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History Taught In Pakistan

What we deserve

THIS refers to Khwaja Shamaas’s letter, ‘What we deserve’(March 31). I am surprised to learn that the people of Pakistan are spineless and servile while those of India are fearless and great freedom-fighters(by implication). Mr Shamaas is so enamoured of Gandhi and the All-India Congress that he holds them solely responsible for the independence of the Indian subcontinent in 1947, to the exclusion of all other luminaries like the Quaid-i-Azam. This is a travesty of history.

Perhaps he forgets that the inhabitants of India, for about 800 years before independence, were invariably ruled by invaders and conquerors of all hues and shapes who came from the northwest of India and were only occasionally faced with any meaningful resistance. <span style='color:red'>The local populace in combined India never had the guts and wisdom to rule their own country since the time of Mohammad Ghauri. So much for the Indians’ zest for freedom.</span>

As for Gandhi, does the writer really believe that by going half-naked, travelling third class, employing inane tactics like ‘satyagraha’, frequent fasts, salt march, Quit India Movement and by being incarcerated in the luxurious palace of the Aga Khan, the former achieved independence for India?

All these antics were half-hearted and near-failures. His repeated vows of celibacy were lies that were exposed in 1942 as a result of a sex scandal that literally caused his political demise and prompted Lord Mountbatten to call him a hypocrite and a charlatan. Besides, rich Indian industrialists of the era like Birla, Bajaj and Sarabhai regularly wrote cheques to fund Gandhi’s vows of poverty. These are all historical facts and not mere concoctions.

I can assure Mr Shamaas that it was not Gandhi but Hitler and the World War II that broke the back of the British empire, with the result that the British government could no longer hold on to India and decided to quit it. The stark failure of Gandhi’s philosophy and legacy of non-violence can be judged from the deadly riots at the time of partition, the forcible annexation of the states of Junagarh, Hyderabad, Goa and Kashmir by his closest acolyte, Nehru, and the policy of all successive Indian governments to spend trillions on armaments and atomic bombs while a whopping 300 million Indians wallow in abject poverty, and the inhuman caste system is still as much in place as in Gandhi’s time.

Furthermore, it was the liberal, civilised and relatively benign British who, on their own, founded the All-India Congress, held elections, formed the Imperial Legislative Council and, inter alia, imparted education and modern knowledge to the Indians in the English language, thus paving the way for the rise of local leaders like Gandhi and others and for eventual independence long before the Indians could even think of it. In a way it was fortunate that India was not ruled by the likes of brutal French or Belgian colonialists.

As a matter of fact, it was because of the blockbuster movie ‘Gandhi’ on which a grateful Indian government spent crores of rupees and incessant propaganda that the world at large came to know of Gandhi. The propaganda continues unceasingly as a result of which he has been made into a demigod.

On the other hand, an ungrateful Pakistani nation has truly buried the Quaid-i-Azam and his lofty ideals. His contribution to the Indian freedom struggle, Hindu-Muslim unity and to safeguarding the rights of minorities in a sterling political career spanning almost five decades was second to none. And he wrested Pakistan from the jaws of a hostile British government, malevolent Hindu leaders and Muslim zealots.

Mr Shamaas would do well to have a second take at his reading of the history of the Indian freedom struggle if he is not totally biased.


Acharya, Why not create a good Geocities website and shove up in each bits and pieces the sweet bubble of myth of pakhistory.

It is a new time to time psyche that the Pakistanis developes, their new psyche is what I have clearly understood and so did husky/dhu et al.
Yes, We need volunteers. Can you get a team built to do this

KARACHI: Conference on Indus Valley civilization

KARACHI, Aug 28: A national literary conference on Indus Valley civilization, focusing on the Soomra period, will be held in the second week of November at the University of Karachi.

According to a press release issued here on Tuesday, the moot is being organised by the KU’s Department of Sindhi. The conference highlighting the Soomra period (1050-1351) will be the first of the six proposed biannual conferences covering a period of almost 900 years of various rules in Sindh.

Prof Dr Khursheed Abbasi, chairperson of the Department of Sindhi, University of Karachi, has said the six conferences will cover the Soomra, Sama, Arghun, Turkhan and Mughal, Kalhora and Talpur periods, culminating in the British Raj in the sub-continent. “All these periods of rule are known for their specific social, political, economic, literary and historical importance and need to be looked into,” she said.—APP

aharya I can certainly get a team, but have to try, need to tell you something regarding this project, can I have your email address?
Just like the famous missile painting industry of pakis, another industry will soon start: manufacturing ancient manuscripts. These new and improved manuscripts will tell us all how everything was invented by the religion of peace and brought to Pakistan, and how some of these wonderful things were copied by by the (May Allah Forgive the True Believer for saying the name)--"Brahmins".
<!--QuoteBegin-Jaggu+Sep 11 2007, 12:01 PM-->QUOTE(Jaggu @ Sep 11 2007, 12:01 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->aharya I can certainly get a team, but have to try, need to tell you something regarding this project, can I have your email address?

Send an email to the moderator or the admin
PURPLE PATCH: History and nationalism —E J Hobsbawm

History is the raw material for nationalist or ethnic or fundamentalist ideologies, as poppies are the raw material for heroin addiction. The past is an essential element, perhaps the essential element, in these ideologies. If there is no suitable past, it can always be invented. Indeed, in the nature of things there is usually no entirely suitable past, because the phenomenon that these ideologies claim to justify is not ancient or eternal but historically novel. This applies both to religious fundamentalism in its current versions — the Ayatollah Khomeini’s version of an Islamic state is no older than the early 1970s- and to contemporary nationalism. The past legitimises. The past gives a more glorious background to a present that doesn’t have much to celebrate. I recall seeing somewhere a study of the ancient civilisation of the cities of the Indus valley with the title Five Thousand Years of Pakistan. Pakistan was not even thought of before 1932-3, when the name was invented by some students. It did not become a serious political demand till 1940. As a state it has existed only since 1947. There is no evidence of any more connection between the civilisation of Mohenjo Daro and the current rulers of Islamabad than there is of a connection between the Trojan War and the government in Ankara, which is at present claiming the return, if only for the first public exhibition, of Schliemann’s treasure of King Priam of Troy. But 5,000 years of Pakistan somehow sounds better than forty-six years of Pakistan.

In this situation historians find themselves in that unexpected role of political actors. I used to think that the profession of history, unlike that of, say, nuclear physics, could at least do no harm. Now I know it can. Our studies can turn into bomb factories like the workshops in which the IRA has learned to transform chemical fertiliser into an explosive. This state of affairs affects us in two ways. We have a responsibility to historical facts in general, and for criticising the politico-ideological abuse of history in particular.

I need say little about the first of these responsibilities. I would not have to say anything, but for two developments. One is the current fashion for novelists to base their plots on recorded reality rather than inventing them, thus fudging the border between historical fact and fiction. The other is the rise of ‘postmodernist’ intellectual fashions in Western universities, particularly in departments of literature and anthropology, which imply that all ‘facts’ claiming objective existence are simply intellectual constructions — in short, that there is no clear difference between fact and fiction. But there is, and for historians, even for the most militantly anti-positivist ones among us, the ability to distinguish between the two is absolutely fundamental. We cannot invent our facts. Either Elvis Presley is dead or he isn’t. The question can be answered unambiguously on the basis of evidence, insofar as reliable evidence is available, which is sometimes the case. Either the present Turkish government, which denies the attempted genocide of the Armenians in 1915, is right or it is not. Most of us would dismiss any denial of this massacre from serious historical discourse, although there is no equally unambiguous way to choose between different ways of interpreting the phenomenon or fitting it into the wider context of history. Recently, Hindu zealots destroyed a mosque in Aodhya, ostensibly on the grounds that the mosque had been imposed by the Muslim Moghul conqueror Babur on the Hindus in a particularly sacred location which marked the birthplace of the god Rama. My colleagues and friends in the Indian universities published a study showing (a) that nobody until the nineteenth century had suggested that Aodhya was the birthplace of Rama and (b) that the mosque was almost certainly not built in the time of Babur. I wish I could say that this has had much effect on the rise of the Hindu party which provoked the incident, but at least they did their duty as historians, for the benefit of those who can read and are exposed to the propaganda of intolerance now and in the future. Let us do ours.

Few of the ideologies of intolerance are based on simple lies or fictions for which no evidence exists. After all, there was a battle of Kosovo in 1389, the Serb warriors and their allies were defeated by the Turks, and this did leave deep scars on the popular memory of the Serbs, although it does not follow that this justifies the oppression of the Albanians, who now form 90 per cent of the region’s population, or the Serb claim that the land is essentially theirs. Denmark does not claim the large part of eastern England which was settled and ruled by Danes before the eleventh century, which continued to be known as the Danelaw and whose village names are still philologically Danish.

The most usual ideological abuse of history is based on anachronism rather than lies. Greek nationalism refused Macedonia even the right to its name on the grounds that all Macedonia is essentially Greek and part of a Greek nation-state, presumably ever since the father of Alexander the Great, King of Macedonia, became the ruler of the Greek lands on the Balkan peninsula. Like everything about Macedonia, this is a far from purely academic matter, but it takes a lot of courage for a Greek intellectual to say that, historically speaking, it is nonsense. There was no Greek nation-state or any other single political entity for the Greeks in the fourth century BC, the Macedonian Empire was nothing like a Greek or any other modern nation-state, and in any case it is highly probable that the ancient Greeks regarded the Macedonian rulers, as they did their later Roman rulers, as barbarians and not as Greeks, though they were doubtless too polite or cautious to say so.

These and many other attempts to replace history by myth and invention are not merely bad intellectual jokes. After all, they can determine what goes into schoolbooks, as the Japanese authorities knew, when they insisted on a sanitised version of the Japanese war in China for use in Japanese classrooms. Myth and invention are essential to the politics of identity by which groups of people today, defining themselves by ethnicity, religion or the past or present borders of states, try to find some certainty in an uncertain and shaking world by saying, ‘We are different from and better than the Others.’ They are our concern in the universities because the people who formulate those myths and inventions are educated people: schoolteachers lay and clerical, professors (not many, I hope), journalists, television and radio producers. Today most of them will have gone to some university. Make no mistake about it. History is not ancestral memory or collective tradition. It is what people learned from priests, schoolmasters, the writers of history books and the compilers of magazine articles and television programmes. It is very important for historians to remember their responsibility, which is, above all to stand aside from the passions of identity politics — even if we feel them also. After all, we are human beings, too.

However, we cannot wait for the generations to pass. We must resist the formation of national, ethnic and other myths, as they are being formed. It will not make us popular. Thomas Masaryk, founder of the Czechoslovak Republic, was not popular when he entered politics as the man who proved, with regret but without hesitation, that the medieval manuscripts on which much of the Czech national myth was based were fakes. But it has to be done, and I hope those of you who are historians will do it.

Eric John Ernest Hobsbawm (born 1917) is a British historian and author. This is an excerpt from a paper given as a lecture opening the academic year 1993-4 at the Central European University in Budapest. It was addressed to a body of students essentially drawn from the formerly communist countries in Europe and the former USSR

Will the Iron Fence Save a Tree Hollowed by Termites? ; Defence Imperatives Beyond the Military By Arun Shourie has a several pages/chapters on this issue.

For the study of the area of present-day Pakistan in the preindependence period, one must generally look to histories of India. The most recent survey is

Stanley Wolpert's A New History of India. Published earlier, <b>
Percival Spear's A History of India (volume 1) and </b>
Romila Thapar's A History of India (volume 2)</b> provide valuable information. <b>
Vincent Arthur Smith's The Oxford History of India</b> gives a detailed account of the preindependence period.

