Jinnah’s 11th August 1947 Speech: Nation’s Destiny

by Dr. Shahid Hameed

Nations derive their guiding principles and unique identities from the visionary ideals of their founding figures. Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the architect of Pakistan, set the nation’s course, emphasizing unity, faith, and discipline. These principles form a crucial framework for the state’s existence and progress. In a 1947 telegraph to the London Muslim League, Jinnah declared Pakistan’s establishment with the aim of creating the world’s preeminent Muslim sovereign state.

Every December, we honor the birth anniversary of our founding father, a moment to renew our commitment to advancing the state within Jinnah’s visionary framework. His address to Pakistan’s Constituent Assembly on August 11, 1947, outlines a regulatory framework, with constitutional development as Quaid’s primary concern. This underscores the Constitution’s role in guiding us towards our goals. Jinnah hailed the peaceful formation of a sovereign nation as a ‘great achievement’, serving as a guiding light for future generations and encouraging diplomatic conflict resolutions.

Furthermore, Jinnah strongly condemned bribery, corruption, black marketing, and similar vices as harmful to the nation’s future, discouraging ‘nepotism and jobbery’. Recognizing the state’s creation as an undeniable fact is a key aspect of this framework. Jinnah’s vision for progress emphasizes principles of “cooperation, forgetting the past, burying the hatchet”, with equality among all citizens at its core. Jinnah asserted; “If you change your past and work together in a spirit that transcends community, relations, color, caste, or creed…”

Religious freedom and tolerance are additional tenets of Jinnah’s guidance to the nation. He asserted; “…You are free to go to your temples, mosques, or any place of worship in this State of Pakistan. Your religion, caste, or creed has no bearing on the business of the State…”

Jinnah’s pronouncements at the First Constituent Assembly remain noteworthy. These principles should underpin Pakistan’s governance, as he declared; “My guiding principle will be justice and complete impartiality, and with your support and cooperation, I can envision Pakistan becoming one of the world’s greatest nations”.

Pakistan confronts significant challenges. Is there a solution, and can we forge a path to a prosperous future? The answer is ‘yes.’ However, since independence, we have often overlooked Jinnah’s guidelines. The path is clear; what’s lacking are genuine efforts and the ‘will’ to prioritize the nation over personal interests. Finally, the December commemoration requires a reassessment of our strategies and policies, aligning them with the principles articulated by Quaid in his August 11, 1947, speech.


Dr. Shahid Hameed is Director Research at Center for International Strategic Studies, AJK.

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Center for International Strategic Studies AJK, King Abdullah Campus Chatter kalas Muzaffarabad, Azad Jammu and Kashmir