The Story of Indian Muslims Half 4: The Two-Nation Principle

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The destiny of Indian Muslims was sealed in 1947 when, based mostly on two-nation concept, they bought divided in two international locations: India and Pakistan, which later grew to become three, including Bangladesh to the checklist. It had come at the price of bloody civil riots wherein a whole lot of 1000’s of individuals had been slaughtered and thousands and thousands had been left homeless. 

On this event, the nice poet Faiz Ahmad Faiz wrote:

The leprous dawn, daybreak evening's fangs have mangled --
This isn't that long-looked for daybreak,
Not that clear daybreak in quest of which these comrades
Set out, believing that in heaven's large void
Someplace have to be the celebrities' final halting-place,
Someplace the verge of evening's slow-washing tide,
Someplace the anchorage for the ship of heartache.

One may ask: why may the partition of India be not averted? It’s troublesome to reply. Hindus blame Muslim management, Muslims blame Hindu management, and typically each blame the British. Curiously, there may be some fact in every one in all these claims, because the historian Ramchandra Guha notices in his guide India After Gandhi. He means that Nehru and Gandhi made error of their judgements of their dealings with the Muslim League, and tries to please mullahs as an alternative of constructing a standard trigger with Jinnah who was rather more secular. Then, 1930s onwards, Jinnah additionally started to stoke non secular passions in Muslims, which led to his name to Direct Motion Day, the day that set in practice the bloody path of violence. And naturally, there have been the British who welcomed and furthered the animosities between Hindus and Muslims, persevering with their divide-and-rule coverage.

Nonetheless, whenever you have a look at the rationale behind the partition, there are two concepts that determined the destiny of Indian Muslims at that time in historical past. These had been:

  • Muslims can’t dwell with non-Muslims
  • Muslims can dwell with non-Muslims

It may be argued that the second thought is usually articulated in numerous phrases (Muslims can’t dwell with Hindus, Muslims can’t dwell if Hindus are in majority, Muslims want their very own political system, and so on), however should you hint all these concepts you all the time get to the fundamental proposition that Muslims want a separate homeland. 

This concept, which laid down the muse of two-nation concept, was articulated by Pakistan’s founding father Mohammad Ali Jinnah in his Muslim League Presidential Tackle in 1940:

The issue in India will not be of an intercommunal however manifestly of a global character, and have to be handled as such... It's a dream that Hindus and Muslims can evolve a standard nationality, and this false impression of 1 Indian nation has gone far past the bounds, and is the reason for most of our troubles, and can lead India to destruction, if we fail to revise our actions in time. The Hindus and Muslims belong to 2 completely different non secular philosophies, social customs, and literature. They neither intermarry, nor interdine collectively, and certainly they belong to 2 completely different civilisations that are based mostly primarily on conflicting concepts and conceptions. Their points on and of life are completely different. 

Alternatively, there have been — and there nonetheless stay — a big group of Muslims that believed that Muslims can dwell with non-Muslims in India. Here’s what Maulana Abul Kalam Azad mentioned in a Congress Presidential handle in the identical yr:

It was India's historic future that many human races and cultures ought to circulate to her, discovering residence in her hospitable soil, and that many a caravan ought to discover relaxation right here... Eleven hundred years of widespread historical past (of Islam and Hinduism) have enriched India with our widespread achievements. Our languages, our poetry, our literature, our tradition, our artwork, our gown, our manners and customs, the innumerable happenings of our each day life, all the pieces bears the stamp of our joint endeavour... These thousand years of our joint life have moulded us into a standard nationality... Whether or not we prefer it or not, now we have now turn out to be an Indian nation, united and indivisible. No fantasy or synthetic scheming to separate and divide can break this unity. 

The unity was damaged, nonetheless, when India and Pakistan grew to become two separate nation-states on 15 August, 1947. The destiny of Indian Muslims was thus sealed and it has stored hanging in confusion since then. The confusion arises due to a easy query which results in two completely different worldviews, two completely different views of historical past and in the end two completely different political destinies. And the query is that this: Can Muslims dwell with non-Muslims? 

Reference books:

India After Gandhi by Ramachandra Guha

Word: Take a look at the earlier episodes of this sequence.

The Story of Indian Muslims Part 1

The Story of Indian Muslims Part 2

The Story of Indian Muslims Part 3


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