A Tribute

It is the authenticated saying of Holy Prophet (PBUH)that, “I was there when Adam was between clay and water.” In general and basedon our knowledge the terminology that Adam was between clay and water does not refer directly to the creation of Adam but thecreation of the Universe. In this saying,the word Adam is for the whole universe. We believe in all the Qudsi Hadithsand no one has ever doubted their legitimacy.The above saying is also Hadith-e-Qudsi. In the light of the above saying whateverestimations and notions we have developed about the date of arrival of the lastmessenger have given rise to confusion. What is the meaning of birth when theperson is already present?

Hazrat Hafiz Muhammad Iqbal (R.A) while explaining the above Hadith has said, “Among the characters of Prophecy, the Apostle of Allah Muhammad (PBUH) was the best being. Before all the creations there would have been characters of Prophecy, Walayat (Sufism), mankind, birds, animals, flora and fauna. In all these forms of characters, the character of the Prophets is the first creation and its very first representation is Hazrat Adam (A.S). According to the chronological order, he was the first one to be sent on this mortal universe and thus the Prophet. Because of this reason, and the words mentioned in the Hadith turned out to be I was already commissioned to Prophet Hood and Prophecy before the next character of Prophet Hood and prophecy came. And that is why the name ‘Adam’ was included in this Hadith-e-Qudsi.”

The worldly birth of the Holy Prophet was different from that of the other children. Unlike the other children who connect with their mothers through the umbilical cord, the Holy Prophet had no relation with the body of his mother. They’re also afraid to differ from this Hadith but they do not speak because of the grudges they hold, that at the time of his birth, there was so much light in the room that it illuminated even early in the morning. The illumination of the holy body was so much that no other light was required in the room. This spectacle was not only witnessed by the people who were in the room, but was also seen by the people outside the room.

No one disagrees to this fact either that the fire which was ablaze in Iran automatically extinguished at the time of arrival of the Holy Prophet. For centuries it was the sign of the existence of those who worshipped fire and was constantly burning. After the fire extinguished, they tried every possible way to set it ablaze again but failed. The big Churches in Qaiser-o-Kasra fell down, but no one was harmed because of this, the arrival of the blessings of the Universe could not in any way cause devastation and this fact was given due consideration by Nature. All these indications are enough to prove that he thoughtfully chose to be one of the human beings to express his Prophecy and preferred the normal course, so that no one could pass judgment that he is different from them. Muhammad (PBUH) expressed this on more than one occasion that, he has been just like us; he was not an angel and not some strange creation, his status was nevertheless different from us. His relation with us in this world only limited to body, but he was directly connected to the Almighty through revelations. The Quran says, “Say, O [Muhammad], “I am only a man like you to whom it has been revealed that your God is but one God; so take a straight course to Him and seek His forgiveness.” And woe to those who associate others with Allah” (41:6). No other human being is blessed with this kind of connection and it is a fact. Even with no other Prophet or Messenger was lucky to have this continuous relation. Prophet Musa (A.S) was given all the revelation in one instance, Prophet Daud (A.S) was conferred with all the revelations in the form of Book and it is being said that an angel visited Prophet Essa (A.S) in the form of revelation just once. But he served Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) continuously for 23 years and even took him to the accent. He acted as a servant.

It is a common knowledge that the Holy Prophet (PBUH) had established him as a truthful and trustworthy person at a very early age. It was recognized by the masses of Arab regardless of their religion. Even the leaders of the ingrates Abu Sufyan and Abu Jahal accepted too. At the age of 40, Prophet Muhammad positioned himself on one of the tallest hills in Makkah and loudly called “Labaik” (come here), as per the Arab custom people used to call Labaik loudly whenever there is something important matter, to signal the people of Arab that there is something important he wants to talk about. Hearing this word everybody flocked in. After that Prophet Muhammad asked the people if he would tell them that an enemy is coming from the backside of the hill, would they believe him? All of them collectively said, “Yes, we know you’re Truthful and Trust Worthy.” Although people disintegrated after hearing his message no one really questioned his status as truthful and trustworthy. Thus, this proves that Al-Siddique is the character of the Apostle of Allah, Muhammad (PBUH) and he expressed it as perfectly as one could imagine through his works and actions; and it is quite hard to match this perfection for any other human being.

