Islamabad, Sep 28: A report revealing that Pakistan's founder made a an Urdu-knowing Hindu to compose the country's national anthem has triggered off heated debates in many spheres.
According to the report, Jinnha had commissioned Jagannath Azad, son of Lahore-based poet Tilok Chand Mahroom to write the anthem three days before the formation of the country in 1947.
This composition was reportedly replaced with Hafeez Jullundhri's lyrics six months after Jinnah's death in Sep 1948, when the National Anthem Committee chose Jullundhri"s poem among 723 submissions.
Azad"s lyrics read “Ae sarzameene paak/Zarray teray haen aaj sitaaron se taabnaak/ Roshan hai kehkashaan se kaheen aaj teri khaak/Ae sarzameene paak" which translates to "Oh land of Pakistan, the stars themselves illuminate each particle of yours/rainbows brighten your very dust".
The debate over the disclosure of the fact that Pakistan's first national anthem was written by a Hindu continues to see many arguments.
Pointing out the 'symbolism', in an article in Dawn, writer-activist Beena Sarwar argues that the song has to be restored at least as a national song noting that Indian kids still learn Iqbal"s 'Saarey jahan se accha'.
In another viewpoint, Adil Najam, a celebrated blogger who has posted Jinnah's speech on his blog has placed an argument that 'Jinnah Sahab wanted to sow the roots of secularism in Pakistan'.
Interestingly, this comes in the time when the Bharatiya Janata Party leader, Jaswant Singh's book on Jinnah has got both India and Pakistan deliberating over Jinnah's stance on secularis.