Essay Competition

BTTN's Inter Universities Essay Competition

Commemorating Allama Iqbal’s 146th Birth Anniversary

Essay Topic: Iqbal’s Concept of Individuals’ Significance in Nation Building

Balochistan Think Tank Network (BTTN) is commemorating Allama Iqbal’s 146th Birth Anniversary by organizing a province-wide Essay Competition for the students from Balochistan who are currently enrolled in the BS/MS/MPhil program in any of the HEC recognized Universities of Pakistan.

Concept Paper

Essay Topic: “Iqbal’s Concept of Individuals’ Significance in Nation Building”

The timeless verses of Allama Muhammad Iqbal continue to illuminate the path towards self-discovery, self-improvement, and the reinvigoration of the national spirit. Iqbal’s magnum opus, “Shikwa” and “Jawab-e-Shikwa,” resonate profoundly in our modern context. These poetic masterpieces grapple with the perennial themes of human potential, self-realization, and the collective aspirations of nations. Iqbal – a visionary poet and philosopher, emphasized the pivotal role of individuals in shaping the destiny of nations. BTTN invites contributions on the theme mentioned in Iqbal’s couplet given below that appears in ‘Jawab e Shikwa’.

افراد کے ہاتھوں میں ہے اقوام کی تقدیر

ہر فرد ہے ملت کے مقدر کا ستارہ”

This couplet resonates deeply in today’s world, as we witness the dynamic interplay between individual actions and their impact on nations. This essay competition aims to explore Iqbal’s profound insights, exploring how an enlightened individual can be an architect of the nation. Iqbal’s lamentations and the divine responses in “Shikwa Jawab e Shikwa” echo themes of self-accountability, unity, and individuals’ role in shaping nations’ destiny. Participants are invited to explore these poetic dialogues in the context of contemporary challenges and opportunities particularly faced by Pakistan. Through this competition, BTTN aspires to bridge the gap between Iqbal’s wisdom and the challenges we face today, fostering discussions that uncover the enduring relevance of his ideals and how they can guide us towards a brighter future. This competition seeks to inspire a new generation to engage with Iqbal’s poetry, offering fresh perspectives on timeless questions and reaffirming the enduring significance of his work in our lives. BTTN will invite the winners and their concerned Vice Chancellors, Principals, Deans and Department Chairs for a formal exchange of views with BTTN’s Faculty of Research at BTTN, Quetta.

Eligibility Criteria

  1. Enrolled BS/MS/MPhil students of Balochistan in all universities of Balochistan.
  2. Enrolled BS/MS/MPhil students of the province of Balochistan in all universities of Pakistan.

Submission Guidelines

  1. Essays must be written in English or Urdu.
  2. Essays must be uploaded in Microsoft Word format on the provided link.
  3. English Essays may also cite Urdu Poetry but along with English translation.
  4. The essay should be original, unpublished, and solely the work of the participant.
  5. The essay length should be between 1500 – 2000 words.
  6. Each participant may submit only one entry.

Submission Deadline

  1. All essays must be submitted by 9 pm, October 31st, 2023. Late submissions will not be accepted.

Assessment Criteria

  1. Essays will be evaluated by the members of BTTN’s Research Committee and Institutional Review Board beside the following criteria:

    – Clarity of thought and expression

    – Critical Thinking

    – Relevance to the competition theme

    – Originality of ideas and insights

    – Quality of research and evidence

    – Structure and organization

    – Adherence to submission guidelines

Plagiarism Policy

  1. Plagiarism in any form will result in disqualification. All submissions will be subject to plagiarism checks.


  1. Prizes will be awarded to the top three essays.

First Prize: 30K

Second Prize: 20K

Third Prize: 10K

Notification of Winners & Distribution of Awards

  1. Winners will be notified via email by November 5, 2023, and a formal announcement shall be made across our social media pages on November 9, 2023. The winners will be invited to BTTN on November 9, 2023, for the presentation of cash prizes and certificates of participation.

Publication and Rights

  1. By submitting an essay, participants grant BTTN the right to publish and promote their essays, with proper attribution, on BTTN’s social media platforms and official website.


  1. BTTN reserves the right to cancel or modify the competition or its terms and conditions at any time.
  2. By participating in this essay competition, participants agree to abide by these terms and conditions. Failure to comply with these rules may result in disqualification from the competition.
  3. BTTN will not pay any TA/DA for the winners to attend the prize awarding ceremony. 

Contact Information

18. For inquiries or assistance, please contact

Dr Maria Malik

Ph: +92-81-2873346 (Ext:107)

Submission Process

19. Essays should be submitted by uploading the Word file on the Google form (