Hindus and Muslims have been living together in India from immemorial period. Though there were clashes between the two but they were more of the political reasons rather than because of religion. After coming of the Europeans clashes became more frequent between Hindus and the Muslims because of the divisive policies of the Britishers.
Reason for Backwardness of Muslims
- By the middle of the 18th century many Hindu Socio reform movements had cropped up which aimed to discard the evils prevailing in the Hindu Society.
- Hindu reformers like Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Keshav Chandra Sen, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar & many more raised their voice against the evils of the society whereas the Muslims reform movements were backward in character.Movements like Wahabi Movement of Sayyid Ahmed of Rai Bareily & Ahmadiya Movement of Mirza Ghulam Ahmed emphasised only on the restoration of purity of Islam.
- However some Muslim intellectuals like Abdul Latif, Sayyad Ahmed Khan,etc. comprehend the competitive backwardness of the Muslim society. So, Abdul Latif established Mohammedan literary & Scientific Society at Calcutta in 1863. In 1875, Mohammedan Anglo Oriented College was established at Aligarh in 1875.
- British Government publicized the Congress as a Hindu party so it brainwashed Muslim leaders like sir Sayyid Ahmed Khan against the Congress party. Sayyid Ahmed Khan established “United India Patriotic Association” as an Anti Congress campaign.
- Sayyid Ahmed Khan in his initial days was a great supporter of Hindu Muslim unity but in later period he became the chief proponent of Separatist Movement.
- Policies of the British Government in the early part of 20th century like: Partition of Bengal, Shimla Deputation & Separate Electorates.
Timeline of the events
1906: Agha Khan led Muslim delegation to the Viceroy,Lord Minto demanding Separate Electorates for the Muslims at all levels. As a result, All India Muslim League was cropped under the leadership of Agha Khan, Nawab Salimullah of Dacca, Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk and Nawab Waqar-ul-Mulk.
1909: Separate Electorates was introduced by the British Government through Government of India Act,1909.
1915: Cropping of Hindu organisations like All India Hindu Mahasabha and Punjab Hindu Sabha.
1916: Acceptance of the Separate electorate demand of the Muslim League by the Congress.
1920s: Shuddhi Movement by the Arya Samajists and Tabligh and Tanzeen Movements in retaliation by the Muslims.
1930: At the Allahabad session of the Muslim League ,Mohammed Iqbal put forward the idea of Separate state for Musims.
1933: Chaudhary Rehmat Ali coined the term Pakistan.
1937 Provincial elections: Muslim League got only 25% of the total Muslim votes in 1937 provincial elections. From here Muslim League resorted to Extreme Communalism instead of Liberal Communalism.
March 24,1940: “Pakistan Resolution” was adopted at the Lahore session of the Muslim League for grouping of all geographically contiguous Muslim majority areas.
1943: In response to the Congress “Quit India Resolution” ,Muslim League gave the slogan of “DIvide and Quit”.
1945-46 elections: Results of the policies of the Muslim League got revealed by the outcome of the 1945-46 elections where Muslim League secured 75% of the total Muslim votes.
1947: Finally through Cabinet Mission Muslim Majority provinces got separated from British India.