Sunday, June 20, 2010

Haindava Keralam - Nehru's interview with Yuvaraj Karan - A Leaf from History, The Price which we are still paying

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    • Secular Combat
    • (We reproduce below a conversation between Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and an IAS probationer, Shri Yuvaraj Karan in 1950)
         Y. Krishna{quoting} (YK): Well, Sir, those who have brought about partition have been left behind in the partitioned India. The Muslim League had declared that the Hindus and Muslims were two nations and had asked for partition because they feared that the Muslims being a minority, would suffer oppression and atrocities at the hands of Hindu majority. Pakistan was to be their homeland where they could live in freedom from the tyranny of the Non-Muslim majority. But lo and behold! The vast majority of Muslims of UP, Bihar, Central provinces, Bombay etc remained behind in India and did not migrate to the homeland (Pakistan) created for them. We never accepted the two-nation theory though we were driven to accept partition to avoid bloodshed and to achieve Independence.
      Prime minister (PM)-- We are not a communal state. The Muslims, who have decided to stay in India, are as much honorable citizens of the country as the members of the majority community. They cannot be victimized in the new situation for their actions and conduct before and at the time of partition. We cannot and must not live in the past
      YK : True Sir, but the immense suffering the people have undergone and the problems; only it has created new ones.
      PM: You are too young to understand. The overwhelming majority of the Indian Muslims are politically backward and have been misled by the pernicious and poisonous propaganda of the Muslim league. So it will be wrong to treat the vast majority of Indian Muslims as being responsible for the ills of our country
      YK: True Sir, the vast majority has been misled by the two-nation theory. But this does not absolve the Muslim League leadership; they are the authors of partition, and yet, the majority of this leadership has also stayed back in India. The Muslims of Pakistan, West Punjab, NWFP, Sindh and Baluchistan as such never wanted or asked for Pakistan, in fact that they did not need to.
            There was a pause and silence for a couple of minutes.
      The Raja of Mahamudabad, Begum Aizaz Rasul, Raja of Pirpur, Maulana Hasrat Mohanti etc, from UP, Syed Hussain Imam from Bihar, M.Mod.Ismail from Madras etc to name a few of the host of Muslim League leaders, have stayed back in India though they had actively worked for the creation of Pakistan as the homeland for the Indian Muslims. There is not an iota of justification for such leaders being allowed to stay in India after having got the country partitioned on the basis of the two-Nation theory. They ought to have gone to the homeland they asked for and obtained

            There was again a pause
    • PM Nehru's face was flushed. After a brief silence, he resumed
      PM: We cannot abandon the nationalist Muslims who had fought and sacrificed for India™s independence.
      YK: But the congress has already abandoned the khidmatgars led by the Frontier Gandhi
      PM: This was a most (unfortunate) decision forced on us by the geo-political realities
      YK: I am not sure of the loyalty of the so-called Nationalist Muslims, after the creation of Pakistan. Considering the speeches (mischievous and rabble rousing) of the National Muslim leaders (those who were opposed to partition) like Dr Syed Mahmud, Maulana Hafizur Rahman(of Jamiat-ul-ulema-e-Hind)etc at the Lucknow conference of Mussalman, Hind(Dec 1947)
      PM: This is false, mischievous, a canard intended to defame and denigrate the Nationalist Muslims who have played a glorious role in India,s independence.
      YK: The PM must be correct on this point. I have perhaps been wrongly informed. But the basic fact remains that the Muslim League leaders and worked from Western UP”Meerut, Moradabad, Aligarh, Saharanpur, etc “organised the riots in Rawalpindi in March 1947 which set the Punjab ablaze. It was not the work of the local Muslims of Rawalpindi in the initial stages but the Muslim League leaders from UP. Is it also not shocking that the Muslim League leaders of Rampur State in UP should have launched a violent agitation by setting on fire several Government buildings demanding accession of Rampur State (to) Pakistan?
         The face of the Prime Minister turned red in anger. He started puffing at his silver cigarette-holder
                At this point , I had a very strong urge to recall the advice PM Nehru had given to the Kashmiri Pandits in 1945 at a meeting in Sopore in the Kashmir valley that if non-Muslims wanted to live in Kashmir they should join the National Conference(which was overwhelmingly a Muslim party) or bid good bye to the country(Kashmir). But sensing the mood of the Prime Minister I was sullen and kept quiet.
            The Principal of the training school MJ Desai, ICS was visibly feeling uncomfortable and edgy. As there was palpable tension in the atmosphere and the PM Nehru was silent and red faced, the Principal asked for the dinner bell to be rung. This relieved the tension in all of us. We collected our plates and made a bee-line for the dining table ..

        {This was a copy of the print version from 'Secular Combat' magazine May 2010 issue}

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