Two dictionaries that are difficult to obtain are helpful in looking up specific places and people: <b>
Sachchidananda Bhattacharya's
A Dictionary of Indian History </b>and <b>
Parshotam Mehra's A Dictionary of Modern Indian History, 1707-1947. </b>

Particularly valuable is the monumental <b>
A Historical Atlas of South Asia, edited by Joseph E. Schwartzberg.
Two classic works on the Mughal period are <b>
Bamber Gascoigne's The Great Moghuls and
Percival Spear's Twilight of the Mughals.
A more recent, standard work on the Mughals is <b>
John F. Richards's The Mughal Empire.
Books that bring the Muslim movement alive include<b>
Peter Hardy's The Muslims of British India;
Choudhry Khaliquzzaman's Pathway to Pakistan;
Chaudri Muhammad Ali's The Emergence of Pakistan;
Gail Minault's The Khilafat Movement;
David Lelyveld's Aligarh's First Generation; and
R.J. Moore's The Crisis of Indian Unity, 1917-1940.</b>

There is little biographic material except on Jinnah: the best are <b>
Stanley Wolpert's Jinnah of Pakistan and
Ayesha Jalal's The Sole Spokesman.</b>

Concerning independent Pakistan during the parliamentary period, <b>
Keith Callard's Pakistan: A Political Study and
Richard S. Wheeler's The Politics of Pakistan are recommended. </b>

On Ayub Khan,<b>
Lawrence Ziring's The Ayub Khan Era is good.</b> <b>
Bangladesh: A Country Study, edited by James Heitzman and
Robert L. Worden, </b>
provides an analysis of the history of the East Wing of Pakistan (1947-71).

The civil war is discussed in <b>
Craig Baxter's Bangladesh: A New Nation in an Old Setting. </b>

Bhutto's tenure is described in <b>
Shahid Javed Burki's Pakistan under Bhutto, 1971-1977 and
Stanley Wolpert's Zulfi Bhutto of Pakistan: His Life and Times. </b>

Zia ul-Haq's period is discussed in <b>
Shahid Javed Burki and Craig Baxter's Pakistan under the Military: Eleven Years of Zia ul-Haq. </b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Indic civilisation
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Ishtiaq Ahmed

Today's article coincides with India's declaration as a republic in 1950. The civilisational roots of modern India are always worth discussing, because despite all the odds against it -- the caste system, poverty and hunger, illiteracy and other such debilitating factors -- it became a democracy and has remained so.

Civilisation denotes a complex society with distinct cultural and ideational features that takes shape in the long, historical process through the division of labour and a concomitant social hierarchy. Therefore, civilisations cannot be understood only in contemporaneous terms; historical antecedents and legacy weigh heavily in forming the present. On the other hand, civilisations are also dynamic and change, adjust and transform, while retaining links with the past.

Studying civilisations is a daunting task. I admire the courage of the veteran journalist and writer, Reginald Massey, born in Lahore to a Punjabi Christian family of Sikh Jatt origin, educated at the St. Anthony's High School in Lahore and later in India, and who now lives in an idyllic village in Wales. He has taken up the challenge and acquitted himself admirably.

His book, India: Definitions and Clarification (Hertford: Hansib, 2007) is a tour de force of truly encyclopaedic proportions. The book, however, is not exclusively about the current geographical entity called the Republic of India; it is about the historical, cultural and civilisational entity: the Indic civilisation. It includes not only India but also Pakistan and other states in this region. The Indic civilisation bears influence of not only Hinduism but also Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Sikhism, Christianity and indeed the modern period of secular rationalism and scepticism. It is pluralistic in its deepest ethos.

The author makes the interesting observation that the Aryans called the main river they confronted when they entered the plains of the subcontinent, Sindhu, which is known as River Sindh and is the lifeblood of today's Pakistan. However, in Persian and Greek usage it began to be pronounced without the "s" at the beginning and over time the people who lived in the valley of the Indus River and east of it began to be called Hindus.

The Aryans crossed into the Indo-Gangetic Plain where they established their stronghold, but the whole region from Afghanistan to the lower Ganges was named by them as Aryavarta. That name, however, did not get established. Rather this region became famous as Hindustan.

The central thesis Massey sets forth is that the caste system has been the ultimate organising principle of the social, political and economic life in the subcontinent. The author condemns it in the strongest terms as it compartmentalised, society and established strict hierarchy. Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, himself a Kashmiri Brahmin and thus belonging to the highest place in the caste hierarchy, made no secret of his abhorrence for the caste system.

Therefore, Nehru saw to it that Dr Ambedkar, the leader of the so-called Untouchables, who prefer to be called Dalits, was made chairperson of the committee that prepared the Indian Constitution. The constitution gives equal rights to all citizens, irrespective of caste. That has been the basis for India becoming a democracy, though in the wider society prejudices against the Dalits and lower castes still abound. The author narrates many anecdotes that highlight the continuing humiliation faced by the Dalits in contemporary India.

He observes that the caste system continued to fashion social hierarchy even among the followers of Islam and Christianity. Thus, among Muslims the distinction between the ashraf (superior) and the ajlaf (low-born) meant that they existed as two separate communities, while Christians who converted from Brahmin or other superior castes avoided contact with low-caste Christians.

The author examines northern and southern Indian societies over the historical period. We learn about important dynasties that came to power and what legacy they have left behind. Some Hindu dynasties were founded by men of humble origin who had themselves promoted to the second highest caste of the Kshatriyas through bribery and coercion.

The book compares the three leading personalities of the freedom struggle -- Mahatma Gandhi, Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Jawaharlal Nehru. Each is treated with fairness. The author thinks that Jinnah was a brilliant leader, without whom Pakistan would most probably never have come into being, and it is Nehruvian secularism which he believes has helped India remain a democratic polity.

He reserves scathing criticism for the ruling classes of both India and Pakistan. He writes: "The corrupt ruling classes of both India and Pakistan have done an excellent job in that they have succeeded in fooling the masses of their respective countries. Their success in this enterprise was, of course, assured since the majority of the people on both sides of the border are poor, superstitious, gullible, illiterate and an easy prey to state propaganda and the poisonous rantings of religious bigots"

Reginald Massey is currently writing a follow-up volume, in which he wants to probe the directions the South Asian region could take in the future. He is optimistic about the youths of this region, which he believes want to move on, rather than remain hostage to past conflicts and rivalries.

In this regard, it would be interesting to examine more closely if the Laws of Manu or the Constitution of Ambedkar is winning. Also, I hope he visits Lahore where he was born and about which he is so very proud. It would be interesting to know what he thinks happened to Jinnah's Pakistan.

The writer is a professor of political science and a visiting senior research fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS), National University of Singapore. Email: isasia@nus.edu.sg
Damn! And what else did the "Aryans" do? Tell onlee no..I am dying to hear the whole story Massa Massey has so eloquently put together. Ishtiaqbhai, tell me more about the "Aryans".. <!--emo&Tongue--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/tongue.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='tongue.gif' /><!--endemo-->

The subtle Subversion: A report on Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan

Updated August 2006

Compiled by A. H. Nayyar and Ahmed Salim

* The subtle Subversion: A report on Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan (PDF Format 513KB)


The objective of the study was to identify problematic contents of textbooks and to
ascertain if the curriculum formulation was the source of such contents. The subjects
chosen were those which can offer a greater space for political and ideological
States quite often use formal education as a tool to disseminate and perpetuate their
political messages. In the Pakistani context, the use of education as a political tool
intensified after 1971 mainly due to the demands of redefining Pakistan after the political
crisis of East Pakistan and emergence of Pakistan as a truncated country. The military
government of General Zia ul Haq after the coup in 1977 had its own problem of
legitimacy, which it tried to guise in an overarching quest for Islamization of the society.
Education was among the first of its victims. Religious political parties became
enthusiastic partners in this quest. In the educational sphere, this amounted to a
distorted narration of history, factual inaccuracies, inclusion of hate material, a
disproportionate inclusion of Islamic studies in other disciplines, glorification of war and
the military, gender bias, etc. Subsequent governments either failed to check these
harmful deviations, or willingly perpetuated them.
This study is by no means the first to point out these issues. The civil society of Pakistan
reacted almost immediately to the Zia government’s policies of Islamization of education.
A number of educationists wrote articles, research papers and books highlighting the
way in which the educational space was being usurped by blatant indoctrination. The first
question they addressed was regarding distortions in history, and the contributions of
Pervez Hoodbhoy, K. K. Aziz, I. A. Rahman, Mubarak Ali, and A. H. Nayyar were
noteworthy. The first known work on the deliberate distortion of history for ideological
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
reasons was from Pervez Hoodbhoy and A. H. Nayyar1, pointing out the policy directive
that had brought about the change and the subsequent distortions entering the Pakistan
Studies textbooks, the foremost target of the process of Islamization of education. Soon
thereafter, the Lahore-based Society for the Advancement of Education (SAHE)
produced a report in 1986 on Pakistan’s curriculum based on a countrywide consultation
involving a number of eminent educationists of the country2.
Mubarak Ali, through his thought provoking works, brought forth the distortions,
inaccuracies and biases in textbooks through his books3, newspaper articles4 and
booklets both in English and Urdu.
K.K. Aziz also pointed out errors in history textbooks in a chapter of his book Historians
of Pakistan, published in the early 90s5. In another famous book on the subject, Murder
of History in Pakistan, Professor Aziz analysed in detail 66 school textbooks and
identified historical errors and inaccuracies6.
Renowned human rights activist and journalist, I. A. Rahman has also touched upon the
issue of historical distortion in textbooks regarding the tragedy of 1971 (Fall of Dhaka)7.
The earliest work on gender bias in textbooks emerged from Simorgh and Aurat
Foundation, NGO’s that specialize in women related issues.8
In 1993 Rubina Saigol conducted a content analysis of language and social studies
textbooks to find out the amount of hate material, and nationalistic and militaristic
ideologies packed in the textbooks. In her Ph.D. thesis in the early nineties and
subsequently in her various research papers, books and monographs, she conducted a
detailed analysis of social studies, civics, history and Pakistan Studies textbook. She
also identified such additional categories of problems in curriculum and textbooks as
'glorification of the military', and did a comparative analysis of textbooks from the pre-
Ayub period, Ayub era and the Bhutto era.9

