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An inquiry into colonial disengagement : the cabinet delegation to India, March to June, 1946 Bajpai, Kanti Prasad 1979

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AN INQUIRY INTO COLONIAL DISENGAGEMENT: THE CABINET DELEGATION TO INDIA, MARCH TO JUNE 1946 by KANTI PRASAD BAJPAI B.A., University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1978 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of P o l i t i c a l Science) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA July, 1979 (c) Kanti Prasad Bajpai, 1979 I n p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r an a d v a n c e d d e g r e e a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , I a g r e e t h a t t h e L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e a n d s t u d y . I f u r t h e r a g r e e t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r . s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d by t h e Head o f my D e p a r t m e n t o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l n o t be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . D e p a r t m e n t n f P o l i t i c a l Science The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a 2075 W e s b r o o k P l a c e V a n c o u v e r , C a n a d a V6T 1W5 D a t e July 31, 1979 ABSTRACT This thesis i s about c o l o n i a l disengagement, a term s i g n i f y i n g the process of decolonisation from the decision to end c o l o n i a l r u l e to the f i n a l withdrawal of imperial o f f i c i a l s and armed personnel. S p e c i f i c a l l y , t h i s thesis i s about B r i t i s h c o l o n i a l disengagement as revealed i n a v i t a l c a s e — I n d i a during the period March 1946 to August 1947. The focus i s on the r o l e of the B r i t i s h Government in that process, which, i n the Indian case, involved the tra n s f e r of p o l i t i c a l a u t h o r i t y — t h a t i s of ultimate r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for govern-ment—from imperial to n a t i o n a l i s t hands. This occurred i n two phases: the f i r s t , during the Cabinet Delegation's mission to India from March to June 1946; and the second, during Mountbatten's mission from March to August 1947. In analysing the r o l e of the B r i t i s h Government, the inquiry w i l l deal with the former phase, of which a d e t a i l e d f i r s t - h a n d account i s av a i l a b l e i n The Transfer of  Power a r c h i v a l documents recently released by the B r i t i s h Government pertaining to the period 1942-1947. The documents are used exten-s i v e l y i n the analysis. The attempt i s made to explain the r o l e of the B r i t i s h Government i n terms of the i n t e r a c t i o n and impact of f i v e f a c t o r s : ( i ) B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s ; ( i i ) B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s ; ( i i i ) the desire for a peaceful and orderly t r a n s f e r of authority; (iv) the momentum of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l change; and (v) de c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n the i i i ' i i face of the increasingly powerful and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement. On the basis of the evidence c o l l e c t e d primarily, from the documents, but also from important secondary sources, i t i s argued that while each of these factors had an impact on how B r i t a i n disengaged, three factors i n p a r t i c u l a r were most s i g n i f i c a n t : B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s , the desire for a peaceful and orderly t r a n s f e r of authority and the lack of B r i t i s h power i n r e l a t i o n to the n a t i o n a l i s t movement. These three f a c t o r s , i t i s further argued, interacted to cause the government to pursue a disengagement plan that would e l i c i t the agreement of the two major n a t i o n a l i s t p a r t i e s — t h e Indian National Congress and the Muslim League—and that t h i s pursuit, in turn, s e r i o u s l y l i m i t e d i t s room for manoeuvre in the process of t r a n s f e r r i n g authority. I t i s shown, f i n a l l