Friday, July 22, 2011

Jinnah as a lawyer

This is a wonderful two part series by an Indian law network website on the life and career of Mahomed Ali Jinnah.
Part 1: "No man is more adroit in presenting his case"
Part 2: "A brilliant advocate, man of unimpeachable integrity"
Mohammad Ali Jinnah evokes strong responses in South Asia, and has been cast in a multitude of roles depending on which side of the political line he is viewed from - a master negotiator, a charismatic leader, a cunning politician, a secular liberal, and a conservative reactionary. Few, however, see him as a lawyer, his primary professional training that helped launch his career in public life and shaped both, his political career, and his ideological vision.

Lawyers of course, overwhelmingly dominate the galaxy of political leaders in colonial India. This was partly structural. Professional and middle classes have always played a significant role in republican movements. In British India, law, unlike medicine or engineering, was the only profession that could be practiced without being employed by the colonial government. Jinnah is unique in being amongst the handful of lawyers who became equally successful in both their fields.

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