Several other writers also highlighted the issues, among them were Tariq Rahman10,
1 Re-writing the History of Pakistan, in Islam, Politics and the State: The Pakistan Experience, Ed.
Mohammad Asghar Khan, Zed Books, London, 1985).
2 Pakistan Curriculum Jungle, An analysis emerging out of the SAHE consultation on the undergraduate core
curriculum in Pakistan, Ed. Hamid Kizilbash, SAHE, Lahore, 1986.
3 For example Tareekh aur Roshni, Nigarshat Lahore 1986; In the Shadow of History, Nigarshat, Lahore;
History on Trial, Fiction House, Lahore, 1999; Tareekh Aur Nisabi Kutub, Fiction House, Lahore, 2003.
4 For example, ‘Heroes and Democracy’ and Akbar in Pakistani Textbooks
5 Historians of Pakistan, K. K. Aziz, Vanguard Books, Lahore, 1993.
6 Murder of History in Pakistan, K. K. Aziz, Vanguard Books, Lahore, 1993
7 The Frontier Post, December 13, 1991, Lahore.
8 School Texts, Nasreen Shah, in Reinventing Women – the Representation of Women in the Media during
the Zia Years, Ed. Maha Malik and Neelum Hussain, Simorgh Publications, 1985; Gender bias in Urdu
Textbooks in Punjab, Class I – V, Aurat Publications, 1989.
9 Her work is spread in Education: Critical Perspectives (Progressive, 1993), The Boundaries of
Consciousness: Interface between the Curriuclum, Gender and Nationalism; Knowledge and Identity –
Articulation of Gender in Educational Discourse in Pakistan, ASR, Lahore, 1995; Qaumiat, Taleem aur
Shanakht, Fiction House, Lahore, 1997; Symbolic Violence (appeared in Locating the Self, ASR, Lahore,
1994), ‘History, Social Studies and Civics and the Creation of Enemies’ in Akbar Zaidi, Social Sciences in
the 1990s (2003), and in the various issues of the journal Tareekh, Ed. Mubarak Ali, Lahore
10 Language, Ideology and Power: Language Learning among the Muslims of Pakistan and North India, Tariq
Rahman, Oxford University Press, Karachi, 2002
Khurshid Hasanain11, Yvette Rosser12, Ahmed Salim13 Zafarullah Khan14 and Ajmal
Kamal15. Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST)
brought out a collective study on the contents of Pakistan Studies textbooks from school
to the university level.16 More recently, The Social Policy and Development Centre,
Karachi has published a comprehensive report17 on the state of education in Pakistan
containing also a critique of the learning material.
What was happening to Pakistani school curriculum and textbooks was also happening
to the learning material in India. While it was Islamization in Pakistan, it was
communalization of education in India, which in effect was an effort at Hinduization of
education. The Indian civil society and academia was as much, if not more, alive to the
disturbing trend as its counterpart in Pakistan. The earliest work criticising distortion of
History in Indian textbooks to provoke communal hatred was Tareekh ke saath
Khalwar18, published in 1988. This book included studies and papers read in a seminar
held in Patna. Two civil society organisations stand out as the torch bearers against
communalization of education; Communalism Combat, a periodical edited by the award
winning activist Teesta Setalvad19, and Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (SAHMAT)20.
Among the more well-known works is the recently published Prejudice and Pride by
Krishna Kumar21, which discusses in detail the distortion of facts and communal
elements in Indian and Pakistani textbooks. The Delhi Historian’ Group published an
analysis of history textbooks in India22. Political parties have also written on the
ideological onslaught of the extremists.23
Part II
Why was a new study on state of curricula and textbooks needed? There were several
reasons. First, new textbooks are published almost every year, and it was essential to
see if the most recent ones also contained the same objectionable material both in terms
of inaccuracies as well as pedagogical slant and style. Second, the Curriculum Wing of
11 Conflict and Violence in the Educational Process, Khurshid Hasanain and A. H. Nayyar, in Making
Enemies, Creating Conflict: Pakistan's Crises of State and Society', edited by Zia Mian and Iftikhar Ahmad,
Mashal, Lahore, 1997.
12 Hegemony and Historiography: The Politics of Pedagogy, Yvette Rosser, The Asian Review, Dhaka, 1997.
13 Enemy Images In The Textbooks, Ahmad Salim, in Kashmir: What Next? by Friedrich Nauman-Stiftung,
Islamabad, October 2001; Enemy Images In The School Textbook, 1947-2000, Ahmad Salim and Zafrullah
Khan, SDPI's Draft Report, April 2003.
14 Ideas on Democracy, Freedom and Peace in Textbooks, an advocacy document against hate speech by
Future Youth Group, Islamabad, May 2002.
15 Censorship in Pakistani Urdu Textbooks, Ajmal Kamal, presented at the Annual Sustainable Development
Conference, Islamabad, 2003. Also available at http://www.urdustudies.com/pdf/10/16censorship.pdf
16 Pakistan Studies – Facts and Fiction, a study conducted by Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science
and Technology, Karachi, 2002.
17 The State of Education, Social Development in Pakistan, Annual Review 2002-2003, SPDC, Karachi, 2002
18 Tareekh ke saath Khalwar, Khuda Bakhsh Library, Patna, 1988
19 How Textbooks Teach Prejudice, Teesta Setalvad, Subrang Communications and Publishing, 2001, and
Communalism Combat 15 June, 2003
20 The Saffron Agenda in Education: An Expose, Nalini Taneja, SAHMAT, New Delhi, 2001; The Assault on
History, SAHMAT, New Delhi, 2002; Against Communalism of Education, SAHMAT, New Delhi, 2002;
Plagiarised and Communalised: more on the NCERT Textbooks, SAHMAT, New Delhi
21 Prejudice and Pride : School Histories of the Freedom Struggle in India and Pakistan, Krishna Kumar,
Viking, New Delhi, 2001.
22 Communalization of Education: History Textbooks, Delhi Historians’ Group, New Delhi, 2001
23 Against Communalisation of Education (CPI-M); Resist the Communalisation of Education; Resist BJP
Assault on School Education (Communist Party Publications, 2002)
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
the Ministry of Education was revising all the curricula in the spring of 2002, and it was
essential to analyse them too.
Third, none of the earlier studies appeared to have had any impact on either the
government policies or the public discourse on education. Generation after generation
was being lost to bad education, yet providing quality education was never on the
political agenda of the country. The problems needed to be highlighted in their true
severity to bring the issues into the domain of public debate. Lastly, it was also deemed
essential to make a collective study in order to bring together all the various perspectives
from which individual analysts had looked at the educational material.
The initiative at SDPI was taken by A. H. Nayyar and Ahmed Salim and joined in by
Mohsin Babbar, Ayesha Inayat and Aamna Mattu. A research project was developed and
such educationists who had expressed their opinion on the issue were invited to be a
part of it. They were university professors, school and college teachers, and members of
civil society organisations in the private sector. Their names are listed in ….. Two 2-day
workshops were held. In the first workshop, ideas were formulated, areas of focus were
defined, and tasks assigned to the program participants to take home and bring back
their studies in the second workshop three weeks later. It was also decided to focus only
on the subjects of Social Studies, Pakistan Studies, Urdu, English and Civics. Most of
the participants brought their in-depth studies of the learning material in the second
workshop. Their contributions, which were scrutinised and discussed in detail
collectively, have become the source of the contents of this report. While everyone had
something to contribute, some like Rubina Saigol, Neelum Hussain, Seema Pervez,
Zarina Salamat, Haroon Nasir, to name a few, contributed more than others. Among
them too, the well-focused written contributions of Rubina Saigol formed the mainstay of
several chapters of this report. The second workshop also assigned the task of preparing
detailed analyses based on the collective contributions to some participants. These
appear in the report as chapters in the name(s) of the writer(s).
Indeed not all the material pointed out by the participants was new. Since much of the
material in textbooks is repeated in newer editions, there was to be an inevitable overlap
with earlier works on the subject, particularly because many of the participants had
themselves written extensively on the issue. Similarly, although the group looked into the
most recent curriculum documents, there was to be an inevitable large overlap between
the problematic material pointed out in earlier studies and the one in this report.
After completion, the first draft report was shared with some friends for review and
improvements, and the draft report released on 16 June 2003. The report has been
widely commented on in the press in Pakistan, India and elsewhere. The extraordinary
attention this report has received as compared to more scholarly works earlier may have
been a result of the special circumstances Pakistan is facing since September 2001.
The final report at hand is a reviewed and edited version of the draft report. Hopefully,
our findings and suggestions will help improve the educational material in Pakistan.
Pakistan’s public education system has an important role in determining how successful
we shall be in achieving the goal of a progressive, moderate and democratic Pakistan. A
key requirement is that children learn to understand and value this goal and cherish the
values of truthfulness, honesty, responsibility, equality, justice, and peace that go with it.
Children’s identities and value systems are strongly shaped by the national curricula and
textbooks in Social Studies, English, Urdu and Civics from Class I to Class XII. The
responsibility for designing them lies with the Curriculum Wing of the Federal Ministry of
Education and the provincial Text Book Boards. The Curriculum Wing is mandated to
design all pre-university curricula and issue guidelines to textbook writers and school
teachers. Provincial Textbook Boards commission writing of textbooks and get them
printed after their contents are approved by the Curriculum Wing.
A close analysis by a group of independent scholars shows that for over two decades the
curricula and the officially mandated textbooks in these subjects have contained material
that is directly contrary to the goals and values of a progressive, moderate and
democratic Pakistan.
The March 2002 revision of curricula undertaken by the Curriculum Wing of the Ministry
of Education did not address the problems that existed in earlier curriculum documents.
In some cases, these problems are now even worse.
Our analysis found that some of the most significant problems in the current curricula
and textbooks are:
􀁸􀀃 Inaccuracies of fact and omissions that serve to substantially distort the nature and
significance of actual events in our history.
􀁸􀀃 Insensitivity to the existing religious diversity of the nation
􀁸􀀃 Incitement to militancy and violence, including encouragement of Jehad and
􀁸􀀃 Perspectives that encourage prejudice, bigotry and discrimination towards fellow
citizens, especially women and religious minorities, and other towards nations.
􀁸􀀃 A glorification of war and the use of force
􀁸􀀃 Omission of concepts, events and material that could encourage critical selfawareness
among students
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
􀁸􀀃 Outdated and incoherent pedagogical practices that hinder the development of
interest and insight among students
To give a few examples:
The books on Social Studies systematically misrepresent events that have happened
throughout the Pakistan’s history, including those which are within living memory of many
This history is narrated with distortions and omissions. The causes, effects, and
responsibility for key events are presented so as to leave a false understanding of our
national experience. A large part of the history of South Asia is also omitted, making it
difficult to properly interpret events, and narrowing the perspective that should be open
to students. Worse, the material is presented in ways that encourage the student to
marginalize and be hostile towards other social groups and people in the region.
The curricula and textbooks are insensitive to the religious diversity of the Pakistani
society. While learning of Islamiat is compulsory for Muslim students, on average over a
quarter of the material in books to teach Urdu as a language is on one religion. The
books on English have lessons with religious content. Islamiat is also taught in Social
Studies classes. Thus, the entire is heavily laden with religious teachings, reflecting a
very narrow view held by a minority among Muslims that all the education should be
essentially that of Islamiat.24
There is a strong current of exclusivist and divisive tendencies at work in the subject
matter recommended for studies in the curriculum documents as well as in textbooks.
Pakistani nationalism is repeatedly defined in a manner that excludes non-Muslim
Pakistanis from either being Pakistani nationals or from even being good human beings.
Much of this material runs counter to any efforts at national integration.
The Constitution of Pakistan is cited but misinterpreted, in making the reading of the
Qur'an compulsory in schools. The Constitution requires the compulsory reading of the
Qur’an for Muslim students alone, but in complete disregard of this restriction, it is
included in the textbooks of a compulsory subject like Urdu which is to be read by
students of all religions. The Class III Urdu textbook has 7 lessons on Nazra Qur'an and
its translations. The Urdu and Social Studies curricula even ask for all the students to be
taught Islamic religious practices like Namaz and Wuzu.
Besides severe pedagogical problems like uneven standards of lessons in books on
English and Urdu languages and bad English even in the English language books,
glaring contradictions exist in books on Social Studies. Together, these factors make it
almost impossible for students to develop critical and analytical skills.
The curriculum as well as textbooks excessively emphasize the "Ideology of Pakistan"
which is a post-independence construction devised to sanctify their politics of those
political forces which were initially inimical to the creation of Pakistan
Most of the textbook problems cited above have their origin in two sources: (1)
curriculum documents and syllabi and (2) the instructions to textbook authors issued
24 Education and the Muslim World: Challenge and Response. Recommendations of the Four World
Conferences on Islamic Education, Institute of Policy Studies, Islamabad, 1995.
from the Curriculum Wing of the Ministry of Education. As long as the same institutions
continue to devise curricula, the problems will persist. Repeated interventions from the
post-1988 civilian governments failed to overcome the institutional resistance.
The problems are further accentuated when the authors of textbooks produce books that
are heavily laden with doctrinal material and devoid of much useful instructional content.
The provincial textbook boards are to be held squarely responsible for repeatedly failing
to produce textbooks that are useful and interesting to students.
Assertion of the Ideology of Pakistan
Many scholars have forcefully argued, with the help of historical record that the term
Ideology of Pakistan is a construction that did not exist when Pakistan was created. Justice
Munir has very clearly identified the first time when the phrase was coined. In his monograph
From Jinnah to Zia he writes:
The Quaid-i-Azam never used the words “Ideology of Pakistan” … For fifteen
years after the establishment of Pakistan, the Ideology of Pakistan was not
known to anybody until in 1962 a solitary member of the Jama’at-I-Islami used
the words for the first time when the Political Parties Bill was being discussed.
On this, Chaudhry Fazal Elahi, who has recently retired as President of Pakistan,
rose from his seat and objected that the ‘Ideology of Pakistan’ shall have to be
defined. The member who had proposed the original amendment replied that the
‘Ideology of Pakistan was Islam’ …
Thus the phrase Ideology of Pakistan had no historical basis in the Pakistan movement. It
was coined much later by those political forces which needed it to sanctify their particular
brand of politics, especially by those who had earlier been against the creation of Pakistan. It
is no wonder that the Jama’at-i-Islami and other religio-political parties use this phrase
Although - as Justice Munir has noted, with which any authority on the Quaid-i-Azam would
agree - the Quaid never uttered the words Ideology of Pakistan, yet the curriculum
72 National Curriculum English (Compulsory) for Classes XI-XII, March 2002
Insensitivity to the Religious Diversity of the Nation
documents insist that the students be taught that the Ideology of Pakistan was enunciated
by the Quaid.
The chapter should present the Ideology of Pakistan as enunciated by Quaid-i-
Azam and should include relevant documented references.73
Needless to say no textbook has ever been able to cite a single reference to Mr. Jinnah
using the term Ideology of Pakistan. On the contrary, his speech to the Constituent
Assembly on the 11th of August, 1947 is completely contrary to the so-called ‘Ideology of
Pakistan’ as it is presented. He had said to the legislators who were to prepare the future
constitution of the newborn country:
“We are starting with the fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal
citizens of one state … Now I think we should keep that in front of us as our
ideal, ad you will find that in the course of time Hindus would cease to be Hindus
and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that
is the personal faith of each individual but in the sense as citizens of the state. …
You may belong to any caste or creed – that has nothing to do with the business
of the state.”
There is no consensus on the term Ideology of Pakistan. It was neither defined nor
contained in any constitution of Pakistan, until General Zia-ul-Haq included the term in an
order of his military government that was made part of the 1973 constitution through an
illegal and questionable process. Even there, Zia-ul-Haq failed to define the term, leaving it
to the ideologues to suit it to their politics. It is now often equated with Islamic ideology, with
the assertion that Pakistan came into being to enforce Islamic principles of civil life as
enshrined in the Shariah. But there is a problem with this interpretation. If this were so, then
one cannot explain why most of the orthodox Islamic scholars, including Syed Abul Aala
Maududi of Jamat-e-Islami, were against the creation of Pakistan. Regarding the Ideology of
Pakistan to be the same as enforcing orthodox Islamic laws is also in direct conflict with the
ideas of the founder of Pakistan as quoted above.
