On this day – Pakistan becomes an independent country

Political Map of Pakistan

#OTD – August 14, 1947 – Pakistan separates from India, as British rulers leave the sub-continent after almost 200 years. British dominance over India was established first through the East India Company (founded in 1600), which initially came to the sub-continent to get trade licenses from the Mogul rulers (and other smaller state rulers), as early as 1611. This was finally turned into Company Rule in India in 1757 and in 1858 direct British Rule under Queen Victoria.

After a long struggle to free all of India from the extremely harsh and exploitative colonial rule, Pakistan emerged as a separate country (which at that time also included East Pakistan – now Bangladesh), to enable the Muslims of India have their own state. Both India and Pakistan became independent in August 1947. Pakistan celebrates its independence day on August 14, while India does so on August 15. Mohammad Ali Jinnah, who had been part of the independence movement became the first Governor General of Pakistan, while Liaquat Ali Khan became its first Prime Minister.

Nearly 10 million people migrated between India and Pakistan, an event that is fraught with tragedy.

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