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Why Pakistan Celebrates Independence Day on August 14, Though Act Says August 15?

Pakistan's first Independence Day Stamp shows August 15 as the Independence Day.

Pakistan’s first Independence Day Stamp shows August 15 as the Independence Day.

India and Pakistan were granted independence on the same mid-night of August 14-15, 1947 but Pakistan chose August 14 as its Independence Day, while India continued to celebrate it on August 15.

History says that Pakistan’s Father of the Nation and its first President Mohammad Ali Jinnah actually preferred August 15 initially and In Pakistan the first Independence Day was actually celebrated on August 15 and not August 14.

While nobody was privy to the decision to make August 14, one day before India as the chosen day to celebrate independence in Pakistan, it could have been motivated by the post-independence bloodshed that followed the massive migration on both sides of the border.

From the British side, the Indian Independence Act 1947 clearly recognized 15 August as the birthday of both Pakistan and India and it clearly states: “As from the fifteenth day of August, nineteen hundred and forty-seven, two independent Dominions shall be set up in India, to be known respectively as India and Pakistan.”

Mohammad Ali Jinnah himself said in his first broadcast to the nation or newly created Pakistan, “August 15 is the birthday of the independent and sovereign state of Pakistan.”

He further stated that “It marks the fulfilment of the destiny of the Muslim nation which made great sacrifices in the past few years to have its homeland.”

pakistan stamp

Pakistan Independence Day stamp released in 1948 shows August 15 as the independence day.

That was how Pakistan celebrated its first Independence Day on August 15, 1947 and the first commemorative postage stamp of Pakistan released in July 1948 showed 15 August 1947 as the Independence Day of Pakistan.

The official explanation given later for the change to August 14 was that it coincided with 27 Ramadan 1366 of the Islamic calendar, which Muslims regard as a sacred night.

However, India and Pakistan were born twins on the same Independence Day but remained at logger heads since then.

2 comments

  1. Used by Nehru, the word ‘born’ was contextual and not literal here — Editor

  2. One cannot use the word “born’ for India. It is one of the oldest curture and civilization in world. And, didn’t born on 15th August, 1947.

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