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Bibliographical Accessibility of Materials on Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah.

Byline: Anis Khurshid

Bibliography is an essential ingredient of research. Some American universities require a state-of-the-art-type bibliographic essay, on the subject of research problem, as a pre-requisite for acceptance of the research problem. Almost all the other universities, all over the world, invariably require a comprehensive usable bibliography on the topic of research. When research is successfully completed, these bibliographies are used by university and research libraries for collection development of their resources. They are also used to evaluate their collections.

In Pakistan, however, bibliography is not given due importance as such with the result that the UNESCO assisted first Urdu language bibliography, Qamussul Kutub, published in 1961, under editorship of Molvi Abdul Haq, by no other institution than the Anjuman Tarraq-I- Urdu, on the subject of Religion, largely remained unsold. Their use by our scholar is also paltry. For this reason bibliography is hardly found on the list of publishers.

Yet another bibliography, Mamlakat-e-Hyderabad..., also in Urdu, compiled by Abdullah al-Masdoosi and published in 1967, by the Bahaduryar Jang Akadami, Karachi, largely comprising books published from Hyderabad Daccan until 1948. It also included periodicals, government documents and also books in English language.

A major development, however, took place in 1960s when UNESCO provided financial assistance to the Pakistan Bibliographical Working Group (PBWG) for the compilation of a retrospective bibliography of Pakistan for the period from 1947-1961. Edited by A.R. Ghani, The Pakistan National Bibliography (1947-1961) was published in two fascicules in 1972 and 1975 by the National Book Centre (later called Council) of Pakistan (NBCP) in 1973 and 1975. The complete bibliography included some 21,758 books in English and Urdu and other Pakistani languages out of which books on the subjects of General Works, Philosophy, Religion and Social Sciences have been published. The remaining parts are yet to be published while PBWG has engaged itself in totally non-bibliographical activities and the NBCP has been closed.

This bibliography, however, has resulted in the promulgation of Copyright Ordinance of 1962 and the publication of the Pakistan National Bibliography (1962-) in 1966 later based on the deposit collection building up in the country as a result of the Copyright Ordinance. The Bibliography is now published by the National Library of Pakistan, Islamabad with a gap of three or more years. With the closure of NBCP, some useful annual bibliographies on Pakistan and bibliographies of Urdu books on various subjects including Children's literature and government publications have ceased publication.

The Accession List-Pakistan a monthly list of Pakistani publications selectively acquired by the Library of Congress Office in Karachi for the American libraries from July 1962 in yet another important source material for current publications, which according to a research by Mumtazul Islam1 lists more books than usually listed in the PNB. This list later issued from New Delhi as part of the South Asian List has now ceased to publish as a hard copy from 1997. The South Asian Bibliographer is a bimonthly publication which has begun to appear from January-February, 1998 by the Sage Publications from New Delhi in collaboration with Library of Congress Office as a priced publication with addition of publications of Afghanistan, Burma and Tibetan language published from India, Nepal and China.

W. Eric Gustafson,2 however, calls South Asia, '...[bibliographically] a wasteland, although there are guide maps to particular cases'. He further says, materials abound but keys to these materials are scattered, hard to locate and often imperfect. Speaking of Pakistan and Bangladesh, he adds what is true for South Asian bibliography as a whole is more true to Pakistan and Bangladesh, partly no doubt due to the lesser interest which scholars have taken in these countries (in contrast to India) until very recently [1976].

In the situation bibliographic access to the writings on Quaid-i- Azam, however, has been a cause of concern to our historians and political scientists. So is the case with the materials on the Muslim Freedom Movement in the subcontinent. Congnizant of the handicap, the Library and Information Science Department at the University of Karachi, despite its limitation, had produced a few bibliographical studies which deserve mention here. Important among them are Mumtaz A. Anwar and Bashir Ali Tiwana's Pakistan: A Bibliography of Books and Articles Published in the United Kingdom (1947-1964) (Lahore: Research Society of Pakistan, 1964) and, more importantly, Muhammad Anwar's first ever bibliography on the Quaid, Quaid-e-Azam Jinnah: A Selected Bibliography (Karachi: National Publishing House, 1964) which includes material both in western and eastern languages.

