“I cannot emphasize it too much. We should begin to work in that spirit and in course of time all these angularities of the majority and minority communities, the Hindu community and the Muslim community, because even as regards Muslims you have Pathans, Punjabis, Shias, Sunnis and so on, and among the Hindus you have Brahmins, Vashnavas, Khatris, also Bengalis, Madrasis and so on, will vanish.”
-Jinnah address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, Aug 11 1947
Pakistan was formed based on two nations theory of Jinnah- that Hindus and Muslims cannot coexist. Though transfer of population was not something that was planned, Jinnah believed in “hostage theory” i.e. minorities in each country were treated as hostage to ensure fair treatment of minorities in the other. Which meant that Pakistan needed Hindus to ensure fair treatment of Muslim in India. But unlike Jinnah, Nehru did not believe in such nonsense, for him all Indians, irrespective of their religion were equal in letter and spirit.
From a secular leader Jinnah was slowing transforming himself into an Islamic leader.
But unfortunately, the partition was not well managed, there was large transfer of population. The native Muslims benefited from migration of Hindus, but Muslims from India lost their property and became homeless in Pakistan. Since Pakistan was land of Muslims, all Muslims were welcomed in Pakistan.
So, Pakistan now consisted of Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs. Ideally all should have forgotten their differences and become Pakistanis.
But soon differences cropped up. Pakistan was land of pure, minorities were now seen as impurities, not welcome, but to be tolerated.
Pakistan’s first prime minister Liaquat Ali Khan wanted Pakistan’s constitution to be Islamic, but minorities were assured that their rights would be protected. Many Pakistani leaders like Jogendra Nath Mandal saw reality, treatment given to Hindus forced him to leave Pakistan and he went to India.
Islamic constitution would mean minorities like Hindus and Christians will be second class citizens.
In 1956, Pakistan was declared as Islamic Republic. After religious minorities, next targets were Ahmadiyyas and citizens of East Pakistan. Military rule by Ayub Khan kept religious leaders in check.
All this changed after war with India in 1965, now religious leaders wanted Ayub Khan to be replaced, his was replaced by Yahya Khan. Yahya Khan dissolved the constitution and first ever election based on adult franchise was held in 1970. Awami league won elections in East Pakistan, while Bhutto won elections in Punjab and Sindh, religious parties were routed.
These elections led to civil war as Bhutto and Yahya Khan were not interested in sharing power with Awami League, because East Pakistanis were not “pure” enough. East Pakistan became independent nation called Bangladesh. Two nation theory was proved to be untrue.
In 1973 a new constitution was made and Pakistan again became Islamic republic. Ahmadiyyas were declared as non-Muslims. Ahmadiyyas like Zafarullah Khan were active supporters of Pakistan, while Abdus Salam got Noble Prize. Though Ahmadiyyas kept insisting that they were pure Muslims, constitution declared them as impure. In fact, to get passport in Pakistan a Muslim has to give declaration that he does not recognize Ahmadiyyas as Muslim.
Bhutto wanted a servile military head, so he appointed Zia ul Haq as military head. But it was a fatal mistake, though Zia appeared to be dumb, he was very smart. He had Bhutto imprisoned and under false case hanged him.
Zia was mullah in military dress. As pious Sunni Muslim, he decided to make Pakistan a true Muslim country. Now not just Ahmadiyyas but even Shias were not pure enough. Due to invasion of Afghanistan by USSR, two things happened, Zia now became darling of USA and Pakistan gave birth to Taliban. Emergence of Taliban lead to more violence and intolerance. Not just Hindus, Christians and Ahmadiyyas, now even Shias were targeted.
Democratically elected governments of Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif didn’t change the situation, only intolerance kept getting worse. General Musharraf tried to improve the situation, but soon lost control over masses. Benazir was assassinated and Nawaz was re-elected. But by now situation was out of control and nobody was interested in Pakistan of Jinnah- differences will never vanish.