Apparels proclaim a man.
Like food and housing, clothes are a necessity of life. Dress reflects the various stages in the development of human civilization. The forms and modes of dress depend on geographical factors life relief and climate, status, the standard of living, customs and conventions. They also change from class to class and from country to city.
Nowadays dresses have become a mark of affluence and fashions, imitation and competition. To a large extent, the dress is a matter of personal choice and whim. As in other walks of life, there is a drift from conservatism to modernity in dresses. The sartorial sense is quite apparent in fashions and fads. The poor can hardly clad themselves, whereas the rich and well-to-do flaunt in fashionable dresses.
The craze is displayed in fashion shows, in modeling, in the leading magazines and parties and social gatherings. The ladies are more prone to display and vie one another. The ads, on the T.V., are very alluring. The result is people live above their standard and indulge in dishonest earnings to keep up the show.
Unlike day-to-day clothes, the national dress is a mark of distinction, national identity, national pride, unity and collective will. Like national anthem, national flag, national press, dress has weight, sacredness and patriotic sense about it. National dress is part of national heritage and culture. Unfortunately, everything is in disarray in Pakistan. National dress is distinct from the official dress.
In his book ‘Discovery of India’ Mr. Nehru writes mockingly: What is Muslim culture? It is a tahmat (Lungi) and – a Totidar Lota’ (Pitcher with a spout). Truly in Pakistan, there is nothing in a dress that we can call our own. In Bharat people are proud to wear Dhoti, Kurta and Gandhi cap-their national dress. In international forums and meetings, most of the delegates turn up and participate in their national dresses. Even in the greatest Muslim congregation in the world – the Haj, peoples (men and women) can be distinguished as Iranians, Turks, Algerians, Indonesians, Malaysians, Burmese and Marrconians, etc.; but no Pakistanis in national dress. Why this divergence and disarray indifference and individuality? Alas! four nationalities and no nation. One could hardly see a few Jinnah caps-a mark of our national identity.
It is high time that the politicians, the people at the helm and the government prescribe and patronize One national dress to be donned by all. The smaller traditions must merge into the Great Tradition. The national dress must be a symbol of our national identity, national culture, and heritage. Let our National Dress proclaim us everywhere, in the parties, social gatherings, meetings, and international forums. Let us patronize Pakistani and be Pakistani. At Aligarh, students had to put on sherwani and Jinnah cap. As a mark of respect to the memory of the father of the nation, at least Jinnah cap should be introduced in schools and colleges.
As a nation we have a poor sense of nationality. We put our heads together but we do not put our hearts together. We are first Baluchis, Muhajirs, Pathans, Punjabis and Sindhis. National dress is indispensable for national integration and unity. May God bless us!