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Jinnahthe Leader Within!

Posted On 30 Dec 2014

By : Maryum
Think 100 times before you take a decision, but once that decision is taken, stand
by it as one man.

Many aspects of the life of JinnahAsias most charismatic and pragmatic leader of
the 1900shave been discussed at great length. We know that he hated
sectarianism, promoted brotherhood and co-operative living, and found solace in
working. We also know how diverse his personality was; how he turned down offers
of becoming a Shakespearian theater-actor, and how he liked to dress like a dandy.
Jinnahs leadership has been the mainstay of many discussions, and so far a lot of
unique points have been elucidated about it. He did not rule with an iron fisthe
allowed for democracy in his party when other Indian political leaders did not. He
was firm and resolute when it came to taking decisions, and he never decided on
any emotional basis. Stanley Wolpert relates how after the Khilafat movement,
Gandhi declared his proposal, of the attainment of swaraj by the people of India by
all legitimate and peaceful means. Jinnah was the only person who vehemently
decried the proposal, and although the response of the emotion-charged crowd was
extremely disappointing in his favor, he continued to express his opinion with logical
argument. We also get a glimpse of another aspect of his leadership here i.e. his
self-control. The Times of India reported: Mr. Jinnahmounted the platform with an
ease suggestive of self-confidence and the conviction of the man, and opposed in
an argumentative, lucid and clear style, the change of creed.
A unique, albeit much-discussed feature of Jinnahs leadership is his moderation. As
the founder of a Muslim State, we revisit, in his nature, many of the characteristics
of the founder of the first Islamic State. Jinnah was neither liberally secular, nor
overtly religious. He created a nation-state for the Muslims of India, but that did not
prevent him from ordering equal rights for minorities, as depicted by his famous
statement: You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to
do with the business of the State. He allowed for a state of cooperative living, in
which everyone was given equal rights under the law. He never wanted a theocracy;
he wanted a Muslim state, where people from every community could coexist. He
did not favor Pan-Islamism, taking it to be an impractical theory at the most, and he
openly excoriated pseudo-religious approach to the political problem of India. He

didnt favor extremism of any kind, and while some might call it a weakness, he
made it his biggest strength.

An interesting incident will serve to elicit Jinnahs conviction of true democracy.

Wolpert relates that Mountbatten met with Jinnah, and told him that some leaders
from Bengal had expressed their wish to create a separate Bengali state. Jinnah
agreed to this, and asserted that they were quite within their rights to ask this.
Later, Gandhi and Nehru disagreed with the proposal, and it fell in importance.
A debate has raged around what Jinnah wanted Pakistan to be, and what it has
become. At the most, it can be safely assessed, from Jinnahs sayings and deeds,
that he wanted an independent, free-thinking, tolerant, peaceful and creatively
active Pakistan. Each of these points is of special interest as they reflect the
ideology which Jinnah believed in.
As a leader in a stereotyped nation, where even British women did not partake
actively in politics, Jinnah strongly supported the right of women to enter politics.
He firmly advocated their right of independent thought, and decried their deplorable
condition in the subcontinent.
Jinnah did not believe in numbers: he believed in the strength of conviction. He
believed that life itself is not worthwhile, unless we bring courage, determination
and fortitude to the mix.
In the light of our current political and moral plight, it must be said that we do not
need a new Jinnah as has been popularized. We simply need to find the Jinnah in
ourselves. To wish and pray for a new Jinnah is exactly what he didnt want us to do.
To work with determination to build on what he foundedthat was what he wanted
us to do. He laid a clear guideline for us, and I think we can only pay correct tribute
to his personage by following it:
Come forward as servants of Islam, organize the people economically, socially,
educationally and politically and I am sure that you will be a power that will be
accepted by everybody.
- See more at: http://muslim-academ

Was Jinnah a charismatic leader?

