Q. 133.5( 2 Votes )

The Muslim League resolution of 1940

The League’s resolution of 1940 demanded :

That geographically contiguous units are demarcated into regions, which should be so constituted, with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary, that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority as in the north-western and eastern zones of India should be grouped to constitute “Independent States”, in which the constituent units shall be autonomous and sovereign.

(13.1) Identify the major demands of the Muslim League.

(13.2) Analyse the reasons for the demand of autonomy by the Muslim League.

(13.3) Analyse the distinctive aspects of the Muslim League Resolution of 1940.

OR

Read the following excerpt carefully and answer the questions that follow :

A small basket of grapes

This is what Dr. Khushdeva Singh writes about his experience during one of his visits to Karachi in 1949 :

My friends took me to a room at the airport where we all sat down and talked... (and) had lunch together, I had to travel from Karachi to London... at 2.30 am... At 5.00. p.m. ... I told my friends that they had given me so generously of their time, I thought it would be too much for them to wait the whole night and suggested they must spare themselves the trouble. But nobody left until it was dinner time.... Then they said they were leaving and that I must have a little rest before emplaning. .... I got up at about 1.45 a.m. and, when I opened the door, I saw that all of them were still there.... They all accompanied me to the plane, and, before parting, presented me with a small basket of grapes. I had no words to express my gratitude for the overwhelming affection with which I was treated and the happiness this stopover had given me.

(13.1) Analyse the attitude of the people of Karachi towards Khushdeva Singh.

(13.2) Express the feelings of Khushdeva Singh at Karachi.

(13.3) “Love is stronger than hate.” Elucidate the statement in the context of this narrative.

Answer :

(13.1) The 1940 Resolution of the Muslim League demanded autonomy for the Muslim-majority regions of the subcontinent, which were the geographically contiguous units in the North-West and the East. They wanted these to be ‘independent states’ which would have autonomy and sovereignty. However, at this point, the idea of a formal ‘Pakistan’ had not yet developed, and the ambiguous nature of their resolution did not refer to any kind of partition (as we now understand it) either.

(13.2) In the provincial elections in 1937, the Muslim League failed to capture many seats across different provinces. In the United Provinces, the Muslim League wanted to create a joint government with the Congress. The Congress, however, rejected this offer, since it had won an absolute majority in the province.


In this context, many scholars argue that it was this rejection that convinced the Muslim League that if India remained united, Muslims would be unable to gain political power as they remained a minority. This became an impetus for the demand for autonomy.


Further, the Muslim League believed that only a Muslim party could understand and represent Muslim interests. Since they believed that Congress was essentially a Hindu party, they further demanded autonomy.


(13.3) The 1940 Resolution was distinctive for multiple reasons:


a. It was an ambiguous resolution, in that it did not actually mention the creation of Pakistan or the Partition.


b. It was an articulation for autonomy, but even the Muslim leaders did not seriously demand a separate state.


c. It was possible that Jinnah himself saw this demand as a bargaining counter in order to gain favours for the Muslim League and block concessions to the Congress.


d. It was only after the failure of the Cabinet Mission’s plan in 1946 that the Partition and the creation of Pakistan seemed inevitable.


Thus, the Resolution was unique because it did not formally articulate a notion of ‘Pakistan’.


OR


(13.1) Khushdeva Singh’s visit to Karachi was in 1949, therefore after the Partition. However, the people of Karachi did not show any hostile attitude towards him, in spite of the widespread violence of the Partition. Instead, they welcomed him. His friends gave him company at the airport for the whole time he was there, even though it was very late and the hours were long. They even accompanied him to the plane and gave him a basket of grapes as a gift. Their attitude was thus of friendship and companionship, with no ill will towards him.


(13.2) While at the airport in Karachi, Khushdeva Singh expressed his feelings of gratitude at the immense generosity of his friends from Karachi. In spite of his insistence that they had already shown so much generosity and should take some rest, they still stayed until he boarded the plane, and handed him a basket of grapes. Khushdeva Singh felt an inexpressible sense of gratitude and happiness because of the overwhelming affection that he was given during his stop-over.


(13.3) Khushdeva Singh’s narrative was written in 1949, after the violent Partition of British India into India and Pakistan. The violence and hatred that had been incited between different religious groups during the Partition should have, in this case, created hostility between him and his friends in Karachi, particularly because the Partition was fresh in everyone’s memory. However, his narrative depicts that in his encounter with his friends, he did not feel any sense of hostility or hatred. Instead, he was given complete affection and love from them- they stayed at the airport for the entire night until his departure, even though he insisted that they should take rest, and also gave him a departing gift. His testimony is evidence that love is stronger than hate, since the hatred brought about by the Partition was completely lost in their act of love towards him.


