The Cost of Independence

All About the Indo Pak Partition and the Migration of 1947

Background of Indo- Pak Independence

Pakistan Movement

Indian national congress was made in 1885 as the representative of all the Indian population but in fact, this political party was mainly fighting for Hindus' cause. First, Muslims and Hindus fought together under the flag of the Indian National Congress but later Muslims realized that Hindus are demanding independence on the ideas of European democracy i.e the ruling majority and if such independence would be given, they will only experience a change of rulers. Thus, they must demand a separate homeland for them. Muslims made a separate political party i.e All India Muslim League in 1906.

Hindus had learned these radical concepts from the Universities of Kalkutta, Madras, and Bombay. These universities were made by English in 1856. Moreover, Indian leaders like Mr. Gandhi, Mr. Jinnah, Mr. Allama Iqbal, Mr.Muhammad Ali Johar, and Mr. Jawahir Laal Nehru had also completed their higher education in England. The concept of the Two-Nation Theory started getting popular. Muslims were struggling based on the Two-Nation Theory but Hindus were simply denying this fact and were stubborn for not accepting Muslims as a separate Nation. Muslims started the demand of a separate state i.e Pakistan. They started their separate movement led by Mr. Jinnah for independent Pakistan. A resolution for the creation of Pakistan was passed by Muslims in 1940 which Hindus and British ridiculed as “Pakistan Resolution”. Muslims adopted this new term and after that, the struggle for an independent Muslim state_Pakistan increased.
After World War 2, the British had suffered major losses, thus they lacked resources to run India. Revolts and tensions were also on increase. Hindus were struggling under the leadership of Mr. Gandhi and their party was Congress Party while Muslims were united under the flag of the Muslim League. Congress, British, and Sikhs opposed the idea of Pakistan as much as possible but Muslims made no compromise. They were not willing to agree on anything less than an independent state. At last elections of 1945–46 were announced as a plebiscite for the creation of Pakistan. In these elections, Muslims voted Muslim league and the idea of the creation of Pakistan became self-evident.

Boundary Commission

Punjab and Bengal were the largest provinces of India and both of them had equal numbers of Muslims, Hindus, and Sikhs, thus these provinces had to be divided between India and Pakistan. Now the question arose, who would divide it? A Boundary Commission was made whose head was a British Barrister, Sir Radcliffe. He divided these provinces i.e a person who knew nothing and had never been in India was assigned to draw maps for two states who had struggled for two to three centuries for their Independence. Punjab and Bengal were the most agricultural provinces and had a vast system of irrigation and transportation. A single wrong decision could put the economy and development of many people at stake.
Mr. Radcliffe in his Redcliffe award gave the districts of Bengal Murshidabad and Malda(Muslim majority districts) to India and Khulna and Chittagong Areas ( Hindus and Buddhist majority areas) to Pakistan.
Similarly, in Punjab, he made the most important districts like Gurdaspur, Lahore, Amritsar, Montgomery the most disputed ones.

The Time of Independence

The summer of 1947 in India was different than usual Indian summers. Perhaps, it had forecast the near future and was giving signals to people to be prepared and ready because something really serious was going to happen. World War II had ended 2 years ago. Muslims in the subcontinent had not properly come out of the grief of losing their Caliphate i.e the Ottoman Empire. People were surprised by the losses and casualties of that war but probably they were unaware that the same chaos was ready to come in their lives too due to early independence and unjust partition. Partition was carried out in such a way that the lives of millions of people were put at stake. The independence for which they had struggled for more than a century was now ready to descend in their lives but unfortunately, they had been demanded a huge price for it. As they all knew that freedom has a price but the price for their independence was set very high_far more than their expectations — so large that a large amount is still in debt.

Riots in Punjab and Bengal

As the renowned Urdu Poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz expressed his sentiments about partition and migration in his poem, “Subh e Azaadi".

ﯾﮧ ﺩﺍﻍ ﺩﺍﻍ ﺍُﺟﺎﻻ، ﯾﮧ ﺷﺐ ﮔﺰﯾﺪﮦ

ﻭﮦ ﺍﻧﺘﻈﺎﺭ ﺗﮭﺎ ﺟﺲ ﮐﺎ، ﯾﮧ ﻭﮦ ﺳﺤﺮ
ﺗﻮ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ

ﯾﮧ ﻭﮦ ﺳﺤﺮ ﺗﻮ ﻧﮩﯿﮟ ﺟﺲ ﮐﯽ
ﺁﺭﺯﻭ ﻟﮯ ﮐﺮ

ﭼﻠﮯ ﺗﮭﮯ ﯾﺎﺭ ﮐﮧ ﻣﻞ ﺟﺎﺋﮯ ﮔﯽ
ﮐﮩﯿﮟ ﻧﮧ ﮐﮩﯿﮟ

This stain-covered daybreak, this night-bitten dawn,

This is not that dawn of which there was expectation;

This is not that dawn with longing for which;

The friends set out, (convinced) that somewhere

there would be met with.

The Bloody Migration

The most ironic thing about the partition was that maps and borders were disclosed on 17 August 1947, i.e two days after the independence. People were unaware till the very last minute as to which country they belong i.e India or Pakistan. And if they are not in the right country, they have the time of only a few hours to pack up and go to their country. One of the largest migrations of human history took place.
According to a BBC report,
About 15 million people were displaced during the Indo Pak migration of 1947

Unjust Assets Division

According to a BBC report,

90% of the subcontinent’s industry, and assets remained in India, including the largest cities of Delhi, Bombay, and Calcutta even though there were many holy places of Muslims in Delhi while Pakistan won a poor share of the financial reserves - with 23% of the undivided landmass, it inherited only 17.5% of the former government’s financial assets. Once the army had been paid, nothing was left over for economic development and the economy was dependent only on agriculture.

The Origin of Kashmir Dispute

Gujrat Massacres

Massacres and anti Muslim riots of Muslims were staged here in 1992 and then in 2002 by the largest democracy of the world i.e India.

According to the New York Times magazine, Hindus destroyed Babri Masjid in 1992 in the city of Ayodhya. 1000 Muslims were killed in those Massacres and then Chief Minister of Gujrat Mr. Mudi (now the PM of India) is still so unapologetic about those Massacres that he claimed in his interview to the New York Times that his biggest flaw in that crises was that he was not able to handle media properly.

Muslims are still 15 percent of Indian’s population. Although, there are many disputes between India and Pakistan due to the partition but for the better future, these countries need to resolve these issues. Only by this way, peace in the subcontinent in general and between India and Pakistan will be possible in particular.

student,article writer.