Sunday, August 23, 2009

Bangladesh, Bose-Jinnah Correspondence

Last attempt for improving the relation between the Congress and The League was made by the Congreess President Subhas Chandra Bose during May-December,1938. He had several correspondence Mr. M.A.Jinnah, President of the AIML. The first letter was written by Bose to Mr. Jinnah on May14, 1938. In the course of the talks between the Congress President and the President of AIML, Mr. Jinnah suggested that any agreement that might be arrived at should be based on a clear understanding of the position of the Congress and of the Muslim League. He proposed that the conversation should proceed on the following lines :
The All India Muslim League as the authoritative and representative organisation of the Indian Musilms and the Congress as the authoritative and representative organisation of the solid body of Hindu opinion have hereby agreed to the following terms by way of a pact between the two major communities and as a settlement of the Hindu-Muslim questions.
After further consideration a somewhat different wording was suggested by him as follows :
The Congress and the All India Muslim League as the authoritative and representative organisation of the Mussalmans of India have hereby agreed to the following terms of a Hindu-Muslim settlement by way of a pact

In a letter written on 6 June, !938, to Mr. Bose, Jinnah sent three resolutions of the Executive Council of AIML with a forwarding note signed by him :

1. That it is not possible for the AIML to treat or negotiate with the Congress the question of Hindu-Muslim settlement except on the basis that the Muslim League the authoritative anf representative organisation of the Mussalmans in India.

2. The Council have also considered the letter of Mr. Gandhi dated the 22nd May,1938

and are of opinion that it is not desirable to include any Muslim in the personnel of the proposed committee that may be appointed by Congress.

3. The executive Council wish to make it clear that it is the declared policy of the AIML that all other minorities should have their rights and interests safeguarded so as to create a sense of security amongst themand win their confidence and the AIML will consult representative of such minorities and any other interest as may be invoved when necessary.

In reply to the above letter , Mr. Bose strongly mentioned in 25 July,1938 :

...The first resolution of the League Council.....that there are Muslim organisations which have been functioning independently of the Muslim League. Some of them are staunch supporters of the Congress. Moreover, there are individual Muslims who are Congressmen, some of whom exercise no inconsiderable influence in the country. Then there is the Frontier Province which is overwhemingly Muslim and is solidly with thje Congress. You will see that in the face of these known facts, it is not only impossible but improper for the Congress to make the admission , which the first resolution of the League Council apparently desires the Congress to make. It is suggested that the status of organisation does not accrue to them by any definning of it. It comes through the service to which the particular organisation has dedicated itself.The working Committee of the Congress, therefore, hopes that the League Council will not ask the Congress to do the impossible..... From its inception it has often had distinguished Muslims as Presidents as General Secretaries who enjoyed the confidence of the Congress and of the country. The Congress, therefore, is in no sense a communal organisation.....

As to the second resolution of the council, I am afraid that it is not possible for the Working Committee to conform to the desire expressed therein.

The third resolution, the working committee is unable to understand. So far as the Workimg Committee is concerned the Muslim League is a purely communal organisation, in the sense that it seems to serve the Muslim interests only and its membership too is open only to muslims......

Some more letters were exchanged with no positive outcome.