Before I begin writing about the Brahmin-Baniya nexus I would like to most emphatically state that there are millions of Brahmins and Baniyas and not all of them would agree with those Brahmins and Baniyas who are against Muslims, and this Blog is in no way blaming entire Brahmin or Baniya community for what happened. It is just that those who were involved were from these communities and these specific individuals were biased and prejudiced against Islam and Muslims.
My grandfather (born around 1916) always said that it was Brahmin-Bania nexus (or simply The Nexus) that divided India and not Muslims or Muslim League. He explained several things to me when I was much younger but I have only documented one thing of his numerous narrations. This was written in 1994-95, while I was still in school. I was so young that I spelt names of Muslim League leaders incorrectly.
The background to the note is that our family had very good relations with Nawab Chattari. In early 1946 a group of our senior members of my family asked Nawab Sahab to get a meeting arranged with top brass of Muslim League to talk to them frankly. Nawab Sahab himself accompanied my family members, given the gravity of the meeting. The prime reason for the meeting among others was to answer the question of the day, ‘Pakistan’. They wanted to know what should they do with regards to moving to Pakistan, given that they were from United Provinces of Agra and Awadh which in no way was going to go to Pakistan. Should they sell their properties and move to Karachi or Punjab?
The Note says (with corrections),
21st March 1946 – Mr. Mohammed Mustafa Khan asked for appointment with Nishtar Sahab
29th March 1946 – Met Mr. Nishtar and Mr. Chundrigar in Mr. Nishtar’s Office. Mr. Nishtar told them that they do not have any plans to make Pakistan.
Muslim League on 29th March 1946 had no plans to make Pakistan. My family was also told that Pakistan is an argument to get security for Muslims in India. Muslim League understood it very well that creation of Pakistan would be detrimental for Muslims of India as they were thinly spread out across India. And specially because many members and leaders of Muslim League were influential landlords and industrialist who had properties in those parts of India that would never become Pakistan like United Provinces of Agra and Awadh, Jinnah himself was from Bombay Province. My grandfather always said that Pakistan was not created by Muslims but by Brahmin-Bania Nexus.
Impact of Brahmin-Baniya Nexus on Muslims
The Brahmin-Baniya nexus started to antagonise Muslims right from 1860s. It was started by launching an Anti-Urdu campaigns, British saw 1857 revolt primarily as a Muslim revolt, hence they had deep distrust of Muslims during this time. This led to them to favouring Brahmins in administering India. Brahmins with their enmity towards Muslims and Urdu convinced the English that Hindi was spoken by most Indians (an unknown language then, it was put together taking all lanugages from Rajasthani to Maithili, speakers of which would neither be able to understand each other, nor would be able to read each other’s script).
This was followed by Shuddhi and Sanghatan movements (of several Right Wing Hindu Sabhas that later united to become Hindu Mahasabha), specially Shuddhi movement which was deep rooted in Hindu Caste System came to be applied to Muslims as well, such public humiliation of Muslims was unacceptable to Muslims. Hence was born the idea of separate electorates for Muslims in 1909.
Almost all Britishers and many Hindus could see a genuine hesitancy that Muslims had to be governed by Hindus. Many wrote openly about it, including Lala Lajpat Rai and several Viceroys and Governor Generals, from Lord Minto to Lord Wavell. Nobody denied that Muslims needed protection and representation, thus when Lucknow Pact was signed between Congress and Muslim League to fight for the nation together, separate electorates for Muslims was kept in as binding clause for future constitution.
Congress may have been a secular party but it never had Muslim membership over 3% and this was when India had around 25% Muslims. Hence British and everyone else found it difficult to consume Congress’s claim that it represented Indian Muslims as well.
For Muslims Congress was essentially a Brahmin-Baniya party. Although Baniyas were not as Anti-Musims as Brahmins were, but it was clear to Muslims that The Nexus could not be trusted with welfare of Muslims. Specially as Congress was infested with Muslim hating Hindu Mahasabhites. Here look at the list of Members of the last Executive Committee of Hindu Sabha before all Hindu Sabhas were merged into Hindu Mahasabha in 1915. You should be able to spot names of several important Congress Leaders. Congress was infiltrated by Hindu Mahasabhaites to an extent that the proper word for it is infestation not infiltration.
The Brahmin-Baniya Nexus Breaks Lucknow Pact
Twelve years later when Nehru Report came out The Nexus broke the promise of separate electorates which they promised to Muslims and Muslim League. The Brahmin-Baniya Nexus found it difficult to share power with Muslims, this unwillingness of The Nexus to share power with Muslims is what will be the reason for partition of India in 1947.