Likewise, the individual who receives the optimum ability to distinguish between two fighting forces is called Farooq. Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has shown throughout his holy lifespan that how well he differentiated between two opposing notions, e.g. truth from false, black from white, believers from non- believers, good from evil, right from wrong, so on and so forth. I can safely state that Al-Farooq is actually the quality of only Muhammad (PBUH).

While considering the holy life of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) one notices that his precept of spirit was ‘have not’. He saved nothing for himself; be it food, money, clothes, revelations, knowledge or anything else. He gave away whatever he had during his holy lifespan being the benefactor of humanity. Throughout his lifespan, he consumed only 33.5kg of foodstuff, had two pairs of clothes, accumulated nothing in terms of wealth and essayed a very simple lifestyle. In short, he disbursed whatever he possibly could and showed through his conduct that Al-Ghani (prosperous) was his attribute.

In the same manner, Muhammad (PBUH) was blessed to have the two lights; Hazrat Ali ul Murtaza (A.S), his cousin and the only successor, and his daughter Her Highness (R.A). He was, in fact, Al-Zunnurain (two lights). After him, if anyone achieved this status it was his successor, Ali UL Murtaza (A.S) who was also blessed with two lights Imam Hasan (A.S) and Imam Hussain (A.S), the saviours’ of the religion Islam.

In the Arabic language when the word “AL” is used as a prefix to a word, it means a proper noun, pointing towards something in particular. And when we say Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is Al-Farooq, Al-Siddique, Al-Ghani and Al-Zunnarain it means that the rights of all these traits are reserved for him only. This does not mean that anyone else cannot have these qualities, but the individual will only be Farooq, Siddique, Ghani and Zunnarain because it is impossible for him to achieve the optimum level of these qualities.

Before going forward I would like the readers to know the following:

  1. God forbid, I have no intention of any sort to undermine the status of any of the Prophets (A.S) but the purpose is to reach a conclusion.
  2. The style of writing is narrative for the simplicity of understanding and remembrance.

The name of Prophet Adam (A.S) is still alive in one form or the other. Whether someone says Adam in English or in Arabic or in any other language, the name, however, is still used in this world.

The name of Prophet Noah (A.S) is one another name which has always been used among the mankind, regardless of the culture and religion. Hollywood even made a movie about him, although it is presented in a humorous way they depicted in a good way. The name of the movie is the Arc of Noah. The name of Noah will exist until the existence of the mankind.

The name of Prophet Ibrahim, like Prophet Noah and Prophet Adam, is still alive in this universe. It is impossible to not find this name in every culture, society and civilization. As per the likeness of the Mother Nature, the name of Prophet Ibrahim is still present amongst the humans.

Prophet Essa (A.S), who is known in the west as Jesus Christ, is one other name which continues to exist and used by the mankind.

All these names will continue to exist until the existence of mankind along with their blessings. But the point of the matter is that what exactly is the reason for their survival, continued existence and why so much importance is being given to these names. The following could be the reason:

1. All of these names have been mentioned in all of the revealed Books.

2. Distinct instances are connected to them:

    a. Prophet Adam for the story of heaven and his exit from there as a  punishment for doing something under the influence of the devil

    b. Prophet Noah for the prayer he made for the tormenting of his populace

    c. Prophet Ibrahim for his sacrifice

    d. Prophet Essa for the incident of his execution

3. Prophet Adam taught how to repent.

4. Prophet Noah taught how to bathe.

5. Prophet Ibrahim demonstrated how to leap into the glowing flame of passion.

6. Prophet Essa educated the people about the soul, but he could not finish it.

All of these points are correct and they have also been mentioned in history. In the following paragraphs, the actual reason for the existence of the names of these Prophets will be elucidated with reference to the Holy Quran.