It was during the Islamization era of General Zia-ul-Haq that the use of the term was
consolidated and made to appear in every aspect of the educational material. A sample of
quotations from curriculum documents below shows how this has been sanctified and turned
into an article of faith.
The Ideology of Pakistan be presented as an accepted reality, and be never
subjected to discussion or dispute74
The Ideology of Pakistan be presented as an accepted reality, and should never
be made controversial and debatable.75
Attempt is made to make the curriculum more representative and responsive to
the Ideology of Pakistan and societal needs76
73 Pakistan Studies Curriculum for Classes XI-XII, National Curriculum Committee, National Bureau of
Curriculum and Textbooks, Islamabad, 1986, p 3
74 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 41
75 Urdu Curriculum (First language) for Classes IV and V, National Bureau of Curriculum and Textbooks,
Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, March 2002, p 3
76 National Curriculum CIVICS for classes IX – X, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education, Curriculum
Wing, Islamabad, March 2002, p 4
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
… so that the Ideology of Pakistan could permeate the thinking of young
generation …77
Demonstrate an appreciation of the Ideology of Pakistan78
find pleasure in the protection of the Ideology of Pakistan, …79
Understand Islam and Ideology of Pakistan, and feel them deep in heart80
To promote understanding of socioeconomic and socio-cultural aspects of
Pakistani society, the Ideology of Pakistan and struggle for Pakistan81
Care be taken in the composition and editing of the essays that there ought to come
out an angle of propagation of Islam and the Ideology of Pakistan82
For speeches, writings and discussions, such topics be chosen that represent
positive thinking about Islam and Pakistan, and those topics be avoided that negate
or denigrate Islamic values and the Ideology of Pakistan.83
Teachers must thoroughly study the Ideology of Pakistan84
Understand Islam and Ideology of Pakistan, and feel them deep in heart85
Essays creating deep love for Islam and Ideology of Pakistan86
To develop a sense of love for the Ideology of Pakistan87
Love for Ideology of Pakistan88
Enhance a sense of respect for Cooperation and preservation of the Ideology of
Cognitive objective: Knowledge of the Ideology of Pakistan90
77 National Curriculum CIVICS for classes XI – XII, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education, Curriculum
Wing, Islamabad, March 2002, p 3
78 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 140
79 Urdu Curriculum (first and second language) for classes VI-VIII, National Bureau of Curriculum and
Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1986, p 8
80 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 58
81 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 6
82 Urdu Curriculum (First language) for Classes IV and V, National Bureau of Curriculum and Textbooks,
Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, March 2002, p 25
83 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 44
84 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 44
85 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 58
86 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 61
87 National Curriculum CIVICS for classes IX – X, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education, Curriculum
Wing, Islamabad, March 2002, p 14
88 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 29
89 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 43
90 Social Studies Curriculum for Classes VI – VIII, National Curriculum Committee, National Bureau of
Curriculum and Textbooks, Islamabad, 1984, p 7
Insensitivity to the Religious Diversity of the Nation
To create sentiments for the protection of the Ideology of Pakistan, love for the
country, …91
Be able to propagate the important values and traditions of Islam, … and adopt
national values in accordance with the Ideology of Pakistan92
To create sentiments for love of the country, safeguarding the Ideology of Pakistan,
deepening the awareness of the Ideology of Pakistan94
enable the students to become a responsible, confident and patriot towards the
Ideology of Pakistan95
To explain Ideology of Pakistan; meaning and nature of Ideology of Pakistan. To
demonstrate the faith in Ideology of Pakistan 96
While writing the textbooks, material contrary to the Ideology of Pakistan which may
injure the feelings of different sects, or which may create hatred against any Muslim
leading personality may be avoided97
We have included so many quotations not for their diversity but for the diverse curriculum
documents in which they appear so repeatedly. The purpose seems to be to establish sanctity of
the term ‘Ideology of Pakistan’. No other political idea has ever been accorded such sanctity.
The only beneficiaries of this exercise have been the orthodox Islamic political forces whose
politics gets an undue advantage over the others.
It is to be granted that any political force has a right to define the future of the country as suits its
political ideology. In this respect, the religious political ideologues are quite in their right to claim
that Ideology of Pakistan should be as they define it, and should be the basis of all the policies of
the country. What, however, is completely unjustified is (1) to present it as a historical truth,
distorting history for this purpose, and (2) making education subservient to their politics.
The problem with stating that the Ideology of Pakistan was inherent in the founding premise
of Pakistan is not just that it is historically untrue. An emphasis on it gives a message to non-
Muslim Pakistanis that Pakistan is only for Muslims and that they do not have a place in it.
Hate Material
Associated with the insistence on the Ideology of Pakistan has been an essential component
of hate against India and the Hindus.
91 Urdu Curriculum (first and second language) for classes VI-VIII, National Bureau of Curriculum and
Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1986, p 41
92 Urdu Curriculum (first and second language) for classes VI-VIII, National Bureau of Curriculum and
Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1986, p 29
93 Urdu Curriculum (Compulsory, optional and Easy course), Classes IX and X, National Bureau of Curriculum
and Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Islamabad, 1988, p 4
94 English Curriculum for Classes IX-X, National Curriculum Committee, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of
Education, Islamabad, 1986, p 7
95 National Curriculum English (Compulsory) for Class XI-XII, March 2002, p 9
96 National Curriculum CIVICS for classes IX – X, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education, Curriculum
Wing, Islamabad, March 2002, p 15
97 National Curriculum CIVICS for classes IX – X, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education, Curriculum
Wing, Islamabad, March 2002, p 20
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
For the upholders of the Ideology of Pakistan, the existence of Pakistan is defined only in
relation to Hindus, and hence the Hindus have to be painted as negatively as possible.
That the pathological hate against Hindus is only because of adopting the so-called Ideology
of Pakistan is borne out by the fact that the pre-Ideology (before the 1970s) textbooks of
Pakistan did not contain this hatred. Although a lot of animosity towards Hindus might well
have been expected in the newborn Pakistan because of the bloody riots of the partition,
the early textbooks in Pakistan, many written after the partition, were free of the
pathological hate that we see in textbooks today. For example:
1. The early history books contained chapters on both the oldest civilizations Moen Jo
Daro, Harappa, Gandhara, etc., but also the early Hindu mythologies of Ramayana
and Mahabharata and extensively covered, often with admiration, the great Hindu
and Buddhist kingdoms of the Mauryas and the Guptas.
2. The books indeed showed biases when discussing the more recent history of the
politics of independence, but still one found school textbooks with chapters on Mr.
M. K. Gandhi, using words of respect for him and admiring him for his qualities.
3. Even in the somewhat biased history of politics of independence, the creation of
Pakistan was reasoned on the intransigence of the All India Congress and its
leadership rather than on ‘Hindu machinations’.
4. Some books also clearly mentioned that the most prominent Islamic religious
leaders were all bitterly opposed to the creation of Pakistan.
Such was the enlightened teaching of history for the first twenty five years of Pakistan
even though two wars were fought against India in this period. The print and electronic
media often indulged in anti-Hindu propaganda, but the educational material was by and
large free of bias against Hindus.
Then came the time when Indo-Pakistan History and Geography were replaced with
Pakistan Studies, and Pakistan was defined as an Islamic state. The history of Pakistan
became equivalent to the history of Muslims in the subcontinent. It started with the Arab
conquest of Sindh and swiftly jumped to the Muslim conquerors from Central Asia.
Simultaneously, there started a trend in the 1970s of stressing the so-called Ideology of
Pakistan. This involved creating an ideological straitjacket in which history of Pakistan,
especially that of the Pakistan Movement was to be re-written. Pakistan was told to have
been created to establish a truly Islamic state in accordance with the tenets of Qur’an
and Sunnah. The Ulema who had bitterly opposed the creation of Pakistan were turned
into heroes of Pakistan movement. The Quaid-i-Azam was represented as a pious
practicing Muslim. And hate and denigration was created for Hindus. A few examples of
the expression of this hate in some recent curriculum documents and textbooks are
given below.
Curriculum documents state the following as the specific learning objectives:
[The child should be able to] understand the Hindu and Muslim differences and
the resultant need for Pakistan98
Develop understanding of the Hindu Muslim Differences and need for Pakistan99
98 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Classes K-V, Integrated and Subject Based, National Bureau of
Curriculum and Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1995, p 151
99 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35
Insensitivity to the Religious Diversity of the Nation
Hindu-Muslim Differences in Culture, .. India’s evil designs against Pakistan (the
three wars with India)100
Identify the events in relation to Hindu-Muslim differences, which laid the
foundations for Pakistan101
The textbooks then respond in the following way to the above curriculum instructions:
Hindu has always been an enemy of Islam.102
The religion of the Hindus did not teach them good things -- Hindus did not
respect women...103
Hindus worship in temples which are very narrow and dark places, where they
worship idols. Only one person can enter the temple at a time. In our mosques,
on the other hand, all Muslims can say their prayers together.104
‘ … the social evils of the Hindus’105
Hindus thought that there was no country other than India, nor any people other
than the Indians, nor did anyone else possess any knowledge106.
[A story “The Enemy Pilot”, about a captured Indian pilot, presumably of Hindu
faith] He had only been taught never to have pity on Muslims, to always bother
the neighbouring Muslims, to weaken them to the extent that they forget about
freedom, and that it is better to finish off the enemy. He remembered that the
Hindus tried to please their Devi Kali by slaughtering innocent people of other
faiths at her feet; that they regarded everybody else as untouchables. He knew
that his country India had attacked Pakistan in the dead of the night to bleed
Pakistani Muslims and to dominate the entire Subcontinent.107
The Hindus who have always been opportunists cooperated with the English.108
…but Hindus very cunningly succeeded in making the British believe that the
Muslims were solely responsible for the [1857] rebellion.109
Nehru report exposed the Hindu mentality.110
100 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35
101 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35
102 Urdu Class V, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002, p 108
103 Muasherati Ulum for Class IV, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, 1995, p 81
104 Muasherati Ulum for Class V, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, 1996, p 109
105 Social Studies Class VI, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002: p 59
106 Social Studies Class VIII, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002, p 82. This sentence, meant to
denigrate Hindus, describes the response of the local people to Al Beruni’s visit to India. It is obviously a
concocted lie because of the fact that Alexander the Greek had come to this land many centuries earlier,
that the rule of the Mauryas and the Guptas stretched to the lands from where Al Beruni had come, that the
Arabs had conquered Sindh before Al Beruni’s visit, that the Arab conquest was also aimed against the
Ismailis who had settled in the area around Multan even earlier, and that the Arabic mathematics was
deeply influenced by Indian mathematics, etc., etc.
107 Urdu Class VI, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002, p 221
108 Social Studies Class VI, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002: p 141
109 Social Studies Class VIII, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, March 2002, p 90
110 Social Studies, Class VIII – Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore. March 2002, p 102
The Subtle Subversion: The state of Curricula and Textbooks in Pakistan
The Quaid saw through the machinations of the Hindus.111
Hindus declared the Congress rule as the Hindu rule, and started to unleash terror
on Muslims.112
The Hindus always desired to crush the Muslims as a nation. Several attempts were
made by the Hindus to erase the Muslim culture and civilisation. Hindi-Urdu
controversy, shudhi and sanghtan movements are the most glaring examples of the
ignoble Hindu mentality.113
While the Muslims provided all type of help to those wishing to leave Pakistan, the
people of India committed cruelties against the Muslims (refugees). They would
attack the buses, trucks, and trains carrying the Muslim refugees and they were
murdered and looted.114
After 1965 war India conspired with the Hindus of Bengal and succeeded in
spreading hate among the Bengalis about West Pakistan and finally attacked on
East Pakistan in December 71, thus causing the breakup of East and West
Urging the Students to Take the Path of Jehad and Shahadat
The themes of Jehad and Shahadat clearly distinguish the pre- and post-1979 educational
contents. There was no mention of these in the pre-Islamization period curricula and textbooks,
and the post-1979 curricula and textbooks openly eulogize Jehad and Shahadat and urge
students to become mujahids and martyrs. The following examples illustrate the point.
Learning Outcome: Recognize the importance of Jehad in every sphere of life116
Learning outcome: Must be aware of the blessings of Jehad117
Must be aware of the blessings of Jehad, and must create yearning for Jehad in his
Concept: Jehad; Affective objective: Aspiration for Jehad119
Love and aspiration for Jehad, Tableegh (Prosyletization), Jehad, Shahadat
111 Social Studies Class-VII, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, ?, p 51
112 Social Studies, Class VIII – Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore. March 2002, p 104
113 M. Ikram Rabbani and Monawar Ali Sayyid, An Introduction to Pakistan studies, The Caravan Book House,
Lahore, 1995, p 12
114 National Early Childhood Education Curriculum (NECEC), Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, March
2002, p 85
115 Social Studies (in Urdu) Class- V, Punjab Textbook Board, Lahore, p 112
116 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education (Curriculum
Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 34
117 Urdu Curriculum (Compulsory, optional and Easy course), Classes IX and X, National Bureau of Curriculum and
Textbooks, Ministry of Education, Islamabad, 1988, p 8
118 Urdu Curriculum (first and second language) for classes VI-VIII, National Bureau of Curriculum and Textbooks,
Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, 1986, p 13
119 Social Studies Curriculum for Classes VI – VIII National Curriculum Committee, National Bureau of Curriculum
and Textbooks, Islamabad, Year 1984, p 16
Insensitivity to the Religious Diversity of the Nation
(martyrdom), sacrifice, ghazi (the victor in holy wars), shaheed (martyr), …120
Simple stories to urge for Jehad121
Activity 4: To make speeches on Jehad and Shahadat122
To make speeches on Jehad123
Evaluation: To judge their spirits while making speeches on Jehad,
Muslim History and Culture124
Concepts: Jehad, Amar bil Maroof and Nahi Anil Munkar125
Importance of Jehad126
Affective objective:Concepts of Ideology of Pakistan, Muslim Ummah and
Stories: eight lessons; Folk tales (mythical, moral, Islamic, travel and
adventure, Jehad)128
Again, the repetition illustrates how insistent the curricula are on the inclusion of
material on jehad and shahadat in textbooks and in classroom teaching.
Narrowing the Options
It is interesting to note that a general objective in curriculum documents: To create
awareness and love for Islamic faith, and to bring up children according to Islamic valueshas
been replaced by particular objectives, that completely narrow the options textbook writers
may have for writing pedagogically sound textbooks. The following excerpts demonstrate the
120 Social Studies Curriculum for Classes VI – VIII National Curriculum Committee, National Bureau of
Curriculum and Textbooks, Islamabad, Year 1984, p 21
121 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 56
122 Curriculum Document, Primary Education, Class K-V, 1995, p 154
123 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 33
124 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35
125 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 34
126 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 34
127 National Curriculum, Social Studies for Classes I-V, Government of Pakistan, Ministry of Education
(Curriculum Wing) Islamabad, March 2002, p 35
128 Urdu Curriculum (First language) for Classes IV and V, National Bureau of Curriculum and Textbooks,
Ministry of Education, Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, March 2002, p 18
129 Integrated Curriculum, Classes I – III, National Bureau of Curriculum and Textbooks, Ministry of Education,
Government of Pakistan, Islamabad, March 2002
<b>Theories on Pakistan's origins </b>
<b>Theories on Pakistan's origins </b>

