A Comparison : Modern History of India and South Korea after Independence


Korean Minjok Leadership Academy
BEW



Table of Contents


First Draft
Partition of Bengal
Working Table of Contents
Bibliography



First Draft (as of December 4th 2008) . . . go to Teacher's comment

Background
             I visited Kolkata for three years in a row. Kolkata, or Calcutta, was the center of British rule in India under the East India Company. However, after Crown rule Kolkata was stolen of its capital status by Delhi, and although it is still a big city, it's hard to feel the same grandeur that one would have felt back in the 19th century. Driving past the roads one can still see the worn but magnificent buildings of the day, which at a glimpse might stand out among with the South Asian surroundings, but still have somehow managed to fit in. The buildings have been carefully preserved and are still being used today as memorials, museums, and even houses. This stood out in contrast with the buildings in Korea built under Japanese rule, most of which have been torn down in an effort to erase the traces of humiliating submission.
             Unlike many parts of India, in Kolkata people greeted me by saying "Assalam allai kum" instead of "Namastey". I was intrigued by the strong Bengali population, and the process of how so many of them had come to settle near the border. Although I had only a vague sense of how India became what it is today, I could not help comparing the process to the partition, or should I say separation, of the Korean peninsula.
             And this is how I became interested in what you are about to read...

A Quick Overview of Early British Colonialism in India
             Centuries ago, India was a fertile land with many riches like Indian cotton, jute, indigo, tea and, temporarily, opium, and raw materials, which Europeans sought. Different European powers competed to gain control over the vast region, especially the French and the British. After the Battle of Plassey [1] in 1757, the British East India Company gained control over the Indian subcontinent. Soon, the East India Company took the more commercially fertile regions under direct rule, and controlled the remaining regions under indirect rule through princes. In 1858, after the Sepoy Rebellion [2], or the First War of Indian Independence, the company went bankrupt and British Crown rule was established in India.
             It is important to note that the Raj (in Hindi meaning 'to rule' or 'kingdom') never encompassed the entire land mass of the sub-continent. About forty percent of the land was still governed by over 560 principalities, and their respective rulers entered into treaties of mutual cooperation with the Raj. Although the Sepoy Mutiny had helped to deepen racial rifts between ordinary Indians and Anglo-Saxons, the conservative elites of princely India and the wealthy landholders held close ties with the British. The degree of wealth was immense; for example, Hyderabad [3] was bigger than England and Wales combined, and its ruler Nizam was the richest man in the world. During the two World Wars, people like Nizam would provide Britain with money and soldiers, both of whom proved to be crucial. They would also stand up against the nationalist movements during the late 19th century and early 20th. Alongside a racial chasm, social segregation was developed, which is adeptly captured in E.M Forster's 'A Passage to India.'
             A main difference between the rule under the E.I.C and the rule under the crown was clearly shown in the types of policies that each pursued. Although the E.I.C was extremely wealthy, it was a private company, whose main pursuit was exploitation of goods and trade. It did not have the resources or time to start developing infrastructure within India. The strength of a grip on a country is much stronger when a government takes place of a private company. A government has the stamina to wait a few years until profits come out. Thus the government undertook steps to develop India's infrastructure. Delhi was anointed as the new capital, railways were constructed, and large scale irrigation projects were undertaken.
             In the 'White Man's Burden'[4], Rudyard Kipling emphasized such benefits of colonial rule. He considered the British to be morally superior; for instance, the British had suppressed the practice of burning widows. However, while the British criticized the divisions of the caste system, they themselves valued precedence and class. Kipling's books also depicted the gulf between the white community and the Anglo-Indians, who the whites considered to be racially 'impure.' Indians were discriminated against in their own country, especially being denied career opportunities, and such discontent grew from a rumble to a forceful movement for independence.

Definition of the Bengal Region
             India, the vast sub-continent it is, is a place where controversy about line-drawing between regions continues even today. Consequentially, many names of regions do not represent the same places they used to represent one hundred years ago, and before moving any further the definition of Bengal must be made clear.
             The Bengal Presidency was established by 1766, including territories north of the Central Provinces (now Madhya Pradesh) to the Himalayas and the Punjab. Originally comprising east and west Bengal, it was a colonial region of British India, which comprised undivided Bengal. The same region is in the present day Bangladesh, and the states of West Bengal, Assam, Bihar, Meghalaya, Orissa, and Tripura. Later at its peak, it annexed the princely states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab in India, Haryana, and Himachal Pradesh and portions of Chhatisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra in present day India, including the provinces of North West Frontier and Punjab in Pakistan, and Myanmar. In contradistinction to the presidencies of Madras and Bombay, the Bengal Presidency eventually included all the British territories North of the Central Provinces (Madhya Pradesh), from the mouths of the Ganges and Brahamputra to the Himalayas and the Punjab. Just before World War I the whole of Northern India was divided into the four lieutenant governorships of the Punjab, the United Provinces, Bengal, and Eastern Bengal and Assam, and the North-West Frontier Province under a Commissioner.

