Friday, April 8, 2011

Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore - A Symbol of Pakistan's Sovereignty

"Minar-e-Pakistan" or the "Minaret of Pakistan" is a monument built to remember the passing of a resolution to demand a separate country for Muslims of India by All-India Muslim League at this ground on 23 March 1940. This was the first official declaration to establish a separate homeland for the Muslims living in the South Asia. Pakistan now celebrates this day as a national holiday each year.

The minaret reflects a blend of Mughal and modern architecture and attracts visitors from all over the World. The large public space around the monument is commonly used for political and public meetings, whereas Iqbal Park area is popular for kite-flying as well.
Design.   The foundation stone was laid on March 23, 1960. The construction took eight years and was completed in 1968. Today, the minaret provides a panoramic view to visitors who can climb up the stairs or through an elevator. The parks around the monument include marble fountains and an artificial lake.

Structure.   The base is about 8 meters above the ground. The tower rises about 60 meters on the base, thus the total height of minaret is about 72 meters above the ground. The unfolding petals of the flower-like base are 9 meters high. The diameter of the tower is about 97.5 meters (320 feet). The base platform is shaped like a five-pointed star and encloses two crescent shaped pools. There is a central spiral staircase rising up with 162 steps. The top-dome of the minaret is made of Stainless steel inlaid with fine glass pieces.
The structure is made of reinforced concrete, stones, and marble. The rostrum is built of patterned tiles, and faces the Badshahi Mosque. The base comprises four platforms. To symbolise humble beginnings of the freedom struggle, first platform is built with uncut Taxila stones, second platform is made of hammer-dressed stones, whereas third platform is of chiselled stones. Polished white marble at the fourth and final platform depicts the success of the Pakistan Movement.
Inscriptions.   At the base, there are floral inscriptions on ten converging white marble Commemorative plaques. The incriptions include the text of Lahore Resolution in Urdu, Bengali and English, and Delhi Resolution’s text, which was passed on April 9, 1946. On different plaques, Quranic verses and 99 attributes of God are inscribed in Arabic calligraphy, whereas National Anthem of Pakistan in Urdu and Bengali, excerpts from the speeches of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, in Urdu, Bengali and English, as well as few couplets of Allama Iqbal are inscribed.
Minar-e-Pakistan has also been featured on numerous bank notes and coins of the country.
Would you like to visit Minar-e-Pakistan? What are your views for this majestic structure? 

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