Bihar Muslims response to two nation theory 1940_47

Sajjad, Mohammad
Aligarh Muslim University
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The Lahore session (1940) of the Muslim League adopted a resolution in which Muslim majority areas were sought to be grouped as ""autonomous and sovereign"" , 'independent states"". This vaguely worded resolution came to be known as Pakistan resolution. The Muslim League, from its days of foundation (in 1906) to the provincial elections of 1937, underwent many changes. However, after the elections of 1937 its desperation had increased manifold. During the period of the Congress ministry (1937-39), the League succeeded in winning over a sizeable section of the Muslims, more particularly the landed elites and educated middle class Muslims of Muslim minority provinces like U.P. and Bihar. From 1937 onwards, the divide between the two communities went on widening. Through a massive propaganda and tactful mobilizations, the League expanded its base, adopted a divisive resolution at Lahore (1940) and then on kept pushing its agenda which culminated into the partition of India. Nevertheless, the role of imperialism, the role of Hindu majoritarian organizations like the Hindu Mahasabha and tactical failure on the part of the Congress combined with communalization of the lower units of the Congress (notwithstanding the unifying ideals of the Congress working Committee) can not be denied in the partition of the country. Such analysis on the 'making of Pakistan' has either concentrated on the negotiative politics at the level of top leadership, known as 'High Politics' of partition or else the works on partition remain confined to the provinces of the Punjab, the Bengal and the United Provinces (now Uttar Pradesh). The present study therefore concentrates on Bihar. As suggested by the title itself, this study has not gone into the 'High Politics' of Partition. Nor does this study go into the theoretical debates on the concept of the Two-Nation theory. (Anil Chandra Banerji in his Two Nations: The Philosophy of Muslim Nationalism and Shafique Ali Khan in his Two Nation Theory as a Concept Strategy and Ideology have dealt with this aspect in detail). This study only concentrates on the response of the organizations and individuals of the Muslims of Bihar towards the separatist politics of the League. Link - //