The First Partition of Bengal
             People usually acquaint the partitioning of India as a process that happened during and after Independence. However, an attempt was made to partition Bengal much earlier, in 1905. This first attempt to part Bengal was executed by the British, nominally to enhance administrative feasibility, rather than as a result of ethnic conflict. The Bengal province stretched over 189,000 square miles, extending to present day Bangladesh and parts of Assam[5], with a population of 85 million. Due to poor communications, eastern Bengal was almost isolated from its western counterpart, and could not be properly monitored from Calcutta, the center of British rule in India. Earlier attempts to relieve this problem included placing the upper provinces under a lieutenant governor in 1836. Eighteen years later, the Governor-General-In-Council was relieved of the direct administration of Bengal. In 1874, Assam was severed from Bengal to form a Chief-Commissionership.
             Actual partitioning of the region, as a means of relieving administrative problems, was first considered in 1903 by British Indian Governor General Lord Curzon, a man who considered himself an expert in Indian affairs. Lord Curzon planned of splitting Bengal into East and West Bengal, with Calcutta being the capital of West Bengal, and Dhaka the capital of East Bengal. Additional proposals suggested the separation of Chittagong and the districts of Dhaka and Mymensingh from Bengal and annexing them into the province of Assam. In January of 1904, the government officially published the idea. To assess public opinion on the partition, Lord Curzon made an official tour to eastern districts of Bengal, consulting with leading personalities and delivering speeches at Dhaka, Mymensingh, and Chittagong to explain his stand.
             According to Lord Curzon's plan, Bengal, henceforth, would encompass Calcutta and the western territories, roughly comprising current-day West Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa. The new province, Eastern Bengal and Assam, would embrace modern Bangladesh and the northeastern states of India (then called Assam). More specifically, the new province would consist of the state of Hill Tripura, the Divisions of Chittagong, Dhaka (the new capital), Rajshahi (excluding Darjeeling) and the district of Malda incorporated with Assam province. Bengal had to surrender not only these large eastern territories but also the Central Provinces and the five Hindi-speaking states. To compromise, it was offered Sambalpur and five minor Oriya-speaking states from the Central Provinces on the western side. After the partition, the area would be decreased to 141,580 sq. miles and the population to 54 million, of which 42 million would be Hindus and 9 million Muslims. The new province would be smaller; 106,540 sq. miles with a population of 31 million, where 18 million would be Muslims and 12 million Hindus. Governing would happen through a Legislative Council, a Board of Revenue of two members, and the Calcutta High Court would continue its jurisdiction of the region. Eastern Bengal and Assam was claimed to have a clearly designated western boundary and well defined characteristics, including geographical, ethnological, linguistic and social. On July 19, 1905, the government of India promulgated their final decision, and the partition was brought into effect three months later, on October 16.
             Although Curzon argued that the partition was based upon administrative principles, in private the British officials were more candid about their motives. Home Secretary to the government of India, H. Risley, summed it up :

             "Bengal united is a power; Bengal divided will pull in several different ways... One of our main objects is to split up and thereby weaken a solid body of opponents to our rule... A separate administration, a separate high court and a separate university at Dacca would give extra opportunities to the Muslim middle class to emerge from their backward state and weaken the economic base of the Hindu middle classes. The Hindu zamindari patrons to the Congress would find the Muslim peasantry ranged against them... It would divide the nationalist ranks once and for all."

             Naturally, the partition sparked much anger and rebellion, creating a huge political crisis. To be fair, Bengal, with 85 million people, was admittedly too large for a single province. However, the line drawn by Lord Curzon's government cut through the heart of the Bengali-speaking "nation", and the growing nationalist sentiment regarded the action as an attempt to divide the nationalist movement along lines of class and religion. The western Bengal's bhadralok ("respectable people"), or the intellectual Hindu leadership of Calcutta, were now tied to the much less politically active Bihari and Oriya speaking Hindus to their north and south. The majority Muslim agriculturalists were now separated in the east, making the partition favorable for them. Before the partition, Western Bengal was developed and industrialized, as it was the first place to be colonized; Eastern Bengal, on the other hand, suffered more from pirates, poor peasantry, and few funds for education, so dreary that it was dreaded as a place of banishment. The partition helped boost Bengali literature and language, and efforts were also made to uplift the social, economic, and educational status of the Muslims. Consequentially, the Hindus rose in unprecedented agitation.
             The leadership of the Indian National Congress viewed the partition as an attempt to "divide and rule", and also as proof of the government's animosity toward the vocal bhadraloks. This belief was substantiated by the fact that the government had ignored countless pleas and petitions signed by tens of thousands of Calcutta's leading citizens. The Hindus of the region, who worshipped the mother goddess, saw the partition as a vivisection of their "mother province", and protested in mass rallies before and after the division, which attracted millions of people who, until then, did not participate in politics. During the same period, India saw a flourishing of nationalist literature. The Muslims in East Bengal considered partition as a wider opportunity for education and employment, but the people in Western Bengal were against the division. After the partition was revoked, conflict between Muslims and Hindus resulted in new laws having to be introduced so as to satisfy the political needs of both groups.
             The new tide of nationalist sentiment, born in Bengal, spread all over India. The song "Bande Martam" ("Hail to Thee Mother"), composed by Bengal's own Rabindranath Tagore, became the Congress' national anthem. The Bengali Hindus initiated a boycott of British-made goods, expressing their firm resolve by burning bonfires of Lancashire-made textiles. Such bonfires, similar to ancient sacrificial altars, aroused fellow Hindus in places as far as Poona, Madras, and Mumbai to follow suit. This was the beginning of the swadeshi movement, a vow to use only domestic cottons and clothing made in India. Simple home-spun, hand-woven saris gained popularity and became high fashion, first in Calcutta and then all across the nation. The swadeshi movement soon stimulated indigenous businesses in various fields.
             Demands for national education also increased swiftly after partition. The boycott of British goods was extended to English schools and college classrooms. Politically active Indians began to emulate the so-called "Indian Jesuits" - Vishnu Krishna Chiplunkar (1850?82), Gopal Ganesh Agarkar (1856?95), Tilak, and Gokhale - who were pioneers in the founding of indigenous educational institutions in the Deccan in the 1880s. In addition, a major demand to be added to the agenda of the Congress was "swaraj", or self-rule, soon to become the most popular mantra of Indian nationalism. In the presidential address of Dadabhai Naoroji, Swaraj was first articulated as the Congress' goal at its Calcutta session a year after the partition was enacted. Opposition by the Indian National Congress was led by Sir Henry Cotton, who had been Chief Commissioner of Assam, but Curzon was not to be moved. Later, Cotton was successful in ousting the first lieutenant-governor of East Bengal, Sir Bampfylde Fuller.
             Such widespread unrest, attempted assassination by revolutionary terrorists, and growing activities of political associations forced Lord Curzon to withdraw the plan. The two parts of Bengal were reunited in 1911, but the non-Bengali portions of the province were separated, creating two additional provinces; Bihar and Orissa, and Assam. The administrative capital of British India was moved from Calcutta to New Delhi. The new division was based on linguistic, rather than religious grounds. However, the Muslims were disappointed by the ending of the partition, and the event proved to be a catalyst in their demanding a need for a separate homeland.