In general, it is being said the Prophet Adam taught mankind how to repent, but the truth is that he got himself stuck at the station of repentance. It is the same station where almost all the human beings get stuck before repentance and it is called the station of hawa. It must have been a very demanding station. Adam (A.S) taught how to repent, but he got stuck in this place. When he got wedged at this place, and that too very badly, then one day he remembered and said, “Oh my true Lord, I have stayed and wandered in the heaven and I am the one who could not recognize that I saw one more name written by yours. Now I have understood and remembered the love I had for this particular name in the heaven. I invoke You for the sake of this name. I invoke You for the sake of Your connection with him and for the sake of the love I have for him that please get me across this station.” Within seconds his repentance was accepted and He said to him that, “I have so much regard for this love and to protect the honour of it I have accepted your repentance the moment you used his name as a mediator.”

Prophet Adam (A.S) educated the mankind about repentance, but his own repentance was based on love for the Apostle of Allah Muhammad (PBUH). Had you not remembered this love and not used it as a mediator then you would have remained worried for 40 years, 400 years, 4000 years and some also say 40,000 years as quoted by various people. And for the next billions of years, this agony would have remained with him. The love and affection for the Apostle of Allah, Muhammad (PBUH) became the basis of his repentance and the acceptance was its recompense. Because of this example the mankind is compelled to use the name ‘Adam’ because he did humanity a big favour by teaching them this lesson. Look at the reality behind all this – love for Muhammad (PBUH).

Prophet Noah (A.S) got so tired of his people in 950 years of his life that he used to just weep at just about anything. In the end, he prayed that “Almighty apprehend them, destroy and ruin them.” These words can actually be found in the Holy Quran.

He said: “Only Allah will bring it (the punishment) on you, if He will, and then you will escape not. (11:33)

[Nuh (Noah)] said: “O my Lord! Help me because they deny me.” (23:26)

It is mentioned in the Holy Quran that these words came from the holy tongue of Noah (A.S). Almighty replied, “O Prophet, it will be executed as requested by you. Your nation will be washed down.” When the orders of washed down came, Noah (A.S) felt strengthened. The orders were that “Upon your request and recommend the arrangements are being made to wash them down. The water will come from just about everywhere, from all the six directions, i.e. from right, left, up, down, front and backwards, even the most skilful swimmer would not be able to beat that.” On hearing these orders Noah (A.S) got terrified because he was also standing on the same part of the earth and he could foresee his end so naturally the thought to save himself appeared in his mind. Psychology at its very best, he asked for the earth to be washed down, which Almighty acknowledged because the request of the Prophet cannot be put off. Noah (A.S) was told that the water will come from all six directions and he got worried. Almighty asked, “What happened now.” He replied, “I am positioned at the same place.”

“And construct the ship under Our observation and Our inspiration and do not address Me concerning those who have wronged; indeed, they are [to be] drowned.” (11:37)

It is the methodology of the Holy Quran that the incidents and conversation circumambient over centuries on certain times are wrapped up in just one word. That’s it. That one word or few words or the verse has the history of centuries wrapped under them. To say much in few words is purely the methodology of the Holy Quran, all the messages, parts and accounts are compiled based on this principle. The above verse, although is very small in nature, carries the complete history of the 950 years. Whatever Noah (A.S) went through moment by moment is wrapped up in one word. Stories are not being told by the Holy Quran, but it says much in fewer words and ask the reader to put their brain with the word to understand the complete picture.

When Noah (A.S) got terrified that what will happen to me and where will the Arc of Noah go. Almighty saw that His devotee is worried and politely told him, by revealing it on Noah’s heart, that, “Noah, have you forgotten? Should I remind you of what Adam (A.S) did to save himself? This is the charity of that name, so you should not be afraid of this situation and reflect upon it, you will find something in terms of means.” Our rightful command is released now and that too upon your recommendation, until today We have not done anything on our own. We will not let this fall upon us and We will never let this happen. We are telling you in advance that such a thing will take place.