Saturday, February 02, 2008
Ishtiaq Ahmed

The <b>official position on the origin of Pakistan </b>is something like this: Muslims are expected to lead their lives in accordance with comprehensive Islamic injunctions. For doing that, an Islamic polity is imperative. Hence Indian Muslims were bound to demand a separate state for themselves whenever an opportunity arose. The end of British colonialism provided such an opportunity and the Muslims whole-heartedly responded to the call for a separate Muslim state on the Indian subcontinent. <b>Some versions of such theorising locate the origins of Pakistan in the arrival of the Arabs in the subcontinent in 711. </b>Islam and Hinduism, it is argued, represent two diametrically opposite worldviews. Therefore partition was inevitable.

Another set of theories can be called <b>'cultural-geographical theories'</b>. We are told that <b>six thousand years </b> :eek: <b>a distinct civilisation</b> evolved around the Indus River and its various tributaries (roughly corresponding to the present territories of Pakistan) and remained separate for most of those six thousand years from the one centred on the Indo-Gangetic plains of Northern India. <b>The sharp contrast between them being that the Indus Valley Civilisation evolved a liberal and egalitarian ethos deriving from the influence of various unorthodox creeds and movements which during the Muslim period were blended into the mystical forms of Sufi Islam</b>, <!--emo&:lol:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/laugh.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='laugh.gif' /><!--endemo--> while the rest of India was organized into an hierarchical and rigid social system which found its ultimate perfection in the Hindu caste system. Hence, when the British withdrew from South Asia the Muslims of the Indus Valley Civilisation chose to separate from the rest of India. Such a theory it may be noted has no room for East Pakistan being part of Pakistan.

Another cluster of theories deriving from <b>Marxism</b>, look upon the <b>movement for Pakistan as a democratic mass movement </b>of the oppressed Muslim community against the dominant Hindu majority. Here, emphasis is given to the head start that Hindus and Sikhs enjoyed in taking to modern education in the schools established by the British. The Muslims lagged behind and consequently the <b>non-Muslims captured the main sectors of the emerging capitalist economy</b> <!--emo&:lol:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/laugh.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='laugh.gif' /><!--endemo--> . In particular the overwhelmingly Muslim agrarian classes including various categories of peasants were deeply indebted to the Hindu and Sikh money-lenders. An ideology of popular, egalitarian Islam attracted Muslims from all segments of society and therefore the establishment of Pakistan was the culmination of a protracted struggle to liberate Muslims from the yoke of Hindu-Sikh domination.

The most famous of these Marxist theories is the one put forth by the late Hamza Alavi. He asserted that the most ardent supporters of the idea of Pakistan were not the ulema but the Muslim salariat. The salariat comprised <b>the sizable body of modern-educated Muslims who perceived that the creation of Pakistan would drastically improve their chances of finding employment </b>with the state than if they were not to remain a part of a united India dominated by the more economically and educationally advanced Hindu majority. Thus, it is argued, Pakistan was not established out of confessional zeal but secular concerns of the salariat.

Alavi, however, never at any stage studied the actual dynamics of the Pakistan movement after the Lahore resolution of 1940. Therefore he was completely oblivious of the fact that the Muslim League made its breakthrough in the Punjab and NWFP only when it won over the Barelvi ulema and pirs. There is solid evidence to prove that Jinnah assured the ulema that the Shariah will apply to Muslims in Pakistan.

Theories based on high politics deriving from the role of individuals in the making of history, identify the role of Mohamed Ali Jinnah as pivotal and decisive to the creation of Pakistan. Without his towering leadership, it is asserted, the movement of Pakistan would not have succeeded. No only his lieutenants and followers are portrayed as political pygmies but even his adversaries with the exception of Gandhi, perhaps, are considered light-weights. <b>Some theories suggest that Jinnah never actually wanted the division of India and sought at most a fair share of power for Muslims in a united India and it was the Congress leaders who spurned his overtures for an accommodation within a loose federation and instead precipitated the partition because they wanted to rule India through a powerful centre</b>. Ayesha Jalal is the main proponent of this variant of the role of individuals in history.