Yet another bibliography though not directly related to the Quaid is that of K.K. Aziz's The Historical Background of Pakistan, 1857-1947: Annotated Digest of Source Material (Karachi: Pakistan Institute of International Affairs, 1970) which includes some 600 references to the life and work of the Quaid-i-Azam. Extensive coverage of the Civil and Military Gazatte, documents and unpublished thesis are the strong features of the bibliography.

Other bibliographies which fully or partially covered the life and work of the Quaid included A.R. Ghani's, (comp.) Pakistan: A Select Bibliography [Lahore: Pakistan Association for Advancement of Science, 1951, Quaid-i-Azam: pp.5-6, 59-60]; Pervaiz Iqbal Cheema's, (comp.) A Select Bibliography of Periodical Literature on India and Pakistan, 1947-1960 (Islamabad: Pakistan National Commission on Historical Research, 1976, Vol.1 Quaid-i-Azam: pp.152-54); Dawn also serially published during 1976 an index of article published in the newspaper during 1955-1976, compiled by M.M. Baig. Ahmed Saeed's Eshareyah-i-Pakistan (1876-1976) in the Urdu was, however, the only source material published during the Quaid's Birthday Centennial Year 1976 by the National Committee for the Quaid's birthday. This index includes more than 2,000 articles, etc. from 28 Urdu newspapers and magazines. The Paisa Akhbar is the only newspaper which completely covers the period from 1906-1948.

The rest in part covers together the period of the index.

India has also published a number of bibliographies. Important among them is the Satyaprakash (ed.)'s bibliography, Pakistan (Gurgaon: India Documentation Centre, 1974, Quaid-i-Azam pp.205-06).

The most comprehensive bibliography on Quaid-i-Azam was, however, published in 2 volumes in 1978-1979. This bibliography was commissioned by the National Committee for the Quaid's Birthday Centennial Year. Titled as Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah: An Annotated Bibliography (Karachi: Quaid-i-Azam Academy, 1978-1979, 2 Vols.), in the Academy's Bibliographical Studies (Pakistan) Series No.1, is edited by the author of this paper with the assistance of a team of researchers co-ordinated by A.H. Ansari for nine western languages materials included in Vol.I (1978, p.403) and Hidayatullah Hadi and Muhammad Ali Asghar for eight eastern languages materials included in Vol.II (1979, p.618). The non-Perso-Arabic script languages Bengali, Gujrati, however, have been included in transliterated Roman form in Vol.I. So is the case with Japanese language.

In all 15,000 author and 230 subject entries are included in these two volumes for books, documents, both government and Muslim League and other political parties, periodical articles, unpublished thesis, manuscripts and special materials including TV programmes, etc. The period covered largely relate to 1906 to 1976 extending further to the date of the publication of each volume where the printing of the Bibliography permitted insertion of the post " 1976 references in the alphabetical order of the text remaining unpublished at the time of their appearance in print.

Some 25 major libraries within the country were searched for collecting materials for this Bibliography mostly from Karachi, Lahore, Hyderabad and Islamabad. Foreign libraries, such as the India Office Library, London, the Library of Congress, Washington D.C., the Australian National Library, Canberra, and Maulana Azad Library of Aligarh Muslim University and the Indian Secretariat Library, New Delhi in India were also consulted with the help of our friends in those countries. Some personal collections, such as, those of Mahmood Lakha in Hyderabad, Prof. Sharif al Mujahid and Quaid-i-Azam and Abdur Rab Nashtar collections in Dr. Mahmud Husain Library of Karachi University.

Standard bibliographies and indexes published throughout the world were also consulted with special reference to the subject of this Bibliography. Important among them are: Margaret H. Case's South Asian History, 1750-1950: A Guide...; (Princeton, N.J.: University Press, 1968); W. Eric Gustafsons's Pakistan and Bangladesh: Bibliographic Essay... (Islamabad, 1976) and Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature (New York: H.W. Wilson, 1928-).