In simple words, Noah (A.S) wanted to say that he was supposed to be safe and he was the one who asked for it by praying. Almighty understood the psychology and said, “Don’t be afraid, Adam (A.S) also got stuck like you’re at this moment. He used that name and you also can.” But Noah (A.S) went a step ahead from Adam (A.S). Noah (A.S) thought that if he will use his name now then being the blessing of the universe he will get everyone bailed out except for him. And he will be questioned why he demanded this action. He prayed that “O Lord, I invoke you not in his name but for the sake of delight of his eyes.” As soon as the prayer was made, not only Almighty accepted it but also His Apostle Muhammad (PBUH) showed his affection and compassion along with his progeny. All the twelve of them enjoined like wooden planks for Noah (A.S) and asked him to sit on it. They asked him to call whoever he wants; the planks of wood that we have tied will not sink and will not wobble no matter how much water comes in its way. And finally, they took the ship to a place where the flow of water stabilized.

It is pertinent to mention here that the ship, regardless of the size, is made of 12 wooden planks. Not a single ship has even been made so far, by using either eleven or thirteen wooden planks. The ship made up of 12 wooden planks is the balance most things, it will brave even the worst of the environmental conditions.

According to the Quran, the very first person who showed faith in the progeny of the Apostle of Allah, Muhammad (PBUS) was Prophet Noah (A.S). The act of becoming skulk after submission, after the acceptance of the delight of Muhammad’s (PBUH) eyes, was done for the first time in this world by Noah (A.S). It was a step ahead of Prophet Adam (A.S) but in reality it was the love for the Prophet and his progeny. By using the delight of the eyes as an arbitrator not only Noah (A.S) exemplified the knowledge of a Prophet, but also familiarized the world with the twelve delights of Muhammad’s (PBUH) eyes. Whatever favour was extended towards humanity at this time salvaged that much of a portion of mankind, which was necessary for its future circulation.

It has been clearly mentioned in the Holy Quran that just by the arrival of the ship and its benevolence and blessings no one was affected and all remained safe. The command of the Almighty was carried out and yet no harm was done. The love and affection for the Holy Prophet (PBUH) is enough to save the entire the universe and if his progeny also joins him then the blessings are innumerable. And it happened, the command of Almighty God in effect, but no one got hurt and at the same time the mankind perambulated the station of munificence (Jud).

And it was said, “O earth, swallow your water, and O sky, withhold [your rain].” And the water subsided, and the matter was accomplished, and the ship came to rest on the [mountain of] Judiyy. And it was said, “Away with the wrongdoing people.” (11:44)

Almighty said to Prophet Ibrahim (A.S) that, “You have exceeded in every respect and have gone beyond the ceiling. Solicit whatever you may want. Just say it.” Ibrahim (A.S) replied, “My grandfather Noah (A.S) gave an introduction and it has also reached me, now please include me among them.” Ibrahim (A.S) knew that the delight of the eyes were the twelve Imams. Almighty said to him, “Ibrahim, you have asked for something which you will not be able to deal with.”

And [mention, O Muhammad], when Abraham was tried by his Lord with commands and he fulfilled them. [Allah] said, “Indeed, I will make you a leader for the people.” [Abraham] said, “And of my descendants?” [Allah] said, “My covenant does not include the wrongdoers. (2:124)

By nature Ibrahim (A.S), forerunner of the Prophets was very kind and loving. He also had the urge and the keenness to go into the depth of things. He devoted all his life to research. And because of this, he was able to determine that the Almighty has said something. He bid adieu by saying, “I understand that I may not be able to deal with it, can anyone from my amongst my children preserve it?” Almighty replied, “I will honour my promise, but I will not give any share to the tyrants.” It actually means that I will not confer this grandeur on anyone but the oppressed since the opposite of the oppressor is oppressed. The moment Ibrahim (A.S) heard that, according to the Holy Quran, he recited the following verse thrice. Just like ‘I accept’ is necessary to be said thrice to consummate the Nikkah, in the similar fashion Ibrahim (A.S) recited this verse thrice. Holy Quran has mentioned it in three different places.

