Nature of Democracy in the Political Leadership of Muhammad ﷺ: In the Context of Pakistan and Iqbal

Bushra Rasheed


The concept of democracy, as we understand it today, did not exist during the time of Muhammad (peace be upon him), the prophet[1] of Muslims, but evolved over time and is rooted in the principles of equality, participation, consultation, social contracts, and justice. Muhammad ﷺ has established these principles, and in this study, it is to be argued that the principles are democratic in nature. His leadership qualities have a significant link with the politics in Pakistan[2] and with the dreamer of this country, Iqbal. It is a descriptive study; the primary objective is to focus on exploring the democratic thoughts of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ through historical incidents from his life. The secondary objective is to explore Allama Iqbal’s thoughts on democracy[3], which are influenced by the political thought of Muhammad (PBUH). It is also argued that Iqbal, the spiritual father of the East, through his poetry, has emphasized the importance of social justice, individual freedom, and education; these are also the basic principles of democracy. The books and literature used for this research depict the political leadership qualities of the Prophet Muhammad and their impact on Pakistan. So, being the most influential leader of Muslims, the “thoughts” of Muhammad ﷺ are explored, which have the potential to bring positive changes to democracy in a country. For promoting democratic values in Pakistan specifically and in Asia in general, this study can play an authentic role. It will provide insights into the potential for democracy to create just and prosperous societies. It can be inspiring for individuals and institutions and would be a new piece of creation incorporating the leadership qualities of Muhammad (PBUH) and Iqbal’s thoughts on democracy and democracy in Pakistan. A triangle needs to be understood.

[1] Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, lived in the 7th century in a different historical and cultural context, where the concept of democracy, did not exist as the political and social structures of that time were different, and decision-making processes were not necessarily based on democratic principles.

[2] A country in South Asia, gained independence from British colonial rule in 1947 and adopted a constitution in 1956, which provided for a parliamentary form of government.

[3] Allama Iqbal was a prominent philosopher and poet who lived in the 20th century and wrote extensively on a wide range of topics, including democracy, who also dreamt of Pakistan.


Muhammad (PBUH); leadership; Iqbal (Poet); democracy; Pakistan

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Journal of South Asian Studies
ISSN: 2307-4000 (Online), 2308-7846 (Print)
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