Other theories identify the fear of the Muslim upper classes of domination by Hindus. It is asserted that <b>upper class Muslim leaders were not willing to accept a junior role</b> for themselves in united India. Muslims had ruled India for more than 600 years and <b>they could not understand why under a democratic system they should be deprived of power and influence</b> :eek: . The veteran Khalid bin Sayeed champions such a theory.

Some theories identify a British hand in the creation of Pakistan. It has been suggested that the British were keen to use Pakistan as a base for their geopolitical and geo-economic designs in South Asia. In this regard, in a meeting held on May 12 1947 in London the chiefs of staff of various branches of the British armed forces and in the presence of Field Marshal Montgomery and Lord Ismay, it was observed:

<b>'From the strategic point of view there were overwhelming arguments in favour of Western Pakistan remaining within the Commonwealth, namely, that we should obtain important strategic facilities, the port of Karachi, air bases and the support of the Moslem manpower in the future…</b> A refusal of an application to this end would amount to ejecting loyal people from the British Commonwealth, and would probably lose us all chances of ever getting strategic facilities anywhere in India…. From a military point of view, such a result would be catastrophic' (Mansergh, N and Moon, P (eds), The Transfer of Power 1942-47, vol. 10. pp. 791-2).

Whatever the explanation for the origins of Pakistan, it is imperative that it becomes a state in which the rule of law and social justice prevail. <b>For the Pakistani nation, the challenge is to look forward and not backwards.</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The writer is a professor of political science and a visiting senior research fellow at the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS), National University of Singapore. Email: isasia@nus.edu.sg<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Let us revive Jinnah

I have gone through the article "Let us Revive Jinnah" published in a local English daily on December 25, 2007. At the first instance I would like to express my views about the substance and an overall analysis of this article.

The respectable writer perhaps is not clear about his political perceptions regarding the charismatic and virile personality of Quaid-i-Azam and even not well-versed with the dominantly important milestones of the Pakistan Movement. Understanding the gory process of the Pakistan Movement, and then the creation of Pakistan needs a more concrete and enthusiastic study with commitment.

Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, was not only a versatile, multi-dimensional and all-encompassing personality of the subcontinent, but he became the beacon light for the whole Islamic World. Much needs to be written about his meritorious national services in the field of liberating the Muslims of the subcontinent from the ugly yoke of imperialistic government of Great Britain, as well as from the hegemonic designs and prejudiced of the Hindu majority. I must say, that so many aspects of Quaid-i-Azam's life need to be written and elaborated keeping in view of his achievements. The writer must keep this thing in mind that thorough comprehension and substantial views should be highlighted and not to be taken in a light philosophy.

The writer is of the view that due to active assistance of Mr Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru, the Quaid was able to establish Pakistan. This is a negation and distortion of the historical and genuine process of the establishment of Pakistan. I would like to recommend the writer to study "Verdict on India" written by Mr Beverley Nicholas particularly, the chapter "A Dialogue with a Giant" that is a sufficient study.
Nicholas writes "India is likely to be the world's greatest problem for some years to come and Mr Jinnah is in a position of unique strategic importance. He can sway the battle this way or that as he chooses. His 100 million Muslims will march to the left, to the right, to the front, to the rear at his bidding, and at nobody else's...that is the point. It is not the same in the Hindu ranks. If Gandhi goes, there is always Nehru or Rajagopalachari or Patel or a dozen others. But if Jinnah goes, who is there?
By this I do not mean that the Muslim League would disintegrate it is for too homogenous and virile a body, but that its actions would be incalculable. It might row completely off the rails and charge through India with fire and slaughter, it might start another war so long as Jinnah is there, nothing like this will happen" (P-216).
This is how the stature of Quaid-i-Azam is analysed by an Englishman like Mr Beverley Nicholas in his book that was published perhaps in 1944. In my opinion, keeping in view the hard facts of history of the subcontinent, Gandhi, Nehru and Patel are not relevantly in the picture of attainment of independence, but only Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah through his consistent, valuable and volatile efforts, the Hindus had been honoured to achieve independence from the British Raj.

The Quaid was a votary of political logic, philosophy and psychology of Hindu mind and reasoning rather than being a magician like Gandhi.
British Labour Delegation once attended the Nagpur Session of the Congress for the non-cooperation programme said, "India could no longer be denied freedom or Sawaraj as it has produced at least one man of Mr Jinnah's calibre, courage and character." This is all the way a rigmarole on the part of the writer and he is not justified in his statements.
The Quaid on his inaugural speech on August 11, 1947 as the president of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan said, "It shall be a liberal democratic state in which religion shall have nothing to do with the business of the state. All its citizens irrespective of their caste, creed or colour shall be equal.

Hindus would cease to be Hindus and Muslims would cease to be Muslims, not in the religious sense, because that is a personal faith of each individual, but in the political sense as citizens of Pakistan." There is no misconception in the speech of the Quaid and the question of over-use and becoming meaningless would create imbroglio in the minds of the Pakistanis and cannot be considered as a substantive discussion.
As far as independence is concerned, as it is presumed an unsuccessful war, but in fact it was not. The war of independence created deep down a sense of nationalism, integrity, solidarity and enthusiasm for getting out of slavery, in the hearts and minds of the Muslims of the subcontinent, which later resulted in a preponderant movement on the basis of this, Pakistan was established.<b>
The Ideology of Pakistan paved the way for the establishment of a separate homeland for the Muslims of the subcontinent and culminated into an Objective Resolution of March 12, 1949, which succinctly elaborates that the constitution of Pakistan shall be based on the commandments of the Almighty, as incorporated in the Holy Quran.
About theocracy, the Quaid-i-Azam never favoured theocracy or papaism for Pakistan. He always supported the establishment of an Islamic, democratic and a welfare state. On the other hand, Liaquat Ali Khan and the other Muslim League stalwarts also never supported theocracy in Pakistan.</b>


1958 Atlantic monthly

The Sensitive Areas

by Frederic M. Bennett
Muslim and Hindu

A decade has passed since the struggle of the Indian subcontinent to free itself from British imperial rule was crowned with success. For half a century or more before emancipation, nationalists of both the great religious communities had stridently asserted that communal antipathy was illusory - a mere creation of the British Raj, allegedly following the old Roman maxim of "divide and rule." History since independence has shown with tragic clarity that antagonism between Muslim and Hindu is much more deeply rooted than in an oppressor's stratagem. For the ink was not yet dry on the 1947 charter of sovereignty before what had been one great single nation under British rule became split into two sullenly hostile countries, Pakistan and India.

However regrettable, this state of affairs is not really surprising. Long before the British conquered India, the Hindus had resented their Muslim Mogul masters and those who by conversion followed the same faith. The Muslim for his part had all the scorn of the warrior for those less martial than himself, not untainted with an intellectual inferiority complex vis-à-vis those commercially and politically more astute than he. With this historic background it would have required more courage, tolerance, and statecraft than any leaders in Delhi or Karachi have yet shown to heal the hereditary strains between the two great communal factions.

Instead, as each year passes, friction grows. What began with a squabble about the division of assets after partition, and went on to bitter conflict over the future of disputed princely states such as Hyderabad, Junagadh, and Kashmir, has now spread to the struggle for limited, precious irrigation water which literally spells life or death for millions upon millions of poverty-stricken, undernourished, illiterate peasants.

Externally, too, a wide gulf has yawned. Pakistan, West and East, with barely a fifth of the population of her larger neighbor, cut asunder by over 1500 miles of Indian territory, fearful of ultimate Indian subjection and absorption, has in her search for allies gone much further than she otherwise might have in openly siding with the West in the global struggle against Communism. For although Pakistan's opposition to Communism is genuine, there is no doubt that to the average Pakistani, India, not Soviet Russia or Red China, is the number one foe.

India, superior in manpower and resources, is fundamentally resentful of, in her view, the quite unnecessarily continued existence of the only nation that stands between her and the complete hegemony of the Indian subcontinent. Nehru is not alone in the ambition to see his country leading a great Asian uncommitted third force between warring Capitalist West and Communist East. Inclined toward Communism to meet the social and political demands of his teeming peoples, he does not openly break with the West in shrewd calculation that only thence can flow the capital and technical know-how to ensure his country's economic survival and its development. Pakistan, firmly linked with one side, the West, is a hindrance to this tightrope policy.

In Kashmir, hostility has reached near flash point. Today an uneasy peace is maintained between the two zones of rival occupation only through the vigilant presence of UN officers and troops ceaselessly patrolling the demarcation line.

In the Indian-occupied sector of this unhappy state, with a handful of local stooges backed by Hindu and Sikh troops keeping in subjection 3 million resentful Muslims, conditions remind one of life in one of the Soviet satellites. As you walk down a street in Srinagar, the state's capital, a man sidles up to you, mutters something in barely intelligible English, and warily presses a crumpled piece of paper into your hand. Nearby stand a couple of police. On the other side of the road .a detachment of grim-faced soldiers marches along. Behind you casually strolls your own particular shadow, the man who seems always to be hanging around the lobby of your hotel when you come down from your room, looking at nothing in particular; who always decides to take a walk when you do; and who always, too, stops aimlessly when you pause on your way.

When you get back to the privacy of your own room, you look at the scribbled message which you were handed: it is either a plea for outside intervention of the forces of freedom, or a letter to a friend or relative across the border, which the writer knows would never pass the censor if posted the ordinary way. A few minutes later your telephone rings, and a voice hysterical with fear asks whether a few opponents of the regime may come and talk privately with you. Hours later, a handful of tired, nervous men crowd into your room, insisting on searching every corner for hidden microphones before they talk. They are late because the police, knowing of their plans through wire tapping, have forbidden all taxis, the only transport available, to bring them, and so they have had to walk several dusty miles. Their story is sickeningly familiar in this day and age - a tale of persecution, repression, midnight arrests, and aggrandizement of the local "Big Brother."

Officials do not deny that thousands of Indian soldiers and gendarmery are stationed in the state to help preserve an outward calm. (Reliable estimates put the figure at 125,000-one soldier to every dozen adult inhabitants of occupied Kashmir.) A rigid censorship exists. All public assemblies and gatherings, except regime-sponsored ones, are banned. The prisons are full to overflowing, and those behind bars include twenty-five or more political leaders - among them a former prime minister - who are being detained under a local law which permits imprisonment without charge or trial, on executive order alone, for periods of up to five years.

As to the recent elections there, Hitler and Stalin could have approved of their conception and execution. In the Vale of Kashmir itself, only five out of a total of forty-five constituencies were contested, all the others returning unopposed ruling party candidates. Moreover, even where the five contests did occur, permitted opposition candidature was limited to purely domestic controversy. This was inevitable, since it is "unlawful," under the constitution imposed from Delhi last year, for anyone to declare for any policy other than the status quo of absorption into India.

To appreciate how this sorry state of affairs has come about, one has to recall the year 1947, when Britain handed over the reins of government to the two newly born states of Pakistan and India, with consequent partitioning of the subcontinent. So far as the then autonomous princely states were concerned, they were faced with three choices: accession to India or to Pakistan or complete independence. The third alternative proved in every case illusory.

