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Full text of "Socialist Trends In Indian National Movement"

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SOCIALIST TRENDS IN INDIAN NATIONAL MOVEMENT

Post- 1 Var Problems

229

League and was a trap. He insisted on his two nation theory and crea- tion of a sovereign Muslim state. Jinnah wanted Gandhi to accept the basic and fundamental principles embodied in the Lahore Resolution as a pre-condition before the Congress and the League might arrive at a settlement to form a front to secure the freedom and independence for the peoples of India on the basis of Pakistan and Hindustan. In his letter dated 17 September Jinnah emphatically stated : we maintain and hold that Hindus and Muslims are two major nations by any definition or test of a nation. We are a nation of hundred million, and what is more, we are a nation with our own distinctive culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, names and nomenclature, sense of value and proportion, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and tradition, aptitudes and ambitions; in short we have our own distinctive outlook on life and of life. By all canon of international law we are a nation. He also asserted that, I am convinced that true welfare not only of the Muslims but the rest of India lies in the division of India as proposed by the Lahore Resolution. Jinnah regretted that Gandhi was considering that working of ^he Resolution in practice would be nothing but ruin for the whole of India.

Gandhi categorically rejected Jinnahs plea because Hindu-Muslim unity was his life mission and he found no parallel in history for a body of converts and their descendants claiming to be a nation apart from the parent stock, and also because he thought that India was one nation before the advent of Islam, it must remain one inspite of change of faith of her very large number-of children. Gandhi remained stead- fast to the position that Hindus and Muslims were brothers and should remain so. He was prepared to accept partition if it became necessary not on the basis of two-nation theory but as between two brothers broadly within the framework of the C. R. Formula which according to him con- ceded the substance of the Lahore Resolution for otherwise there would be no limit to claims for cutting up India into numerous divisions. 52

Jinnah protested against Gandhis claim that Independence does mean as envisaged in the A.I.C.C. Resolution of 1942. In his letter of 21 September he wrote to Gandhi : It is, therefore, clear, that you are not prepared to revise your policy and you adhere firmly to your policy and programme . . . which culminated in your demand ... in terms of the August 8, 1942 Resolution .... You know that the August 1942 Resolu- tion is inimical to the ideas-and demands of Muslim India. Jinnah dis- agreed to independence and establishment of any provisional Govern- ment as envisaged in the August Resolution or in the C. R. Formula before creation of a sovereign homeland for the Muslims i.e. Pakistan.

Towards the end of the talks Gandhi became much disturbed at the intransigence of Jinnah. He wrote to him on 23 September, last even-

5 Gandhi to Jinnah, 15 September 1944, The Hindu, 29 September 1944.

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