“Any idea of a United India could never have worked and in my judgment it would have led us to terrific disaster.” These were the exact words spoken by the very reprehensible Muhammad Ali Jinnah after a vibrant and diverse Bharat was divided on the name of religion and peace into India and Pakistan respectively. The Partition of India was one of the most defining events in the history of the Indian subcontinent. With no accurate statistics of how many died or lost their homes, approximate estimates suggest that perhaps up to 20 million people were affected by the Partition and somewhere between 200,000 – 1 million lost their lives. Was the partition worth it? Was it necessary? Was there really enough distress to call for a partition? Wasn’t it the job and the responsibility of our leaders to tackle this distress and not resort on dividing the country altogether? Or was it just the greed embedded in those leaders to rule that led to the division and individual share hold of land? The scheme of Partition of India after being approved by our colonial masters was announced by Mountbatten and endorsed in speeches by Nehru and Jinnah on the All India Radio, who later also happened to rule their respective divides.
In today’s world, out in the foreign countries Indians and Pakistanis mix up as if the partition never happened. And what is the basis of this partition? It is the completely bogus two nation theory, that Hindus and Muslims can’t live together and deserve their respective nations. I submit that this spurious two nation theory was solely manufactured by the Britishers to fire hatred in order to divide and rule and make Hindus and Muslims fight against each other.
If this theory, that religion is the basis of a nation, were to be actually accepted then logically England should be partitioned into at least 6 states… The majority group in England is of the Anglican Protestant Christians, but there are many Scottish Presbyterians, Catholics, Hindus, Muslims and Jews too. Similarly, France has a sizeable Muslim population (descendants of North African Arabs belonging to the former French colonies in North Africa). The French Muslims too should be provided with a state of their own (if the spurious two nation theorywere accepted to be valid). If countries began to divide themselves on the name of religion, hardly any country will be able to survive as in almost every country there are people of different religions. And in the Indian subcontinent secularism is all the more vital in view of the tremendous diversity present here therefore engraving it in our very preamble too.
This partition resulted into innumerable issues and complications in the subcontinent. A lot of hatred has developed between Hindus and Muslims ever since. Unfortunately, this hatred is being carried and nurtured till this date with ever increasing intensity.
Both India and Pakistan are in a race of nuclear arms and military power, while the masses suffer from insecurity, poverty, illiteracy, malnourishment and underdevelopment. India and Pakistan have fought three wars over Kashmir and both nations claim their rights on entire part of territory. There is also a regular trade of fire across the LOC, damaging properties, taking lives of both armed forces as well as common people, and causing large scale displacement on both sides and many more. Most of the people think of reunification as a flawed idea, however history has witnessed the mighty successful reunifications of Vietnam in 1975 and that of Germany in 1990 as well. The country’s primary aim must be to secure to the people a high standard of living and decent lives. But in order to provide that we have to make India a highly industrialized country, because that alone can generate the wealth required for the wellbeing of our people. And for that we must reunite under a secular government which while upholding religious freedom does not tolerate religious extremism or bigotry, and crushes it with an iron hand. Unless we reunite we will keep fighting each other, thus depleting our stock. So, unless we reunite, we will keep wasting our scant resources fighting each other, and will never become a highly industrialized country, and thus remain poor with many social evils.
It is unfortunate that when there are a number of bigger issues like poverty , starvation , unemployment , illiteracy and major health issues to be addressed ,the Indians & Pakistanis are still caught up between communalism, regionalism, religious fanatism , intolerance & hatred , instead of creating a suitable atmosphere of friendship ,co-operation and mutual understanding for the growth and prosperity of the two Nations. It is a matter of great concern and misfortune that both the Indians & Pakistanis have not yet learnt the art of living together with an atmosphere of mutual understanding and co-operation, not thinking prospectively for the reunification of both the countries. Clearly things are going from bad to worse. The only solution to the ongoing problem is to eradicate the cause of conflict.
The politicians instigate hatred among people and call each other enemies where as it is not really true.India and Pakistan are like two sons of one mother and have been separated due to the unrest and intolerance in the society caused by the hatred caused by some groups which are still going on, till date, on both sides. If it carries on like this, there is no stopping it. Hence, it is a must to curb this growing cancer before it gets too late.
The most important question that arises here is how are we to reunite? This can only be done peacefully and voluntarily, and will take a long time, maybe 10-20 years. The communal venom which has been injected into our body politic by vested interests for over a century, will take a long time to be expelled. During this period, we must patiently explain to the masses the truth that we are really one nation, were one for centuries, and spread the idea of Indian reunification among them.
At present, all that needs to be done is to spread the idea of reunification, as is being done by the Indian Reunification Association. Later, when the idea has gripped the imagination and minds of the masses, then people will use their creativity and find ways to make a peaceful reunification a reality.The main problems of India and Pakistan are the same – massive poverty, unemployment, malnutrition, lack of healthcare and good education, etc. If we were to reunite, we can pool in our resources and overcome these problems in 15-20 years. We can save much of the billions of dollars we spend annually on purchasing arms abroad, and use it for our people’s welfare. We were befooled by the British into thinking that we are enemies, but how much longer must we remain befooled? How much longer must blood flow? It’s been over 70 years now; it’s high time we make a move to curb this situation once and for all.
Islamabad and New Delhi must restart the reconciliation process aided and assisted by international community. Reunification, peace treaty or Confederation – options are too many. The least the two conjoined twins can do is to work for a approchement.
After reunification, which in my opinion is bound to happen since we are really one nation, we will rapidly industrialise on a gigantic scale. And this is the only resort that alone can solve our country’s real, socio-economic problems.