Pakistan observes Liaquat Ali Khan’s 65th death anniversary

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The 65th death anniversary of Shaheed-i-Millat Khan Liaquat Ali Khan, the first prime minister of Pakistan, is being observed on Sunday (today)

The death anniversary of the first Prime Minister of Pakistan and a close aide of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah is observed on October 16 in the country with great reverence.

He was assassinated in 1951 during a public meeting of the Muslim City League at the Company Bagh, later named as the Liaquat Bagh, in Rawalpindi.

To mark the day, seminars and references are held across the country where speakers pay rich tributes to Khan Liaquat Ali Khan, who struggled with Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah to get a separate homeland for Muslims of the subcontinent and later served as first Prime Minister at a critical juncture.

Quran Khawani and Fateha Khawani will be offered at his grave in the premises of the Mazar-Quaid. A large number of people visit his grave and offer Fateha on his death anniversary.

Liaquat Ali Khan has shot dead under a conspiracy almost six decades ago while addressing a public meeting. He was one of the most important leaders of the Muslim League and most trusted and close associate of Quaid-e-Azam.

Liaquat Ali Khan wanted to shape Pakistan according to the vision of the founder of the country so that it could be brought into the group of developed countries. However, he was murdered through a conspiracy.

Born and hail from Karnal‚ East Punjab‚ Khan Ali Khan were educated at the Aligarh Muslim University in India‚ and then the Oxford University in the United Kingdom. Well educated‚ he was an Islamic democracy political theorist who promoted the parliamentarians in India.

A barrister by profession like his leader Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Liaquat Ali Khan entered politics in 1923, being elected first to the provincial legislature of the United Provinces and then to the central legislative assembly.

After being invited by the Congress Party‚ he opted for the Muslim League led by the influential Mohammad Ali Jinnah who was advocating and determining to eradicate the injustices and ill-treatment meted out to the Indian Muslims by the British government.

Having joined the Muslim League, he soon became a close associate of Jinnah, the Founder of Pakistan. Khan assisted Muhammad Ali Jinnah in campaigning for the creation of a separate state for Indian Muslims.

By degrees, he won first the respect and then the admiration of the Muslim community for his share in the struggle for Pakistan. When Jinnah became the first governor general after independence in 1947, Liaquat Ali Khan was the obvious choice as prime minister. In this post his achievements were outstanding.

If Jinnah founded Pakistan, Khan established it laying down the main lines of policy: domestic and foreign that guided the country afterwards.

He played an important role in the independence movement of Pakistan while serving as the first finance minister in the interim government of British Indian Empire prior to partition.

Khan held the office of Prime Minister for four years – from 1947 until his assassination in 1951 in Rawalpindi. He was assassinated on 16 October 1951‚ during a public meeting of the Muslim City League at Company Bagh (later named Liaquat Bagh after him) in Rawalpindi.

After Jinnah’s death, Liaquat Ali Khan was acclaimed as Quaid-i-Millat (leader of the country). Upon his death‚ he was given the title of “Shaheed-e-Millat”‚ or “Martyr of the Nation”.

He is buried at Mazar-e-Quaid compound in Karachi, however, the mystery of his assassination remains unsolved to the date.