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RELATED QUESTIONS :

Read the following excerpt carefully and answer the questions that follow:

Why the Salt Satyagraha?


Why was salt the symbol of protest? This is what Mahatma Gandhi wrote: The volume of information being gained daily shows how wickedly the salt tax has been designed. In order to prevent the use of salt that has not paid the tax which is at times even fourteen times its value, the Government destroys the salt it cannot sell profitably. Thus, it taxes the nation’s vital necessity: it prevents the public from manufacturing it and destroys what nature manufactures without effort. No adjective is strong enough for characterising this wicked dog-in-the-manger policy. From various sources I hear tales of such wanton destruction of the nation’s property in all parts of India. Maunds if not tons of salt are said to be destroyed on the Konkan coast. The same tale comes from Dandi. Wherever there is likelihood of natural salt being taken away by the people living in the neighbourhood of such areas for their personal use, salt officers are posted for the sole purpose of destruction. Thus, valuable national property is destroyed at national expense and salt taken out of the mouths of the people.


The salt monopoly is thus a fourfold curse. It deprives the people of a valuable easy village industry, involves wanton destruction of property that nature produces in abundance, the destruction itself means more national expenditure, and fourthly to frown this folly, an unheard-of tax of more than 1,000 per cent is extracted from a starving people.


This tax has remained so long because of the apathy of the general public. Now that is sufficiently roused, the tax has to go. How soon it will be abolished depends upon the strength of the people.


(i) Why was salt monopoly introduced by the British considered as a curse by the Indians?


(ii) How did Gandhiji illustrate his tactical wisdom with regard to salt monopoly?


(iii) Explain the significance of Gandhiji’s challenge of salt protest.

History - Board Papers

“Tomorrow we shall break the salt tax law”

On 5 April 1930, Mahatma Gandhi spoke at Dandi:


When I left Sabarmati with my companions for this seaside hamlet of Dandi, I was not certain in my mind that we would be allowed to reach this place. Even while I was at Sabarmati there was a rumour that I might be arrested. I had thought that the Government might perhaps let my party come as far as Dandi, but not me certainly. If someone says that this betrays imperfect faith on my part, I shall not deny the charge. That I have reached here is in no small measure due to the power of peace and non-violence: that power is universally felt. The Government may, if it wishes, congratulate itself on acting as it has done, for it could have arrested every one of us. In saying that it did not have the courage to arrest this army of peace, we praise it. It felt ashamed to arrest such an army. He is a civilised man who feels ashamed to do anything which his neighbours would disapprove. The Government deserves to be congratulated on not arresting us, even if it desisted only from fear of world opinion. Tomorrow we shall break the salt tax law. Whether the Government will tolerate that is a different question. It may not tolerate it, but it deserves congratulationthe patience and forbearance it has displayed in regard to this party. … What if I and all the eminent leaders in Gujarat and in the rest of the country are arrested? This movement is based on the faith that when a whole nation is roused and on the march no leader is necessary.


(i) Why did Gandhiji start the Dandi March?


(ii) Why was Salt March notable?


(iii) The power of peace and non-violence was universally felt. Why did Gandhiji say so?

History - Board Papers

The Muslim League resolution of 1940

The League’s resolution of 1940 demanded :


That geographically contiguous units are demarcated into regions, which should be so constituted, with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary, that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority as in the north-western and eastern zones of India should be grouped to constitute “Independent States”, in which the constituent units shall be autonomous and sovereign.


(13.1) Identify the major demands of the Muslim League.


(13.2) Analyse the reasons for the demand of autonomy by the Muslim League.


(13.3) Analyse the distinctive aspects of the Muslim League Resolution of 1940.


OR


Read the following excerpt carefully and answer the questions that follow :


A small basket of grapes


This is what Dr. Khushdeva Singh writes about his experience during one of his visits to Karachi in 1949 :


My friends took me to a room at the airport where we all sat down and talked... (and) had lunch together, I had to travel from Karachi to London... at 2.30 am... At 5.00. p.m. ... I told my friends that they had given me so generously of their time, I thought it would be too much for them to wait the whole night and suggested they must spare themselves the trouble. But nobody left until it was dinner time.... Then they said they were leaving and that I must have a little rest before emplaning. .... I got up at about 1.45 a.m. and, when I opened the door, I saw that all of them were still there.... They all accompanied me to the plane, and, before parting, presented me with a small basket of grapes. I had no words to express my gratitude for the overwhelming affection with which I was treated and the happiness this stopover had given me.


(13.1) Analyse the attitude of the people of Karachi towards Khushdeva Singh.


(13.2) Express the feelings of Khushdeva Singh at Karachi.


(13.3) “Love is stronger than hate.” Elucidate the statement in the context of this narrative.


History - Board Papers