Tag Archives: Bangladesh

Syama Prasad & Partition of British Bengal

syama prasad mukherjee

Partition (of a country or a province) always comes with  endless pain to the affected people of that land but the partition  for which Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee fought and succeeded, brought smile and relief to the majority population there. It is the tale of the partition of British Bengal. But today nobody remembers him as a great leader nor as a martyr nor as a savior of Hindus (from the clutches of Muslim League) except a political party that is BJP (foremerly Jana Sangha founded by him).  He is the architect of partition of “Bengal” province and creation of West Bengal, where we are proudly leaving today as a citizen of India. Had he not fought for this, we would have been in Bangladesh today. This is a very important piece of Historical information, we should all know.

 Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee was born on 6 July 1901 in Calcutta (Kolkata). His father was Sir Ashutosh Mukherjee, a judge of the High Court of Judicature at Fort William, Bengal, who was also Vice-Chancellor of the University of Calcutta. His mother was Lady Jogamaya Devi Mukherjee.

Dr. Syama Prasad Mukherjee was an ardent believer in the integrity of the country, but when he understood that the partition of India had become imminent and the emergence of Pakistan inevitable, he joined hands with similar minded leaders in demanding a partition of “Bengal” Province using the same logic as applied to the rest of India. In 1947, British Bengal Province was partitioned along religious lines. The Hindu dominated western part of British Bengal Province became the Indian state named as West Bengal. And the Eastern part of Bengal Province, joined to Pakistan as a province called East Bengal. Later it was renamed as East Pakistan, giving rise to independent Bangladesh in 1971.

At the time of partition of India, had Syama Prasad not raised this demand, the whole Bengal and Punjab provinces would have gone to Pakistan. West Bengal would have gone East Pakistan and there would have been no trace of Bengal and Punjab in India.  Can you imagine what would have be the fate of Hindus in a Muslim country like Pakistan? In Pakistan what is happening today, all we know from the media. Even in Bangladesh Hindus are not safe, in the broad day light Hindus being attacked and killed.

Dr. Syama Prasad  Mookerjee saved million of Hindus (Mostly Bengalis) of this part of India from the clutches of the Muslim League and remained with the Indian Union.

It is painful to see that nobody remembers Dr. Shyama Prasad Mukherji today except his political party which was formed by him. Since he worked for the Hindus, objected for Kashmir’s special status and founded a political party with those lines, he is not a popular leader to the other political parties and their Governments. Thus he has no place in in the School level text / History Books. In vote bank politics today political parties (except BJP) are afraid to acknowledges his thinking, principles and works for the Hindu causes in his short life.

(His vision for Kashmir was very clear and was dead against the special status of Kashmir  This part will be posted in a separate post )


Posted by on 14/05/2016 in Indian History, Uncategorized


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Justice after 34 years

15th Aug 1975, when India was preparing for celebration of its Independence Day in the early morning, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founder of Bangladesh, was assassinated brutally by his own army, in a military coup in Bangladesh.  Thirty-four years after, the country’s Supreme Court, on 19th Nov 2009 upheld the death sentence on five of his killers, paving the way for their walk to the gallows. Seven others, who are absconding, were also convicted to hang by the apex court. It was  a well planned coup by the Army as seen from the date they selected for their operation. The ruling of the Apex court paves the way for the execution of the former army officers, who murdered Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, along with his wife and three sons, on August 15, 1975.

Sheikh Mujib led the country to independence in 1971 after a bloody, nine-month war against Pakistan. He was the only leader in true sense who  raised his voice against the Pakistani authorities and demanded independence for East Pakistan, after securing majority seats in the National Assembly in 1970 election by his party Awami League. Instead, the Pakistani President, sent his troops to regain control of the eastern province but  those Pakistanis were defeated with the help of India and they were made to surrender to Indian Army and Independent Bangladesh was created in 1971.

People of Bangladesh, especially new generation of today, like it or not, it is true that Bangladesh was born just because of India’s timely help and that credit goes to  the then Prime Minister of India, Smt Indira Gandhi,  most courageous lady for her bold decision. Had India not helped that time, it would have been a impossible task for East Pakistan to Achieve the Independence what they are enjoying today. As long as Bangladesh remains, Mujibua Rahman and India should be remembered. The Pakistanis (army) still unable to digest that defeat and the loss of their Eastern province  which increased the enmity with India.

Picture 1 :  Bangabandhu waves to supporters on March 23, 1971 as daughter Sheikh Hasina looks on
Picture 2 : Sheikh Mujib with Indira Gandhi in Bangladesh;

Picture 3 : Mujibur Rahman with his family members: (from left) son Sheikh Kamal, daughter Sheikh Rehana, son Sheikh Russel (on his lap), wife Fazilatunnesa, son Sheikh Jamal and daughter Sheikh Hasina (present Prime Minister Of Bangladesh)

Pix coutesy  : Bangladeshi publication “Father of the Nation” through Times of India

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Posted by on 20/11/2009 in politics


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Pain of Partition

Citizens of Khulna and Jessore by heart wanted to be attached to India during partition in 1947. Many people from Barishal had even shifted to Jessore and Khulna hoping that these would be part of India. On 15th Aug 1947 they hosted even Indian National Flag but by noon they came to know that Khulna and Jessore were included in East Pakistan. Indian flag was brought down by sunset.


