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Friday, August 28, 2009

Iqbal Centenary (November 9, 1977)

In grateful memory of Iqbal the great visionary and poet, Pakistan Post Office is issuing a set of 5 Stamps on his birth centenary, which falls on 9th November, 1977. The stamps have been printed in a row and project the personality and the message of the Poet. The 20 Paisa and 65 Paisa stamps on the extreme left and right corner of the set are based on 2 paintings by the famous Iranian painter, Behzad. The 20 paisa stamp depicts the spirit of the great Persian mystic and poet Maulana Jalaluddin Roomi appearing before Iqbal to lead him in his journey through hell and heaven. The 65 Paisa stamp depicts Iqbal looking at Jamaluddin Afghani and Saeed Haleem Pasha offering their prayer. The paintings are the illustrations of two of the poets verses which have been reproduced at the bottom. Rs.l.25 and Rs. 2.25 stamps reproduce an \'Urdu\' and a Persian\' verse of the Poet highlighting his conception of Mard-e-Momin, the ideal man and his faith in the universality of Islam and the brotherhood of Muslims. The 5th stamp which appears in the middle depicts the portrait of the poet himself. Iqbal’s early poems are based on mostly nationalistic and patriotic ideas and love of nature, but after his stay in Europe and his association with the Universities of Heidelberg, Munich and Cambridge where he studied Law and Philosophy he became more universal in approach. His epoch making long Poems ‘Asrar-I-Khudi’ and Rumuz-i-Khudi (Secret of self) became very famous-and were translated into English by proof. R.A. Nicholson of Cambridge University.
His verses in Urdu and Persian and his monumental work ‘The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam’ have been translated into almost all the important languages of the world and won vide recogni-tion in Iran, Turkey, Egypt, England, France, Germany, Italy, Russia and many other countries of the East and West.
Iqbal was intellectually associated with politics and the fight for the emancipation of the Muslims of India. In his presidential address delivered at the annual session of the All India Muslim League at Allahabad in 1930 he for the first time, gave the concept of an independent Muslim state in the Indo—Pakistan Sub-Continent, thus offering a solution for the vexed politico-religious problem of India. The scheme of Pakistan was later on adopted by the Muslim League and subsequently realised in 1947 when under the dynamic leadership of Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah the 100 million Muslim of the Subconti-nent finally succeeded in establishing a homeland for themselves.
Iqbal breathed his last on 21st April 1938 but his monumental works in Urdu, Persian and English continue to be abiding source of hope and inspiration not only for the people of Pakistan but for humanity in general and the Muslims in particular.