Creation Of Muslim League (History)

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Article Upload Date: Thu 20 Jun 2019

    
It did not take the Muslims long to realize that they could not afford to be disorganized and disunited. The Indian National Congress was dominated by Hindus and it is impossible for Muslims to join such Hindu dominated party. So it was inevitable that some Muslim group should be formed.

Title Description
Event
Type: Pre-partition history
In English: Creation of Muslims League
In Urdu: مسلم لیگ کا قیام
Location: Dhaka
Year: 1906
Proposed By: Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk
Drafted By: Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk and Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk
Appreciated By: Muslims all over India
Disregarded By: Congress and Hindus
Presented At: In a meeting chaired by Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk after the Mohammedan Educationa Conference
Importance: The Bengal agitation had convinced the Muslims that political differences between the two communities were immense. After the Minto acceptance of separate electorates, it became political necessity for the Muslims to have their own party. Having won the right to a separate electorate, the Muslims had ensured that their views and feeling would be heard at the highest level of government.


Reasons

Members of all India Muslims league

Members of all India Muslims league

There were certain crucial incidents that lead Muslims to create their own political wing in order to protect their rights. 
  • The Muslims were disturbed by the Congress demand that ‘ India’ should be treated as a cultural whole and Hindi should be declared the national language. 
  • Even more worrying for the Muslims, however, was the emergence of extreme Hindu nationalist groups, such as the Arya Samaj, who demanded that Muslims should be forcibly converted to Hinduism.

Role of Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk

Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk

Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk

After the death of Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk, a very prominent Muslim and a close associate of Sir Syed, tried to carry on the struggle. At a meeting held in Lucknow in October 1901, Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk outlined the need for a political group but nothing was formally concluded after the meeting. It was to take the events of Bengal to shock the Muslims into action. The Muslims fear of being sidelined was increased by the election of Liberal Party in Britain, who stated that they were now going to increase local participation in the British government of India through elections. The Muslims leaders decided it was time to act. 

Simla Delegation 8 Oct 1906

Viceroy Minto

Viceroy Minto

On October 8, 1906, a delegation of prominent Muslim leaders led by the Agha Khan met the viceroy, Lord Minto, at Simla. This Simla delegation, as it became known, had two fundamental demands. 
  1. Firstly, that in all local and provincial elections, Muslims must be safely represented and teir representatives must be elected by purely Muslims voters. 
  2. The second demand was that Muslims must be given weightage in all elected bodies; in other words, have more seats than their percentage of the population. 

Ground facts behind demands

  • The first demand was made on the grounds that in the existing tense situation, every elected seat could lead to a communal riot and that no Muslims elected by Hindu voters would be a true representative of the Muslims.
  • The demand for weightage was made on the grounds that Muslims owned more land in India and they formed a large proportion of British Indian army.
The viceroy, much to the delegation’s relief and delight, accepted both demands.

Simla Delegation- crucial turning point for Muslims

The Simla delegation represents a crucial turning point for Muslims of British India.
  • All the efforts of Muslims like Sir Syed now paid off in removing the bad feeling between the Muslims and British. 
  • The acceptance of demands shows how far the British were willing to go to restore relations, particularly after the Bengal episode.
  • The long term importance of this meeting was that the underlying tensions between the two main communities in the Subcontinent, the Hindus and the Muslims, were now on a constitutional plane. The majority and wished to have constitutional protection and safeguards. 
  • The idea of a single nation was implicitly rejected by the Muslims. The granting of the right as separate electorate to as large and important a group as Muslims has to be seen as a major step.
  • It was a the first rel political step towards a separate homeland.

Pheroze Shah Mehta

Only one thing was certain after the Simla delegation: the Muslims had guaranteed themselves an independent role in the political process. There were attempts by the Muslims, even at this early stage, to pressure the Congress into accepting them as a significant group in India. Howver, the Congress, under Sir Pheroze Shah Mehta, refused, leading the prominent Muslims to only one logical conclusion: the Muslims needed a party of their own which would represent and protect their interests.

Announcement of All India Muslim League

Founding fathers of AIML

Founding fathers of AIML

Influential Muslims delegates were to gather at Dhaka to attend the 20th session of the Mohammedan Educational Conference. It was decided to make use of that occasion to finalize the question of a political party, and after the educational conference had finished, a meeting was called, chaired by Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk. The Nawab of Dhaka moved a resolution calling for an organization to be established with the name of “ All India Muslim League”. 

Points of Leagues resolution

The presidential address was read by Nawab Viqar-ul-Mulk. The League adopted as its resolutions the following points:
  •  To promote amongst the Muslims of India feelings of loyalty to the British government and to remove any misconceptions that may arise as to the intentions of the government with regard to any of its measures.
  • To protect and advance the political rights and interests of Muslims of India and respectfully to represent their needs and aspirations to the government.
  • To prevent the rise, amongst the Muslims of India, of any feelings of hostility towards other communities, without prejudice to other objects of the League.

Reaction of Congress

Hazara community showed unity with AIML

Hazara community showed unity with AIML

There were baseless allegations by some Hindus who claimed that the Muslims League was founded by the British themselves to try and counter the congress. It is true that the British were not hostile to the Muslims league but that was mainly due to the modest terms in which the League had defined its activities. A party led by landlords and princes could hardly threaten the British with any physical force and was obviously going to act as a buffer between the British and the Muslims, as well as a constant reminder to Congress that they had to take Muslims views into account.

Conclusion

Summary

Summary

The Bengal agitation had convinced the Muslims that political differences between the two communities were immense. After the Minto acceptance of separate electorates, it became political necessity for the Muslims to have their own party. Having won the right to a separate electorate, the Muslims had ensured that their views and feeling would be heard at the highest level of government.  [1] AIML