Pakistan ka matlab kya, lā ilāhaʾillā-llāh.
Does religion make a nation? Does it make a qaum? Does it make a secure and stable entity? Most importantly, does it make us united?
Inasmuch as Bano and Hassan’s love story begins to blossom, the crux of the narrative in Dastaan is on nation building and what really makes a nation, what defines it. Last week, I brought up historian Ayesha Jalal’s work, so, this week I’ll start with one of her (many!) lectures. Speaking at the Hudson Institute, Dr. Jalal brings up two very significant points: first, of course, is on the struggle to make Pakistan, but more significantly, her second point is on an emerging popular culture that makes Pakistan more than just a failed state, a constant and recurring criticism in recent history.