Formation of an All-India Muslim League
             Between the 8th and 14th century, Islamic rule was established across northern India. In the 16th century the Muslim Mughal Empire ruled most of India, but after its decline the British took over in the 19th century. The now out-of-center and minority Muslims were dis-empowered and discontent. In British India 40% of the population were Muslims, but they were the majority of the population in places like East Bengal, Kashmir valley, Baluchistan, North-West Frontier Province, the Punjab region, and the Sindh region of the Bombay Presidency.
             When the Indian National Congress was founded in 1885, Indians had been provided with a forum to express their opinions. However, most Muslim leaders were wary of the Hindu dominating the conference and were reluctant to join the Congress, and the Congress did not make any special effort to embrace the Muslim Community. Thus the Muslim Community was unable to find an outlet for their opinions.
             There are three main reasons why the Muslim nationalist movement emerged in 1906, later than the Hindu movement. With their own religious schools, Muslims were less quickly influenced by western thought, an important characteristic of the leaders of the revolutionaries. Furthermore, the Muslims in the Indian National League were becoming alienated by the increasing Hindu nationalism. Thirdly, and perhaps the catalyst to make the issue rise to the surface, was the cancellation of the first partition of Bengal.
             Tides rose in 1900, when the British administration of the United Provinces (now Uttar Pradesh), then the biggest state in India, acceded to Hindu demands and made Hindi the official language. Muslims feared that this would aggravate the suppression of Muslim culture and religion. Muslims wished their voices to be separately recognized from the Hindus, and a British official, Sir Percival Griffiths, wrote of these perceptions: "the Muslim belief that their interest must be regarded as completely separate from those of the Hindus, and that no fusion of the two communities was possible." The partition of Bengal in 1905 deepened religious strife, and the relationship between Hindus and Muslims came to its worst.
             An example of Muslim effort to safeguard their interest was the Simla Deputation; Muslim leaders drew up a plan for separate electorates in their community, and presented it to the Viceroy Lord Minto at Simla, on October 1, 1906. It consisted of 70 representatives, representing different parts of the Muslim body, and was headed by Sir Aga Khan, who read the address. The address stressed that the Muslim community should not be estimated by its numerical strength alone, but in terms of its political importance and services rendered to the Empire.
             As a result of the mounting Muslim outcries, the founding meeting of the All-India Muslim League was held on December 30, 1906, at the annual All India Muhammadan Educational conference in Dhaka. Almost 3,000 delegates attended the session, making it the largest-ever representative gathering of Muslim India. Hosted by Nawab Saimullah Khan, and presided over by Nawab Vigar-ul-Mulk, the convention presented a proposal to establish a political party to safeguard the interests of the Muslims, heretofore the All India Muslim League, and declared :

             "The Musalmans (Muslims) are only a fifth in number as compared with the total population of the country, and it is manifest that if at any remote period the British government ceases to exist in India, then the rule of India would pass into the hands of that community which is nearly four times as large as ourselves . . . our life, our property, our honour, and our faith will all be in great danger, when even now that a powerful British administration is protecting its subjects, we the Musalmans have to face most serious difficulties in safe-guarding our interests from the grasping hands of our neighbors."

             The three objectives of the association were to protect Muslim interests, to counter Congress influences, and to support the British administration. On December 20th, 1907, the first meeting of this new entity was held in Karachi.
             For the next hundred years, the history of AIML can be described as tumultuous; while the party and its ideologies gained significance in the Indian nationalist scene, it also underwent various evolutions as it struggled to represent often dueling agendas. The AIML played a crucial role not only in the anti-colonial movement but also in the partitioning of India and the creation of Pakistan and Bangladesh.