It was thus possible to not only update the earlier bibliographers but also to correct the errors that were found therein; some of which had become part of the Muslim League documents. These errors related to the often quoted Quaid's article published in the Time and Tide (9 March 1940), the title and date of publication of which were incorrectly reported invariably in all the references. This was reported to be the first ever article of the Quaid but during the search for the Quaid-i-Azam's Annotated Bibliography (1978"1979) another article of the Quaid, 'Two Nations in India' was found published, two years earlier (23 April 1938) in the Weekly Mussalman (Calcutta). This article was the first article of the Quaid but has not been referred to as such in literature.

Another important feature of this Bibliography is the extensive coverage of the newspapers both of English and Urdu languages. Among them are: The Civil and Military Gazette (Lahore) (1918-1947) Dawn (Delhi/Karachi) (1941-1976); Morning News (Dacca [now Dhaka] / Karachi) (1942-1947); Khyber Mail (Peshawar) (1947-1976); The Mussalman (Calcutta) (1935-1938); Pakistan Times (Lahore) (1956-1976); Star of India (Calcutta) (1932-1948) in English and Asre Jadid (Calcutta) (1935-1946); Paisa Akhbar (Lahore) (1906-1948) and Nawai Waqat (Lahore) (1948-1972), etc.

Such a comprehensive and important bibliography, however, has not been updated although much has been written recently in connection with The Golden Jubilee Celebration of the Pakistan Day and still continues to be written about the Quaid both within and outside the country. Sharif al Mujahid,3 the founder Director of the Quaid-i-Azam Academy, defining the objectives of the Academy says, 'As a first step towards, realizing of the objectives...' [viz.], 'to collect and collate source materials on the life and times of the Quaid... [being the primary ones, the Quaid-i-Azam Bibliography being published by the Academy referred as Annotated Bibliography]', he further says, 'represents as yet the first attempt in that direction'.

It is, therefore, all the more necessary for the Academy to undertake updating of the Annotated Bibliography enabling it to carry forward its major function, as rightly outlined above. Appointment of a suitable qualified Bibliographer, with a working knowledge of growing literature on the life and times of the Quaid, is almost a pre-requisite. The next important step would be a systematic review of post-1976 publications to ascertain, first of all, the omissions in the Annotated Bibliography and also to find out additions that need to be supplied to make this Bibliography as update as possible. Some important post-1978-79 publications such a 2.Volume proceedings of the International Conference on Quaid-i-Azam to mark Quaid's Birthday Centennial Year Celebration, edited by Ahmad Hasan Dani4 and N.A. Baloch's5 Bibliography of Books and Government Publications (1947-1980) may also be useful in this connection.

Typographical errors, if any that may have crept in the Bibliography, may also be recorded by carefully checking the entries from original materials themselves by searching them in the libraries of Karachi. This will also help to acquire or obtain microfilms or photocopies of these materials for the Academy library if it is not done already.

Standard source materials listed in the Annotated Bibliography may also be a useful source for locating post-1976 publications on the Quaid. Accession lists brought back by libraries in the country announcing latest acquisition in their libraries may also be helpful in the direction. So would be the catalogues generally published on the occasion of Pakistan Day etc. Some periodicals publishes their indexes. Qaumi Zuban is one of them which publishes regularly an index of a number of periodicals, both from India and Pakistan. The Anjuman Tarraqqi Urdu which publishes this periodical also updates its Urdu language bibliography, Qamussul Kutub. These are useful source materials and may be used for updating the Annotated Bibliography.

This is a painstaking and time-consuming job, no doubt, in the absence of any computer database. But it should be done at any cost for such a leader who has given his life for the struggle and establishment of Pakistan. He could not live enough to enjoy the fruits of his untiring efforts in the country founded by him. Should we not honour him with at least an updated bibliography on his life and times, if not a biography truly portraying his life and work as a tribute to his superb political genius. This perhaps may help later to write a biography worthy of his great struggle.
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Publication:Pakistan Perspectives
Date:Jun 30, 2015
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