This was also Pakistan [ 5.3 ]

A 1973 press ad of the United Bank of Pakistan (UBL). It was one of the largest private banks in the country but was nationalised by the Z A. Bhutto regime in 1972 that won the 1970 election (in West Pakistan) on a socialist manifesto. Which is why modern socialist and pro-working-class imagery is used in this particular ad.



by Nadeem F. Paracha


The Also Pakistan series was to conclude much earlier. But the kind of popular interest that it attracted from readers from within and outside Pakistan, prompted the making of a few more sequels of this photo feature.

It took more than two years to research and to compile this series. Hours were spent going through old newspapers and magazines tucked away safely in Dawn’s archives section. Politicians, sportsmen, artistes and friends were approached to share with us images that would capture the political and cultural zeitgeist of what Pakistan was like between 1947 and 1977.

A Pakistan that was a very different creature compared to what it started to mutate into from the 1980s onwards.

In this final installment of the Also Pakistan series, we share with you the last bits left in the arsenal of images that we were able to collect in the last couple of years.

Images of a strange, alien place that was also called Pakistan.

Famous Pakistani painter, Jamil Naqsh, captured here working in his studios in Karachi in 1973. Naqsh’s paintings remain to be one of the most expensive buys.

A group of friends pose outside their class at the Karachi University in 1973. (Photo: The Herald)

Various leaders of the Muslim world gather inside Lahore’s historic Badhshahi Mosque to say the evening prayers.
The picture was taken during the 1974 Islamic Summit organised by the government of Z A. Bhutto in Lahore and in which dozens of heads of state of Muslim countries took part.
Bhutto wanted to use the occasion to open a third front in the Cold War dominated by the US-led West and the Soviet-led communist bloc.
Bhutto also explained the summit as an expression of his regime’s idea of ‘progressive Muslim democracy’ and ‘Islamic Socialism’ – even though most of the attendees were either monarchs or dictators.
Seen in the picture are PLO chief, Yasser Arafat (in dark glasses), Z A. Bhutto (in a Jinnah cap), Libyan leader Colonel Qadhafi, and Saudi monarch, Shah Faisal.

A 1974 magazine feature on 1970s’ pop icon, ‘Maulana Hippie.’ His real name was M. Hussain Talpur and he hailed from the Sindh province.
His interest in adorning outrageous ‘hippie attire,’ and his carefree demeanour earned him the name Maulana Hippie – a name that was also enacted to mock his more religious detractors.
Talpur also ventured into film production but was not very successful and by the late 1970s he was history.

Libyan leader Colonel Qadhafi waving to an enthusiastic crowd during the 1974 Islamic Summit in Lahore. It was this speech given on the grounds of Lahore Stadium after which the stadium’s name was changed to Gaddafi Stadium. (Photo: Daily Jang)

A 1973 photo of fiery poetess and writer, Fahmida Riaz, lighting a cigarette during a poetry recital in Lahore. After the 1977 military take-over, Riaz was harassed by the Ziaul Haq dictatorship. She finally escaped to India with her husband and stayed there in exile till Zia’s demise in 1988.

Video grab of Pakistani cricket fans enjoying beer at the first Test match during Pakistan cricket team’s 1974 tour of England.

American tourists enjoying a ride on a tonga in Rawalpindi in 1975.

A 1974 press ad of Red & White cigarettes.
In the 1970s Pakistani cigarette brands had started to target middle-class women smokers, a practice that was discontinued (on the instructions of the government) by the government after 1976. Cigarette advertising was totally banned from TV, radio and the print media in Pakistan in the early 2000s.

A 1975 photo of a hash (cannabis) shop in Kohat. Various such shops sprang up to mostly cater to the rising number of Western hippie tourists who would travel by road from Turkey through Iran and then enter Pakistan from Afghanistan. The government tolerated such shops as long as they were not offering harder drugs like heroin on the menu.
In fact heroin was a rarity in Pakistan till 1980 when Pakistan’s involvement in the anti-Soviet insurgency in Afghanistan triggered the arrival of a flood of guns and heroin into Pakistan from Afghanistan.
In 1979 there was only one reported case of heroin addiction in the country. By 1985 Pakistan became the country with the second largest number of heroin addicts.

German archaeologists at the ancient ruins of Taxila in Pakistan in 1976.

Pakistani boxer Jan Muhammad Baloch, seen here with former Governor of Punjab, Mustafa Khar (left) in 1975.
The picture was taken when Baloch, who had already won a gold medal in the 1970 Asian Games in South Korea and represented Pakistan at the 1972 Munich Olympics, was honoured by the government when he won a gold medal at the RCD Boxing Championship held in 1975 in Istanbul, Turkey.

A 1975 poster highlighting Pakistan’s Baloch, Sindhi, Pashtun and Punjabi folk singers.
The Pakistan government in the 1970s aggressively promoted the distinct cultures of Pakistan’s various ethnicities due to which folk music became a popular part of the programming on state-owned television and radio. This particular poster was printed to advertise the featured artistes’ performance during the 1975 International Folk Music Festival in Washington DC.

A 1976 photo of the award ceremony of the Pakistan Open squash tournament which was won by Qamar Zaman. This was the beginning of Pakistan’s long dominance of world squash (that lasted for almost 15 years – mainly on the shoulders of Jehangir Khan and Jansher Khan).
By 1976 most of the Pakistani players seen in the photo were already placed in the top-ten rankings of international squash, especially the four seen in the picture (from left): Mohibullah Khan, Gogi Allauddin, Torkam Khan (Jehangir Khan’s elder brother who tragically died at the young age of 21), and Qamar Zaman (seen here standing in front of the trophy).

A photo of one of the 1970s most popular celebrity couple, Saira Kazmi and Rahat Kazmi. Both were TV actors, even though Rahat did act in a few films as well, and for a while was hailed as ‘Pakistan’s answer to Amitabh Bachan.’
He continued to appear on TV and on stage throughout the 1980s, whereas Saira went on to become a highly respected TV director.

A special stamp issued by the government of Pakistan in 1976 to mark the centenary of the 1776 American Revolution.

The Pakistan cricket team on its way to win its first ever Test against Australia in Australia, in 1976.
Many believe this was the point from where the Pakistan team began to be taken seriously as a Test side.
Up against a strong Australian squad and on fast pitches, Pakistan drew the first Test, lost the second but came back to win the third game and draw the series 1-1.
Pakistan’s victory was set-up by Pakistan’s fast bowling pair of Imran Khan who took 12 wickets in the match, and Sarfraz Nawaz. Seen in the picture (from left): Sadiq Muhammad, Wasim Bari, Mushtaq Muhammad, Imran Khan and Rodney Marsh.

Another image of the third Test of the Pakistan-Australia series in 1976. Skipper Mushtaq Muhammad is seen arguing with the Australian umpire who had warned Imran Khan for bowling bouncers at Dennis Lillie. Also in the picture are twelfth man Wasim Raja and behind the umpire, a fuming Imran Khan.

Nasir Zaidi, the first journalist to be mercilessly flogged in public by the Ziaul Haq dictatorship in 1978.
General Zia had toppled the democratically-elected regime of Z A. Bhutto in July 1977, promising a new order based on ‘Islamic laws.’ Between 1978 and 1982, dozens of journalists and political activists were flogged for opposing the dictatorship.


Previous: This was also Pakistan [ 5.2 ]

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Nadeem F. Paracha is a cultural critic and senior columnist for Dawn Newspaper and

You might also like: 

1. Picturing Pakistan’s Past [in two parts] 2. Those were the days my friend [in three parts]
Source of text and all images (provided by the author) 
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