Pakistan got its independence under the dynamic leadership of Quaid e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and his devoted comrades through a political process. The credit goes to All India MuslimLeague (AIML) which was established as a political party in December 1906 at Dhaka during the annual session of Muhammadan Educational Conference which was attended by 3000 delegates. The meeting was presided over by Nawab Viqar ul Mulk. Nawab Salim Ullah Khan presented a proposal to establish a political party to provide a platform to Muslims of the subcontinent to safeguard and fight for their political rights and interests. TheQuaid was a member of Indian National Congress (INC) which had been functioning since December 1885 with the main objective to put forward demands of Indian nationals before the British government. He joined AIML in 1913 and became President in 1916.Demands of the Muslims were forwarded to the British government through the AIML platform like more posts in the government offices for Muslims, breaksfor Jumah prayers in the offices, separate electorate etc. In the twenty fifth annual session of AMILat Allahabad on December 29, 1930, Iqbal gave the idea and concept of Muslims as a separate nation. He said, nation is distinguished from the other on the basis of religion, customs and traditions. He did not support the Western concept of religion as private affair. Iqbal explained thatIslam is a way of life and thusMuslims are a separate nation. He advanced the idea that for peace and tranquility in the Subcontinent, Muslims should have a separate state. This continuous political struggle led to the March 23, 1940 Resolution, which became the landmark for the creation of this country. The annual session of AIML was held from 22-24 March at Minto Park Lahore. On the first day, the Quaid addressed the session and said thatHindus and Muslims follow two different religions, philosophies, social customs and literature and this made them two distinct nations. Had the political process continued and elections held as scheduled, the people would have had some semblance of political awareness by now Based on these ideas, AK Fazal -ul- Haq, then Chief Minister of Bengal moved resolution which was seconded by Maulana Zafar Ali Khan from Punjab and other prominent leaders from NWFP, Balochistan and Sindh. It states: “No constitutional plan would be workable or acceptable to the Muslims unless geographical contiguous units are demarcated into regions which should be so constituted with such territorial readjustments as may benecessary. That the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in majority as in the North-Western and Eastern zones of India should be grouped to constitute independent states in which the constituent units shall be autonomous and sovereign”. It further reads, “That adequate, effective and mandatory safeguards shall be specifically provided in the constitution for minorities in the units and in the regions for the protection of their religious, cultural, economic, political, and administrative and other rights of the minorities, with their consultation.” It repudiated the concept of a United India. It was made part of constitution of AIML in 1941 and in 1946, the AIML, decided to go for one state for Muslims. First Governor General was Quaid Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Liaquat Ali Khan as the Prime Minister. India Act of 1935 with amendments was adopted by the constituent assembly as an interim constitution. The Objective Resolution which gives the guide lines for framing the constitution was presented by Liaquat Ali Khan and adopted by the assembly on 12 Feb 1948. Salient features are, federal System of Government, principles of democracy, equality, freedom and social justice as laid down by Islam shall be fully observed. The sovereignty of the state will be established through the elected representative of the people. The rights and interests of the minorities to freely profess and practice their religion will be protected. Judiciary will be independent.It was preamble of constitution of 1956, 1962 and 1973, and made partof constitution in vogue as Article 2A by Zia ul Haq in1985.The Quaid has emphasized these points in his addresses at various occasions. In his address to Staff College Quetta on 14 June 1948, he said that, “the defense forces are the most vital of all Pakistan servicesand correspondingly a very heavy responsibility and burden lies on your shoulders. One thing , I am persuaded to say this because during my talks with one or two very high ranking officers I discovered that they do not know the implications of the oath taken by the troops of Pakistan.Of course, an oath is only a form; what are more important is the true spirit and the heart’. He read out the Oath administered to Armed forces and emphasized faithfulness to constitution and the oath taken. It is unfortunate that four Martial laws have been imposed in Pakistan against the constitution and directives of the Quaid. Except the martial law of Yahya Khan, all other have been declared as lawful by the Supreme Court (SC). On the other handin the decisions of Zia ul Haq and Musharraf the SC even authorised the dictators to amend the Constitution. This is an authority which even the SC did not have.Both the 1965 and 1971 wars were fought while the country was under military rule. In 1965 while executing Operation Gibraltar, the desired objectives could not be achieved and a ceasefire was accepted. According to theTashkentdeclaration, troops had to be withdrawn to the positions they were in prior to start of the operation.This became a significant factor in the downfall of Ayub Khan. Soon after assuming power as President and Chief Martial Law Administrator on March 25, 1969, Yahya Khan announced that elections will be held on the basis of “one man one vote”. However, the former East Pakistan got 162 and West Pakistan 138 National Assembly seats. Considering the populations of both sectors, this was a clear violation of Yahya’s earlier statement. In the 1970 elections, the National Awami Party of Sheikh Mujeeb ur Rehman got 161 seats from the Eastern Wing. Meanwhile, the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto got 81 seats from the West and not a single one from East Pakistan. In this scenario, a political process was the need of the hour. A seasoned, realistic and intelligent politician at the helms of affairs would have opted for a political solution instead of military action.It would have saved the country from a humiliating defeat followed by surrender and more than 90,000 people becoming prisoners of war and losing a 5000 square kilometer area in the West wing. We should learn from this shamefulhistory. Had the political process continued and elections held as scheduled, the people would have had some semblance of political awareness by now. The requirement at this point of time is to strengthen our institutions. The writer is a Senior Research Fellow at the Strategic Vision Institute Published in Daily Times, February 1st 2019.