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Gandhi and his Critics$
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B. R. Nanda

Print publication date: 1994

Print ISBN-13: 9780195633634

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195633634.001.0001

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The Partition Massacres

The Partition Massacres

(p.98) Chapter 12 The Partition Massacres
Gandhi and his Critics

B. R. Nanda

Oxford University Press

The Muslim League argued that peace in India could only be achieved by creating a separate Muslim state. This demand was answered by Britain in the form of the Mountbatten Plan of June 1947, which proposed the Partition of India into two new Dominions starting 15 August 1947. Unfortunately, violence flared up in response to the Mountbatten Plan, compelling the minorities — the Hindus in West Pakistan and the Muslims in East Punjab — to flee for safety across the newly created border between the two states. Mahatma Gandhi was in Delhi when news of the massacres in East Bengal reached him. In March 1947, serious disturbances arose in Punjab. No serious student of Gandhi’s life and India’s nationalist movement can deny that Gandhi was opposed to violence, especially communal violence.

Keywords:   Muslim League, Partition of India, massacres in East Bengal, Mountbatten Plan, West Pakistan, East Punjab

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