah Al-Fatihah of the Holy Quran, after which his translation was broadcast.

At midnight, Aftab Ahmad Bismal from Radio Pakistan Peshawar announced the establishment of Pakistan in Urdu and Abdullah Jan Maghmoom in Pashto, while Qari Fida Muhammad received the honor of reciting the Holy Quran.

These broadcasts ended with a song written by Mr. Ahmad Nadeem Qasmi which had the lyrics “Pakistan Making Pakistan

At the same time, a similar announcement was made by Kaleemullah in English on Radio Pakistan Dhaka, which was translated into Bengali.

On 15 August 1947, a Pakistani government delegation presented the Pakistani flag to British officials at Lancaster House in London.

On the morning of August 15, 1947, the transmission of Radio Pakistan Lahore started at 8 o’clock with selected verses of Surah Al-Imran.

After the recitation of the Qur’an, English news began to be read by newsreader Nubi.

After the news, at exactly 8.30 am, a message was heard in the voice of Quaid-e-Azam which was already recorded.

Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s speech began with these words:

I send you a message of congratulations with immense joy and feeling. August 15 is the birthday of an independent and sovereign Pakistan. It symbolizes the destiny of the Muslim nation, which has made great sacrifices in the last few years to achieve its homeland.

In his address, Quaid-e-Azam congratulated all the citizens of Pakistan on the establishment of an independent state of Pakistan and said that the creation of this new state imposes tremendous responsibilities on the people of Pakistan. Should show how a nation, which includes various elements, lives together in peace and harmony.

On the morning of the same day, August 15, 1947, the newspapers published special issues on the occasion of Pakistan’s Independence Day.

Mention of Independence Day in government orders and papers.

On the same day, August 15, 1947, the first Gazette of Pakistan was issued which reported the appointment of Muhammad Ali Jinnah as the Governor-General of Pakistan and his assumption of office from the same day.

On the same day, the Chief Justice of the Lahore High Court, Justice Abdul Rashid, administered the oath of office to Jinnah as the first Governor-General of Pakistan and on the same day, the members of the first cabinet of Pakistan headed by Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan also took the oath of office.

From all these objections and documentary evidence, it is clear that Pakistan came into being not on August 14, 1947, but on August 15, 1947.

In the first year of Pakistan’s existence, no one had any ambiguity as to when Pakistan became independent.

This is further reinforced by the fact that on 19 December 1947, the Home Department of Pakistan, in its letter 17/47, declared the annual holidays of 1948 to be 15 August 1948 ahead of the Pakistan Day holiday for 1948. The date was entered.

In the first quarter of 1948, the Pakistan Postal Department began designing and printing early Pakistani stamps.

The stamps were printed by the British printing press Messrs. Thomas de Laro and went on sale on July 9, 1948.

The date of Pakistan’s Independence Day was also written on them on August 15, 1947. It seems that by the time these stamps were designed and sent to the UK for publication, it was certain that Pakistan had become independent on August 15, 1947.

So when was Pakistan’s Independence Day from August 15 to August 14?

A meeting of the Cabinet was held in Karachi on Tuesday, June 29, 1948, under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan. There were broadcasts.

The meeting decided that Pakistan’s first Independence Day celebrations should be held on August 14, 1948, instead of August 15, 1948.

Prime Minister Liaquat Ali told the cabinet that the decision was not final, he would bring the matter to the notice of the Governor-General and whatever the final decision would be.

The file containing the details is numbered 196 / CF / 48 and the case number is 393/54/48. This file is written in English in action:

The Prime Minister has taken the responsibility to convey to Quaid-e-Azam the suggestion that our Independence Day celebrations should be celebrated on August 14 instead of August 15.

The file does not say who motivated the proposal and what arguments were put forward to celebrate Independence Day on August 14 instead of August 15. At the end of the proceedings, it is written in brackets that the Quaid-e-Azam rejected the proposal.

The practice of celebrating Pakistan’s Independence Day on August 14 instead of August 15 continues to this day and it has gradually become clear that Pakistan became independent on August 14, 1947, not August 15, 1947.

However, a study of the documents cited above largely confirms that Pakistan’s first cabinet did not change Pakistan’s history of independence but only decided to celebrate Pakistan’s Independence Day on August 14 instead of August 15 each year. The Quaid-e-Azam had also ratified the decision.

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