"Divide and Rule"
             The partition can be blamed on various factors, but the main one is the rift between Hindus and Muslims. "Divide and Rule" is a generic term meaning a policy of ****. Often, it is associated with British policy in India, and is regarded responsible to a certain extent for deepening the hostility between Hindus and Muslims.
             The history of British rule in India is long and complex, but one aspect was constant throughout; divide, co-opt, and rule. Although the British did not single-handedly create the rift, up to that time, those who followed the customs of Islam and Hinduism did not constitute exclusive groups. Neither shared a strong sense of common identity against other groups. The British worked to mold the two categories into something real. The idea of a "Muslim" political community was especially important, because once the Muslims had been invented, it also created the Hindus. The British implied that they had been in conflict, until the British wisely were able to separate them in a benevolent order. In the early days of the empire, following the Sepoy Mutiny, Britain used the policy to weaken the communal unity. One military leader said "I wish to have a different and rival spirit in different regiments, so that Sikh might fire into Hindoo, Goorkha into either, without any scruple in case of need." Both Hindus and Muslims participated in the Sepoy Mutiny but Muslims were in the forefront. Hence, after 1857 the British policy was pro-Hindu and anti-Muslim. Consequentially, Hindus made rapid gains economically, politically, educationally, and socially. The divide strengthened Brahman-led high-caste establishment enmity for Islam, which the British engendered and nurtured through both their policies and historians implying that most troubles of Hindus and loss of power to Brahman-based order was because of Muslim invasions and conquest. On the other hand, Muslims slowly lost the power and wealth they had accumulated during their rule in India. Although they were the minority, the Muslims had been the rulers for many centuries before the British.
             The tactic of favoring Muslims from Hindus began at the end of the 19th century and developed further at the start of the 20th century against the stirrings of the Indian nationalist movement. As can be seen in H. Risley's quote, the first partition of Bengal is a representative example of a "divde and rule" policy, one favorable to the Muslims. When the Muslim League was founded in 1906, its objectives included: "to promote loyalty to the British government, to protect and advance the political rights and interests of Musalmans of India and respectfully represent their needs and aspirations to government". In order to win the Muslims over, the British helped establish the M.A.O. College at Aligarh and supported the All-India Muslim Conference, both institutions where leaders of the Muslim League and the ideology of Pakistan emerged. The British also extended the scope and nature of elections in 1909, introducing one of the League's central demands; separate electorates for Hindus and Muslims at the provincial level. Thus the idea of the separateness of Muslims in India was built into the electoral process of India.
             When the Congress launched the Quit India Movement in 1942, the leaders were almost immediately arrested, unleashing an enormous rebellion. This rebellion enhanced the position of the Muslim League in the eyes of the British authorities, because of its compliant stance. Britain did not openly repudiate the League's demand for the creation of an independent Muslim state because it helped them to renounce Congress' claim to speak for the majority of Indians when it demanded independence.
             However, when the Indian independence movement reached its peaks ? in 1905-08, 1919-22, 1928-34, 1942 and 1945-46, there was always a certain amount of united action by Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs that the British repression failed to halt. For example, in 1946, Royal Indian Navy units in Bombay mutinied over racist abused and demanded the release of all army prisoners. The leaders of the mutiny tied together the flags of the Congress, the Muslim League and the Communist Party to indicate their unity and raised them on the mastheads of the fleet. The mutiny spread to naval bases all over the country.

Hindu-Muslim Relations
             An event in history can often be attributed to various causes, and the partition of India is one such event. However, one reason stands out above others; the conflict between Hindus and Muslims, or more specifically, the National Congress and the All-India Muslim League, that continues even until today.
             Although India is known for its religious and cultural tolerance, unlike previous settlers in India, the Muslim immigrants were not fully absorbed into Hindu society. A cultural interchange existed between Hindus and Muslims, but no homogeneity emerged. After the First War of Independence in 1857, Hindu middle class began to dominate positions in industry, education, and the civil service. Although in its early years, the National Congress made efforts to include the Muslims in the nationalist movement, its rising power and hostility towards Muslims left Muslims feeling isolated and led to the formation of the Muslim League, after which Hindu-Muslim conflict became increasingly acute. Despite the peacemaking attempted by leaders like Gandhi, for many Hindus in the freedom movement, there was no room for Muslims. During the limited period of the Congress' rule, Muslims suffered discrimination, such as the banning of building new mosques.
             The visible trend of the two major communities going against each other caused deep concern to leaders of all-India stature, and they tried to bring the Congress and Muslim League on one platform. The leading figure was Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. After the European powers' aggressive designs against the Ottoman Empire and North Africa, the Muslims were receptive to the idea of collaboration with the Hindus. The Congress-Muslim league rapprochement was achieved at the Lucknow session in 1916, where a joint scheme of reforms was adopted. In the Lucknow Pact, the Congress accepted the principle of separate electorates and in return for 'weightage' to the Muslims of the Muslims in the minority provinces, the Muslims agreed to surrender their slight majorities in regions such as Punjab and Bengal. The post-Lucknow Pact period was one of amity, which reached its climax during the Khilafat and the Non-cooperation Movements. The Khilafat movement, which took place after World War I, was led by Maulana Muhammad Ali and Maulana Shaukat Ali, to protect the Ottoman Empire from dismemberment. Gandhi linked the Khilafat movement to his concept of swaraj (self-government) so that more Hindus would join the movement. Although the movement failed in reaching its objectives, it had a big impact on the Muslims. Being a purely Islamic issue, it created momentary solidarity, and produced a class of Muslim leaders experienced in mobilizing the public.
             The collapse of the Khilafat Movement also meant the collapse of friendly relations between Muslims and Hindu. The Hindus promoted two anti-Muslim ideas; Shudhi, designed to convert Muslims to Hinduism, and Sangathan, creating Hindu solidarity against Muslims. The Muslims sponsored similar organizations in retaliation.
             In the 1920s, communal riots became the norm. The Muslims revised their demands, to name a few: they now demanded to preserve the majority they had in the Punjab and Bengal, separation of Sind from Bombay (Sind would have a Muslim-majority populace), making Baluchistan a separate province. The Muslim leadership was divided ? part of them, to reach the above-mentioned goals, cooperated with the British Government, while another part of them boycotted the cooperation and instead held hands with the Nehru Committee to draft a constitution for India. However, Muslims were put off by the fact that the Nehru Plan contained bias towards the Muslims and the Congress refused to rewrite the plan.
             At this point, several leaders proposed the separation of Muslim India. The most well-known is Allama Muhammad Iqbal, who, in his presidential address to the Muslim League in 1930, proposed a separate Muslim state, at least in the Muslim majority regions of the northwest. Later he also included the areas in the northeast. Although not generally popular at first, the idea was ardently supported by Indian Muslim students in England, who were the first to use the name Pakistan: land of the pure, from the Urdu pak, =pure and stan, =land.
             From 1930 to 1932, three Round Table Conferences were held in London to resolve the Indian independence/partition problem. The leaders of both sides could not agree on a formula, and the British Government had to announce a 'Communal Award', which they introduced in the Government of India Act of 1935. Before the elections under the new Act were to be held, Jinnah, who had returned to India in 1935 after five years of self-exile in England, reorganized the Muslim League. However, when the elections were held in 1937, Hindus won the majority of seats, alienating the League, which was unable to unite even in provinces with Muslim majorities. After the elections there was continuing friction between the two groups; Congress refused to form a coalition government in the United Provinces, asking the League to join the Congress instead.
             The 1930s was the decade in which Muslim leaders fully developed the idea of wishing their separate identity to be preserved in separate boundaries. During 1937-39, several Muslim leaders presented schemes of partitioning the sub-continent. In 1940, at its yearly session, the Muslim League presented the Lahore Resolution, also referred to as the Pakistan Resolution, in which Jinnah demanded a separate homeland for the Muslims in their majority regions. Two years later, the British sent the Cripps Mission to India to conduct negotiations between all political parties and set up a cabinet government. Both the Congress and the League rejected these proposals, but the principle of secession was conceded. After the failure, a promiment Congress leader, C. Rajagopalachari suggested a formula for a separate Muslim state in the Working Committee of the Congress. This was rejected but later on formed the basis of the Gandhi-Jinnah talks in 1944. In 1942 the Congress also adopted the Quit India Resolution to rid India of British rule. Consequentially, Congress leaders, including Gandhi were arrested for interfering with the war effort. This gave the Muslim League a chance to gain more power, and when Gandhi was released in prison in 1944 and the Gandhi-Jinnah talks were held, Muslims saw it as an acknowledgement that Jinnah represented all Indian Muslims.
             The Second World War was the peak of Pakistan demand. The party branched out to remote parts of India, and pamphlets, books, magazines, and newspapers were widely distributed to explain the Pakistan demand. In the 1945 elections, the Muslim League swept all the thirty seats in the central legislature and gained victory in the provincial elections. The next year the British Cabinet announced its own plan for the subcontinent; three separate territories, two of them made up of Muslim majority provinces, held together in a loose Confederation. The Muslims accepted the plan, strategically considering it as a close step to reaching their objective of building Pakistan, but the Congress realized what the plan meant for the Congress and did not give their support. Frustrated by the negotiations for an independent state, Jinnah launched "Direct Action Day", to rally support for an independent Pakistan. This unleashed an unprecedented wave of communal riots, and in Calcutta, where events were most bloody, 10,000 people were killed in a day. The Calcutta killings were followed by riots across the sub-continent, and immediate responsibility varied from area to area as fearful Hindus exacted revenge when they heard stories of massacres by Muslims and vice versa. The communal groups were reaching their height of animosity, yet general rebellions continued. The strike wave of 1946 surpassed all previous records. The Empire was crumbling and the British decided that partition was inevitable, and decided to get out. In October, an Interim Government was formed, but it soon collapsed due to lack of agreement. By the end of the year communal violence was escalating, and the British government began to fear that India would descend into civil war.
             Lord Wavell, the then representative of the British government, put forward a breakdown plan as a safeguard in the event of a deadlock. However, he considered partition to be a bad idea, and believed that once the disadvantages of the Pakistan scheme were exposed, Jinnah would see the advantages of working for the best possible term inside a united India. He wrote :

