Indian move to establish United India through United Bengal

By Khodeza Begum

Some activities prejudicial to national independence and territorial integrity of Bangladesh have drawn the attention of all conscious persons. A demand has been raised to establish an undivided sub-continent by holding a press conference at a restaurant in Dhaka on December 29, 1991 . 'Upamahadesh Punorujjibon Andolon' (movement for revival of the sub-continent) is the name of this outfit. In an Iftar party hosted by them, the speakers delivered speech at a seminar held in Dhaka on 31 December, 1991 . In that seminar a Congress scholar who came from India commented that none but Zinnah is responsible for partition of India. His speech resounded to imbibe new thoughts rejecting the two-nation theory.

Afterwards a cover story was published in the weekly Bichinta regarding movement for revival of sub-continent. In an interview given by a leader of this outfit indicated that they want to go back to pre August-1947 scenario. It may be mentioned here that a brochure was also published named 'Ashamprodaik Upamohadesher Ishtehar'(communiqué of non-communal sub-continent). In this communiqué, it was proposed to place defence, currency and some other subject under the disposal of the centre. The map of India was printed on the cover page of this booklet where the present countries were not clearly shown. Leaflet containing the movement for revival of sub-continent were circulated simultaneously.

A similar seminar was held in Dhaka titled 'new urge in the field of South Asian regional co-operation'. World Peace Council and its Bangladesh chapter arranged this seminar. The political high-ups of the country participated in the seminar. It was decided that the agenda of the discussion will be focussed on 'South Asian regional co-operation. But Congress Leader Mayaram Surgeon and others delivered speech on united India. Mayaram said, 'Why can't we establish united Indian state of pre-1947 scenario? We did not want separation. We are separated by the British design on the basis of religion. But now it is proved that division on the basis of religion can not exist. We want to return to pre-partition India'.

In fact, it was very difficult to hold a seminar in the name of 'New urge to establish undivided India', which rather was the main aim of seminar. It was more strenuous to have assurance regarding the presence of leaders. So discussion was mainly concentrated on regional co-operation. Here it may be pertinent to inform about the organisers of the seminar. It is known to all that World Peace Council was formed by sole patronisation of Soviet imperialism. It was basically a Soviet intelligence front initiative ( The daily Telegraph, 02 March, 1992). At present this council is acting on behalf of RAW (The daily Millat, 10 March, 1991). Immediately after independence of Bangladesh this very council mounted upon the then leaders. They detached the leaders from the general public entrapping through Julio-Curie award. The roller of socialism pressed upon the country. Unlimited plundering was continuing in the name of nationalisation. We may have a true picture of that time in a book titled ' Shekh Mujib's Bangladesh in the eye of Foreign ournalists' which was edited by Khandokar Hasnat Karim.

One matter cannot be over-looked. The visit of Indian artistes, litterateurs, journalists and intellectuals to Bangladesh has increased to a great extent. They are taking part in various meetings and seminars of our country and giving various types of sermons. Most of them are making undesirable comments on undivided India, United Bengal etc, which is not their point of discussion. Some local 'progressive' cultural activists and intellectuals are also echoing similar tone. It is notable that after independence a group of intellectuals of West Bengal are making publicity in newspapers on United Bengal or greater Bengal in the name of East Bengal-West Bengal friendship.

Some time back Shib Narayan Ray, an Indian intellectual, spoke highly on Undivided Bengal while he was in a visit to Bangladesh. In an interview with a weekly he told that both the parts of Bengal will be inevitably united. But he did not clarify anything about how both the portion of Bengal will be merged, whether Indian administered Bengal well be freed from her (Indian) subjugation and will be united with Bangladesh or Bangladesh will be included with India-controlled West Bengal. Needless to say that there is no difference of slogans like Unification of India-controlled West Bengal and Bangladesh , United Bengal, movement for revival of sub-continent or undivided India . Such attitude was also prevalent in a teleserial 'Purbo-Poschim' (East-West) adapted from a novel written by Sunil Gangopadhaya, which aims at establishing undivided India.

Now let us analyse these developments from historical point of view. The exponents of United Bengal or undivided Bengal or undivided India blamed Jinnah or Muslim League for India 's partition, but history reveals that Nehru and his Congress was solely responsible for the partition. In this context Maulana Abul Kalam Azad told that Congress could not strictly follow its avowed ideology considering the past. One will have to admit with regret that nationalistic spirit of Congress could not defy communal considerations to select leaders on merit basis instead of majority and minority sentiment (India Wins Freedom, page : 19-20). Sardar Patel said, partition of India has to be accepted since it was the inevitable solution. It was better to be separated than quarrelling everyday. (India Wins Freedom, Orient Longman, 1959, page 185 & 197).

Now question arises why did Congress agree on India's partition? The answer lies in the writings of Bikramadittya, an Indian writer : Nehru agreed to accept the partition of India considering it as a proposal of amicable settlement. Nehru and Congress had deep-rooted conviction that existence of Pakistan will be for a very short period. They thought that Pakistan will not be able to exist due to political, economic and social weakness. (Shadhinotar Ojana Katha, preface : page-10 ).