“Our Lord, and send among them a messenger from themselves who will recite to them Your verses and teach them the Book and wisdom and purify them. Indeed, You are the Exalted in Might, the Wise.” (2:129)

He then said to Almighty that, “I will wait for him. The love and affection I feel for him, the same love was expressed by Adam and Noah. O my Lord, please confer Your benevolence on the mankind by sending him, so that he could educate the humanity and lead them as well. If I am not worthy of the status of leader and instructor, then I request you three times to send them.” In short, Ibrahim (A.S) too expressed the love he had for the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) by saying that, “I believe that there is someone who understands this discourse, who is able enough to transfer this ingenuity to the mankind and who will open their conscience and heart to the extent that, they could absorb the glory and quality of Imamate.”

Prophet Essa (A.S) surpassed everyone when he said to his people that, “Be prepared, no one like me will come after me; now it is the era of Ahmad-ul-Mursaleen.”

And [mention] when Jesus, the son of Mary, said, “O children of Israel, indeed I am the messenger of Allah to you confirming what came before me of the Torah and bringing good tidings of a messenger to come after me, whose name is Ahmad.” But when he came to them with clear evidence, they said, “This is obvious magic.” (61:6)

Hafiz Muhammad Iqbal (R.A) always used to say on the basis of this word ‘Musadiq’ that, “Essa (A.S) began the course of the 40 years of the pre Prophethood of Apostle of Allah Muhammad (PBUH). No scope is left for anyone to deny this fact.” In a nutshell, Prophet Essa (A.S) clearly notified that there will be no one like him in the future. Although he was also His Apostle, but now a man of true word will follow him and his name will be Ahmad.

The point of this whole discussion was to look for the reason why so much preference is given to these four names, i.e., Adam, Noah, Ibrahim and Essa and why the mankind has not forgotten them. It is evident from the above anecdotes and the references of the Holy Quran that the reason nothing else but the love and affection for the Apostle of Allah Muhammad (PBUH). They were the true patriot of Muhammad (PBUH). Another reason why the mankind will not be able to forget them is that Almighty has appreciated their actions and made them ever living amongst mankind. No matter where they’re and on whichever area of the universe the humans exist, they can never forget Adam, Noah, Ibrahim and Essa because they possessed the love for the Apostle of Allah (PBUH).

I will conclude this article with these few lines of a song from a Pakistani movie.

نام لے لے کے تیرا ہم تو جیے جائیں گے
لوگ یونہی ہمیں بدنام کیے جائیں گے

جانے والے تیرے قدموں کے نشان باقی ہیں
ہم تو سجدے تیری راہوں میں کیے جائیں گے 

Developments in October which shook Pakistan

By: Muhammad Zahid Rifat

October, the 10th month of the calendar year, is almost a fortnight old.  For any nation, every day in a month and a year becomes important when some important developments and events take place, having a short or a long impact on things to come in future. Living nations do remember history, learn from the good or bad events taking place every now and then and learning lessons to avoid such things which may lead to further bad developments.

As such, the month of October has somehow assumed a lot of importance in our chequered political history as many events of the sorts had taken place during this month in the past 71 years since the creation of Pakistan.

It was on October 16, 1951, just little more than four years after the birth of a separate country for the Muslims of the sub-continent, that Pakistan’s first  Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan was shot dead while addressing a public meeting in Gol Bagh Rawalpindi since named after him as Liaquat Bagh. This was the first political murder in the newborn country. The inquiry report conducted into this mysterious murder has never been made public so far. It is also not confirmed whether the post-mortem of the assassinated prime minister was then conducted or not.

During the month of October in different years, two military takeovers by the then Army Chiefs had also taken place.

It was on October 7, 1998, that the then President Justice (retired)  Muhammad Rafiq Tarar on the recommendations of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had promoted and appointed  General Pervez Musharraf as the new chief of Army Staff (COAS). In this way, General Pervez Musharraf had superseded a couple of generals who were senior to him. Afterwards, General Pervez Musharraf was also named as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee on April 9, 1999, thus two offices were combined in one person.

The key post had fallen vacant after COAS General Jahangir Karamat was forced to step down by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for floating the idea of a civil-military partnership in power. The same idea was later translated into reality with the establishment of the National Security Council through an Act of the Parliament.

