Seeds of Communalism: Partition of Bengal

In the last post, we have studied about the Lord Curzon’s Foreign Policy. His Foreign policy was aggressive. Because he wanted to secure British interest in India. The next worst thing he did to India was, that he sown the seeds of communalism in India. Because of this we are facing the fruits of terrorism and communalism in our country till now. 🙁

The seeds of communalism was sown by Partition of Bengal. Here in this post we shall read about the reasons and consequences of the Partition of Bengal.

Partition of Bengal

Preface

Bengal was the first place in India, which was conquered by Britishers. Though Bengal of that time was a very large province and proved the golden land for Britishers. Because from the Bengal they also got access to the Eastern Golden Islands like Indonesia, Malaysia, Java, Sumatra etc.

So, in India Calcutta was the Capital of Britishers. We all somewhere in our lives have read Newton’s Third Law of Motion. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. The same was true in case of Bengal. As the Bengal was the capital of British India, so the people of Bengal was suffering from the peak level of exploitation.

So, from the third law of Newton, the Bengal became the centre of organised Nationalism in India. The exploitation and suppression of people gave the birth of feeling of Nationalism among the masses. So, divide the feeling of nationalism on the basis of religion Lord Curzon played his ace card in Bengal.

Partition of Bengal: Dividing on the basis of Religion

Partition of Bengal: Nationalist demand v/s Curzon's Plan
Partition of Bengal: Nationalist demand v/s Curzon’s Plan

Bengal was a very big province to govern. Simultaneously the Nationalist activities also rising in the Bengal. So, Lord Curzon in 1903 first gave the proposal for the Partition of Bengal. In 1904, the government gave the official statement regarding the Partition of Bengal.

Lord Curzon himself went for the inspection of the Bengal in 1904 and decided the partition boundary there. Though the nationalist were not against the Partition. But they were against the way of Partitioning. The Bengal was the province of India which had both Hindu and Muslim population living as complementary to each other.

So, Lord Curzon was of the opinion to divide the Bengal on the basis of religion. The eastern Bengal was dominated by the Muslim population and western Bengal was inhabited by the Hindu majority. So, he demarcated the line in as such that it divided the whole Bengal on the basis of religion.

This was surely unacceptable by the masses. Because at the phase of growing nationalism if anyone tries to divide Indians on the basis of religion it was, in any case, unacceptable to the nationalists.

Impacts

Consequences of Partition of Bengal
Consequences of Partition of Bengal

Promotion of Communalism

The Partition of Bengal sown the seeds of the communalism in India. Therefore after this time to time, some stupid people keep watering this seed of hatred. And the people are still facing the side effects of its fruits. We got a partitioned independence in 1947. 

The issue of communal violence till date affects our peace and harmony. It is not that all the people are responsible for the communal violence. But the people who do not have a proper understanding of religion preach the masses. This is the biggest cause of the suffering of the people in the current scenario.

Linguistic Minority

Calcutta was the heart of Nationalism that time. It was also the capital of Bengal. But the partition was so planned that Orissa (Odisha) and Bihar also became the part of West Bengal. So, the Bengalis became the linguistic minority in the Bengal Province.

Increased Administrative Pressure on the Nationalists

The Partition also became the cause of trouble for the nationalists. Because it increased the administrative pressure on Nationalists. Though nationalists resolved this problem by creating the two headquarters after the partition. The new headquarters were Dacca and Calcutta.

Conclusion

Though this was the diplomatic move of Lord Curzon which sown the seeds of communalism in the India. But, there were nationalists too, they used this partition of Bengal as the reason for the start of the first mass movement of India! The Swadeshi Movement! From here started the leadership of the new phase of the Indian National Congress.

The phase of Extremist! We shall discuss this period in the next coming post.

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