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Old Thursday, October 07, 2010
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Iqbal delivered a monumental address on 29 December, 1930 which is unquestionably one of the most significant documents in the modern history of Islam in the sub-continent. It is regarded as a landmark in the history of Muslim nationalism as well as the partition proposals in the sub-continent while acknowledging its significance Sharif ul Muja hid describe the solution proposal by Iqbal in this address as a synthetic concept of Muslim nationalism.
Iqbal’s Allah Abad address also represented a paradigm shift in iqbal’s thought or thought process which may be attributed to two reasons.
a) Change in Iqbal's concept of nationalism. For instance, Iqbal began as nationalist, he was a diehard nationalist and his earlier poetry Steve in patriotic theme e.g. Naya Shabala, Hindustani Bache Ka Geet represents Iqbal's thought but with passage of time his concept of nationalism underwent change particularly during his stay in Europe and he became exponent of two nation theory.
b) This change in Iqbal's thought also synchronized with his disillusionment towards the course of Indian politics particularly the nature of direction of Hindu politics. Particularly the intransigents of Hindus towards Muslims. So Iqbal's Allah Abad address may be intextualize in this context. As this illutiernment became more acute in late 1920s.
1) Iqbal began his address with theoretical exposition of basic principal of Muslim polity. He expressed the view that there is no bifurcation in the Islamic ideology between spirit and matter. In Islam, spirit and matter, church and state are integrated into a compact structure. They form a part of organic whole. Therefore, he by highlighting and expounding by highlighting basic principal of polity. He tried to project Islam as an ethical plus ascertain kin of polity which cannot be separated. He further implied that a social structure regulated by legal system and animated by specific label. So he presented concept of Islamic solidarity as social unity. Social order is production of religious order.
2) Then he surveyed the Indian political situation and highlighted the peculiarities of Indian political scenario which delighted that Indian problems are not an national problem rather it is an international problem. India in Asia is miniature. So, it should be resolved in this sence.
“India is not a nation rather it is inhabitated by more than one nation. The unit of Indian society is not territorial as in Europian countries. India is a continent of human groups belonging to different races, speaking different languages and professing different religions”. He argued that the process of European democracy can not apply to India without recognizing the facts of communal groups. Islam in India made Indian muslims something more than a community, a nation.
“Instead they are the only people who can fitly be described as a nation in the sense of word”. He further said “the Hindu though ahead of Muslims in all walks of life, have not yet been able to achieve the kind of homogeneity which is necessary for a nation which Islam has given Indian Muslim as free gift. Iqbal rejected the proposal of any form of unitary state. The idea of a united state in which various sections of Indian population would have to sub-merge their cultural individuality was unthinkable in the existing circumstances.
3) Then he raised the question that whether it is possible to accept Islam as an ethical idea and rejected it in favor of a polity in which religious attitude was not allowed or permitted to play any role? Then he answered this question in negative. Then all the arguments of separatism revolve around this contention. Therefore, the construction of polity on national line, it meant the displacement of Islamic principles of solidarity was simply unthinkable to muslims. Then he proposed his own solution. According to his solution the life of Islam as a cultural force in this country was very much dependent on its centralization in this specific territory. He was very much concerned with the survival of Muslims that how the cultural individuality could be resented. “I would like to see Punjab, NWFP, Sindh and Balochistan amalgamated into a single state” he described.
1) It provided an unapologetic unambiguous illustration of two nation theory. In his Alaabad address he unapologically expounded the two nation theory which had been vaguely suggested by Sir Syed and others.
2) Iqbal was first to clearing or formulating the theory of necessity of creation of a separate state.
3) It was regarded as mile stone as it provided great impetus and Muslim nationalism in subsequent years which found vigorous manifestation in the demand of Lahore resolution.
4) The significance of Allahabad address is further enhanced by the fact that it was propounded by a personality of Iqbal's stature. Moreover it was presented from a popular platform of all India Muslim league. The previous proposals could not get popular imagination as they were not propounded through a popular platform.
5) Another significance of Allahabad address is that it led to the popularity of partition proposal. As is evident from the fact that numerous or incessant partition proposal were presented after Allahabad address in 1930-1940s. for instance Ch. Rehmat Ali’s scheme (now or never), Sir Sikandar Hayat, Sardar Aurangzaib, Sindh Assembly’s resolution of 1938,Lahore resolution which showed that number of people started thinking on the same line.
6) Through this proposal Iqbal presented a revival solution of Hindu Muslim conflict in the sub-continent in terms of two state solution. This solution could only guarantee the peaceful co-existence of these two communities in the sub-continental context.
7) Another significance of Allahabad address is that it may be categorized as a very realistic partition proposal, as the present state of Pakistan roughly comprise those areas identified by Iqbal in his Allahabad address.
According to Sharif ul Mujahid, “Iqbal sought to resolve the conflicts inherent in nationalism-panislamism dichotomy through formation of a synthetic concept of Muslim nationalism. It was a cross between the two competing ideologies, territorialism and pan-islamism. Muslim nationalism claims attributes of both but varying measures while the structural opputuriance
1) Allahabad address was criticized an account that Iqbal was not clear in his pronouncement as he mentioned separate state twice but recurrent theme of his demand was federation within a federation. This controversy became more explicit when Iqbal try to disassociate himself from the concept of separate state while writing letter his friends. He wrote to Advert Thomson on 4th March,1934 from Lahore “you call me prognast in scheme called Pakistan. Now Pakistan is not my scheme. My mentioned scheme was accumulation of Islamic majority provinces in sub continent while demanding Pakistan is a separate federation. (then on 6 march Raghab Hasan-same context)
2) Excluding of Ambala division, Ambala was Muslim division with Hindus but he excluded it.
3) Non mentioning of Muslim Bengal. He did not mention East Bengal having a majority of muslims in it and faces many a difficulties in way of Islam by
The protagonists of Iqbal defend him on account that if he subsequently disown Pakistan scheme it has obvious reasons.
1) Demand of a separate state had not yet been adopted by league as its official policy whereas Iqbal has persecuted proposal in his personal capacity.
2) Iqbal was not originator of Pakistan scheme. It was propounded by Choudhary Rehmat Ali; therefore, he try to clarify his position by disassociation himself from concept of separate state.
On the other hand Iqbal's conception of Pakistan became more and more clear in the coming years of sub-continent as it is evident from his statement in 1933, his Endeavour to convince Jinnah in 1936-1937. This was led Manawar Mirza and Mukhtar Zaman to infest that Iqbal's Allahabad address defiantly contained the spirit of Pakistan if not its name.
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