Celebrating the 70th Independence Day of Pakistan, the nation also pays tribute to the wonder woman who stood firmly alongside the founder of Pakistan Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, his sister Fatima Jinnah.
Fatima Jinnah is fondly remembered as Madar-i Millat, the mother of the nation.
Apart from fighting a hard battle alongside his brother to achieve freedom, she played a vital role in creating awareness among women. She was a passionate political worker and a determined activist for women’s rights. She was also a qualified dental surgeon.
Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted women to participate in the freedom struggle for Pakistan besides taking up jobs to be an active part of the society. Fatima Jinnah was instrumental in rallying female support behind Quaid-e-Azam and proved to be a source of great strength and support for her brother.
During the early formation of All India Muslim, Fatima Jinnah was inducted as the member of the Working Committee of the Bombay Provincial Muslim League and continued serving until 1947. Due to Fatima Jinnah’s efforts and initiative, All India Muslim Women Students Federation was organized in February 1941 at Delhi.
During the transfer of power in 1947, she formed the Women’s Relief Committee, which later proved to be the nucleus for the All Pakistan Women’s Association (APWA) founded by Rana Liaquat Ali Khan.
She also played a significant role in the settlement of Muhajirs in the new state of Pakistan. In 1967, Jinnah gave a historical speech to the nation. She warned that ‘cowards die many deaths, the valiant never taste death but once’.
After the death of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Fatima Jinnah had also quit her political activities but when Field Martial Ayub Khan imposed first Martial Law in Pakistan in 1958, it became unbearable for her to see her country being ruled by a dictator.
Fatima Jinnah challenged Ayub Khan in Presidential elections of 1965. Although she last against the dictator, her bold move was praised by all Pakistanis.
In a message to the Nation on Eidul Azha in 1965, Fatima Jinnah said:
“Let us sink all our differences and stand united together under the same banner under which we truly achieved Pakistan and let us demonstrate once again that we can, united, face all dangers in the cause of glory of Pakistan, the glory that the Quaid-i-Azam envisaged for Pakistan.”