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Divide and Quit  

Alain Danielou (1907-1994), son of French aristocracy, author of numerous books on philosophy, religion, history and arts of India, has said that the division of India was on the human level as well as on the political one, a great mistake. It added, he says, to the Middle East an unstable state (Pakistan) and burdened India which already had serious problems." 

He further says:  

"India whose ancient borders stretched until Afghanistan, lost with the country of seven rivers (the Indus Valley), the historical center of her civilization. At a time when the Muslim invaders seemed to have lost some of their extremism and were ready to assimilate themselves to other populations of India, the European (British) conquerors, before returning home, surrendered once more to Muslim fanaticism the cradle of Hindu civilization. 

(source: Histoire de l'Inde - Alain Danielou p. 355).

Horrors of Partition

"Partition was a political maneuver in which the Muslim League and the British were partners with the intention to Balkanize India and reduce it to a geographical expression."

(source: A critique of A G Noorani’s Kashmir Dispute 1947-2012 – By Mohan Krishen Teng).

Dramatic new footage from India's partition in 1947 -- much of it in color (a three-part report by ITV to be called The British Empire in Color) and never been seen publicly before -- will be shown on British TV this month. The new footage gives the most vivid visuals yet of the violence and atrocities that occurred during the partition when the sub-continent was broke up into Pakistan and India.

The frames shot at the time of partition have stunned audiences at early screenings and already provoked an argument among historians. The partition is being compared with the ethnic cleansing in Bosnia and Rwanda. "The British, and in particular Lord Louis Mountbatten, Prince Charles's great uncle and adored mentor, come across as vainglorious interlopers who left the continent when trouble loomed," The Observer reports. 

"Terrible scenes, not seen before, of thousands of dispossessed refugees trailing across the newly created border with Pakistan will make it hard to defend the memory of colonial India as a caring, orderly place, which was run in increasing collaboration with Indians." Historian Andrew Roberts and Prof Judith Brown, the Oxford academic who advised the program-makers on India, say these distressing pictures will be a welcome jolt to Britain's complacent self-image. "At the time of transition the British establishment admitted that around 100,000 had died," says Roberts. "But from my own researches the figure is more like three quarters of a million. A figure not un-adjacent to what happened in Rwanda and worse, I think, than in Bosnia.

"The footage shows terrible trails of people and much of this is not known about in Britain where it was described at the time as 'a peaceful transfer of power.'"

(source:  British TV to air horrors of India's partition - Times of India).

"...It has rare images and comments that expose the British Raj as exploitative and in many ways a shambles. The documentary unravels much of the grim reality beneath the grand spectacle of the Raj. The pomp and show is also there to be seen, as never before. The spectacle of 20,000 men who came to honour Kind George V in Delhi in 1911. Lord Linlithgow is shown as hunting down 38 rhinos, 120 tigers and 27 leopards over a three-month shoot in the company of several Indian princes. The film brings out the dire poverty in which most Indians lived, away from the glamour in Delhi.

It quotes Gandhi as describing this as a "crime against humanity".

The partition of India in 1947 was the most tragic legacy of the empire, the documentary shows, giving horrific accounts of atrocities. Of 10 million people who crossed over in Punjab, a million died. 

Documentary on British Empire stirs new controversy -

Sri Aurobindo (1872-1950) most original philosopher of modern India said, "India is free, but she has not achieved unity, only a fissured and broken freedom." 

fundamental mistake”. That was how Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad, the greatest of India’s Muslim leaders, described the Partition of India on October 23, 1947. Many in both countries today agree that Partition was a historical blunder. 

Fundamental mistake, historical blunder - By V. S. Dharma Kumar). The country was partitioned on the basis of religion and undivided Bengal lost its two-third area to Pakistan in 1947.

Partition triggered one of the most terrible and bloodied exodus in the history of humanity. Partition, which the British willfully and consciously left behind as a parting gift. Winston Churchill's (who had called Gandhi a naked fakir), words on learning about the chaos following Partition: "At last we had the last word."  

(source: Arise O India - By Francois Gautier p. 85-92).

Prince Charles much-publicized British Golden Jubilee Banquet held in London, recently thanked India for "its civilizing influence over Britain", then proposed a toast for "real India, the enduring and everlasting India", an India that had preserved its identity through its experience of colonization.....What a volte face for a nation that systematically during its 300 years of rule, denigrated every aspect of the 'native' culture, including its philosophy and spirituality, and supplanted it with its own imperial values, attitude and approaches.

(source: The empire strikes back - By Suma Varghese Publication: The Free Press Journal Date: December 5, 1997).

In conclusion, it can be said that, from 1600, when the East India Company received its charter from Queen Elizabeth, to 1947, when Lord Mountbatten packed up the Union Jack, the history of the British in India has been one of treachery, exploitation and untold savagery. 



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