             "Unfortunately the fact that Pakistan, when soberly and realistically examined, is found to be a very unattractive proposition, will place the Moslems in a very disadvantageous position for making satisfactory terms with India for a Federal Union."

             In his report, Wavell claimed that if Pakistan were to be established, it would have no manufacturing or industrial areas of importance: no ports except Karachi, and no rail centers. Furthermore, the distance between East and West Pakistan would make it difficult to defend and maintain.
             The situation changed when Lord Mountbatten, the last Viceroy of India, replaced Lord Wavell in 1947. Mountbatten's first proposed solution for India, known as the 'May Plan', was rejected by Nehru who claimed that it would cause the 'balkanisation of India'. On June 3, 1947, Lord Mountbatten announced his new plan. The salient features were :

             Mountbatten's formula was to divide India but retain maximum unity. The country would be partitioned but so would Punjab and Bengal, so that the limited Pakistan that emerged would meet both the Congress and League's position to some extent. The League's position on Pakistan was conceded to the extent that it would be created, but the Congress position on unity would be taken into account to make Pakistan as small as possible. Whether it was ruling out independence for the princes or unity for Bengal or Hyderabad's joining up with Pakistan instead of India, Mountbatten firmly supported Congress on these issues.

      2. The Mountbatten Plan sought to effect an early transfer of power on the basis of Dominion status to two successor states, India and Pakistan. For Britain, Dominion Status offered a chance of keeping India in the commonwealth for India's economic strength and defence potential were deemed sounder and Britain had a greater value of trade and investment there.
      3. The rationale for the early date for transfer of power was securing Congress agreement to Dominion status. The additional benefit was that the British could escape responsibility for the rapidly deteriorating communal situation.
      4. A referendum was to be held in NWEP to ascertain whether the people in the area wanted to join India or not. The princely states would have the option of joining either of the two dominions or to remain independent. The Provinces of Assam, Punjab and Bengal were also to be divided. A boundary commission was to be set up to determine the boundaries of these states.

             The assemblies of west Punjab, East Bengal, and Sind; and parts of Baluchistan voted for Pakistan. On August 14, 1947, Pakistan came into existence, followed by the birth of the new Republic of India the next day.