Author: Dr. Hasan Askari Rizvi
Posted On: Friday, August 14, 2009
Total Views :2191
SubmitJinnah emerges as the top most leader of the Muslims of British India whose
role was critical to the success of the movement for the establishment of
Pakistan.His death within 13 months of the establishment of Pakistan was bound to
create a severe crisis of leadership.Quaid i Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah was a leader
of extraordinary qualities who transformed the Muslim community of British India
into a nation by articulating their aspirations for protection and assertion of Muslim
identity rights and interests.The British government that had strong reservations
about the partition of India until they realised that it was not advisable to transfer
power the Congress party alone.
This raises a fundamental question about the role of leadership in history making
political struggles especially independence movements.Should leadership be
treated as a dependent or independent variable?The dependent variable
explanation de emphasises the role of leadership assigning greater importance to
socio economic forces that affect the course of history and make it possible for
some leaders to emerge on the political scene.Others talk of the cyclic rise and fall
of civilisations that enable some to assume the leadership role.Still others
emphasise the rise and fall of great powers that have implications for the
emergence and decline of leadership.There are those who underline economic
determinants of historical changes which cause some leaders to emerge.

The independent variable perspective assigns centrality to leadership in social and

political movements especially independence movements in Asia and Africa.The
leader is viewed as the guiding spirit of the movement that inspires the people
articulates and aggregates their interests and concerns into concrete demands.He
guides people who have full faith in his leadership towards the goal.Circumstances

and conditions prevailing at a particular point in time do matter in the rise of such a
leader but as an independent variable his role is not at the mercy of
circumstance.Rather he is viewed as having the capacity to mould circumstances
for achieving his goal.Personal qualities and political acumen are viewed as integral
to the notion of leadership.

A good example of leadership as an independent variable is a charismatic leader

who emerges in peculiar socio political conditions but has the personal qualities and
capacity to change the political context to pursue his agenda.Jinnah can be
described as a charismatic leader who altered the course of history in the Indian
subcontinent.Sikander Hayats book The Charismatic Leader Quaid i Azam
Mohammad Ali Jinnah and the Creation of Pakistan is an excellent study of the
notion of the charismatic leader or charisma as it developed in comparative politics
and sociology and how this can be applied to Jinnah to understand his role as the
founding father of Pakistan.The book thus examines historical data in an analytical
and theoretical framework derived from social sciences making it an excellent
biography of Jinnah and a personality study as well as an issue oriented analytical
study of the Pakistan movement.

Hayat argues that charisma offers a better framework of analysis for Jinnahs
leadership than other explanations like the saviour notion personal power ambition
leadership vacuum among the Muslims congruence between Jinnahs personal
needs and those of Indian Muslims and the hostile and uncompromising disposition
of Gandhi and the Congress leadership towards Jinnah and his political
demands.These explanations are not mutually exclusive and some of them overlap
with the articulation of Jinnahs charismatic leadership.No discussion of charisma is
possible without going back to Max Weber who provided the earliest coherent
discourse on this notion.Hayat not only discusses Weber but also examines
contributions of other scholars that further refined the dimensions of charisma and
applied it to the study of leadership in the post WWII period.These scholars include
Edward Shils David Apter Ann and Dorothy Ruth Willners Dankwart Rustow and
Robert Tucker.

Webers first description of charisma emphasises supernatural superhuman and

exceptional qualities that are recognised by the followers who have complete faith
and confidence in him as the leader.Such devotion is born out of enthusiasm
despair and hope. Charisma can fade out if the leader fails repeatedly in delivering
the goal to the people.Later Weber argues that a charismatic leader is capable of
adapting to legal rational authority and institutionalisation through the routinisation
of charisma.He further suggests that charisma is not necessarily irrational and

transitory but it is compatible with normal economy and daily routine.In fact he
needs institutions and processes to sustain his leadership.(p.20) However it may
be mentioned that routinisation and institutionalisation of charisma is not always

Charisma emerges as Ruth Willners puts it in a situation of extreme social stress or

crisis often producing major deprivations. Such a leader emerges in a situation of
crisis and uncertainty and he articulates the concerns and demands of the people in
such a manner that they develop complete confidence and faith in his ability to
address their problems.Hayat is not the first writer to describe Jinnah as a
charismatic leader.Other writers like Sharifal Mujahid Stanley Wolpert RJ More and
Waheed uz Zaman recognise Jinnahs charisma for the Muslims in British India.Still
others regard Jinnah as a leader of extra ordinary qualities who exercised unrivalled
influence over the majority of Muslims although they do not use the label of
charismatic.Hayats argument about Jinnahs charisma is couched in theoretical
literature making it more analytical and it is backed by extensive documentation of
theoretical studies and hard data about Jinnah and the movement for the
establishment of Pakistan.