y , that the lack of room f o r manoeuvre was p a r t l y inherent in the Indian p o l i t i c a l s i t u a t i o n and p a r t l y in B r i t i s h objectives, and that the Congress and the League were equally constrained by s i m i l a r f a c t o r s . Thus, in the end, i t i s concluded that to the extent that the Indian case i s paradigmatic of B r i t i s h disengagements generally a more pe s s i m i s t i c view of what accommo-dations and p o l i t i c a l arrangements the departing imperial adminis-t r a t i o n s and n a t i o n a l i s t movements can or cannot make during the process of t r a n s f e r r i n g authority may be necessary. i y TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER Page I THE END OF EMPIRE 1 The End of the European Co l o n i a l Empire .. 1 B r i t i s h Disengagement from India 6 II THE PROBLEM OF BRITISH DISENGAGEMENT FROM INDIA 12 Towards an Explanation of B r i t i s h Disengagement from India •. .. .. .. 12 The Cabinet Delegation's Mission 24 III THE LACK OF ROOM FOR MANOEUVRE 34 Two Issues of Economic Interest 34 An Issue of Strategic Interest 38 Obligations to the Min o r i t i e s 45 Obligations to the Rulers of the Indian States 51 The Co n s t i t u t i o n a l Issues 61 IV THE THREE IMPERATIVES AFFECTING BRITISH DISENGAGEMENT 73 V CONCLUSION 82 FOOTNOTES 95 BIBLIOGRAPHY 101 V ACKNOWLEDGEMENT My thanks and appreciation to Professor John Wood who supervised t h i s thesis in sometimes t r y i n g circumstances, not the le a s t of which were the f i t s and s t a r t s by which i t proceeded. Thanks also to Professors Frank C. Langdon and Robert H. Jackson for t h e i r i n t e r e s t and understanding. And thank you Grace f o r a quick and e f f i c i e n t job of typing the manuscript. 1 CHAPTER I THE END OF EMPIRE The End of the European C o l o n i a l Empire The purpose of t h i s thesis i s to contribute to the study of the end of the European c o l o n i a l empires, the empires pre-eminently of B r i t a i n , France, Holland, Belgium and Portugal. Broadly speaking, two questions need to be answered: f i r s t , why did European r u l e i n the various Asian and A f r i c a n colonies end; and secondly, how did i t end and why did i t end the way i t did? For the most part, those who have studied the end of empire have concentrated on the f i r s t question: that i s , the reasons for the end of European rule over non-European people i n Asia and A f r i c a i n the t h i r t y years a f t e r the surrender of Japan. Much has been made, for instance, of the apparent r a p i d i t y with which the Asian and then A f r i c a n colonies gained t h e i r independence from the v i c t o r i o u s European nations, e s p e c i a l l y B r i t a i n and France. In general, two factors have been held responsible f o r the r a p i d i t y of that process: the post-war exhaustion of the European 'powers' and the increasing strength of the n a t i o n a l i s t movements."'" Thus, there are those who believe that the imperial nations, exhausted by two world wars i n 2 three decades, chose to r e l i n q u i s h t h e i r colonies. A l t e r n a t i v e l y , there are those who believe that the imperial nations not so much chose to r e l i n q u i s h t h e i r colonies as were forced to withdraw from 2 them under n a t i o n a l i s t pressure. At least one commentator believes that both points of view are v a l i d , that post-war imperial exhaustion 4 coupled with n a t i o n a l i s t pressure ended European r u l e . C l e a r l y , therefore, though the ground has been extensively covered, the question of why European r u l e i n Asia and A f r i c a a c t u a l l y ended remains an open and engaging one. However, though t h i s i s so, i t i s also one that requires dealing with issues and events considerably anterior to the period dealt with here: the period proceeding from the decision to end c o l o n i a l rule to the formal end of c o l o n i a l r u l e . Thus, t h i s thesis addresses i t s e l f not to the question of why c o l o n i a l r u l e ended, but rather to how i t ended and why i t ended the way i t did. That i s not to suggest that how c o l o n i a l r u l e ended and why