The last British Viceroy, Earl Mountbatten, then holding the ring between the rival claimants in this territorial lottery, affecting more than five hundred separate states and 93 million people, declared, with the prior approval of the governments of both India and Pakistan, the considerations that should decide the states' choice. The overriding factor was to be the will of the people concerned, which was to be implemented through the medium of a formal accession instrument lodged by the ruler either in Delhi or Karachi. In cases where the ruler's personal wishes conflicted or were likely to conflict on communal religious or other grounds with those of his subjects, the latters' will, to be given a free, prompt opportunity to express itself, should prevail.

Meanwhile, in any instance where the issue seemed to be in doubt, interim agreements could be entered into with one or both of the national claimants, in order to preserve certain existing essential links, such as the postal system and trade. To the general principle of self-determination, the Viceroy added a practical warning that in reaching a decision the inescapable consequences of frontier contiguity could not he ignored. What happened next is history.
In Junagadh, a small princedom with a Muslim ruler but a population which was predominantly Hindu, surrounded by Indian territory except for an outlet to the sea, the decision of the Nawab to join Pakistan was immediately thwarted by force of Indian arms - in the name of democracy.

In Hyderabad, one of the few princely states large enough and strong enough economically to support itself, the Muslim ruler of a largely Hindu population opted, as was his constitutional right, for total independence, and initiated a referendum to test the will of his subjects. Refusing to await the outcome of this, the Indian government, in what it soothingly described as a "police action," entered the territory with tanks and infantry and forcibly integrated the state with India.

In Kashmir, partition rivalry between India and Pakistan produced an even more confused and dangerous situation. Thankful for an opportunity at long last to rid themselves of the autocratic minority Hindu regime which had ruled them so long, the local population supported by sympathetic tribesmen from outside the state rose in revolt and drove the Maharajah from the land. The fleeing Prince sought Indian help and, in exchange for the promise of Indian military intervention on his side, signed an accession instrument in favor of India. In accepting this purported accession, the Indian government also accepted the condition that it should subsequently be ratified by a free and fair expression of the people's will. Meanwhile, Pakistan refused to accept at all the validity of the ousted ruler's accession, and fearful of her own national security as Indian troops continued their advance northward toward her own frontiers, Pakistan moved her troops into Kashmir and a local war began.
It was at this point that Nehru, who now so bitterly complains of United Nations interference in "an internal domestic matter," took the matter to the Security Council for settlement. After much bitter wrangling, a temporary truce and cease fire was arranged and accepted by both sides. From that day to this, the story of Kashmir has been one of endlessly recurring delay, procrastination, and obstruction, by which India has sought to evade the obligations to hold a plebiscite that she solemnly affirmed between 1947 and 1949. Argument and counterargument have ranged over who was the original aggressor, the number of troops of each side that would have to be withdrawn before a fair test of public opinion could be held, and the terms and timing of the plebiscite.

In patient efforts to end the deadlock, mediator after mediator, investigatory commission after investigatory commission, conciliator after conciliator, have been appointed. Despite even the division in the Security Council between Communist and non-Communist powers, one unanimous recommendation after another—eleven in all, including neutral arbitration of the points of detail still in dispute have been put forward. Every time Pakistan has said "Yes," India has said "No." Always, as one argument is met or falls to the ground, Nehru or his delegate at the United Nations, Krishna Menon, supported lately only by Soviet Russia, produces another, with seemingly inexhaustible fertility and often total irrelevance. Thus quite recently, when it at last seemed that the clouds were lifting, India suddenly announced that because Pakistan had joined in such anti-Communist security treaties with the West as SEATO and the Baghdad Pact, and had accepted military aid from the United States, Kashmir's self-determination was permanently debarred. Now, the issue is once. more firmly back in the "For Urgent Action" file of the UN.

While this controversy continues to rage, another perhaps even more menacing quarrel divides India and Pakistan; that of the division of their natural water resources. The Indus basin, watered by the Indus and its five main tributaries, Jhelum, Chenab, Ravi, Beas, and Sutlej, all having their source in Indian territory, forms one of the largest irrigation systems in the world, created during the bygone days of British rule. On partition, the duly authorized representatives of both the two new countries gave assurances that each would abide by well-established principles of international law, requiring all riparian users of common rivers to respect one another's established uses and to divide surplus waters, in accordance with the rule of equitable apportionment. Patient efforts by the' International Bank in Washington have so far failed to find a solution that would produce for India the extra irrigatory supplies she needs for her increasing millions of impoverished peasants, without reducing the flow no less vitally needed by Pakistan to feed her own fast-growing population. For India the problem is grave, but for Pakistan it is one of national survival.

If on this, as on all other outstanding issues between India and Pakistan, any permanent cure of the present estrangement is to be effected, sacrifices and gestures will have to be made by both sides. Yet it is India who will have to make the first constructive efforts to break the log jam. For it is her recalcitrance that blocks the UN attempt to provide a settlement of the Kashmir quarrel; it is her obstinacy, based doubtless on uneasy foreknowledge of the probable verdict, that prevents the Canal Waters dispute going to thee International Court of justice at The Hague for adjudication. Is it too much to hope that Nehru, who has already lost so much of the moral stature he had gained for himself and his country since the war, will yet, before it is too tragically late, have second thoughts?


An Atlantic report

India and Pakistan

The signing of the Indus Water Treaty in Karachi in September was, as President Eisenhower so correctly put it at his press conference, "One bright spot… in a very depressing world picture." The treaty marks the end of a twelve-year fight between India and Pakistan over the division of the waters of the immense Indus River basin, a parched and hilly region which overlaps northwest India and a major section of West Pakistan. The Indus treaty is the first real rapprochement India and Pakistan have had since the bloody partition of the Asian subcontinent in August, 1947. And inasmuch as the fight over the waters was considered by many to be the most explosive of the many disputes between the two countries, there now is at least hope that India and Pakistan can become more neighborly.

When the British raj pulled out of the subcontinent two years after the end of World War II, Muslim Pakistan also pulled out of predominantly Hindu India. In partitioning the land on a religious basis, the peculiarities of the Indus momentarily were ignored. This 1800-mile-long river rises in the Himalayas of Tibet, is fed by six tributaries, and now forms a sort of unwieldy international fire hose with India, at the headwaters, controlling the spigot, and Pakistan, down-country, at the unpredictable nozzle. Further complicating this, the canals and barrages built under British rule to serve a unified area were, under partition, left pretty much on the Pakistani side of the border.

It was not until eight months after partition tha


April 1946 Atlantic Monthly

An Atlantic report


"India," said Jawaharlal Nehru recently, "is on the brink of a mighty revolution." The mutiny and rioting in Bombay haye underscored his warning. The showdown is coming.

From January 7 to April 12, 1946, the Indian provinces are voting in the last elections to be held under the Constitution of 1935. When the results are known, the lower houses of the Provincial Legislatures will elect from their members a constitution-making body to frame the Constitution of Independent India. India will then take her place on an equal footing with the other self-governing Dominions of the Empire. That is Britain's offer. It all sounds so simple. Then why the revolution?

The most powerful figure in Indian politics today is not the Viceroy, nor Mahatma Gandhi, nor Jawaharlal Nehru. It is a lean, gray-haired, impeccably dressed Karachi lawyer, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, the leader of the All-India Moslem League. Upon his attitude depends the success or failure of the present attempt to solve the Indian problem.

Ten or twelve years ago, Jinnah was an obscure but wealthy lawyer. He is a former member of the All-India Congress, which he now vehemently attacks. By astute political maneuvering, he has made himself the leader of a political party which commands the support of the majority of Indian Moslems, and can block any move by the British government to confer self-government on India.

Britain has often been taunted with employing "divide and rule" tactics in India, but the cleverest attempt at dividing and ruling is that of Jinnah. Moslems number only 94.5 millions according to the census of 1941. Compared with the 255 million Hindus, they will always be in a minority in any system of democratically elected bodies.

To counter this disability the Moslems, as long ago as 1909, pressed for and secured the electoral device of separate Hindu and Moslem electorates, with seats "reserved" in the legislature on a communal basis. This procedure ensured to Moslems a political representation in excess of their numerical proportions. But it did not satisfy them for long.

When Congress ministries took office in seven out of eleven provinces in 1937, Moslem Leaguers (who had polled only 4.6 per cent of the total Moslem vote) were denied any share in the spoils of office. Moslem League propagandists have represented this situation as a denial of their legitimate rights, and as proof of a Hindu determination to dominate India. Tactically, it may have been unwise of Congress, but under a party system of government it is difficult to see how it could have done otherwise. Congress did not refuse office to Moslems as such, but to Moslems who were not members of Congress.

For Congress is not, as League followers claim, a Hindu organization. The Hindu Mahasabha is the party of orthodox Hindus. Congress is, and always has been, open to Moslems, and has a notable Moslem president, the Maulana Abul Kalam Azad. Mr. Asaf Ali is another Moslem member of the Working Committee. To expect Congress to present ministerial offices to its political rivals is as if the British Labor Party, after its recent overwhelming victory, should be invited to give Cabinet posts to members of the insignificant Independent Labor Party, which had opposed it at the polls.

How many nations in India?

The experience of one election convinced Jinnah that his party could never hope to enjoy a ruling majority. In 1940 he accordingly resurrected the theory of Pakistan, claiming that Hindus and Moslems are two separate nations.

Before 1940 no one outside the Moslems, and few among them, took Pakistan seriously, but by persistent advocation in season and out, Jinnah has made of it the central issue before India today. He has made of the League a real political party, and in the recent elections to the Central Legislative Assembly it won all the Mohammedan seats (30), polling 86.6 per cent of the total Moslem votes. These elections were based on the extremely restricted franchise of the 1919 Act, and the total number of votes cast was only 586,647, representing almost exclusively the propertied classes.

In the provincial elections now taking place, with an electorate of over 30 millions, the League is unlikely to repeat its 100 per cent success, but there is little doubt that it will gain a decisive majority of Moslem votes for a policy of Pakistan.

The real problem starts from this point the League is pledged not to make the new Constitution work unless it starts from the basic assumption of Pakistan. There must be not one but two constitution-making bodies, says Jinnah -one for Hindustan and one for Pakistan. Hindus naturally are not willing to submit, in advance of the elections, to the dictation of a minority.

Allegations of corrupt practices and official interference have been made by the League and Congress in the Punjab and the North-West Frontier Province. Doubtless many are true. The greatest curse of Indian political and administrative life is corruption running like a putrefying streak from top to bottom. Election returns from the North-West Frontier Province show, however, that the majority of Moslems in their traditional home are opposed to the vivisection of India.

Jinnah wrecked the Simla Conference - called by the Viceroy, Lord Wavell -in July, 1945. He can wreck the elections. All he has to do is to stall, and the longer he stalls, the stronger he grows.

The British government, which most Indians are now convinced is genuinely anxious to hand over power, is thus faced with a quandary. Britain's offer of August, 1940, guaranteed minorities against forcible inclusion in any future Indian Union or Federation; the undertaking was reiterated in the Cripps offer of March-April, 1942, and at the Simla Conference.

Jinnah asks the British government to guarantee his Pakistan scheme; he does not ask the people of India, and is quite oblivious to the 30 millions who would be a Hindu minority in the six provinces which he claims: Sind, Baluchistan, the North-West Frontier Province, the Punjab, Bengal, and Assam. Of these, only the first three have a decisively Moslem population. In the Punjab, Moslems number 57

per cent; in Bengal 54 per cent; while in Assam they are actually in a minority. Even under this plan, about one fifth of the Indian Moslems would remain outside Pakistan.

