“You are free. You are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place of worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed - that has nothing to do with the business of the state.”

–Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah – August 11, 1947.

 

The speech quoted above has become one of the nation’s founding father’s most iconic addresses to the newly-formed country. It is often used as evidence in the debate for what Jinnah wanted Pakistan to be like, following its creation. Secular proponents feel that the Quaid wanted a country that leaned less on religion and focused on the importance of equality, while the opposition to this view suggests that Jinnah would never have asked for a separate homeland for Muslims if that was really on the agenda. His real designs though, might lie somewhere in between, for its clear that the Quaid envisioned a a home for Muslims to call their own, but at the same time, one that would treat each citizen equally.