Why did Dr. B R Ambedkar support the partition of India and Pakistan…the untold story!

Dr BR Ambedkar is associated with upliftment of Dalilts in the Indian society. Many people however, fail to read the inclusive objective of Dr Ambedkar in his efforts. He was a man of economic principles, and worked towards detaching ‘suppression’ from its root cause. He was a visionary, with an analytical bent of mind. Had it been for Dr Ambedkar’s thoughts on the ‘Lahore Resolution’ in 1940, India would have seen a smooth transition perhaps. But the history was not meant to be his way; as MK Gandhi, often accused of committing the sin of partition ignored the (BR Ambedkar) facts, then in 1940.

According to some media reports, the demand for partition aka a separate Muslim nation, Pakistan was first officially heard on March 23, 1940. This was the day, huge number of Pakistan supporters gathered in Lahore, to demand their own nation. The All India Muslim League leaders and supporters, under its supreme leadership of Jinnah, lend their support to the resolution. They demanded a separate nation in front of Hindu and British rulers.  Supporters from Muslim majority provinces such as Sindh, Punjab, N.W.F.P and Baluchistan as well as minority provinces were present to extent their support.

However, what is less known is the fact that the Muslim community in India has been contemplating its demand of ‘Pakistan’ for many years. The Lahore resolution was not an abrupt movement. The Muslim league members had been working towards the cause, by passing resolution through the whole year of 1939.

Even though an issue of this magnitude might have skipped MK Gandhi’s attention; it was Dr BR Ambedkar who lent his support to the cause. He analysed the facts, and later penned it down as a historical reference.

Later in 1944, when MK Gandhi shared with Jinnah his opinion on partition- implying that such an event has not happened in the past; then Jinnah presented his case, by sharing BR Ambedkar’s documented publication on the matter. Obviously, the talks failed; giving rise to atrocities which we know of, during the partition.

 So, what was Dr Ambedkar’s view on demand of a separate nation? We bring to you some ‘points’, which were enough to draw a border line between India and Pakistan in 1940; and clarify that Pakistan was not one man’s fancy. 

  • Dr Ambedkar was convinced that the demand of partition was not just a result of ‘political distemper’ and that, it was not a passing phase
  • He was convinced that the very characteristic of Hindus and Muslims was different-biologically, culturally
  • That their co-existence will depend on their struggle to survive the existing forces in the Indian society
  • That the demand of a separate nation is now an acknowledged fact by over 90% of Muslim population in India, even though it might not necessarily be a popular sentiment
  • That it is important to understand its implications, sensibly and intelligibly
  • That within a singular nation India, there exists two separate cultures-Hindu and Muslim
  • British are not responsible for creating the rift between Hindu and Muslims, and they should not be expected to settle it down
  • How can we expect the British rulers to decide the existing resentment of sentiments, in a majority population of Hindus?
  • How can we expect British rulers to leave it to us to take a decision in a matter, when Hindus (Majority) outnumber the Muslims (minority), wouldn’t this amount to Hindu imperialism?
  • That a decision needs to be taken before formulating the constitution of India. Muslims have already highlighted five provinces with predominant Muslim population, and expressed their averseness to be ruled by one Central government, post independence

In addition, Ambedkar also presented some ground facts for putting up his case for two nations. He took into perspective, Defense, Muslim sentiments, financial resources, communal peace and exchange of population.

As shared in a media journal, http://pakteahouse.net/, He pointedly asked, “Hindus have a difficult choice to make: To have a safe Army or a safe border! Is it in their interest to insist that Muslims should remain part of India to have a safe border, or should they welcome its separation from India to have a safe Army?”

Dr Ambedkar’s analysed some given facts. The Simon Commission had revealed in 1930 that Indians, who were willing to join the Indian army post independence, largely belonged to (Pakistan) identified provinces. If Pakistan was to happen, then India would be in a big defense dilemma later. With respect to financial assistance, it was Hindus who were contributing a whopping amount of Rs 52 crore, in comparison to Muslims contribution of Rs 7 crore in the defense corpus. So, if the separation happens, it is bound to be India’s own weapon tragedy.

Dr Ambedkar’s views and statements may have sounded provocative at time; however, in the present context it was indeed a rational judgment. It could have saved the human cost associated with partition. Our medieval history has also proved that Hindus were rulers by choice, and Muslims were perceived as invaders. It has been the fabric of our Indian society. Muslims would not have accepted a Congress government ruled by Hindus, when Muslim political member recognition was openly subdued by Congress. And, British rulers were not interested in the subject, as they had a necessity of ruling India, after the World War 2. So, who is really responsible for the human tragedy?

(With inputs from http://www.esamskriti.com/essay-chapters/Thoughts-on-Pakistan-by-Dr-Ambedkar-1.aspx)

Team Postcard