By Parvez Jamil

SELDOM has the role of children in Pakistan Movement and for Pakistan discussed but the part children played and continue to play for Pakistan is revealing indeed. Recalling hardships and agonies of our forefathers in Pakistan Movement include their suffering and distressed children’s rejuvenating resolve for

Pakistan. Refreshing scenes from current examples speak volumes of national sentiments of children enthusiastically commemorating August 14 in every nook and corner of Pakistan.It is not just by mere slogans for Pakistan during Pakistan Movement and it is not just by celebrations on national occasions today that children attribute Pakistan. One of the many past cases is how children shared parents’ agony amid hunger and fear in the scary ‘Lal Qila’ environs destined for the cherished destination Pakistan. One of the many present models is how our kids excel academically, creatively and as ‘ambassadors of goodwill’ in foreign lands, whether Europe, Asia or North America.

It is not just by mere slogans for Pakistan during Pakistan Movement and it is not just by celebrations on national occasions today that children attribute Pakistan. One of the many past cases is how children shared parents’ agony amid hunger and fear in the scary ‘Lal Qila’ environs destined for the cherished destination Pakistan. One of the many present models is how our kids excel academically, creatively and as ‘ambassadors of goodwill’ in foreign lands, whether Europe, Asia or North America.

Pakistan Movement has inculcated an inborn and inherent patriotic spirit in our children as teachers taught at schools and parents discussed at home the inspiring and instrumental literary and journalistic role of Sir Syed, Maulana Mohammad Ali Johar, Maulana Zafar Ali Khan, Hasrat Mohani, Abul Kalam Azad, Zafar Ali Khan and the like. While Iqbal’s poetry, especially for children and his dream for Pakistan became every child’s heart beat, thought process, swan song, wish and will for Pakistan, it was transformed into practical reality by trend-setting examples of Quaid-i-Azam from his childhood stories of inspiration to the dream-come-true reality of Pakistan.

The positive side of our children’s talents shines over the international horizon. Building on their brilliant performance, Pakistani boys and girls brought laurels to their country by outshining international students in O and A level examinations of the University of Cambridge, as for example, Ali Nawazish, Ibrahim Shahid, Sitara Akber and alike. Our students have represented Pakistan at such prestigious international occasions as IGSC at Global Young Leaders Conference, UN and IoBM at CIMA Global Challenge, Malaysia, China and Sri Lanka. It is rejuvenating to learn of young Pakistani cadet, Muhammad Talha Zahid, winning the prestigious “Sword of Honour” for overseas cadets at the annual Sovereign’s Parade at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, Pakistani contingent returning with a staggering tally of 56 medals at the Special Olympics in Athens last July, Shiza Gulab, Bushra Shahed and Mahnoor Hassan from the Institute of Computer and Management Science of Peshawar winning a grand award in the “Animal Sciences” category at International Science and Engineering Fair at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania US recently, NED students making a solar-powered car with efficient fuel consumption and an eco-friendly drive and projecting it amid laurels in Pakistan and abroad.

Quaid-i-Azam offered a piece of advice to the young nation: At a public meeting in Dhaka on March 21, 1948, he said: “My young friends, students who are present here, let me tell you as one who has always had love and affection for you, your main occupation should be — in fairness to yourself, in fairness to your parents, in fairness to the state to devote your attention to studies.”

Quaid-i-Azam had a great love for sports and fully released the vital role it played in the development of Nations and inculcation of discipline among the masses. In a meeting with the Organizing Committee of the First Pakistan Olympic Games held at Karachi the Quaid- said to the first President of Pakistan Olympic Association, Mr. Ahmed E.H. Jaffar: "Dedicate yourself to sports promotion, for when you and I are gone, leadership will go into the hands of Youth, and Youth is our wealth, a raw material, that must be hammered into shape, into burnished steel to strive and smite in defence - the defence of the integrity and solidarity of Pakistan - the defence of the ideology of Pakistan."

As such, it is only through education with a harmonious blend of character building, career-oriented focus, health and recreation that we can see a better and brighter future for Pakistan. It is a question of affordable and purposeful education for the majority of our children in the slums and countryside beyond

promises and principles that can ensure the rejuvenation of a nation.

Published in Young Nation magazine on August 13, 2016 issue.