His main argument is that the rise of charisma involves two sets of factors i.e.extra
ordinary personality attributes and situational or contextual factors within which the
leader functions.(pp.24 25) His success is dependent on the confidence of his
followers in his leadership and his ability to articulate the demands mobilise the
people and then secure the promised solution to their problems.His study of Jinnah
focuses on how these two sets of factors contributed to Jinnahs rise as the greatest
leader of the Muslims in British India.Jinnahs charisma according to Hayat began to
manifest in 1934 35 on his return from England where he stayed on after
participation in the Roundtable Conference.However its roots go back to the earlier
period when Jinnah demonstrated his personal qualities in the changing political
context of India and built his reputation as a professional person devoted to
preservation and promotion of Muslim identity interests and rights in Indias legal
and constitutional arrangements.

Jinnah had several personal qualities that made it possible for him to rise to
eminence he was always absolutely sure of himself and his cause he responded to
the aspirations of the Muslims and knew how to express their aspirations in concrete
demands he possessed an exceptional legal mind that was suited to negotiations on
complex political legal and constitutional issues he was a well organised person with
strong discipline in his private and public life which strengthened his management
capacity and he was a keen strategist who fully understood the line of action to be

adopted in specific political situations and contexts.(pp.72 77).Imbibed with liberal

traditions and a law degree he acquired during his stay in England from 1893 1896
Jinnahs initial associations on his return to India were with political leaders of liberal
orientations.His decision to join the Congress party in 1906 was understandable
because the Congress represented at that time both Hindu and Muslim educated
urban middle classes and was agitating for self government and responsible rule.
(p.40) However from the early years of politics Jinnah gave special attention to
Muslim interests and causes.

He joined the Muslim League in 1913 and succeeded in securing a Congress Muslim
League understanding in 1916 on future constitutional and political arrangements
with clear guarantees for Muslim rights and interests.His leadership skill as the
champion of Muslim identity and interests were demonstrated in the late 1920s and
the early 1930s as he put forward Muslim demands in clear terms while showing
flexibility by expressing willingness to give up separate electorates under certain
conditions in 1927.He also continued to work towards developing some
understanding with Congress provided the latter was willing to accommodate
safeguards and guarantees for Muslim identity rights and interests.The fifth chapter
of Hayats book provides a detailed account of why and how the Muslim League
came to the conclusion that it must opt for a separate homeland.It also deals with
how Jinnah articulated the separate nationhood of the Muslims of British India.The
discussion of the Lahore Resolution rejects the argument that it was inspired by the
British or Jinnah opted for the resolution only to increase his bargaining power.

Hayat argues that the demand for Pakistan was the work of the Muslim mind and
[the] Muslim leadership of India particularly Jinnahs and was dictated in a Muslim
situation of despair and hope.It represented the Muslim desire to avert a
permanent Hindu majority government in India with no prospects for the Muslims to
be in power. (pp.193 94) He also addresses three principal ambiguities in the
Lahore Resolution and argues that the ambiguities were deliberate and tactical.
(p.206).Two chapters focus on Jinnahs mobilisation for the demand of a separate
homeland and how he dealt with the British the Congress party and others including
the Muslims who opposed his demand.He used his charisma to strengthen the
Muslim League and transformed it into a mass party by bringing in the newly
mobilised populace and the traditional groups.As a charismatic leader he kept a firm
control on the party and was the pivot of its popular mobilisation campaign because
Jinnahs charisma went far beyond the Muslim League which was seen as his

Jinnah emerges as the top most leader of the Muslims of British India whose role
was critical to the success of the movement for the establishment of Pakistan.His
death within 13 months of the establishment of Pakistan was bound to create a
severe crisis of leadership.

Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi is a political and defence analyst.

Jinnah the charismatic leader

Durdana Najam
March 21, 2013
0 Comment

JINNAH may not have talked much about secularism in the context of Pakistan but
he had made it absolutely clear in many of his talks that theocracy was the last
thing he would want Pakistan to follow as a rule of governance.
Dr Sikander Hayat, professor of History and Public Policy at Forman Christian (FC)
College Lahore, revealed these interesting and thought-provoking ideas of Quaid-eAzam Mohammad Ali Jinnah at a book review seminar held at the Center for Public
Policy in FC College. "The Charismatic Leader: Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah
and the Creation of Pakistan ", written by Dr Sikander Hayat, is pitched on Max
Weber's theory of leadership and charisma.
Jinnah though had been held by sundry as a great leader ever since he became
conspicuous first for his deliberation over the concept of an independent Muslim
state and later for his achievements on actually getting one, his accomplishments
were never seen through the lens of charismatic leadership. His sobriety, and
dispassionate style of dealing over emotive national issues were no match to the
emotional outbursts and temperamental reactions seen in leaders described as
He even failed to fit in the definition of charisma as described by Weber. This reality
had a nagging effect on Dr Sikander. For a better part of his life, while he was in
search of a leader who he could write on to describe charisma as a functioning
quality, he remained confounded as to how Jinnah, being the architect of not only a
state but a nation as well simultaneously, lacked charisma. Then as is always the
case, the solution to Dr Sikandar's dilemma came out of the blue. In an essay
written by Max Weber "Politics as a Vocation", Dr Sikandar found the meat he had
always required to shape his thoughts about Jinnah being a charismatic leader.
In an about turn to his previous description, Weber in this essay, perhaps given the
destruction and annihilation he had seen because of world wars in Europe, has
described a charismatic leader as someone who could reason, is sober and has a
sense of responsibility. He is not someone who is focused inward. It is his capacity to
look beyond self-interest with a passion to bring about a change required by his
followers beaten by their surrounding and circumstance. This essay was a passage
that took Dr Sikander to the path that he always wanted to tread; to prove that
Jinnah was a charismatic leader and not somebody who simply calculated his moves
remaining at a distance. This awakening did not only untangle Dr Sikander's
mystery, it also gave him the leader he was looking for to write a book on
charismatic leadership.
There exist two schools of thoughts about the creation of Pakistan. One group of
people considers the birth of Pakistan as a result of some bargaining between the
Muslims and British. The other group considers Pakistan's creation the result of a
long, tedious, and drawn out effort against a shrewd and unpredictable enemy. Dr
Skinader has been very emphatic, and instead talked time and again during his

book review, about the bargaining theory in order to discard it once again. Seen
through the bargaining theory the entire credit of Jinnah's effort to establish an
independent Muslim state is wasted along with the charisma that comes
automatically with the efforts and sincerity he showed to create Pakistan.
Another point emphasised by Dr Sikander was Jinnah's concept about Islam. To
Jinnah, it was the social justice system of Islam that prevailed above the ritual part
of it. Rituals he believed eventually kill the spirit of any religion and it was in this
context that he rejected the influence of theocracy over Pakistan. It was this arena
that earned him bad press with the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, for their staunch believe to
sift everything through the sieve of ritual discourse.
Jinnah said Dr Sikandar had been watchful of the feelings of minorities who had
chosen to stay back in Pakistan. He celebrated his last birthday after the creation of
Pakistan, with none other than the Pakistani Christians. One could imagine the
warmth, the closeness, and the ingratiation exuding from this gesture and how it
would have strengthened the belief in the minorities over the creation and
existence of Pakistan. Perhaps that was Quaid-e-Azam's way of exhibiting what he
believed to be the social justice part of Islam, which he held so close to his heart
and considered it the corner stone of a democratic Pakistan. Dr Sikander Hayat's
book "The Charismatic Leader: Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and the
Creation of Pakistan, has been awarded the best book publication award by High
Commission of Pakistan in 2011. He was selected as "Meritorious Professor" of
History in 2005. His contribution in giving Research Method as a subject its due
shape and form in Pakistan is not a small feat.

