Don't distort facts
IT IS GOOD WE DEBATE ACCESSION, BUT IN THE PROCESS, WE MUST REMEMBER THAT FACTS ARE SACRED. LET’S NOT DISTORT THEM, WRITES PROF FIDA HASSNAIN
It is good to see a debate picking up on the Instrument of Accession signed by Maharaja Hari Singh in October 1947.This debate was initiated by the daily Greater Kashmir and it is being discussed in the local dailies and outside. Some of these articles are well-informed but some are only touch pro-Omar or anti Omar explanations. At the same time, articles of disinformation are also being published by some who claim themselves as the “authority on accession ". One such example is the article by Pandit M.K, Teng ( the Tribune16 October 1010). With all humility, I beg to submit some historical facts on this subject for consideration:
1.On 4th October 1947, some prominent Kashmiri politicians met in the Paris Hotel, Rawalpindi, and after discussing a manifestive prepared by Faiz Ahmad Faiz, announced dethroning of Maharaja Hari Singh and establishment of the Kashmir Republic with Khawaja Anwar as President and Sardar Ibrahim as the Prome Minister and other Cabinet Ministers. This declaration was telegraphed to the news agencies of India and Pakistan. On 8th October , Khwaja Anwar reached Srinagar and met Shaikh Muhammad Abdullah at his Souwra residence. They discussed political issues after which it was decided to arrange a meeting between the Shaikh and the Qaid Azam. (Tarikh-vol.V. by Doost Muhammad . pp.680-690)
2.On 10th October, Maharaja Hari Singh convened a meeting of war-experienced Hindu Dogra military men in the Jammu Palace, to discuss ways and means to safeguard his throne .In this meeting a military operation scheme prepared by Col. Baghwan Singh was discussed. It was decided to approach Sardar Patel and request the Government of India, to supply arms and ammunition for raising the Mountain Batteries.
Col. Baghwan Singh reached Delhi and met Patel, and Nehru. On this date Sheikh Abdullah was in Delhi as a guest of Pandit Nehru when a discussion was going on between Mehar Chand Mahajan, as Prime Ministerof the Maharaja and Pandit Nehru for installation of sheikh Abdullah in the future set up. Mr. Mahajan succeeded in obtaing 2 objectives from the Government of India: a re-linking Pathankot with Jammu and b) full supply of arms and ammunition to raise the Mountain Batteries. (Bungling in Kashmir, Balraj Madhk.p.50)
3. On 19th October, a contingent of Mountain Battery of Patiala Regiment reached Badami Bagh, Srinagar cantonment.
4. On 20th October, Pandit Nehru wrote to Mahajan, full suopport to his mission, advising him “to remain in close contact with him." (Letter quoted in, Hassnain, Freedom Struggle. p.150)
5. On 23rd October, Mahraja Hari Singh deputed his emissary to Delhi with the coded military plan as well as ACCESSION PAPERS with two letters, each to Sardar Patel and Pandit Nehru.He had agreed to associate Sheikh Abdullah in future administration as attached with his Prime Minister.. After this Sheikh Abdullah returned to Srinagar in a military aircraft fully assured of the Maharaja’s agreement.
6. On 24th October, when Maharaja Hari Singh was holding the Duhsera Darbal in the evening at Shergari Palace, the electric lights went off. The Mahraja got paniky and without completing the Darbar ceremonies hurried to the Royal Palace Cheshma Shahi, Srinagar. He ordered disbandment of all Muslim military personnel by replacement of RSS armed youth for protection.(Balraj Madhok. p.58)
6. On 25th October, Menon reached Srinagar and advised him to leave for Jammu. He flew back with top secret documents to Delhi, in a military aircraft. Along with Sheikh Abdullah ( F.A.Abba. Profile of Shaikh Abdullah.p.102)
7. On 25th October, the Mahraja fled away to Jammu in mid-night carrying his family as well as all jewellary, gold and silver ornaments and statues. Shaikh Muhammad Saleem. S.P. counted 57 cars of the Maharajas caravan at Banihal.
8. On 26th October, the ACCESSION PAPERS were handed over to the Maharaja and Sardar Patel who was waiting for the arrival of V.P. Menon from Jammu, at the airport. (Gajaaragudkar. Kashmir.p.73}
9.On 27th October , 704 sorties of military flights were reported at the Srinagar Airport.
10. On 31st October 1947, Sheikh Abdullah assumed the charge, Head of Administration, Jammu and Kashmir.
(Professor Fida Hassnain is former Director of Archives, Archaeology and Research. Feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lastupdate on : Thu, 28 Oct 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 28 Oct 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 29 Oct 2010 00:00:00 IST
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