Came across this very interesting interview of Jinnah given to Reuters recently. There are many remarkable things here, one of which is that Jinnah had no idea that Mountbatten and Nehru have already decided to partition the Punjab and Bengal. He is still making a pitch for their unity unaware that it’s little more than an academic exercise. In the end-game leading up to 1947, Mountbatten kept the AIML out of a lot of key decisions.
However, all that is well known. What is really interesting is Jinnah’s casual dismissal of pan-Islamism. When the interviewer asks him, “Do you envisage the formation of a Pan-Islamic state stretching from the Far and Middle East to the Far East after the establishment of Pakistan?” he starts of his answer by saying, “The theory of Pan-Islamism has long ago exploded…”
Jinnah’s reflexive opposition to pan-Islamism might be seen in the light of his criticism of the Khilafat movement (1920) in which he opposed moves to make a political movement out of a theological issue (the deposition of the Caliph) and warned of the “religious frenzy” that such a move might unleash.
Given that the state he founded is now in some serious hot water due to forces which do believe strongly in some form of pan-Islamism, this might be an interesting point for the beleaguered liberals of Pakistan.
You can read the entire interview here.