Secular Pakistan
Jinnah, in a Class of His Own

Posted on June 3, 2009 by Awais 9

10 Votes

by Eqbal Ahmad
Dawn, 11 June 1995

Mohammad Ali Jinnah is an enigma of modern history. His aristocratic English
lifestyle, Victorian manners, and secular outlook rendered him a most unlikely
leader of Indias Muslims. Yet, he led them to separate statehood, creating history
and, in Saad R. Khairis apt phrase, altering geography.
Several scholars, among them H.M. Seervai, Aisha Jalal and Saad R. Khairi, help
explain his shift from Indian nationalism to Muslim separatism but the mystery of
Jinnahs appeal remains. After all, neither Muslim nationalism nor the idea of
Pakistan originated with him; he embraced them somewhat reluctantly.
There is another way of viewing the matter. In the twentieth century, two
extraordinary personalities competed for the leadership of Indian Muslims. They
were Abul Kalam Azad and Mohammed Ali Jinnah. As a point of departure in
comprehending the aspirations of Muslims in India, we might review their
biographical profiles.
The contrasts in their family background, education, culture, and styles of
leadership were remarkable. Azads ancestors belonged since Emperor Babars time
to the Persian and Urdu-speaking Muslim aristocracy of India. His great-grandfather
was one of the last Ruknul Mudarrasin, a position roughly analogous to todays
minister of education, in Mughal India. After the War of 1857 his family migrated to
Madina where it intermingled with the Sharifain aristocracy. Azads mother was a
daughter of Sheikh Mohammed Zaher Watri, in his time Madinas best known Alim.
His father Maulana Khair al-Din gained much fame in the Muslim world for his tenvolume work on Islam, and for his central role in the restoration of Nahr Zubeida,
Makkahs main source of water. Among Indian Muslims who were still wistful over a
lost empire, and reeling from the excesses of British colonisation, it is hard to
envision a family with better credentials than Abul Kalam Azads.
Abul Kalam was a most worthy scion of an extraordinary family with roots deep in
the dualityIndian and pan-Islamicto which South Asias Muslims have been
historically linked both psychologically and culturally. Born in Makkah, he was fluent

in Arabic, at ease in Persian, and a most gifted writer of Urdu prose. He was deeply
immersed in the mystical tradition of Islam. As early as 1919 he wrote on Sarmad
Shaheed and the grand dichotomy between state and civil society in Islam. His later
commentaries on the Holy Quraan are still regarded as among the best in the
Who is your master among the mufassareen? I asked the late Maulana Kausar
Niazi some years ago. Abul Kalam he replied reflexively. Al-Hilal, the magazine
Azad founded in 1912, at age 22, marked the beginning of serious, mass circulation
Urdu journalism. With its successor al-Balgah, it remains a milestone in the
development of Urdu as a popular vehicle of political and social discourse. Azad was
a spellbinding speaker and, like Jinnah, an ardent nationalist. In 1923, at age 35, he
was the youngest man to be elected president of the Indian National Congress, a
record Nehru will break later. An overwhelming majority of Indias Ulema supported
The man we shall later revere as the Quaid-i-Azam was a contemporary of Azad,
and a most unlikely contender for Muslim leadership. He was born in 1876; Azad in
1890. But beyond the proximity of age, the two stood in sharp contrast to each
other. While Azads aristocratic roots lay in the Muslim heartland of UP and Bengal,
Jinnah was born to a middle class business family in the port town of Hindudominated Karachi. At age 21 he moved to England, thence to Bombay, the modern
gateway to British India. Unlike Azad who belonged to the majority Sunni
denomination of Islam, Jinnah came from the minority Shia community. He was the
prototypical westernized Indian, tutored at Lincolns Inn, tailored at Saville Row, in
his youth a Shakepearian actor, a constitutionalist barrister in the Anglo-Saxon
tradition, married to a Parsi woman. More at home in English than his native Gujrati,
Jinnah spoke little Urdu which he would later designate as Pakistans official
language, knew neither Persian nor Arabic, and had only the rudimentary
knowledge of Islam which is common to western educated Muslims. He was
anathema to an overwhelming majority of the Ulema of the subcontinent, including
so grand a figure as Maulana Husain Ahmed Madani and such ideologue as Abul Ala

