In the opening lines of his book, “Jinnah of Pakistan”, an illuminating biography of Jinnah, the powerful and most enigmatic leader of the last century, depicting India’s partition and the instrumental role that Jinnah played in it. In his opening lines Wolpert praises Quaid-e-Azam in these words, “Few individuals significantly alter the course of history. Fewer still modify the map of the world. Hardly anyone can be credited with creating a nation-state. Mohammad Ali Jinnah did all three.”
Jinnah was a brilliant lawyer, a man of words and character, an adroit negotiator, an extraordinary charismatic leader and a prudent statesman. He faced setbacks and was humiliated many times in his struggles – first for the unified India, and then for the equal representation of Muslims, and finally for Pakistan. Nonetheless, his utter resolve, endurance, perseverance and political acuity capacitated him to accomplish what people called mere hallucinations of an egotist.
The book also casts light on how Jinnah’s political discourse and viewpoint evolved in response to the experiences he underwent. A young patriotic Jinnah, who reinforced the notion of united India at first, transformed into an intransigent opponent of the united India over the period of forty bitter years. However, what remained consistent about him were his intrinsic personal characteristics such as, adherence to principles, willpower, discipline and integrity.
After reading Nelson Mandela’s
autobiography, “Long Walk to Freedom”, I was able to get better acquainted with
his life events and the circumstances encompassing them. In classical and
elegant prose, he tells of his early life, gradual political arousal, and of
his vital role in the resurgence of ANC. He describes the struggle to synchronize
his political involvement with his devotion to his family, the intensifying
political strife between the ANC and the government during fifties that
climaxed with the notorious Rivonia Trial of 1964, at which he was sentenced to
Nelson Mandela is among the greatest
political leaders who remained resilient in the face of adversities. As leader of South Africa’s anti-apartheid
campaign and president of the ANC, he played a monumental role in leading the
nation toward majority rule and multiracial government. He is venerated
everywhere as an essential force in the fight for human rights and racial
equality. His life had
been full of tribulations, but his commitment to the struggle never wavered.
quotes, all of which are held in high esteem, this one motivates me the most to
make other peoples’ lives better from a position of influence, “What counts
in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of
others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.”
Yet another inspiring chronicle I
have read that evokes humanitarian instincts in me is the book ‘Three Cups of
Tea’ by Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin. The remarkable, exhilarating
story of a real-life Indiana Jones and his compassionate, altruistic crusade to
employ education to counter terrorism in the Taliban’s backyard.
Anyone who desponds of the maverick’s
ability to transform lives has to read the tale of Greg Mortenson, a vagrant
mountaineer who, subsequent to a 1993 climb of Pakistan’s hazardous and
menacing K2, was stimulated by a coincidental encounter with penurious mountain
residents and assured to construct them a school. Over the period of ten years
that followed he built fifty-five schools, primarily for girls that provide
equitable education in one of the most remote and unsafe places on earth.