i t ended the way i t did can be divorced from the question of why i t ended; but rather that i n the period immediately preceding the formal end of empire— i n contrast to the re s t of the imperial p e r i o d — t h e foremost issue facing the various p o l i t i c a l actors was no longer whether c o l o n i a l government was to be replaced, but how. This period was, therefore, unique i n the hi s t o r y of colonialism rule:for the f i r s t time, the p r i n c i p a l p o l i t i c a l actors, that i s the c o l o n i a l government and the n a t i o n a l i s t movement, were both committed—in theory and i n p r a c t i c e — to the more or l e s s immediate end of c o l o n i a l r u l e . Hereafter, i n the i n t e r e s t p a r t l y of h i g h l i g h t i n g that 3 uniqueness and p a r t l y of convenience, the period and process of the end of c o l o n i a l rule w i l l be referred to as disengagement. The use of "disengagement" i n t h i s context i s unorthodox (though not unprecedented): by convention, the word has belonged e x c l u s i v e l y to the discourse of i n t e r n a t i o n a l p o l i t i c s where, since World War I I , i t has been used to describe an a l t e r n a t i v e p o l i c y p r e s c r i p t i o n to the face-to-face con-frontation of opposing p o l i t i c a l systems and armed forces equipped with nuclear weapons.^ As such, i t i s admittedly somewhat f a r removed from the context of the demise of European c o l o n i a l rule i n Asia and A f r i c a . Nevertheless, i t i s s i n g u l a r l y apt. What makes i t so apt i s the recognition that "(t)he essence of disengagement i s the separation of contending forces". For, that general sense of disengagement neatly summarises the c o l o n i a l s i t u a t i o n i n i t s f i n a l stage, which features the imminent separation of two contending forces, namely the c o l o n i a l government and the n a t i o n a l i s t movement. The period of c o l o n i a l disengagements was b r i e f but crowded, and proceeded in roughly three phases: beginning with the mandates in S y r i a and Jordan i n 1946, the f i r s t phase consisted of the disengage-ments from the Indian sub-continent i n 1947, Burma, Ceylon and Palestine i n 1948, Indonesia and the French dependencies i n south-east Asia i n 1949 and Libya i n 1951; the second phase consisted of the disengagements from Morocco, Tunisia and Sudan i n 1956, and Malaysia and Ghana i n 1957; and the t h i r d phase consisted of the disengage-4 ments from N i g e r i a , the Belgian Congo and the French dependencies in equatorial and west A f r i c a i n 1960, S i e r r a Leone, Tanganyika and Kuwait i n 1961, A l g e r i a , Uganda and the Caribbean islands i n 1962, Kenya and Zanzibar i n 1963, Nyasaland and Zambia i n 1964, Gambia i n 1965, Swaziland i n 1968 and, f i n a l l y , i n a p o s t s c r i p t , the Portuguese dependencies i n A f r i c a i n the 1970s. C l e a r l y , a comprehensive study of how c o l o n i a l disengagement occurred and why i t occurred the way i t did would be a project of some magnitude. Thus, t h i s thesis w i l l proceed towards a much more modest goal: i t w i l l attempt to shed l i g h t on the process of B r i t i s h disengagements i n analysing a v i t a l c a s e — India. S p e c i f i c a l l y , the focus w i l l be on the r o l e of the B r i t i s h Government i n that process. The decision to r e s t r i c t the scope of the inquiry to B r i t i s h disengagements i s not an a r b i t r a r y one. The French disengagements from south-east Asia, north, eq u a t o r i a l and west A f r i c a and the Belgian disengagement from the Congo were, by and large, abrupt and hurried a f f a i r s ; the Portuguese disengagements from southern A f r i c a were even more so, ending i n chaos and widespread violence. The B r i t i s h d i s -engagements by contrast, were not: among the various c o l o n i a l disengagements, they, above a l l , involved a p r o c e s s — r e l a t i v e l y w e l l -ordered and peaceful. There i s the suggestion that t h i s contrast may be at t r i b u t e d to the d i f f e r e n t " h i s t o r i c a l experiences that had come to e s t a b l i s h a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y n a t i o n a l attitude and method for handling c o l o n i a l a f f a i r s " . 