Usually, the Chief of Army Staff is appointed for a period of three years. But the tenure can be cut down or extended depending on the circumstances by the competent authority and whether a civilian or a military ruler is at the helm of national affairs.

It was on October 12, 1999, when an event changed the course of things drastically. The civilian government of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was summarily ousted and COAS General Pervez Musharraf had seized the power, assuming the title as the Chief Executive and retained incumbent President Rafiq Tarar apparently till the completion of his tenure.

All these developments had taken place in the fateful afternoon and culminated by the evening on October 12, 1999. Firstly, a ticker was run by then only PTV that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has removed COAS General Pervez Musharraf and appointed then ISI Chief General Ziauddin Butt as the new Army Chief in his place. A couple of hours later, another ticker on PTV said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been ousted and COAS General Pervez Musharraf has seized the power. Had the Prime Minister reduced something in writing in this regard on some official file, then the things would certainly have been entirely different instead of the developments that so took place.

The coup was so staged on the ground when a flight coming from Colombo, Sri Lanka,  with COAS General Pervez Musharraf on board along with over 200 passengers were not allowed to land at Karachi airport. General Pervez Musharraf was returning home after paying an official visit to Sri Lanka and following this development, the army had promptly intervened.

It is a matter of record  that General Pervez Musharraf  had promulgated Provisional Constitution  Order (PCO) on October 14, 1999  holding the 1973 Constitution in abeyance  and suspended the Senate and its Chairman and Deputy Chairman, the National and Provincial Assemblies with their Speakers and Deputy Speakers  and also dismissed the federal and provincial governments  as well. It was the first time ever that the Senate, upper house of the Parliament, was so dismissed, perhaps.

Under the PCO, the National  Security Council was established in October 1999 with a mandate to render advice to the Chief Executive  (later the President) on matters relating to national security, sovereignty and solidarity of Pakistan.

On June 20, 2001, prior to his visit to India, General Pervez Musharraf assumed the office of the President of Pakistan while retaining the post of COAS also after incumbent President Rafiq Tarar was sent home rather quite unceremoniously without letting him complete his tenure. This was in sharp contrast with the good treatment which General Ziaul Haq had meted out to President Fazal Elahi Chaudhry by letting him complete his tenure, even after seizing power and toppling of Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in July 1977.

In October 2001,  General Pervez Musharraf had extended his own term as the COAS indefinitely till further orders. Out of three previous military rulers, General turned Field Marshal Muhammad Ayub Khan had relinquished the post of Commander-in-Chief when he had become the President by appointing General Muhammad Musa as his successor and General Agha Muhammad Yahya Khan and General Muhammad Ziaul Haq had retained the khaki uniform even after assuming the office of the President.

In accordance with the direction of the Supreme Court of Pakistan, general elections were held on October 10, 2002, just two days before the expiry of the three year time-frame laid down by the country’s apex court.

Going back to the early political history of the country, Major General Iskander Mirza was the last of the four Governors-General and the first President after enforcement of the 1956 Constitution. General Ayub Khan was the third Commander-in-Chief of Pakistan Army after two British  Generals and the first Muslim/ Pakistan army chief.

Political development developments continued to place in quick succession. Leg pulling and intrigues were part of the political culture of that time. The situation took so bad turns that the Deputy Speaker of East Pakistan was beaten up to death in the first week of October 1958.

Viewing this ugly development as “enough is enough”, President, Major General Iskander Mirza  imposed the first ever full-fledged martial law  in the country on October 7,1958, derailed the democratic  system, removed the central government of Prime Minister  Feroze Khan Noon and appointed General Ayub Khan as the Chief Martial Law Administrator  just  a little more than eleven years after Pakistan had surfaced on the world map.. This was the beginning of the army’s intervention in civilian political matters.

This was quite unfortunate and sadly not the end. Much more was in store for the person who had imposed the first martial law in the country. After just 20 days on October 27, 1958,  CMLA /Commander-in-Chief of the Army General Ayub Khan got Major General Iskander Mirza kicked out of the President’s House in Karachi and himself became the President.