Gandhi, Nehru or Congress did not accept an undivided, and sovereign Bengal as demanded by Suhrawardy-Hashim-Sharat Bose plan. They made the division of Bengal inevitable. Nehru in a letter written to his blind supporter Ashraf Chowdhury indicated that ' Bengal and Punjab will have to be divided if division of India becomes indispensable. Because only by making this division, we shall be able to establish undivided India again within shortest possible time (Jinnah and Gandhi - Sree R Majumder). The British hypocrisy was also an important factor in this context. When Mountbatten realised that India can not be kept united by any means, he chalked-out the plan of partition in such a way that confronting parts may be merged again ( Mountbatten and the Partition of India-by Larry Collins & Dominique Lapier, Page 92-93). Everybody is well aware of the much-talked amorous relations between Nehru with Edwina, the Jewish wife of Mountbatten.

Nehru was still confident about undivided India despite the partition in 1947. He said. ' India will be the hub of all political and economic activities in Indian ocean region. There is no future for small ethnic communities. They can only survive as a cultural entity, not as an independent political entity' (Discovery of India). Noted Indian defence analyst Roby Rikhi also echoed the identical views. He wrote : We will have to start reunification process whatever the consequences might be. Once Pakistan is merged with us, then other states will come back easily and in shortest possible time ( The War That Never Was).

This was why Sikkim was swallowed, soldiers were sent to Sri Lanka and Nepal and Bhutan were destabilised. The assistance provided by India in our liberation war is a historic truth. But we also need to consider the intention of Indian leaders. On 05 April, 1971, the chief of Institute of Defence Strategic Analysis Sree Subramaniam, who is believed to maintain close relation with Nehru family, wrote in the daily National Herald : The crisis of East Bengal has brought such an opportunity to India which will never come in thousand years. Everybody understands of what type of opportunity it is. It was also necessary for India to neutralize Bengal for the interest of strife-torn North-East India (War and Secession-Richard Sison & Leo Rose, page-207).

During liberation war, both the governments of India and Bangladesh signed a seven-point secret agreement in order to make Bangladesh dependent on India in all respect. (RAW and CIA in the Liberation War of Bangladesh , Masudul Haq, page:-92-93).In clause three of the treaty it was enunciated : Bangladesh will have no army of its own. Possibly Jatiya Rakkhi Bahini was formed for this reason. Plan was formulated by Indian intelligence organisation RAW to maintain Indian dominance on independent Bangladesh. When the undaunted freedom fighters were fighting with the marauding Pakistanis at the risk of their lives, then RAW formed its own forces by General Sujon Singh Uban at Dehradun without intimating the exiled Bangladesh govt. The name of the force was 'Mujib Bahini' (RAW and CIA in the Liberation War of Bangladesh , Masudul Haq, page :-96-97).

A book titled ''Phantoms of Chittagong' written by General Uban has clearly illustrated the motives and masterminds of Mujib Bahini. Many quarters opine that the now-defunct 25 year Friendship Treaty was nothing but a revised edition of that 7 point treaty. Clauses 08, 09 and 10 of this treaty indicate that the concept of defence system of Bangladesh and India are codified in one string. It means that defence policy of India and Bangladesh are reciprocal or complimentary. Similar attitude was echoed in the writings of Indira Gandhi: Both India and Bangladesh are complimentary to each other in terms of culture and economy. (Aspects of our Foreign Policy :- page-100).

It is the irony of fate that India is showing the excellent example of reciprocal mentality by depriving the Ganges water, organising the Shanti Bahini and Banga Sena, encouraging smuggling, attacking the innocent people of border areas, seizing Dahagram, Angorpota and South Talpatti enclaves and conducting cultural aggression. Some newspapers of West Bengal like the Ananda bazar, the Bartaman, the Desh, the Shanonda are reverberating the ill motive of the Indian leaders. Some days ago, a person who is believed to be a mysterious personality in the politics of Bangladesh, attended a seminar titled 'Political trend of South Asia' which was held in USA . He urged to unite the 20 crores Bangali speaking people of Bangladesh, West Bengal, Assam and Tripura (Weekly Khoborer Kagoj, 23 May, 1991). Before termination of 25-year treaty, suggestions were put forward by the Upamaohadesher Punorujjibon Andolon (Movement for revival of sub-continent) for allowing Indian soldiers to settle Rohingya issue which speaks of Indian ill intention ( Daily Dinkal, 24th March 91).

Analysing the foregoing the attitude of Indian leaders and their local agents in Bangladesh have become clear regarding establishment of undivided India. So we can clearly say, united Bengal or greater Bengal will no longer be any independent or sovereign entity rather than it will be merely a province under India. Basically united Bengal or greater Bengal is another face of the revival of the sub-continent or united India. Now question arises, if there is no border between Bangladesh and India or a pre-47 undivided India is established, then what was the necessity of the liberation war? All patriotic forces of Bangladesh will have to be more vigilant against the evil design which is prejudicial to our national independence and territorial integrity.