7 The case i s often made, f o r instance, 5 that whereas the B r i t i s h t y p i c a l l y spoke of eventual self-government for t h e i r colonies, the French aspired to making "fellow c i t i z e n s out of t h e i r c o l o n i a l subjects" and that t h i s had a c r u c i a l e f f e c t on g how t h e i r c o l o n i a l involvements ended. The argument i s undoubtedly a v a l i d one for hist o r y cannot be ignored. The contrast between the B r i t i s h experience, on the one hand, and the experience of the French, Dutch, Belgian or Portuguese, on the other hand, however, i s beyond the scope of t h i s t h e s i s . But the fact of that contrast r a i s e s a question; i f B r i t i s h disengagements i n comparison to the others displayed a process, what was that process? This analysis of the B r i t i s h Government's ro l e i n the disengagement from India i s intended to provide some answers to that question. The decision to focus on the B r i t i s h r o l e i s not intended to suggest that to explain how the process occurred and why i t occurred the way i t did i s merely (or even mainly) to explain the r o l e of the c o l o n i a l government; rather, i t i s a consequence of the desire to study the period not from secondary material, which r e l i e s heavily on memory and conjecture, but from primary material. Unfortunately, the only primary material of any s i g n i f i c a n c e to-date has been B r i t i s h . Material from n a t i o n a l i s t sources such as the Congress Party and the Muslim League has been l i m i t e d and i s j u s t beginning to be a v a i l a b l e . C e r t a i n l y , there i s no n a t i o n a l i s t material to compare with the previously secret state documents released by the B r i t i s h Government 6 i n 1966 and published since 1969 i n a set of volumes e n t i t l e d The  Transfer of Power i n India 1942-1947. These volumes contain corres-pondence, reports, minutes of meetings and memoranda from every l e v e l of government i n B r i t a i n and India: senior o f f i c i a l s ; governors of provinces; the Viceroy, h i s s t a f f and h i s Executive Council; members 9 of Cabinet and the Prime Minister. In the absence of comparable n a t i o n a l i s t documents, one i s forced to deal pre-eminently with questions regarding the B r i t i s h r o l e i n disengagement: that i s , how did B r i t a i n attempt to disengage from India and why did she do so i n the p a r t i c u l a r manner she did? This thesis w i l l seek to answer those questions i n the l i g h t of information accumulated from The Transfer of Power documents. B r i t i s h Disengagement from India What does an inquiry into B r i t i s h disengagement from India involve? We know that B r i t i s h disengagement ended on August 15, 1947 with the p a r t i t i o n i n g of the sub-continent and the independence of two successor states, India and Pakistan, so that, f i r s t of a l l , i t involves that h i s t o r i c event. We know too that B r i t i s h disengagement ended with the complete withdrawal of c o l o n i a l o f f i c i a l s and armed personnel, so that i t also involves that h i s t o r i c event. However, neither event o c c u r r e d — o r indeed could have occurred—spontaneously or overnight; rather, they occurred as the r e s u l t of an antecedent chain of events, a continuity, a working out of the underlying p o l i t i c a l process. Thus, to inquire into B r i t i s h disengagement from 7 I n d i a — o r any o t h e r disengagement f o r t h a t m a t t e r — i s , f u n d a m e n t a l l y , t o u n d e r s t a n d and e x p l a i n the working o u t , o f t h a t p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s What was the u n d e r l y i n g p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s t h a t made independence and w i t h d r a w a l p o s s i b l e ? One seemingly p o p u l a r answer i s t h a t i t was t h e t r a n s f e r o f p o l i t i c a l power from t h e c o l o n i a l g o v e r n -ment of I n d i a t o t h e two major n