It was also in the month of October that Pakistan’s first Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan was assassinated on October 16, 1951, while addressing a public meeting in Rawalpindi and was replaced by Khwaja Nazimuddin,  who had stepped down as the Governor General, on October 17, 1958 as the new Prime Minister, the second in the list to which  new names were being added as the years went by despite frequent military interventions. The democratic process had been derailed and the National and Provincial Assemblies dissolved a number of times. The third Governor General of Pakistan Malik Ghulam Muhammad laid the foundation of foul practice by dissolving the Constituent Assembly on October 1954 just when the draft of the Constitution was ready to be placed before the assembly for consideration and approval.

Pakistan’s third Prime Minister Muhammad Ali Bogra was, however, not dismissed and was asked to run the administration until such time fresh general elections were held. Thus he remained in the office as the Prime Minister, but with a reconstituted cabinet.

Cutting the long story short, the general elections for the 9th National Assembly were held on October 24, 1990, as a result of which  Nawaz Sharif became the 13th Prime Minister.

Elections to the 10th National Assembly were held on October 6, 1993. Its first session was held on October 13, Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani took oath as Speaker National Assembly on October 17 and Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto became the Prime Minister for the second time by taking oath on October 19, 1993, as the 17th Prime Minister of Pakistan. By the time Prime  Minister Nawaz Sharif was removed on October 12, 1999, both Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif had served two stints as the Prime Ministers in quick succession in about a decade from December 12, 1988, to October 12, 1999.

Besides these frequent political developments, more unpleasant than pleasant ones, Nature had also shaken the people of Pakistan when a massive earthquake of 7.8 Richter scale intensity hit the country on  October 8, 2005, causing massive devastation in Islamabad, Azad Kashmir and elsewhere. Billions of rupees have been spent so far, but the hard-hit large number of people in Pakistan and Azad Kashmir have not been fully rehabilitated even after the passage of thirteen long years.

This is not all. Developments continue to take place. Only Almighty Allah knows the best as to what is in store for the rulers, political leaders and the people of Pakistan in the coming days, weeks, months, years and decades. There is certainly and surely no harm in keeping our fingers crossed and praying for Almighty Allah’s continued blessings, mercy and good times coming and keeping Pakistan safe, secured, progress and developed for all times to come.


The writer is a Lahore-based Freelance Journalist, Columnist and retired Deputy Controller (News) Radio Pakistan Islamabad, my dad and can be reached at zahidriffat@gmail.com


Yousaf – Zulaikha


Love is seemingly a four-letter word, but it spins our world around more than the merry-go-round. Still, our lives are incomplete without it. No matter how much has been written on this emotion, it remains a mystery and inexplicable. Every time, it manifests something new and not two experiences of love can ever be the same. This four letter word is the reason behind the creation and expansion of the universe in every imaginable sense. People have sacrificed lives and taken the lives of the other all in the name of love. In the end, it comes down to every individual’s perception. Poetry, prose, stories and quotes are all incomplete without the element of love. Continue reading

To Whom It May Concern


Imran Khan led Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf secured majority in the 25th July elections. They went on to form the coalition government in only the second consecutive transfer of the power in the 70 years history of Pakistan’s existence. Unfortunate but at least it is happening now and hopefully it will continue and one fine day the democracy will mature in its true form. Continue reading

Sacred Conglomerate

Photo: Zubair Khawar

On 5th August 2018, news reads ‘China’s Military asked to cease its kindergarten businesses’. China’s military had established businesses in the 1970s, when the country was struggling with a shortage of funds. In the later years, questions were raised over the corruption and effectiveness of the army. The demands of separating military from business had started in 1998 Continue reading

The Change We’re Seeking

The simplest definition of change is to make a difference, to give different position course and direction but unlimited usage. Since childhood, I have heard and talked incessantly about the change Pakistan needs. Change is a relative term thus different from one and other. Continue reading

25th July – Election Day

On the 25th July Pakistan will vote to elect a new government and a prime minister. The popular anthem these days is tabdeeli and naya Pakitan just  like Bhutto’s popular slogan ‘roti, kapra aur makan’. Politicians have the knack of playing with the emotion and sentiments of the people and ignite them by using a psychological slogan. Continue reading