A: Gandhi, like Jinnah, was an advocate for Hindu-Muslim unity. There should be more discussion about the relationship between India and. Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a lawyer, politician, and the founder of Pakistan. Jinnah served as .. Jinnah attended a reception for Gandhi, and returned home to India in The couple resided at South Court Mansion in Bombay, and frequently . number of Muslim politicians and confirmed his recommendation to Jinnah. Jinnah, Gandhi's greatest adversary, was a complex figure, and the relationship He knew Gandhi's charm and manner of establishing personal relationships, and . It spumed his advice, denying Gandhi's spirit an organizational incarnation.
Pandit Nehru was not surprised to hear of the solution which had been suggested, since this was the same solution that Mr. Gandhi had put up to the Cabinet Mission. It was turned down then as being quite impracticable; and the policy of Direct action by the Muslim League, and the bloodshed and bitterness in which it had resulted, made the solution even less realistic now than a year ago. He said he was anxious for Mr. We next discussed the partition of the Punjab and Ghazanfar Ali Khan's suggestion for fresh elections.
And even if they had a small paper majority, the districts in which Sikhs and Hindus predominated would now in no circumstances willing accept the rule of an unrepresentative Government. He linked the question of partition of Bengal with that of the Punjab. He had not yet had the opportunity of discussing with Mr. Gandhi his reasons for opposing the Congress resolution on partition; but he realized that Mr.
Gandhi was immensely keen on a unified India, at any immediate cost, for the benefit of the long term future. I told Pandit Nehru that I recognized that there were long term and short term considerations which must affect the decision I had to make, and that although the long term ones should theoretically predominate, I hoped he would agree that I could not base my decision solely on them if the consequences were to be greatly increased chances of heavy bloodshed in the immediate future.
He said that no reasonable man would argue with these premises. We discussed the position between Bengal and Assam. Gandhi is not being quite fair to H. E when he puts forward his proposal that the selection of the Cabinet for an Interim Government should be left entirely to Jinnah. He knows full well that similar offers have been made by him in the past and that Jinnah never took them seriously.
Amery's difficulty as to minorities". He said that if H. Subsequently, Gandhi issued a statement to the effect that Congress had no desire to mount to power at the expense of a single national interest and that Lord Linlithgow would therefore have no opposition from Congress if he formed a Cabinet composed of representatives of different parties.
This question of participation in the Central Government on the basis of Lord Linlithgow's offer of August was considered by the Working Committee of the Muslim League. A minority of about 5 were against co-operation with the Government and Jinnah himself stood with this group. The late Sir Sikander Hayat Khan opposed further haggling and said that the offer should be accepted in principle, details being settled personally. Jinnah said that he was prepared to abide by the advice of the majority but warned the members of the consequences of full co-operation; the entire burden of responsibility for protecting the Indian Empire, crushing the Congress, suppressing internal strife, supplying men and money, and running the administration, would fall on the League; and at the same time, they would have to work under the constant fear that Congress might decide to co-operate, and that Government might refuse to consider the Pakistan scheme.
Jinnah's adroitness was proved by the sequel. Though in this meeting he was in a minority on the main question, he prevented any outright decision in favour of accepting the Government's offer, and subsequently obtained a verdict of rejection.
There is no reason to suppose that Jinnah will now accept an offer which he has rejected previously. If he forms a Government composed entirely of Muslim League nominees, that Government will find itself facing a predominantly Congress majority in the Central Legislature from which Jinnah has to get his essential legislation and supply. On the other hand, if there is a coalition, it will have to be formed on conditions more acceptable to the Congress than to the League.
In either event, the assurance of co-operation by the Congress is more a wishful thinking and would certainly place Jinnah in the position of having to adjust his views to those of the Congress. This is perhaps not un-intended by Gandhi. In a Legislature where the Congress has got predominant representation, the question whether a "particular proposal is in the interests of the Indian people" will in practice be decided by that party.
The fact that H.
E as the arbitrator has decided on a particular course of action will not help Jinnah either with the Legislature or with the public. The position of H. E will become under the proposed arrangement one of very great difficulty and embarrassment. At no time is it desirable that the Governor-General should be brought into the vortex of party politics.
