The importance and limitations of memories and oral
testimonies in reconstructing the history of the partition of India are explained below:
1. Memoires, diaries, family history and first handwritten accounts have helped us to understand the life of ordinary people during the partition of the country.
2. Many people viewed partition in terms of suffering and challenges requiring a lot of psychological and emotional adjustment.
3. It was not only a political event but a lot of meaning has been attached to the people who had suffered through it.
4. There is a lot of testimony about the stress and trauma that people had to go through during the partition.
5. The historians have been able to gather a lot of information about the experiences of the poor and the powerless by many oral testimonies.
6. There are many limitations to such testimonies.
7. For example, it is not easy for the government to extract this kind of information because it deals mainly with policy and party related matters of various States.
8. Many historians are very skeptical about the oral testimony because it does not have any chronological support of evidence.
9. Different types of sources have to be tapped to answer different types of questions.
10. The government has provided information about the number of recovered women exchange by Indian and Pakistani States but it is the women who will tell them about the actual suffering they had to go through.
The outcomes of the provincial elections of 1937 and the role of Congress ministries and Muslim League in it is explained below:
1. In the 1937 elections, Congress won by a majority of 511 provinces.
2. It formed government in seven of these.
3. The Muslim League did not perform very well in the constituencies reserved for the Muslims.
4. The Muslims had polled only 4.4 % of the total Muslim vote cast in the elections.
5. It was not able to secure even one seat in NWFP.
6. It was able to capture only 2 out of the 84 reserved constituencies in Punjab and 3 out of 33 reserved constituencies in Sind.
7. Jinnah was also not able to convince the people that it would be considered as the sole spokesman for the Muslims.
8. The league assumed that only a Muslim party would be able to successfully represent the interest of the Muslim and that Congress was a party of the Hindus.
9. It received good support from Bombay, Madras, and the united province.
10. But it was not able to gather support from Punjab, Sind, and Bengal.
11. The Congress wanted to abolish the system of landlordism which was supported by the Muslim League. But it did not take any steps for the same.
12. Congress launched the Muslim mass contact program but failed. The secular concept of the Congress alarms the Muslims conservative and the Muslim Elite.
13. The Muslim League passed a resolution demanding a measure of autonomy for the Muslim majority areas of the country on 23rd of March 1940.
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