The antagonism against Muslims gradually progressed to Hindu Mahasabha’s open hostility to Muslims. To the extent that they openly said Muslims are not Indians because their Punya-Bhumi is not India. This was propagated in Principles of Hindutva by Kaayar Savarkar, published in 1923, the concept found grounding not just in Mahasabha but also Congress which was infested with Mahasabhites. Not even being regarded as Indians rang alarm bells among Muslims. Muslims realised that they needed constitutional guarantees protecting their rights, specially those pertaining to their religion, law, language, customs and culture. And that is what Muslims kept demanding for a long time. But since Hindu Mahasabha (and Congress through Mahasabha’s influence) was refusing Muslims their identity of being Indian, constitutional guarantees needed to be secured. A Muslim India within India needed to be demanded and agreed before British left India, because after British leave Muslims would not be able to secure any guarantees due to their smaller numbers.
Back To Note’s Claim: Muslim League Had NO Plans To Create Pakistan
My Grandfather and the Note claimed that Muslim League had no plans to make Pakistan. Let us work this the European Union way. In European Union it does not matter what statements Country Leaders make for their home audience as long as they agree with the Union, and makes European Union richer, stronger and more influential. We will take the same approach and keep the statements of leaders aside, and see what they actually did when it was the last chance to save the country from partition, and the Last opportunity to keep country together was during the Cabinet Mission Plan. But let us look at the face value of what Muslim League wanted, a Pakistan (specially not a moth eaten one). Congress (the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus) wanted a United India, partition was unacceptable at any cost. But both of them did opposite of what they were asking for.
Cabinet Mission Plan. It was a proposal for One United Indian State, with Three Tiers of Governance and Legislature, first Centre, second Groupings and third States. It proposed a weak Central Government Executive and Legislature looking after Foreign Affairs, Defence, Communications and Taxes required to meet such expenses. Following the Central Government would be Groupings Executive and Legislature, the groupings were clubbing of states. Followed by State Executive and Legislatures. The Groupings were as follows
Group A – NWFP, Punjab, Sindh and Baluchistan.
Group B – United Provinces, Madras, Bombay, Bihar, the Central Provinces and Orissa.
Group C – Assam and Bengal
Two points that really shows the treachery that the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus forced upon India are below. The Nexus’s main objection were two
1. The Nexus didn’t believe in the proposed Federal Structure. But it later it adopted a similar structure in the Indian Constitution, the only difference being the subjects under state control was a lengthier list in Constitution of India than one in Cabinet Mission Plan.
2. It could not accept the groupings on the basis of religion. A party that rejected keeping India together because State’s Groupings were based on religion, accepted to Partition India on the basis religion. Talk about hypocrisy!!! But the most amazing this is that States were not in a Binding Relationship forever, they were there only for a 10 year period, beyond that States could do whatever they liked.
Next, League accepted the Cabinet Mission Plan on 6th June 1946, and the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus accepted it on 26th June 1946, only to reject it later. The Nexus kept claiming that Partition is unacceptable at any cost. But they soon found it overbearing to share power with Muslims. Everybody knew that a partition would set out slaughter of innocents and civil war leading to death of Millions as it was mentioned in the plan and repeated by Cabinet Mission when they reported back in London. But slaughter of millions of Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs didn’t matter to Brahmin-Baniya Nexus, as most who would die would be lower castes or Muslims. Brahmin-Baniya Nexus wanted absolute control and did not want to share power with Muslims even if it meant Partitioning their Bharat Mata and causing a great slaughter.
Other Brahmin organisations like Hindu Mahasabha and Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh also rejected the Cabinet Mission Plan, saying at the same time that India can not be divided at any cost. But both knew that if India needed to stay together they needed to accept Cabinet Mission plan. Alas! Sharing power with Muslims was not a cost they were ready to bear either. Choosing a united India and saving million of lives did not even cross their mind, their enmity with Muslims was a much bigger preference than keeping India together.
Finally on 10th July Nehru, under pressure from the Right Wing Hindu Mahasabhaites that infested Congress made a statement that essentially rejected the Cabinet Mission Plan. Following this Jinnah tried to salvage the situation by chasing British and asking The Nexus to accept Cabinet Mission Plan. But neither Wavell nor Jinnah could not persuade Nehru or Brahmin-Baniya Nexus to withdraw the statement and accept Cabinet Mission Plan. Ultimately, after trying for several days to salvage the Cabinet Mission Plan, Muslim League on 29th July rejected the Plan as well, saying if Congress is not willing to agree the framework of the Plan, their is no reason for them to accept it as well.
Let me also clarify that in all my readings there was a sea change in the influence Mr. Gandhi had over Congress and what he could do by the time it was July 1947. In my readings I could not find him supporting partition, overtly or covertly. He was dead against partition and Khushwant Singh described him as helpless along with Mr. Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan. But Mr. Gandhi comes out as an exceptional case among Baniyas not rule.