This is to be particularly avoided at the present juncture when we are engaged in the process of transfer of power and our primary duty should therefore be to concentrate on devising an arrangement under which the parties themselves will have to face up to their tasks and responsibilities. Further, such a development might well cast doubts on H. E's bona fides and might do irreparable damage to good relations between India and Great Britain. According to Gandhi's proposal, Jinnah is at liberty to plan for Pakistan and even to put his plans into effect provided that he is successful in appealing to reason and does not use force.
This is asking for the impossible. If Jinnah could persuade the Sikhs and Hindus of the Punjab and Hindus of Bengal to join Pakistan, he would automatically get his Pakistan without joining the Interim Government on dubious terms. On the other hand, if Jinnah still persists in his scheme of separation, he will be giving his case away by entering the Central Government. This was the main motive which induced him to keep out of the Central Government in the past; and, as a matter of fact, he has never attached any importance to effective participation on the side of the Muslim League in the present Interim Government.
BBC - Radio 4 Empire - Gandhi or Jinnah
It is Gandhi's habit to make propositions, leaving many of their implications unsaid, and this method of negotiation has put him and the Congress in difficult positions in the past. For example, there is no reference here to the Muslim League participation in the Constituent Assembly.
If Jinnah were to accept his proposal, Gandhi probably takes it for granted that the Muslim League would enter the Constituent Assembly. It seems to me clear therefore that the present proposals do not expose his full mind. Since the Cabinet Delegation's visit last year, Gandhi is out of accord with the policy of the Congress Working Committee as well as the members of the Interim Government on several questions of major importance.
It is suggested that if Jinnah rejects the offer the same offer is to be made mutatis mutandi to the Congress. It should be borne in mind that all the factors which have been mentioned as working to the disadvantage of Jinnah will for the same reason work to the advantage of the Congress. E's main task is to find a solution to the present deadlock between the League and the Congress.
It is no solution to suggest that power should be transferred to the Congress to the exclusion of the Muslim League. If the proposition were as simple as that, it would have been solved long ago. Abell, Captain Brockman, Mr.
Mahatma Gandhi, Mohammed Ali Jinnah tried to avoid partition, says Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri
Gandhi the previous day after the latter's interview with the Viceroy. He had reduced to writing an outline of Mr. Gandhi's scheme for an Interim Government pending the transfer of power. The salient features of this scheme were that Mr. Jinnah was to be given the option of forming a Cabinet of his own selection; and that if he rejected this offer, the same offer should be made mutatis mutandis to Congress. Abell and Rao Bahadur Menon, and after a meeting with them on the subject, Rao Bahadur Menon had rendered a note containing criticism of the scheme.
It was clear that Mr. Gandhi's plan was not a new one. Gandhi had made no attempt to disguise this fact. Abell and Rao Bahadur Menon had come to the unanimous conclusion that Mr. Gandhi's scheme was not workable. It would put the Viceroy in an impossible position; Mr. Calcutta's Marwari Hindu merchants and bankers also pointed fingers at Suhrawardy. So did their sycophants in every court and bazaar, who soon hired their own thugs to wreak vengeance on Muslim quarters of the city, gutting homes and shops there for months.
Suhrawardy by now was stripped of Calcutta's chief ministership, replaced by Dr. Nor would Suhrawardy be picked to become chief minister of East Pakistan; his less popular Muslim League rival Khwaja Nazimuddin had been selected instead by Jinnah to take that post in Dhaka. His vision was to integrate Hindu majority West Bengal and Muslim majority East Pakistan into a single unified land of Bengali speakers, whose language and culture would transcend any differences of religious doctrine or practice.
Mountbatten, however, refused even to consider Suhrawardy's brilliant plan, just as he had ignored Gandhi's proposal to replace Nehru with Jinnah. Though Suhrawardy's dream of becoming the king of Bengal was thus aborted, he lived to emerge less than a decade later but only briefly to remain as prime minister of Pakistan.
He was removed by martial coup and died a few years later in Beirut. Gandhi had long known and liked Suhrawardy, who for three decades had admired him as well.
Suhrawardy agreed, and they moved into the abandoned Hydari House, a once-splendid residence whose terrified Muslim owners had fled, leaving it to be robbed and ruined by looters and hoodlums. They seemed an odd couple, the almost naked Bapu and Bengal's Big Daddy dressed meticulously in his white linen or beige silk suits. But Gandhi's genius for symbolic gestures was never wiser than this experiment in Hindu-Muslim cohabitation.
