- NAME: Muhammad Ali Jinnah
- OCCUPATION: Lawyer, World Leader
- BIRTH DATE: December 25, 1876
- DEATH DATE: September 11, 1948
- EDUCATION: University of Bombay, Lincoln’s Inn, Christian Missionary Society High School, Sind Madrassa, Gokal Das Tej Primary School, Sindh Madrasatul-Islam
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Karachi, Pakistan
- PLACE OF DEATH: Karachi, Pakistan
- Originally: Mahomedali Jinnahbhai
- AKA: Quaid i Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah
- AKA: Quaid-e Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah
- AKA: Quaid-i-Azam
- Nickname: The Father of Pakistan
Best Known For
Muslim statesman Muhammad Ali Jinnah led Pakistan’s independence from India, and was its first governor-general and president of its constituent assembly.
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Muhammad Ali Jinnah was born December 25, 1876, in Karachi, Pakistan. In 1906 he joined the Indian National Congress. Seven years later, he joined the India Muslim League. The independent state of Pakistan that Jinnah had envisioned came to be on August 14, 1947. The following day, he was sworn in as Pakistan’s first governor-general. On September 11, 1948, he died near Karachi, Pakistan.
"There is no power on earth that can undo Pakistan."
"My message to you all is of hope, courage and confidence."
Muhammad Ali Jinnah was born in a rented apartment on the second floor of Wazir Mansion in Karachi, Pakistan (then part of India), on December 25, 1876. At the time of his birth, Jinnah’s official name was Mahomedali Jinnahbhai. The eldest of his parents’ seven children, Jinnah was underweight and appeared fragile at the time of his birth. But Jinnah’s mother, Mithibai, was convinced her delicate infant would one day achieve great things. Jinnah’s father, Jinnahbhai Poonja, was a merchant and exporter of cotton, wool, grain and range of other goods. As a whole, the family belonged to the Khoja Muslim sect.
When Muhammad Ali Jinnah was 6 years old, his father placed him in the Sindh Madrasatul-Islam School. Jinnah was far from a model student. He was more interested in playing outside with his friends than focusing on his studies. As the proprietor of a thriving trade business, Jinnah’s father emphasized the importance of studying mathematics, but, ironically, arithmetic was among Jinnah’s most hated subjects.
When Jinnah was nearly 11 years old, his only paternal aunt came to visit from Bombay, India. Jinnah and his aunt were very close. The aunt suggested that Jinnah return with her to Bombay; she believed the big city would provide him with a better education than Karachi could. Despite his mother’s resistance, Jinnah accompanied his aunt back to Bombay, where she enrolled him in the Gokal Das Tej Primary School. Despite the change of scenery, Jinnah continued to prove himself a restless and unruly student. Within just six months he was sent back to Karachi. His mother insisted he attend Sind Madrassa, but Jinnah was expelled for cutting classes to go horseback riding.
Jinnah’s parents then enrolled him in the Christian Missionary Society High School, hoping he would be better able to concentrate on his studies there. As a teen, Jinnah developed an admiration for his father’s business colleague, Sir Frederick Leigh Croft. When Croft offered Jinnah an internship in London, Jinnah jumped at the chance, but Jinnah’s mother was not so eager for him to accept the offer. Fearful of being separated from her son, she persuaded him to marry before leaving for his trip. Presumably she believed his marriage would ensure his eventual return.
At his mother’s urging, the 15-year-old Jinnah entered into an arranged marriage with his 14-year-old bride, Emibai, in February 1892. Emibai was from the village of Paneli in India, and the wedding took place in her hometown. Following the marriage, Jinnah continued attending the Christian Missionary Society High School until he left for London.
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