External reasons for Independence
             Outwardly, India was appalled when the England Viceroy Victor Alexander John Hope declared India's entrance in World War II on the side of the allies without consulting either the Hindu or Muslim parties. This example goes to show the extent of de facto English rule in India regardless the Government of India Act. However, the Congress quickly responded by using the war to force the British to negotiate, demanding immediate independence. The British, in an urgent position, offered independence at the end of the war. The Congress cooperated for much of the war, perhaps seeing a worse future for India if Britain lost the war, which seemed quite possible as the decade turned.
             An explanation for the chaos in which the two nations came into being is Britain's hurried withdrawal with the realization that it could not afford its vast empire. The main cause for this was pressure from the rising tide of Indian nationalism, which made running the empire both politically and economically challenging and cost-ineffective. Such pressure came not only from the large organizations like the Congress but also from the acts of peasants and tribes, trade union strikes, and individual acts of subversion and violence. A second reason was the attack of Japanese expansionism, which extended vastly in Asia, encroaching British territory such as Burma and stretching as far as India. Although the British were successful in defending their territories, fighting itself had consumed a lot of energy. Furthermore, ever since Woodrow Wilson's call for decolonization and national self-determination and leading up to isolationism, US foreign policy was pressuring for the end of western imperialism, and it seemed only a matter of time before India gained independence. There were further symptoms. European capital investment declined in the inter-war years; India, a debtor country in World War I was a creditor in World War II. After World War I, applications to the Indian Civil Service (ICS) declined dramatically. Also important was the situation of Britain at the timing of Indian independence. World War II had left Britain victorious but exhausted, in deep financial trouble. The Labour party had a tradition of supporting Indian claims for self-rule, and the party was elected to power in 1945 after a war which had greatly weakened Britain. With all of the factors above, it was no surprise that the British Raj unraveled quickly in the 1940s. Britain's strategy of a gradual devolution of power, its representation to Indians through small, successive constitutional acts had gathered a momentum of its own.

Immediate Consequences of the Partition
             However, the situation was far from settled. The act of partition threw the area into turmoil, as millions of both Muslims and Hindus living on the wrong side of the border fled their homes. Extreme nationalists from both sides caused extreme violence, taking thousands of lives. On January 1948, a Hindu militant who opposed Gandhi's campaign for peace and reconciliation assassinated the most famous victim.
             The newly drawn border caused trouble, as expected, especially in the province of Kashmir. In Kashmir, the Hindu ruler had hesitated in deciding whether to join Pakistan or India. When his Muslim-majority populace protested in violence, he chose India, and within a year of gaining independence, India and Pakistan were at war in Kashmir.

Notes

(1)      The Battle of Plassey was a decisive British East India Company victory over the Nawab of Bengal and his French allies, establishing Company rule in India and British rule over much of South Asia for the next 190 years.
(2)      In 1857, a large part of the Indian army rebelled against the British authorities; the ensuing bloodshed sent shockwaves throughout colonial Britain.
(3)      Hyderabad, under the rule of Nizams, was the largest princely state in the erstwhile Indian Empire.
(4)      "The White Man's Burden" is a poem by the English poet Rudyard Kipling. The phrase "white man's burden" came to be known as a characterization for imperialism that justified the policy as a noble enterprise
(5)      Assam is now a northeastern state of India with its capital at Dispur, located south of the eastern Himalayas




Partition of Bengal (as of October 24th 2008) . . . go to Teacher's comment

Background
             I visited Kolkata for three years in a row. Kolkata, or Calcutta, was the center of British rule in India under the East India Company. However, after Crown rule Kolkata was stolen of its capital status by Delhi, and although it is still a big city, it's hard to feel the same grandeur that one would have felt back in the 19th century. Driving past the roads one can still see the worn but magnificent buildings of the day, which at a glimpse might stand out among with the South Asian surroundings but still have somehow managed to fit in. The buildings have been carefully preserved and are still being used today as memorials, museums, and even houses. This stood out in contrast with the buildings in Korea built under Japanese rule, most of which have been torn down in an effort to erase the traces of humiliating submission.
             Unlike many parts of India, in Kolkata people greeted me by saying "Assalam allai kum" instead of "Namastey". I was intrigued by the strong Bengali population, and the process of how so many of them had come to settle near the border. Although I had only a vague sense of how India became what it is today, I could not help comparing the process to the partition, or should I say separation, of the Korean peninsula.
             And this is how I became interested in what you are about to read...

1. A Quick Overview of British Colonialism in India
             Centuries ago, India was a fertile land with many riches like Indian cotton, jute, indigo, tea and, temporarily, opium, and raw materials, which Europeans sought. Different European powers competed to gain control over the vast region, especially the French and the British. After the Battle of Plassey in 1757, the British East India Company gained control over the Indian subcontinent. Soon, the East India Company took the more commercially fertile regions under direct rule, and controlled the remaining regions under indirect rule through princes. In 1858, after the Sepoy Rebellion, or the First War of Indian Independence, the company went bankrupt and British Crown rule was established in India.
             It is important to note that the Raj (in Hindi meaning 'to rule' or 'kingdom') never encompassed the entire land mass of the sub-continent. About forty percent of the land was still governed by over 560 principalities, and their respective rulers entered into treaties of mutual cooperation with the Raj. Although the Sepoy Mutiny had helped to deepen racial rifts between ordinary Indians and Anglo-Saxons, the conservative elites of princely India and the wealthy landholders held close ties with the British. The degree of wealth was immense; for example, Hyderabad was bigger than England and Wales combined, and its ruler Nizam was the richest man in the world. During the two World Wars, people like Nizam would provide Britain with money and soldiers, both of whom proved to be crucial. They would also stand up against the nationalist movements during the late 19th century and early 20th. Alongside a racial chasm, social segregation was developed, which is adeptly captured in E.M Forster's 'A Passage to India.'
             A main difference between the rule under the E.I.C and the rule under the crown was clearly shown in the types of policies that each pursued. Although the E.I.C was extremely wealthy, it was a private company, whose main pursuit was exploitation of goods and trade. It did not have the resources or time to start developing infrastructure within India. The strength of a grip on a country is much stronger when a government takes place of a private company. A government has the stamina to wait a few years until profits come out. Thus the government undertook steps to develop India's infrastructure. Delhi was anointed as the new capital, railways were constructed, and large scale irrigation projects were undertaken.
             In the 'White Man's Burden', Rudyard Kipling emphasized such benefits of colonial rule. He considered the British to be morally superior; for instance, the British had suppressed the practice of burning widows. However, while the British criticized the divisions of the caste system, they themselves valued precedence and class. Rudyard's books also depicted the gulf between the white community and the Anglo-Indians, who the whites considered to be racially 'impure.' Indians were discriminated against in their own country, especially being denied career opportunities, and such discontent grew from a rumble to a forceful movement for independence.