Theory versus fact

Nevertheless Jinnah insists on acceptance of the present boundaries of those provinces for the hypothetical state of Pakistan. Exchange of populations and frontier adjustments, he says, could follow. No one with the least knowledge of India could suppose that these provincial boundaries correspond to any national, ethnic, or linguistic delineation. The principle of self-determination, which is of the essence of democracy, applies to nations, not to the fortuitous divisions of a subcontinent conquered by an alien power.

The Pathan of the North-West Frontier Province and the Bengali Moslem are both, according to Jinnah, potential members of Pakistan. What have they in common? They have the same religion, but racially they are totally different; they cannot understand each other's language; they dress differently, eat differently, and by reason of great differences in climate and geography are engaged in different occupations and forms of agriculture.

The rice-eating Moslem mopla of Malabar has far more in common with his Hindu neighbors than he has with the wheat-eating Punjabi Moslem. Only the most confused thinking could produce a two-nation theory in India, where there are dozens of distinct races and languages.

Jinnah, who is far from being confused in his thinking, knows all this. It is plain, therefore, that the Hindu-Moslem conflict should be seen, not as a religious one, but as a straightforward political and economic struggle for power, with the spoils of office as prizes.

Moslem rule

Moslem intransigence has perfectly comprehensible historical roots. For centuries before the British came, Moslems were the conquerors and rulers of India. Mahmud of Ghazni, Tamerlane, Baber, each in turn swept through the passes of the North-West, to sack and pillage the fertile plains of India, leaving behind them great pyramids of Indian skulls to bear witness to their military prowess. The lost splendors of the Mogul courts are not forgotten by Moslems. Although the Emperor Akbar, one of the ablest India ever had, was an eclectic ,in religion, it was in the main a Moslem administration that ruled the greater part of India for nearly 800 years.

Up to a century ago, Persian was the official language, and Moslems filled most of the minor official posts. Then, in 1835, Lord Macaulay's proposal to make English the official language was adopted. Moslems resented this choice, and withdrew from competition for public positions and the professions. Not until 1875, when Sir Syed Ahmed Khan founded the Aligarh College for Moslems, was their attitude of boycott reversed; but by that time they had lost ground irretrievably to the Hindus.

Moslems to this day are the weaker community financially and educationally. Of male Hindus, 14.7 per cent are literate, compared with 10.7 per cent of the Moslems; for women the percentages are 2.1 and 1.5 (1931 census). Separate electorates have merely accentuated communal differences.

Deadlock in Congress

Congress, and many of. the influential moderate leaders outside it (such as Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru and C. R. Rajagopalachariar) have for long endeavored to secure Congress-League agreement. Congress leaders realize that to obtain the unity of India which they desire, they will have to make considerable concessions to the Moslems. They point out that the federal form of government envisaged would afford opportunities for local autonomy in predominantly Moslem areas; but they refuse to hand over the Hindu minorities in those areas to the unfettered control of Jinnah and his followers.

Jinnah's growing power and prestige have only made him more obdurate. Would he have dared to go so far if he had not felt assured of outside backing - that is, from Britain? At all events, his attitude has caused Jawarhalal Nehru, the most modern and internationally-minded Congress leader, to declare that Congress will negotiate no further with the League under its present leadership.

Deadlock is complete; and if history repeats itself, the appropriate gesture for the British government would be to say that without agreement among the Indian communities, power cannot be handed over. But Britain cannot afford to repeat that time-worn bit of history now. Not only is the prestige of the Labor Government committed to the solution of the Indian dilemma, but the Indians themselves are in no mood to brook further delay.

The troubles in Indonesia (where the use of Indian troops to restore Dutch rule has greatly incensed Indian opinion) have lit a spark which Pandit Nehru has forecast will inflame the revolt of millions of colonial peoples against imperial domination.

The mutinies in the Royal Indian Navy and Royal Indian Air Force are no mere protests against pay or conditions but are political mutinies directed against foreign rule. It is significant that they started in the two junior services drawn from politically conscious sections. Unlike the Army, which is recruited largely from illiterate peasants of the so-called martial races, volunteers for the Navy and the Air Force have to be literate in English, a rare accomplishment limited to a mere one per cent of the population. The youths are mainly townsmen and acutely conscious nationalists. Whatever the attitude of her political leaders, the people of India are united as never before in vehement opposition to foreign rule.

What will Britain do?

If Britain backs Jinnah in his intransigence, she will be accused once more of utilizing the communal divisions to delay a settlement and final handing over of power. The conservative Pioneer of Lucknow says that if freedom for India is withheld for long, a revolution is inevitable. But what if Britain calls Jinnah's bluff? What if he is bluntly told that the question of Pakistan is not for Britain or Moslems alone to decide, but must be settled by the whole Indian people through their elected assemblies?

Britain's Labor Party, which championed India's freedom, has, since it came to power, gone little further than the Tories. Current pronouncements, while undoubtedly sincere, have been confined to the old formulas, with emphasis on the necessity for prior agreement among Indians, and warnings against attempts to secure results by violence. They have not dealt with the fundamental question of what the British government will do to break the stalemate.

Failure to grasp this nettle firmly has already led to suspicions that the leopard has not changed its spots, and that despite the change of government, Britain is still more interested in word-spinning than in action. Even the moderate and liberal sections of the Indian press speak of an "Anglo-Moslem conspiracy to keep India in perpetual subjection."

This unhealthy atmosphere could be dispelled at one stroke by an announcement that on a specified date all power would be handed over to those representatives of all parties who were willing to accept it. The prospect of a fait accompli of this nature would compel Jinnah to choose between ineffectual isolation and finding a compromise of some sort. It might not be lasting, but at least the subsequent squabbles could not be laid at Britain's door.

It is true that, in the long run, agreement between Indians themselves is the only guarantee of peaceful government and development. Under the new Constitution, India will be as free as Canada, and it will be for Indians to settle differences between themselves. But so long as there is doubt about Britain's intentions, communal differences will be accentuated, simply because each community wants to secure the best possible terms far itself before Britain "quits India."

May 1953 Atlantic Monthly

An Atlantic report


The least understood great power of Asia today is probably Pakistan. To Western eyes, Pakistan is that "other India," the vestige that was left over when India achieved her independence. A Pakistani is always being taken for an Indian, simply because he is a citizen of the same subcontinent. He feels something like an Israeli being taken for an Arab because both are Semites.

Pakistan would be easier to understand at a distance if it were one remnant. But it is made up of two unequal lobes separated by the vast territory of India - hung like two great ears of an elephant, two Muslim ears on an Indian skull.

West Pakistan, the left-hand ear, has some 33 million people, including energetic mountaineers and light-skinned members of the ancient Aryan races. East Pakistan, separated from the other ear by a thousand miles of Indian brow, has a darker, tamer race of rice and jute growers and there are some 42 million of them. In their swampy forest they are packed 800 to the square mile, while in the parched western plains there are hardly 110 people to a square mile.

The plan for a split Muslim nation, sketched by the father of Pakistan, the lean, aristocratic reed of fire called Mohammed Au Jinnah, drew little encouragement from Lord Louis Mounthatten, Nehru, and Gandhi, fellow artisans of the division.

Nehru had predicted earlier that a Muslim state carved out of India would collapse. In 1936 he had written: "Politically the idea is absurd, economically it is fantastic . . . . And even if many people believed in it, it would still vanish at the touch of reality."

Few people in the West, at first, wished Pakistan well. Pakistan, a new "Islamic Democracy" the Muslim religion as the foundation for its existence, did not seem to be a blessed move toward oneness of the world. The terrible mutual slaughters that accompanied the exchange of population when Pakistan and India separated caused observers to ask why so much blood was necessary, and to blame it on Pakistan. The contrast seemed the more striking because 43 million Muslims remained in "Bharat," as the Pakistanis call India, not going over to Pakistan at all.

West and East Pakistan, even amid so much pessimism, stoutly refused to make the worst come true. When Jinnah died his spirit was carried on by the cool international lawyer Zafrullah Klan, and by the able, thoroughly modern premier, Liaquat Ali Khan and his Begum, who bore with grace and good humor a Western opinion that often confused them with Rita Ilayworth and Aly Khan. A fanatic Afghan emptied a revolver into Liaquat Ali in the old Kipling town of Rawalpindi; still Pakistan did not waste away, but found fresh hope in new Prime Minister, the roly-poly little politician Khawaja Nazimuddin.

Kashmir, Asian Trieste

When Greece and Turkey exchanged populations a few years ago, they passed from being enemies to being allies of sorts. Pakistan and India are such a natural partnership, too, but the reconciliation has never taken place. What prevents it is the question of Kashmir, the mountain state wedged into the Western Himalayas.

Kashmir is partly Hindu, partly Tibetan Buddhist, but mostly Muslim. Yet India holds most of it. Irregulars from Pakistan's Khyber Pass country, riding in trucks with homemade rifles over their shoulders, attempted to take the lovely lakeland of Kashmir for their own, to "liberate" it, not without some looting. Nehru snapped in paratroopers and followed them with Indian army regulars. He still holds the country, stalling off the endless demands by both the UN and Pakistan for a plebiscite.

The Pakistanis managed to save for themselves less than half of Kashmir and about a quarter of the population. They block the main exit road and compel the Kashmir government of Sheikh Abdullah to wear out its trucks on the 9000-foot Banihal Pass, closed by snow in winter.

Pakistan, with its vast fields of wheat and cotton, and with its anti-Communist barrier range of healthy little Himalayan states like Swat and Ilunza, ought to be a happier and wealthier country than it is. The two Pakistans, East and West, share the advantage of all farming, nonindustrial countries in our day. But Kashmir prevents them from enjoying these fruits. Even when drought cuts down the yellow wheat of the Punjab, forcing Pakistan to buy bread, the trouble starts—the Pakistanis feel—with Kashmir.

Kashmir lies heavy on the Pakistani brow heavier than Trieste on the Italian. The Pakistanis know that just an auto ride away are thousands of co-Muslims who would go to Pakistan if they had a free choice. What prevents the Pakistanis from rescuing their Kashmir brothers-in-faith is the presence of a well-behaved Indian army. New Delhi's position in this matter is that India is responsible for the maintenance of order in Kashmir.

Rice for coal

East Pakistan has worked out a fair deal with India by shipping its jute to the hungry factories in Bengal. The rice of East Pakistan—rice being the best bargaining lever in the East today—keeps East Pakistan financially independent. And the Pakistanis, who are providers of raw cotton for the mills of Red China, agreed in March to provide 10,000 tons more in return for 100,000 tons of Chinese coal.

But the narrow corridor of West Pakistan, squeezed between a hostile Afghanistan and an unfriendly India, strung on its cities of Lahore, Rawalpindi, and Peshawar, is too tense to be healthy. How long would it take India's tanks to stab westward through the Punjab to the Northwest Frontier, severing West Pakistan like a broken hourglass? This is the question every Pakistani asks himself.

Karachi, the seaport capital on the broiling Arabian Sea, has become an Asiatic Los Angeles a bursting boom town, living on a miracle of will. Its terrible slums, a vast Hooverville of ragged doorways, oilcans for water, and rickety children are very slowly being cleared away. But a fundamental fever in West Pakistan remains, though the incredible 6 million refugees are gradually be absorbed.

A Pakistani woman is usually more progressive than any of her Muslim sisters. The veil has been almost wholly whisked away. Clean and intelligent young women, wearing the national white tunic march with rifles over their shoulders ready to defend the nation. But some plain needs remain unsolved—among them, water. What about water?



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