Superficial and little knowledge, wrong and mischievously created perceptions and the hangovers from Partition days are the root causes of regular anti Muslim violence in India, occasional attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh, and the regular harassment of Hindu in Pakistan, mostly in Sindh province, where nearly 94% Pakistani Hindus live
TARIQ FAROOQUI | Caravan Daily
Why 36 Million Muslims were counted in India in 1951 census, if the country was divided on religious lines in 1947? My Hindu friends often, and rightly, ask. They are not Isamophobes but genuine seekers of knowledge. This is a logical and genuine question that must be asked and the answer to which must be found.
Almost all Muslims and secular Hindus say, “These 36 Million Muslim loved India and hence stayed back, even though they had option to migrate to Pakistan.”
All Hindutva fanatics say, “Theses 36 million Muslims should have been sent to Pakistan. It was mistake by Congress and Mahatama Gandhi to keep the problem here.”
Superficial and little knowledge, wrong and mischievously created perceptions and the hangovers from Partition days are the root causes of regular anti Muslim violence in India, occasional attacks on Hindus in Bangladesh, and the regular harassment of Hindu in Pakistan, mostly in Sindh province, where nearly 94% Pakistani Hindus live.
Below is the mathematically correct and historically accurate answer as summary of Partition documents. Please read it carefully with paper, pencil, and calculator in hand.
GUIDELINES FOR PARTITION OF INDIA TO SIR CYRIL RADCLIFFE BY CONGRESS AND MUSLIM LEAGUE IN 1947.
- Basic guidelines to Partition any area was majority and contiguity. This is the principle Sir Cyril Radcliffe used to draw the borders and Partition the subcontinent in 1947.
- Exception to rule if absolutely necessary and for practical reasons.
- Minimum displacement of people from both side.
- States covered were Punjab, NWFP, Sindh, Baluchistan in west
- Bengal and Assam in East.
In 1947 Population of areas now known as Pakistan + Indian + Punjab + Haryana + Himachal Pradesh= 4.5 Crore
Muslims=2.79 Crore, Hindus+ Sikhs= 1.71 Crore
Population of area now Bangladesh + west Bengal= 6 Crore
Muslims ( 54%)= 3.24 Crore, Hindus( 46%) =2.76 Crore
Population of Assam = 1 Crore
Muslims (30%)= 30 Lakhs, Hindus (70%)= 70 Lakhs
I will not discuss Kashmir here as it was Princely state and had the option to either remain independent, or go to either side.
Take point (1), (2) and (3) only.
During the partition, around 6 million Muslims population from Indian Punjab + Haryana + Himachal Pradesh + West Bengal+ Rest of India (very small, around 2-3 Lakhs only) were swapped for 6 million Hindus and Sikhs from areas now Pakistan and Bangladesh.
In 1951, Population of India, West Pakistan, East Pakistan (Now Bangladesh) was as below. One Muslim majority district of Assam, Sylhat, was included in East Pakiatn and one Hindu majority area from East Pakistan, Tripura, was included in India
India Population =360 Million
Muslims 36 Million, Hindus+ Others=324 Millions.
In I951, Population of West Pakistan= 34 Million( Roughly)
Muslims =32 Millions, Hindus+ Sikhs= 2 Million ( Roughly)
In I951, Pop. of E. Pak.( Now B. Desh) = 42 Million( Roughly)
Muslims =32 Millions, Hindus= 10 Million ( Roughly)
Point No (9)
Difference in Population of Muslims living in India in 1951 and Hindus living in Pakistan
=Population of Muslims in India in 1951- Population of Hindus in East and West Pakistan in 1951= 36-12= 24 Million.
Point No (10)
It means 24 Million muslims were suppose to be accommodated in India in exchange of portion of land originally demanded by Muslim League.
It was agreed that Partition must be done with minimum possible displacement. Complete swap was not possible.
Area of India in 1951= 32.87 Lakh Sq Km.
Proportionate area for 24 million extra Muslims=(24/360) X32.87=2.2 Lakh Square Km.
Area of Indian Punjab+ Haryana + Himachal+ Assam =50362+44212+55673+78478= 228085 Sq Km
It is proportionate area nearly equal to extra 24 million population of Muslims in India in 1951.
Point ( 14)
It means Indian Punjab+ Haryana+ Himachal + Assam were included in India in in order to 12 million Hindus to stay back in Pakistan+ Bangladesh and 36 Million Muslims to stay back in India.
I hope no one will parrot any other reason other than impossible and impractical displacement of 12M (Hindus) +36M (Muslims) = 48 M more people in addition of already 12 Million people uprooted and displaced from India and Pakistan respectively.
Had there been 100% swap of Hindu + Sikhs one side and Muslims on other side, new state of India and Pakistan would have collapsed immediately. For this reason, complete partition was not possible and not done.
I hope it must be clear to all. It needs deep study of history and basic mathematical and geographical skills to understand partition.
Tariq Farooqui comes from western Uttar Pradesh in India and has been working in Riyadh for the past 25 years in a senior management position. An alumnus of NIT Calicut, he is a regular contributor on social media. He can be contacted on email@example.com