Table of Contents
Early Islamic History:
The caliphate, as his office and seat of power were known, was initially in Medina, in what is now Saudi Arabia. Over the history of the empire, control of the caliphate changed hands, and the caliphate moved from Medina to Damascus (in what is now Syria) under the Umayyads (660–750) and then to Baghdad (in present-day Iraq) under the Abbasids (750–1258); ultimately the caliphate resided in Constantinople under the Ottomans (1299–1922).
Early in the period of Islamic conquests, between the years 637 and 643 during the reign of the Caliph Umar (r. 634–644), the Arabs mounted several campaigns in the region.
Arab naval expeditions raided Debal in Sind and at Thana and Broach on the northwest coast of India. A small-scale raid against Makran in 643 paved the way for a larger invasion the following year, during which a Muslim army defeated the forces of the Hindu king of Sind near the Indus River.
In 652 Majasha ibn Masood, who was sent by Caliph Uthman (ca. 580–656) to retake Karman, reconquered Baluchistan as well, extracting tribute payments from its subdued (conquered) rulers.
In 663, while trying to suppress a revolt in Kalat, ibn Marah and most of his army were killed, and Islamic control over the Baluchistan region was lost.
Caliph Muawiya ibn Abi Sufyan (r. 661–680), founder of the Umayyad dynasty, dispatched an overland expedition to recapture the region.
At the mouth of the Indus River (called the Mehran by the Arabs),
In 710 news reached Arabia that Debal pirates had seized an Arab ship, stolen its cargo, and imprisoned its crew and passengers, Arab families returning home from a visit to Ceylon.
Hajjaj bin Yousuf, then governor of the Islamic empire’s eastern end, demanded the kingdom’s ruler, Raja Dahir (d. 712), pay for the ship and its cargo and free its passengers. Dahir claimed he held no sway with the pirates, and negotiations broke down. Two limited campaigns against Dahir subsequently failed. Finally Yousuf received permission for a major campaign against all of Sind. His young nephew, Muhammad bin Qasim (695–715), was given command.
Qasim issued a decree:
All human beings are created by Allah and are equal in His eyes. He is one and without a peer. In my religion only those who are kind to fellow human beings are worthy of respect. Cruelty and oppression are prohibited in our law. We fight only those who are unjust and are enemies of the truth. (Hussain 1997, 103)
A treaty was promulgated by one of the officers: On behalf of the Commander of the Faithful, I, Habib bin Muslim, grant amnesty to all the people of Daibul [Debal] and hereby ensure their personal safety, security of their temples, women and children and their property. So long as you will pay jizya [a tax of protection levied on non-Muslims] we shall abide by this agreement. (Ibid.)
Hindu rule in the region had been marked by oppression and cruelty toward both the large Buddhist population and lower-caste Hindus. By their tolerance the Muslims, as they had in other conquered regions, soon won over the populace, who had little regard for their previous rulers.
Sehwan became a center of Islamic power in Sind.
Over time the Islamic and Sindi customs intertwined to create a new culture. Underscoring the deep bond that grew, Sindi became the first language into which the Qur’an was translated.
It was under the Abbasids that the intellectual flowering called the Golden Age of Islam took place. The Golden Age reached its height during the reign of the Abbasid Caliph Harun al- Rashid (r. 786–809).
Indo-Pak History starts
Charles John Canning, first earl Canning, who had become governor general in 1856, retained his post and became the first viceroy (r. 1858–62).
Sir Sayyid Ahmad Khan was one of the first to call for separate representation for the subcontinent’s Muslims and Hindus in institutions of self-governance.
After 1884 Ahmad Khan began to support Muslim separatism, advising Muslims to boycott the Indian National Congress, and in 1886 he formed a rival institution to the INC, the Mohammedan Education Conference, a predecessor of the All India Muslim League that would form 20 years later.
After 1879 Lahore and Karachi were linked by rail. By 1883 it was possible to travel from Karachi to the Khyber Pass by rail. During construction of the Lahore-Multan track, engineers discovered the lost city of Harappa.
Partition of Bengal:
United Bengal’s area covered 189,000 sq. miles with 80 million populations. Dr Abdul Hameed writes in his book, Muslim Separatism in India, that the partition was imperative even if Curzon had not initiated it. A Lt. Governor had problems in looking after the eastern areas. Mainly Muslim suffered because of the rotten administration by the British. Before 1905, many proposals of partition of Bengal had been under consideration but Lord Curzon decided to practicalise this administrative scheme. East Bengal became incidentally a Muslim majority province having 13000000 out of 31000000. West Bengal was a Hindu majority province. Muslims were very happy on the partition as this had enabled them to promote their life conditions. It was rightly an opportunity for compensation. The Muslim community supported it strongly but Hindus retaliated furiously saying it the division of motherland. The Congress joined the anti-partition movement. They started widespread agitation, violence and boycott of foreign goods. The main reason of Hindu protest was that they had loosened grip over the eastern parts.
Bengal remained backward and undeveloped.
The eastern portion of Bengal was predominantly Muslim, the western portion Hindu. West Bengal encompassed Bihar and Orissa, with Calcutta as its capital, and East Bengal incorporated the province of Assam, with Dacca (modern-day Dhaka) as its capital.
The religious dichotomy had complicated administration of Bengal, as did the large population.
To break the administrative bottleneck, in 1905 Lord Curzon partitioned Bengal into two parts:
From the start, Hindus objected to the partition.
The opposition to the partition also spawned the swadeshi movement, which advocated boycotting British goods
Reaction To The Partition Of Bengal:
According Dr. I.H. Qureshi:-
“This modification of the boundaries of Bengal was made an occasion for unprecedented agitation by the Hindus—first of Bengal, and later on other parts of India. Ulterior motives were imputed to Curzon: he had deliberately tried to divide the Hindus and the Muslims by drawing the line between Hindu and Muslim halves of Bengal; he had favoured the Muslims by giving them a new province in which they were in a clear majority, he had vivisected the Bengali homeland; he had struck a deadly blow at Bengali nationality; he had sought to weaken the nationalist and patriotic Movement of the people of India which had its strongest centre in Bengal.”
Reaction Of The Annulment Of Partition:
According To I.H. Qureshi:-
“Muslim reaction to these decisions was naturally bitter. For years the government of India and Home government had been telling the Muslims that the decision regarding the partition of Bengal was final and would not be reopened. Such flagrant disregard for solemn promises created a feeling of distrust among the Muslims. They lost all faith in British pledges. They were convinced that the Government listened only to sedition and clamor, that constitutional approaches did not pay, that loyalty was rewarded with treachery………….”
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