It visibly demonstrated to Calcutta's millions of angry and fearful Hindus and Muslims alike that a Mahatma and the Muslim League leader most often blamed for instigating the worst of last year's riots could peacefully live under a single roof.
They stayed there together for almost a week, answering the most hostile, angry questions as honestly as they could, as fearlessly as both of these remarkable men had lived all their lives. It proved to be a potent lesson in the practical possibility of peaceful coexistence, cooperation, and the powers of love.
Of the lessons Gandhi had labored most of his life to teach, this was one of the most important. The interlude with Suhrawardy, however, was his last demonstration of the miraculous force of love and the value of trust and faith in one's fellow man as well as in truth. Pacifist Horace Alexander, whose leadership of the Society of Friends had first brought him to India inwas invited by Gandhi to join them in Hydari House, where Alexander proved useful in helping to keep crowds of irate Hindus from breaking in that first night.
The hooligans told him to "go away," but Gandhi was never easily dissuaded or intimidated from doing what he believed to be right. I won't invoke the help of the police. You can prevent me from leaving this house, but what is the use of your dubbing me an enemy of the Hindus?
I will not accept the label. On August 14, Gandhi argued again with the young Hindus who had so angrily challenged him the previous day. He was also afraid that it would lead to much bloodshed and permanently sour the relations between the two countries. When he realized that the fast that he had long threatened was likely to make matters worse, he gracefully accepted the partition and endeavoured to create a climate that would both minimize violence and maximize future reconciliation.
By and large he saw the partition in the image of the Hindu joint family. Those who could not live together were free to set up a separate household to avoid constant quarrels, but there was no reason why they should deny their shared history, hate and kill each other, or reject co-operation on matters of common interest. During the last few months of his life, Gandhi fought heroically against the corybantic wave of violence that had gripped most of north India.
For many years past he had been plagued by profound political and spiritual doubts. Now he had no doubts about his course of action, for his duty could not be clearer. Everything he had stood for all his adult life was at stake, and his very God was on trial.
Gandhi now became a transcendental. The personal and the political were inseparable for Gandhi. Every time he had faced a momentous political struggle in the past, he had turned inward to concentrate his being and summon up all his moral and spiritual energy.
His religious faith dictated that good would always triumph over evil that all violence would dissolve in the presence of pure non-violence.
The continuing violence had to be explained, and Gandhi characteristically blamed himself. God or cosmic energy was not working through him because of some deep inadequacy in him. Although he thought that he had eliminated all traces of violence in himself, he must be wrong. The only possible source of violence could be the presence of unconscious sexuality, for Gandhi a form of aggression. Accordingly he decided to put his celibacy to the severest test by embarking on the extraordinary experiment of sleeping naked with carefully chosen female associates, partly to flush out such residues of sexuality as might still remain and purify himself, and partly to generate the immense energy he thought he needed to subdue the evil raging around him.
The experiment generated great unease, and he wrote publicly about it. Although he was attacked, ridiculed, and shunned by some of his colleagues, he remained resolute. Just because his countrymen had made him a Mahatma, he was not prepared to confront to their expectations of him. In order to fight violence Gandhi had only one weapon left, his life, and only one way to use it, namely to make a sacrifice of it by means of well-calculated fasts designed to awaken the consciences and mobilize the moral energies of his misguided countrymen.
He stayed there from October to Februarywalking from village to village, living in the huts of those willing to put him up, listening to their stories of atrocities, calming passions, and consoling the distressed and bereaved. He worked eighteen hours a day and covered forty-nine villages. Sometimes his path was strewn with filth and brambles and, since as a pilgrim of peace he often walked barefoot, his feet became sore and developed chilblains.
He had to cross bridges consisting of nothing more than loosely fastened bamboo poles, and sometimes he narrowly missed falling into the mud several feet below. There were also several threats on his life and a couple of violent scuffles.
Undeterred, he continued his work, summoned up immense physical energy in his disintegrating body, and by the sheer force of his personality succeeded in restoring peace. When India became independent on 15 AugustGandhi did not go to Delhi or even send a message.
He was busy fighting violence several hundred miles away, and saw no reason for celebration.