2. The First Partition of Bengal

(Ewon - It shows how separated the people were, and underrepresented.
To mr. ganse- they say they partitioned because of inefficient administrative, but then how did they administrate further regions? After all , Calcutta is a part of Bengal. )

             People usually acquaint the partitioning of India as a process that happened during and after Independence. However, an attempt was made to partition Bengal much earlier, in 1905. This first attempt to part Bengal was executed by the British, nominally to enhance administrative feasibility, rather than as a result of ethnic conflict. The Bengal province stretched over 189,000 square miles, extending to present day Bangladesh and parts of Assam, with a population of 85 million. Due to poor communications, eastern Bengal was almost isolated from its western counterpart, and could not be properly monitored from Calcutta, the center of British rule in India. Earlier attempts to relieve this problem included placing the upper provinces under a lieutenant governor in 1836. Eighteen years later, the Governor-General-In-Council was relieved of the direct administration of Bengal. In 1874, Assam was severed from Bengal to form a Chief-Commissionership.
             Actual partitioning of the region, as a means of relieving administrative problems, was first considered in 1903 by British Indian Governor General Lord Curzon, a man who considered himself an expert in Indian affairs. Lord Curzon planned of splitting Bengal into East and West Bengal, with Calcutta being the capital of West Bengal, and Dhaka the capital of East Bengal. Additional proposals suggested the separation of Chittagong and the districts of Dhaka and Mymensingh from Bengal and annexing them into the province of Assam. In January of 1904, the government officially published the idea. To assess public opinion on the partition, Lord Curzon made an official tour to eastern districts of Bengal, consulting with leading personalities and delivering speeches at Dhaka, Mymensingh, and Chittagong to explain his stand.
             According to Lord Curzon¡¯s plan, Bengal, henceforth, would encompass Calcutta and the western territories, roughly comprising current-day West Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa. The new province, Eastern Bengal and Assam, would embrace modern Bangladesh and the northeastern states of India (then called Assam). More specifically, the new province would consist of the state of Hill Tripura, the Divisions of Chittagong, Dhaka (the new capital), Rajshahi (excluding Darjeeling) and the district of Malda incorporated with Assam province. Bengal had to surrender not only these large eastern territories but also the Central Provinces and the five Hindi-speaking states. To compromise, it was offered Sambalpur and five minor Oriya-speaking states from the Central Provinces on the western side. After the partition, the area would be decreased to 141,580 sq. miles and the population to 54 million, of which 42 million would be Hindus and 9 million Muslims. The new province would be smaller; 106,540 sq. miles with a population of 31 million, where 18 million would be Muslims and 12 million Hindus. Governing would happen through a Legislative Council, a Board of Revenue of two members, and the Calcutta High Court would continue its jurisdiction of the region. Eastern Bengal and Assam was claimed to have a clearly designated western boundary and well defined characteristics, including geographical, ethnological, linguistic and social. On July 19, 1905, the government of India promulgated their final decision, and the partition was brought into effect three months later, on October 16.
             Although Curzon argued that the partition was based upon administrative principles, the partition sparked much anger and rebellion, creating a huge political crisis. To be fair, Bengal, with 85 million people, was admittedly too large for a single province. However, the line drawn by Lord Curzon¡¯s government cut through the heart of the Bengali-speaking ¡°nation¡±, and the growing nationalist sentiment regarded the action as an attempt to divide the nationalist movement along lines of class and religion. The western Bengal¡¯s bhadralok (¡°respectable people¡±), or the intellectual Hindu leadership of Calcutta, were now tied to the much less politically active Bihari and Oriya speaking Hindus to their north and south. The majority Muslim agriculturalists were now separated in the east. The leadership of the Indian National Congress viewed the partition as an attempt to ¡°divide and rule¡±, and also as proof of the government¡¯s animosity toward the vocal bhadraloks. This belief was substantiated by the fact that the government had ignored countless pleas and petitions signed by tens of thousands of Calcutta¡¯s leading citizens. The Hindus of the region, who worshipped the mother goddess, saw the partition as a vivisection of their ¡°mother province¡±, and protested in mass rallies before and after the division, which attracted millions of people who, until then, did not participate in politics. During the same period, India saw a flourishing of nationalist literature. The Muslims in East Bengal considered partition as a wider opportunity for education and employment, but the people in Western Bengal were against the division. After the partition was revoked, conflict between Muslims and Hindus resulted in new laws having to be introduced so as to satisfy the political needs of both groups.
             The new tide of nationalist sentiment, born in Bengal, spread all over India. The song "Bande Martam" ("Hail to Thee Mother"), composed by Bengal's own Rabindranath Tagore, became the Congress¡¯ national anthem. The Bengali Hindus initiated a boycott of British-made goods, expressing their firm resolve by burning bonfires of Lancashire-made textiles. Such bonfires, similar to ancient sacrificial altars, aroused fellow Hindus in places as far as Poona, Madras, and Mumbai to follow suit. This was the beginning of the swadeshi movement, a vow to use only domestic cottons and clothing made in India. Simple home-spun, hand-woven saris gained popularity and became high fashion, first in Calcutta and then all across the nation. The swadeshi movemen soon stimulated indigenous businesses in various fields.
             Demands for national education also increased swiftly after partition. The boycott of British goods was extended to English schools and college classrooms. Politically active Indians began to emulate the so-called "Indian Jesuits" - Vishnu Krishna Chiplunkar (1850?82), Gopal Ganesh Agarkar (1856?95), Tilak, and Gokhale - who were pioneers in the founding of indigenous educational institutions in the Deccan in the 1880s. In addition, a major demand to be added to the agenda of the Congress was "swaraj", or self-rule, soon to become the most popular mantra of Indian nationalism. In the presidential address of Dadabhai Naoroji, Swaraj was first articulated as the Congress¡¯ goal at its Calcutta session a year after the partition was enacted. Opposition by the Indian National Congress was led by Sir Henry Cotton, who had been Chief Commissioner of Assam, but Curzon was not to be moved. Later, Cotton was successful in ousting the first lieutenant-governor of East Bengal, Sir Bampfylde Fuller.
             Such widespread unrest, attempted assassination by revolutionary terrorists, and growing activities of political associations forced Lord Curzon to withdraw the plan. The two parts of Bengal were reunited in 1911, but the non-Bengali portions of the province were separated, creating two additional provinces; Bihar and Orissa, and Assam. The administrative capital of British India was moved from Calcutta to New Delhi. The new division was based on linguistic, rather than religious grounds.