Direct Action Day and Aftermath
The Nexus used Direct Action Day as a reason for partition, but during partition more than 300 people died for every single person killed during Direct Action Day. What kind of logic justifies that you should agree to slaughter of 300 people because 1 person was killed. The truth is that Direct Action Day was always the excuse by Brahmin-Baniya Nexus for partition, not the reason. The reason was for partition was that they were not ready to share power with Muslims, they alone wanted to rule India. The Brahmin-Baniya Nexus is the reason India was Partitioned, not Muslims.
|Knowledge that Partition will lead to Civil War, Millions Slaughtered, Millions of women raped, etc||Yes||Yes|
|Knowledge that this was THE LAST ATTEMPT for United India||Yes||Yes|
|Who was the First to accept Cabinet Mission Plan||First|
|Who was the First to reject Cabinet Mission Plan||First|
|Reasonable Reason For Rejection||No||Yes|
|Preferred Partition over other Objectives||Yes||No|
I can not find any good reason why The Cabinet Mission Plan would not have worked, except for the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus not wanting to share power with anyone, specially Indian Muslims. Muslim League dropped both of its Primary Demands to prevent partition,
2. Separate Electorate or Reservations for Muslims
This is verbatim implementation of Mr. Nishtar’s statement, that they had no plans to make Pakistan. And the excuses that Brahmin-Baniya Nexus gave for rejection of Cabinet Mission Plan were flimsy at best. And the excuse they gave for accepting Partition was even worse, they accepted civil war in exchange for a riot. It is a gross understatement that they did not realise the extent of violence, it is a lie, even Britishers understood the violence that would happen if India was divided, as it is stated here.
To revisit the illogicality of The Nexus’s excuse for justifying partition let us revisit the proportions at stake, The Brahmin-Baniya Nexus accepted to sacrifice 300 lives in a Civil War for every life lost during a riot. Has anyone ever said, because I had a fight with my brother where one child of mine died, I will sacrifice 300 more so that I don’t have to share this house with him. Also, let us not forget the contribution made by the Hindu Mahasabhaites within the Congress led by Patel who were the first people to accept Partition of India in Congress. Once again, it was the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus who was responsible for Partition of India, not Muslims.
Today, many accept that Muslim League alone was not responsible for Partition, be it Indians like Jaswant Singh (in Jinnah), Pakistanis like Ayesha Jalal (in The Sole Spokesman), Britishers like Patrick French (in Liberty or Death) or Americans like Stanley Wolpert (in several books). They accept that Congress (or The Nexus) was equally responsible for partition of India. This is a sea of change in the narrative of partition from around thirty-forty years ago, where it was clearly claimed that Muslim League created Pakistan and this suited Pakistan’s Generals and their narration of permanent enmity with India and their need to remain in power. And in India the Brahmin-Baniya Nexus blamed Muslims for partitioning India, vilifying them forever. But the truth is that Brahmin-Baniya Nexus was the ONLY reason India was divided. THE BRAHMIN-BANIYA NEXUS PARTITIONED INDIA NOT MUSLIMS.
How Muslims Lost Most in Partition
The human tragedy of Partition was great and Muslims lost out most. But Hindu Mahasabhaites 2.0, ie Sanghis in India are trying to prove that Hindus bore the brunt of Partition. While the loss to Hindus and Sikhs was great and I will never want/try to belittle that, but Sanghis must be replied for belittling Muslims losses, Muslims lost more than everyone else. Let us look at Punjab of 1947 which after partition was completely devoid of communities on other side making migration completely complete. Here is the table of Punjab in 1941, Hindus and Sikhs in Pakistani Punjab numbered around 4.2 million and Muslims in Indian Punjab Numbered around 5.4 million. This means 1.2 million more Muslims bore the brunt tragedy than Hindus and Sikhs. United Punjab which had a population of 34.3 million in 1941, 15.7% of its population went from India to Pakistan but only 12.2% of its population moved from Pakistan to India, what more proof is required to confirm that Muslims lost out more in the horror of partition than Hindus and Sikhs. I hate to state this fact, because it is suggesting that I am trying to belittling the horror that 4.2 Million of Sikhs and Hindus faced in Pakistani Punjab. But Sanghis need to replied with facts for they belittle the horror of partition that 5.4 million Muslims of Indian Punjab faced in India.
Finally, for anyone to say that Pakistan performed poorly during partition, India did much worse. Here are the districts on the Western Front alone and look at their Muslim population collapsing in Punjab and Delhi. Yes, the Muslims population collapsed from 31.3% in 1941 for Punjab to 1.4% in 1951. Delhi and Punjab are proofs that India handled Partition much worse than Pakistan, where the Hindu and Sikh Population also collapsed but from 22.8% to 3.4%.
Pitting this in simple ratios, Delhi before partition every 3rd person was Muslim, and after partition every 20th person was Muslim, and Delhi was capital of the country. In Indian Punjab previously every 3rd person was Muslim, after partition every 70th person was Muslims. Comparing this with Pakistan where every 4th person was a Sikh or a Hindu before partition, after partition every 30th person was a Hindu or Sikh. So clearly it was Muslims who suffered most.
It must be reinstated that that purpose of this last piece is not to belittle anyone’s horror, be it 4.2 million Hindus and Sikhs or 5.3 million Muslims. Their suffering can not be forgotten and we must learn from mistakes of previous generations and make sure not to repeat them, but Sanghi lies have to be set straight. The issue with Sanghis is that their intention is to demonise Pakistan and all Muslims by extension, hence the demonisation of Pakistan in India must be stopped to save Muslims of India.