Independence Day (Urdu: یوم آزادی; Yaum-e Āzādī), observed annually on August 14, is a national holiday in Pakistan, commemorating the day when Pakistan achieved independence and was declared a sovereign nation, following the end of the British Raj in 1947. Pakistan came into existence as a result of the Movement. The Pakistan Movement aimed for creation of an independent Muslim state by division of the north-western region of the South Asia and was led by All-India Muslim League. The event was brought forth by the Indian Independence Act 1947 in which the British Indian Empire was divided into two new countries—the Dominion of India (later the Republic of India) and the Dominion of Pakistan (later the Islamic Republic of Pakistan) which included the West Pakistan (present Pakistan) and East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).
According to Islamic calendar, the day of independence coincided with Ramadan 27, the eve of which is regarded as sacred by Muslims. The day begins with special prayers for integrity, solidarity, and development of Pakistan in mosques and religious places across the country. The official festivities take place in Islamabad and commence with the raising of the national flag on the Parliament House and the Presidency followed by a 31-gun salute in the capital and a 21-gun salute in provincial capitals. The President and Prime Minister of Pakistan address the nation in live telecasts.
Government officials and other political leaders deliver speeches during various rallies and events highlighting Pakistani achievements, goals set for the future, and praise the sacrifices and efforts of national heroes. National flags are displayed on Shahrah-e-Faisal, Shahara-e-Quaideen, and Mazar-e-Quaid Road leading up to the Jinnah's mausoleum in Karachi. Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore, where Pakistan Resolution was passed in 1940, is fully illuminated on the eve of the Independence Day to signify its importance in the creation of Pakistan. Conferment of national civil awards, by the President of Pakistan, upon the eminent personalities in various disciplines that have rendered noteworthy contribution to the cause of the nation, is mark of the Independence Day.
The area constituting Pakistan was historically a part of the British Indian Empire. Following the nearly one thousand years of Muslims rule over major part of Indian sub-continent that culminated on the Indian Rebellion of 1857, the Government of India Act 1858 led to the British Crown assuming direct control over India. All-India Muslim League was founded by the All India Muhammadan Educational Conference at Dhaka, in 1906, in the context of the circumstances that were generated over the partition of Bengal in 1905 and the party aimed at creation of a separate Muslim state.
Eventually, in February 1947, Prime Minister Clement Attlee announced that the British government would grant full self-governance to British India by June 1948 at the latest. On 3 June 1947, the British government announced that the principle of partition of India in two independent states was accepted. He chose 14 August as the date of the ceremony of power transfer to Pakistan (August 15 to India) because he wanted to attend ceremonies both in India and Pakistan. This ended the Ninety years of the British rule over the Indian sub-continent.
Girls lighting candles at midnight to celebrate the day