The 73rd death anniversary of Dr Allama Muhammad Iqbal was observed with due reverence and solemnity in Daska, Sambrial, Pasrur and Sialkot. Allama Iqbal was born on November 9, 1877, and died on April 21, 1938. Special prayers were offered for the eternal peace of his soul and a number of programmes were organised to highlight his teachings and his philosophy that gave an independent state to the Muslims of the subcontinent. Special programmes, seminars, speeches and debates were held in all schools of the tahsil.
In Sialkot, the hometown of Iqbal, people from different walks of life, including businessmen, journalists, lawyers, police officers and students visited Iqbal Manzil to pay homage to the great poet-philosopher. A number of female students also recited the holy Quran at Iqbal Manzil.
A procession was also taken out from Lady Anderson School to Iqbal Manzil while various roads, prominent buildings and government offices had been decorated with portraits and verses of Allama Iqbal. Iqbal was born on November 9, 1877, in Sialkot.
During the reign of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, Iqbal’s Brahmin ancestors from Kashmir converted to Islam. Much later in 19th century when the Kashmir state was coming under the Sikh rule, his grandfather’s family immigrated to the Punjab. Iqbal often wrote about his being “a son of Kashmiri Brahmans, but acquainted with the wisdom of Roomi and Tabrez.
At the age of four, young Iqbal was sent to a mosque where he learnt how to read the Quran. Later, he became a student of Syed Mir Hassan, who was then the head of Madrassa in Sialkot. His father sent him to Sialkot’s Scotch Mission College where Hassan was professor of Arabic.
In 1895, Iqbal obtained the Faculty of Arts diploma from the college. The same year Iqbal joined Government College Lahore where he studied philosophy, English Literature and Arabic and obtained a BA degree. He won a gold medal for standing first in philosophy.
While studying for his master degree, Iqbal came under the influence of Sir Thomas Arnold, a scholar of Islam and modern philosophy at the college. Arnold served as a bridge between the ideas of East and West for Iqbal. Iqbal travelled to Europe and spent many years studying there. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from Trinity College at Cambridge in 1907, simultaneously studying law at Lincoln’s Inn from where he did Bar-at-Law in 1908.
In Europe, he started writing poetry in Persian as well. Throughout his life, Iqbal preferred writing in Persian as he believed it allowed him to fully express philosophical concepts.
Following the formation of All-India Muslim League in 1906, Iqbal was elected to the executive committee of its British chapter in 1908. Together with two other politicians, Syed Hassan Bilgrami and Syed Ameer Ali, Iqbal sat on the subcommittee which drafted the constitution of the League.
In 1907, Iqbal travelled to Germany to pursue a doctorate from the Faculty of Philosophy of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität at Munich. After returning from a trip to Spain and Afghanistan, Iqbal began suffering from a mysterious throat illness. He spent his final years helping Chaudhry Niaz Ali Khan establish Dar-ul-Islam Trust Institute at the latter’s Jamalpur estate near Pathankot.
Iqbal ceased practising law in 1934 and he was granted pension by the Nawab of Bhopal. Iqbal died in Lahore on April 21, 1938. Allama Iqbal is known for his poetic works, including Asrar-e-Khudi, Rumuz-e-Bekhudi, Bang-e-Dara, Baal-e-Jibreel, Zarb-e-Kaleem and Payam-e-Mashriq.
Our correspondent from Sialkot adds: The 73rd death anniversary of Dr Allama Muhammad Iqbal, the Poet of the East, was observed in his native city Sialkot.
The day began with special prayers and Quran Khawani for the eternal peace of the departed soul of Allama Iqbal in all the mosques. Special Quran-khawani was also held at the Iqbal Manzil Sialkot, the birthplace of Iqbal, in which a large number of people from all walks participated.
The people also visited the Imam Sahib Graveyard at Sialkot, laid floral wreathes on the graves of the parents and other family members of Allama Iqbal and offered fateha for their eternal peace.