Working Table of Contents (as of October 24th 2008) . . . go to Teacher's comment

     I. Introduction
     II. Contents
         II.1 India
             II.1.1 Achieving Independence
             II.1.2 Partition of India
             III.1.3 Political Integration of India
             III.1.4 India under Nehru
             III.1.5 India Today
         II.2 South Korea
             II.2.1 The Road to Independence
             II.2.2 The Korean War
             II.2.3 Urbanization and Development
             II.2.4 Korea Today
         II.3 Compare and Contrast
             II.3.1 The After-Effects of Colonialism
                 II.3.1.1 Domestic Tension
                 II.3.1.2 Attitude toward Colonial Rule
             II.3.2 Development of the Country
                 II.3.2.1 Long-Term Rulers
                 II.3.2.2 Accomplishing Democracy
     III. Conclusion



Bibliography (as of October 24th 2008) . . . go to Teacher's comment

I. Books
1.      Smith, Vincent A. The Oxford History of India, Oxford University Press 1988
2.      Masani, Zareer and Mark Tully. India: Forty years of Independence, George Braziller, 1988
3.      Barthwal C.P., National Integration in India Since Independence, New Royal Book Company, 2000.
4.      Bhatia, H.S. End of British Power and Partition of India (ISBN: 8171003737), Deep & Deep, 2001
5.      Mahajan, Sucheta. Independence and Partition The Erosion of Colonial Power in India (ISBN: 0761993681), Sage Publications, 2000.
6.      Inder, Anita Singh.Partition of India (ISBN: 8123746962), National Book Trust, 2006

7.      Chakravarty, Debadutta. Muslim Separatism and the Partition of India (ISBN: 8126902388) Atlantic Publishers and Distributors, 2003
8.      The New International Year Book, 1907. Article India

II. Articles
9.      The Economic and Social Impact of Colonial Rule in India Chapter 3 of Class Structure and Economic Growth: India & Pakistan since the Moghuls / Maddison (1971)
10.      JSTOR: The Partition of India. Policies and Perspectives 1935-1947
11.      JSTOR: India's Partition: Process, Strategy and Mobilization
12.      JSTOR: The Destiny of Indian Muslims
13.      JSTOR: The Republic of India
14.      JSTOR: The Science of Empire: Scientific Knowledge, Civilization, and Colonial Rule in India by Zaheer Baber, Canadian Journal of Sociology
15.      JSTOR: India and Pakistan: A Continent Decides

III. Websites
16.      Independence of India : http://www.indianchild.com/independence_of_india.htm
17.      Political integration of India, Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_integration_of_India
18.      Partition of Bengal and Anti Partition Movement http://freepedia.in/Partition_of_Bengal_and_Anti_Partition_Movement
19.      History of the Republic of India, Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Republic_of_India#Aftermath_of_partition
20.      Partition of India, Wikipedia : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Partition_of_India
21.      The Hidden Story of Partition and its Legacies, BBC http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/modern/partition1947_01.shtml
22.      Indian independence movement http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Independence_Movement
23.      From Empire to Independence: The British Raj in India 1858-1947 By Dr Chandrika Kaul http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/modern/independence1947_01.shtml
24.      Post-Colonialism: Definition, Development and Examples from India http://www.nilsole.net/referate/post-colonialism-definition-development-and-examples-from-india/
25.      Pakistan and India: Political Legacies from the Colonial Era The Basham Lecture, ANU Public Lecture Series 2002 http://dspace.anu.edu.au/html/1885/42047/bash2002.html
26.      The Partition of India - Good references http://www.english.emory.edu/Bahri/Part.html
27.      Narratives : History of South Asia http://www.zum.de/whkmla/sat/texts/narrsasia.html
28.      History ? British imperial power, 1858?1947 ? Indian nationalism and the British response, 1885?1920 ? Origins of the nationalist movement http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/285248/India/47041/Indian-nationalism-and-the-British-response-1885-1920#tab=active~checked%2Citems~checked&title=India%20%3A%3A%20Indian%20nationalism%20and%20the%20British%20response%2C%201885-1920%20--%20Britannica%20Online%20Encyclopedia
29.      Partition of Bengal http://www.mapsofworld.com/cities/india/kolkata/partition-bengal.html
30.      East Bengal, Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_Bengal
31.      Partition of Bengal (1905), Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1905_Partition_of_Bengal
32.      One Hundred Years of All India Muslim League http://muslimleague.uchicago.edu/Welcome.html
33.      Establishment of All India Muslim League [1906] http://www.storyofpakistan.com/articletext.asp?artid=A031
34.      Muslim League, Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_League
35.      Lahore Resolution, Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_League