India became one nation thanks to the rule of the British, who in1757 after winning the famed Battle of Plassey, became the omnipotent power in the subcontinent. They united India as never before and India was the Jewel in the Crown. This was the biggest Empire in Indian history, much bigger than anything that Aurangzeb or Raja Ashok had dreamed.
There’s absolutely not any doubt and it’s been proved historically that India consisted of almost 500 small kingdoms. All of them were united and became a part of what is known as the British Empire. The British left India united but when the time came for them to go away the Indians themselves were not ready to kiss each other and this animosity gave the English an opportunity to divide the country.
With Independence round the corner after the defeat of Hitler, the two major parties the Congress and the Muslim League jostled for power. The Muslim League was led by Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Congress party led by self-styled”Mahatma” Mohandas Gandhi. He was assisted by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel, and Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad. Unfortunately his subsequent consisted of just a few Muslims as almost 90 percent Muslims were with Jinnah.
Recently in a program on TV, Farooq Abdullah, the Ex-Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir clearly stated that partition would not have taken place, but it happened due to the attitude of Nehru and Patel. The Muslim League at its Lahore session of 1940 had in a resolution called for the nation of Pakistan.
Research papers and a witness to the age Leonard Mosley has said that Muhammad Ali had only made the demand for Pakistan as a bargaining chip and he wanted to be the Prime Minister of India. Patel and Nehru along with Azad were opposed to Jinnah as prime minister. At this point, had the Congress party accepted Jinnah as Prime minister, the trailer might not have happened. Nehru, however, wanted to be the Prime Minister of India and the others also wanted some traces of power.
Maulana Azad, in particular, would have been reduced to an outsider as Jinnah had nothing to do with him.
The last days of the Raj
Leonard Mosley in his book”the last days of the Raj” has recorded all that happened in the corridors of power. Jinnah had the aid of the Muslim League, all Dalits and Scheduled Castes and the Princes. These were members of the Prince’s room which were part of parliament. He had a majority and Nehru could not accept this. He and Patel and Azad met Gandhi and convinced him to accept the demand for Pakistan. Nehru had selfish reasons for this as he wanted Jinnah from the way and to his mind creating Pakistan was the only way to send Jinnah from contention as Prime minister of India. These comments were made by the BJP leader Jaswant Singh in his book”Jinnah, India, and Partition”
Rest is all history as the attitude of Jinnah hardened and Nehru had his way and became PM of India and Gandhi accepted Pakistan. It was his biggest defeat.