Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sardar Patel on Direct Action Day

To achieve Pakistan,  the Muslim League called for a Direct Action Day on August 16, 1946.  What ensued was the Great Calcutta Killings, in which several thousand were killed.  From the point of view of the Congress, the Muslim League and in particular, the Muslim League Chief Minister of Bengal, S.H. Suhrawardy, were responsible for starting the violence.  Sardar Patel had more to say.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


List of references.

The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi (Electronic Book), New Delhi, Publications Division Government of India, 1999, 98 volumes  (available online here: last checked 2012-09-09.)

India's Freedom Movement: Some Notable Figures, B. Shiva Rao, Orient Longman, 1972

Jinnah : India - Partition - Independence, Jaswant Singh, Rupa & Co, 2009.

Jinnah of Pakistan, Stanley Wolpert, Oxford University Press, 1984.

The Life and Death of Mahatma Gandhi, Robert Payne, Konecky & Konecky, 1969.

M.A. Jinnah - Ispahani Correspondence 1936-48, Edited by Z.H. Zaidi, Pakistan Herald Press, Karachi, 1976

Sardar Patel's Correspondence 1945-50, Volumes I-X, Edited by Durga Das, Navajivan Publishing House, Ahmedabad,  published in the 1970s.

Quaid-I-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah Papers, Editor-in-Chief Z.H. Zaidi

Second Series Volume X, Quest for Political Settlement In India, 1 October 1943-31 July 1944.
Second Series Volume XI, Consolidating the Muslim League for final struggle, 1 August 1944—31 July 1945.
Second Series Volume XIII, Cabinet Mission's Parleys For Shaping India's Future, 1 April—31 July 1946.
Ten Years to Freedom, Kanji Dwarkadas, Popular Prakashan Bombay, 1958.

The Transfer of Power 1942-47, Editors Mansergh and Lumby
Volume III Reassertion of authority, Gandhi's fast, and the succession to the Viceroyalty
21 September 1942—12 June 1943.

Volume VI The post-war phase: new moves by the Labour Government
1 August 1945—22 March 1946

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

What this blog is about

The purpose of this blog is to present material related to the Partition of India.  This blog will cover the period 1857 to 1950, and perhaps a little beyond.

The starting point, 1857, is chosen because I think this is when the ruling class Muslims had to come to terms with the fact that they were permanently displaced, and the seeds of Partition lie here.

The unity of India might have been preserved if the parties involved could come to an agreement about a constitution; and so the natural end point of this story is when independent India adopted its constitution, or perhaps a little beyond that, to the failure of constitution-writing in Pakistan - these end-points help clarify what we might otherwise only guess about the intentions and plans of the various parties.

Of course, the struggle for independence is also central to this story.  There might have been a sort-of-united India, ruled by the British, but for the independence movement.   Moreover, it was the apprehensions of Muslims (justified or not) about the political order of an independent India that spurred them on to demand Partition.

I will update this post as I refine the scope of what I want to include here.