Pakistan’s First National Anthem

A good friend Mobeen Ahmed Chughtai brought my attention back to our National Anthem which we spend every school day reciting in the morning and forget it altogether as an adult. Like many problems of Pakistan attached with languages, so is our National Anthem.

Pakistan’s Lingua Franca is English, the national language is Urdu, the provincial languages are Sindhi, Punjabi, Balochi and Pushto and National Anthem is in Persian. What is comical is that a common Pakistani doesn’t know more than three languages listed above on the average.

I found this post from Abdul Haseeb on the First National Anthem of Pakistan and it proved to be very interesting. I had read something similar before but his post is much clearer and gives some more in-depth details along with highlighting the poet who wrote it on none other than Mohammed Ali Jinnah’s instruction, Jagannath Azad.

[Original Post Reproduced Below]

Unfortunately like most of you, I didn’t know that our current National Anthem is not our first one. In fact it was adopted in August 1954. Then what was our National Anthem before August 1954. This is an interesting Question.

Jagannath Azad was a well known Urdu poet, a punjabi Hindu living in Lahore, who on the personal request of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah created down Pakistan’s very first National Anthem which remained Official for almost eighteen months after August 14, 1947. This Anthem was played on radio on the Independence day as it was approved by Quaid-e-Azam as the National Anthem of Pakistan.

Its first lines are as follows.

Aey sarzameen-e-Pak
zarrey terey hein aaj sitaron sey tabnak.
Roshan hey kehkashan sey kahin aaj teri khak.
Aey sarzameen-e-Pak

O land of Pakistan,Each particle of yoursIs more illuminated than stars.Today your dustIs brighter than the galaxy

During the partition days Azad was a famous journalist and a poet. Quaid requested him to write the Anthem just in five days and he did it remarkably indeed. But tragedy is that soon after the death of Quaid, his beautiful Anthem was replaced in August 1950.

Quaid’s Wisdom

Well why Quaid selected him for the National Anthem when there were lot of muslim poets present at that time.  The answer can be found by looking at the Jinnah’s inaugural speech as the Governer General of Pakistan.

“You will find that in the course of time, Hindus will cease to be Hindus and Muslims will cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense because that is the personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of the state.”

Quaid-e-Azam wanted a Hindu Poet to write the Anthem because through this gesture He wanted to sow the roots of Secularism in Pakistan. But soon after the death of our beloved Quaid, the roots of Secularism were destroyed and now we even don’t have the complete National Anthem available to us so easily.

Complete National Anthem

Thanks to my friend Badeel Khan Janjua for sharing complete version with me.

Few Lines about Azad

Jagan Nath Azad has won several awards from Pakistan, India, Russia and other countries. For the naats composed by him, he was given the Seerat-i-Pak Award by Bradford Publications of UK. Not only that, Jagan Nath Azad has written a long poem condemning the destruction of the Babri Mosque.

Hamarey dil ko tora hey imarat ko nahin tora
Khabasat ki bhi had hoti hey aey had torney waley

I found a very interesting article about Jagannath Azad’s life written

by Ashfaque Naqvi in Dawn.

His devotion to Allama Iqbal has been intriguing for many. But then, he has himself said:

Merey yaqeen ko dekh amal par nazar na kar
Mera yaqeen heh daulat-eeman liye huey
Ahl-i-haram mujhey na hiqarat se dekhna
Kafir hun eik qalb-e-Musalman liye huey

[Via:  Pakistaniat , DailyTimes ]


2 thoughts on “Pakistan’s First National Anthem

  1. Thunder

    An excellent post. Its really great you’re trying to raise awareness of the issues they didnt teach us in ‘social studies’.

    Do make a post on how the creator of the flag was exiled from the country and died alone..such is the fate of our heroes.

  2. Wasio Ali Khan Abbasi Post author

    It is unfortunate how we bend our history to suit a certain perspective. Just because a Hindu wrote Pakistan’s first national anthem, even that on none other than Jinnah’s request, we simply ignore it like it never happened and and spent five years to get a new anthem which turned out to be in Persian which none of us understand one bit.

    I have nothing against Persian language. I am in fact one of those who believe Urdu should not have been the national language and this status should have been given to Arabic or that English declared as the sole national language with the rest being provincial languages. This would have resolved a lot of language related riots Pakistan faced since its inception.

    For the time being there is a lot to think upon but if I got the chance, I will research about the person who made the flag and find out what really happened to him.


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