The district of Nadia (in Indian state of West Bengal), has not one, but three Independence Days. Yes three Independence days. It’s quite an interesting story, all stemming from a cartographical error made 62 years ago.

The news on radio on August 12, 1947, was that INDIA had been granted freedom. But the same news also carried a devastating missive : a large part of Nadia District was no longer in India. The map created by Sir Cyril Radcliffe, which carved out two countries from undivided India, had awarded a large chunk of the district to East Pakistan (Now Bangladesh).

Pre-Independent Nadia had five subdivisions: Krishnagar Sadar, Meherpur, Kusthia, Chuadanga and Ranaghat. According to the map prepared by Radcliffe, all parts of Nadia — except Nabadwip, which is to the east of the Bhagirathi — were given to East Pakistan.

For Nadia residents, the joy of Independence soon turned to sorrow. Women protested by not lighting their ovens for two days, while the entire town maintained a blackout. Muslim League leaders hoisted Pakistan flags near the Krishnagar Rajbari and the Krishnagar Public Library ground, and their supporters patrolled the streets, shouting “Long Live Pakistan”.

When word reached outgoing Viceroy Lord Mountbatten, he immediately ordered Radcliffe to look into the matter. Radcliffe went back to the drawing board. And, after careful scrutiny, he identified the problem. It was, in fact, a minuscule error : A line had been drawn wrongly and, with a single stroke, a large part of Nadia had gone to East Pakistan.
Radcliffe rectified the map, which finally placed only Chuadanga, Kusthia and Meherpur in Pakistan. Ranaghat, Krishnagar, Shikarpur in Karimpur and Plassey were kept in India. The rectifications, however, took a little time and the final announcement took place only on the night of August 17, 1947. The Pakistani flag at the Krishnagar Public Library ground was finally brought down and the Tricolour hoisted a day later —on August 18, 1947.

Since then, there has been two schools of thought as to celebrating Independence Day in Nadia. Some insist on August 17, when the announcement reached them, while others feel that the more important moment was on August 18, when the Tricolour was finally hoisted.

‘18 August, 1947 Committee’ celebrate I-Day on August 18, a practice they started in 1998. The ‘Nadia Zilla Independence Day Celebration Committee’ celebrate Independence a day —on August 17, which they have been doing for the last seven years. Rest of Nadia district has no reason to celebrate either on 17 or 18 but on 15 Aug .So Nadia district as a whole has three Independence Days to celebrate.

(Source : Times of India of 17 Aug 2009)


Posted by on 26/08/2009 in Indian History


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Train to Bangladesh

“That is my country …. How near is it. Still, I can never reach there.” This was a dialogue in Ritwik Ghatak’s film “Komal Gandhar”, which captured the pain and grief of partition and his dream of reaching there remained just a dream . But on the day of poila Baisakh, Bengali New Year 1415, the Bengalis of both side of the International border got a gift to cherish and to make their dreams of “reaching there” fulfilled.

“Maitree Express” (Friendship Express) a train to Bangladesh from India, (Kolkata to Dhaka) started its journey on the auspicious day of Poila Baisakh that is 14th april 2008, after 43 years of snapping rail link between India and Bangladesh (then East Pakistan). The rail link between India and the then East Pakistan was snapped during Indo-Pak war in 1965.

The two countries, India (particularly West Bengal) and Bangladesh supposed to be very close at hearts to each other because of their common bond of language, culture and food habits. But we are not so due to politics and misunderstandings. An International Boarder separated us from each other. India always respect sovereign state of the neighboring countries and never believe in aggressiveness or Dadagiri to any neighboring country. India always stood by the side of Bangladesh, at the time of distress like a good friend.

“Maitree Express” alone can not bridge the gap or erase the border between two nations built or created through many years unless there is heart to heart communications by way of cultural exchange and tourism. Let there be more “Bharat Bangaldesh friendship society”, and let us extend our hands for friendship with each other. The same was reflected on the first day run of “Maitree Express” when the passengers reaching Kolkata expressed their happiness shouting “we are very happy to be here. We Bangladeshis share a common bond with you people. We especially thank you for standing by us during our war of liberation”.

If East and West Berlin can unite by breaking their “Wall of Berlin”, why can’t we work for union of two Bengals ?

Note : During united India (before Independence) the present Bangladesh was known as “East Bengal”. Then came the partition of INDIA in 1947 on the basis of religion and then “East Bengal” became “East Pakistan” ruled by Pakistan. In 1971, “East Pakistan” was freed from the clutches of Pakistan by India and a new nation was born , thats “Bangladesh”.

Train reached Kolkata from Dhaka. ( Pic : Times of India)



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