Mr. Jinnah made little effort to overcome his obvious handicaps. Unlike Barrister M.K.
Gandhi with whom Jinnah shared similarities of language, class, and education, and
who donned the Mahatmas home spun dhoti, Jinnah stuck to his western ways and
pin-stripe suits. He bowed but rarely to populist symbols, appearing only
occasionally at political ralies, and shunning the display of emotion in public.
Reasoned arguments and cold logic were the hallmark of Jinnahs discourse. He
spoke at political rallies as though he were addressing a courtroom, or a conference
of lawyers. This is not the populist style anywhere, least of all in South Asia. Yet, in
less that a decade of his return from London in 1935, he had eclipsed his political

foes no less than colleagues in the Muslim League, and successfully established
himself and the League as the sole spokesman of Indias Muslims. In the elections of
1937 the Muslim League barely survived as a minor political party; in 1940 it set
Pakistan as its goal. Barely seven years later the new state was born.
In the Introduction to this first volume of Jinnah papers Professor Zaidi has asked
this central question: What then turned Jinnah into the embodiment of Muslim
hopes and aspirations? One answer, admirably documented by Saad Khairi and
H.M. Seervai, is that the leadership of the Indian National Congress allowed Jinnah
no alternative even though he constantly probed for one. But a deeper explanation
offered in Professor Zaidis Introduction worth quoting:
What distinguished Jinnah from his great contemporaries is that he was quite selfconsciously a modern man one who valued, above all, reason, discipline,
organisation, and economy. Jinnah differed from other Muslim Leaders in so far as
he was uncompromisingly committed to substance rather than symbol, reason
rather than emotion, modernity rather than tradition.
But how could this apparently modern figure so powerfully appeal to a people laden
with tradition and religious inertia? I should summarise Professor Zaidis answer to
this question: Jinnahs peculiar appeal worked because collectively Indian Muslims
had an instinctive if inarticulate grasp of recent history. It was a community
conscious of its declining condition, and it had experienced the ineffectiveness of
old remedies. After all, neither the revivalist prescriptions of Shah Waliullah, nor the
fiery war cries of Syed Ahmed Shahid, nor the flamboyant, though confused,
demarche of the Khilafat movement with which Abdul Kalam Azad had become
associated and from which Jinnah kept a pronounced distance provided relief from
the ills which afflicted Muslim society in India. Restorationist alternatives had nearly
exhausted when Jinnah re-entered the second act of contemporary Muslim tragedy
in India. On their part, leaders of the Indian National Congress were so overcome
with hubris that they refused to open viable political doors to this wounded and
bewildered people.
Significantly, by then the modernist view of the causes of Muslim decline and of the
remedies it required, especially as articulated by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan and his
ideological successors, including Iqbal, had seeped into the consciousness of the
Muslim intelligentsia. There was to this phenomenon also a pan-Islamic context: In
the 1930s the Muslim world as a whole had entered what Albert Hourani has
described as the Liberal Age when Muslim nationalism grew exponentially on the
premises of modernism and reform. Mr Jinnah returned from England in 1935 to find
himself swept to the crest of this wave.
In the four decades that have followed his passing, Pakistan has moved
precipitously away from the country its founding father had envisioned, and the
people had created at costs beyond counting. The two volumes of Jinnah Papers and

the archives from which they are drawn do not tell the story of the cowardice and
betrayals which followed the Quaid-i-Azam. What they do tell us is who he was, how
he waged a difficult and deeply painful struggle for statehood, the vision he
nourished, and the hopes he had for this country. I would like to recall him and
remind us in passing of what we have done with his legacy. I am sorry if in the
process I cause some discomfort to some of you readers.