a t i o n a l i s t p a r t i e s , t h e I n d i a n N a t i o n a l Congress and t h e A l l - I n d i a Muslim League. However, p o p u l a r o r n o t , t h a t answer i s i n a c c u r a t e , because what was t r a n s f e r r e d t o the l e a d e r s of t h e Congress i n August 1947 was n o t , p r i m a r i l y , p o l i t i c a l power at a l l . F o r , i f p o l i t i c a l power denotes the c a p a b i l i t y o f a c h i e v i n g chosen ends and i f t h a t c a p a b i l i t y depends on p o l i t i c a l r e s o u r c e s and the w i l l t o use them, then t h e r e was i n c r e a s i n g l y l i t t l e o f i t to t r a n s f e r . B r i t i s h r e s o u r c e s and w i l l , from t h e end of World War I I onwards, were m a n i f e s t l y open to q u e s t i o n and e f f e c t i v e p o l i t i c a l power r e s i d e d i n c r e a s i n g l y w i t h the Congress and t h e League. Indeed, t o what e x t e n t B r i t i s h r u l e i n I n d i a was ev e r p r e d i c a t e d on p o w e r — when at no time a f t e r 1857 was t h e r e more than 1300 members of th e I n d i a n C i v i l S e r v i c e (of whom i n 1939, f o r i n s t a n c e , o n l y 760 were B r i t i s h ) , 10,000 B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s , 60,000 B r i t i s h r e g u l a r s and 200,000 I n d i a n t r o o p s i n a p o p u l a t i o n o f over 300 m i l l i o n — i s a moot p o i n t . B u t though i t i s , one s h o u l d n o t l o s e s i g h t o f the f a c t t h a t w h i l e B r i t i s h power was p r o b a b l y n e v e r overwhelming, i t was f a r from f i c t i o n a l . L o r d L i n l i t h g o w , t h e V i c e r o y at the t i m e , demonstrated t h i s c o n v i n c i n g l y i n 1942 when, w i t h the Japanese a d v a n c i n g on the 8 b o r d e r s of I n d i a , he was a b l e to command s u f f i c i e n t r e s o u r c e s and w i l l t o f o r c i b l y suppress the w i d e spread d i s t u r b a n c e s accompanying t h e Congress-led " Q u i t I n d i a " c a m p a i g n — t h e most s e r i o u s r e b e l l i o n d i r e c t e d at o v e r t h r o w i n g the Raj s i n c e the mutiny of 1857. The p o i n t , i n r e a l i t y , i s not so much t h a t B r i t a i n a f t e r 1945 was power-l e s s i n I n d i a as t h a t her power had p a l p a b l y d e c l i n e d and showed s i g n s of c o n t i n u i n g to do so: i f i n 1939 t h e r e were 760 B r i t i s h members of the C i v i l S e r v i c e , t h e r e remained i n 1947 but 500; and, i f p r e v i o u s l y , t h e r e were 10,000 B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s and 60,000 B r i t i s h r e g u l a r s i n the I n d i a n Army, t h e r e remained i n 1947 but 4,000 and 40,000 respectively."'""'" Moreover, i f the body was sagging so was the s p i r i t . The B r i t i s h p e o p l e and t h e n e w l y - e l e c t e d Labour government (which had campaigned on the i s s u e o f I n d i a n freedom) i n c r e a s i n g l y l a c k e d the w i l l to use what r e s o u r c e s they s t i l l had. E m o t i o n a l l y d e p l e t e d by t h e war, aware of t h e i n c o n g r u i t y o f f i g h t i n g f o r peace and democracy, on the one hand, and f o r c i b l y p e r p e t u a t i n g c o l o n i a l r u l e , on the o t h e r , aware too of t h e e f f o r t r e q u i r e d f o r post-war r e c o n s t r u c t i o n , r e c o g n i s i n g the v i t a l r o l e o f the U n i t e d S t a t e s i n t h a t r e c o n s t r u c t i o n and t h e s t r e n g t h of American a n t i - c o l o n i a l p r e s s u r e , and i n any case " i n u r e d f o r y e a r s to t h e p r o s p e c t o f I n d i a n independence", they no l o n g e r p o s s e s s e d t h e o l d d e t e r m i n a -t i o n to r u l e . Thus, the n o t i o n t h a t t h e u n d e r l y i n g p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s 9 wh i c h made I n d i a n independence and B r i t i s h w i t h d r a w a l p o s s i b l e was p r i m a r i l y t h e t r a n s f e r o f power i s s c a r c e l y t e n a b l e , f o r t h e s i m p l e r e a s o n t h a t t h e r e was, to r e p e a t , i n c r e a s i n g l y l i t t l e power t