Following the release of Jaswant Singh’s book on Mohammad Ali Jinnah, a debate has begun on Partition and different versions of the role played by Jawaharlal Nehru, Vallabhbhai Patel and Jinnah himself are being advanced.
Let us assume that Partition had not taken place in 1947. It would have taken place at one point of time or the other.
Could our leaders stop the linguistic reorganisation of States in post-Independent India? Did they not give in to the pressure tactics of linguistic elements? How then can we assume that our leaders could have resisted the pressure of Partition on religious lines? It is futile to argue over an incident that took place 62 years ago.
Neither was Partition inevitable nor has it benefited the divided people. It might have given the Pakistanis and the Bangladeshis some emotional satisfaction. Even that is coming under increasing strain due to Talibanisation, which was not foreseen by those who clamoured for Partition. Had India not been divided, the huge military expenditure incurred by it and Pakistan could have been utilised to improve people’s welfare. The al-Qaeda and the Taliban might not have been born, because the culture of hatred these movements espouse would have found no response in the absence of problems like Kashmir.