o t r a n s f e r . What, t h e n , was t h a t p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s ? To answer t h a t , l e t us r e t u r n t o t h e q u e s t i o n o f what, a f t e r 1945, s u s t a i n e d c o l o n i a l r u l e i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t . We know t h a t o n l y m i n i m a l l y was i t power. What was i t m a i n l y ? M a i n l y , i t was what Hodson c a l l s "momentum": The p l a i n f a c t i s t h a t i n l a t t e r t imes B r i t i s h r u l e i n I n d i a r a n on i t s momentum.... Day by d a y . . . i t s agents from V i c e r o y to n e w l y - j o i n e d p o l i c e o f f i c e r s , and t h e i r s u b o r d i n a t e s , d i d the work t h a t l a y b e f o r e them; whatever t h e i r p r i v a t e f e a r s and a s p i r a t i o n s , t h e y had to obey o r d e r s , t o t a k e d e c i s i o n s , see t h a t d e c i s i o n s were c a r r i e d out....From j u d g e s t o v i l l a g e chowkidar, from army commanders to government c l e r k s , t h e agents o f the Raj went on d o i n g as they had been wont t o do, w h i l e p o l i t i c a l storms raged around them.13 What was the p r o p e l l i n g momentum o f r o u t i n e based on? I t was based on t h e r e c o g n i t i o n on t h e p a r t o f t h o s e i n v o l v e d — w h e t h e r V i c e r o y , p o l i c e o f f i c e r , j u d g e , chowkidar, commander or c l e r k , t h a t the u l t i m a t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r g o v e r n i n g I n d i a r e s t e d w i t h the c o l o n i a l government and her s e r v a n t s u n t i l t h a t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y was t r a n s f e r r e d to I n d i a n hands. Thus, t h e p o l i t i c a l p r o c e s s at work from 1945 on was t h e attempt t o e f f e c t such a t r a n s f e r . I n t e r e s t i n g l y , t h e B r i t i s h Government was f u l l y aware t h a t what was at i s s u e was not so much power as r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r government. S t a f f o r d C r i p p s , who was ' c h i e f t h e o r e t i c i a n ' on I n d i a i n A t t l e e ' s c a b i n e t , r e v e a l e d as much i n a speech to t h e House of Commons when be n o t e d r e t r o s p e c -t i v e l y : 10 One t h i n g t h a t was, I t h i n k q u i t e o b v i o u s l y , i m p o s s i b l e , was...to c o n t i n u e our r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n d e f i n i t e l y — a n d , i n d e e d , a g a i n s t our own wishes — i n t o a p e r i o d when we had n o t the power t o c a r r y i t out.14 (My emphases.) Fundamentally, t h e n , B r i t i s h disengagement from I n d i a i n v o l v e d what might be c a l l e d the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , a u t h o r i t y b e i n g c o n c e i v e d of n ot i n t h e f a m i l i a r g u i s e o f ' l e g i t i m a t e power', but as u l t i m a t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r government. What w i l l c oncern us f o r t h e remainder o f t h i s i n q u i r y i s t h e manner i n which the B r i t i s h Government attempted to e f f e c t t h a t t r a n s f e r and why. B e f o r e p r o c e e d i n g any f u r t h e r , however, we must c l a r i f y what the dimensions o f an i n q u i r y i n t o the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y a r e . We know, of c o u r s e , t h a t the p r o c e s s of t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y ended i n August 1947 w i t h I n d i a n independence and B r i t i s h w i t h d r a w a l . But when d i d i t b e g i n ? F o r a l l p r a c t i c a l p u r p o s e s , i t may be s a i d t o have begun w i t h the Prime M i n i s t e r ' s announcement on March 13, 1946 t h a t t h r e e members of h i s c a b i n e t were on t h e i r way to I n d i a " w i t h the i n t e n t i o n of u s i n g t h e i r utmost endeavours to h e l p h e r t o a t t a i n ...freedom as s p e e d i l y as possible...","'"^ because t h a t announcement was, i n e f f e c t , t h e f i r s t t r u l y u n e q u i v o c a l e x p r e s s i o n o f B r i t a i n ' s d e s i r e t o hand over p o l i t i c a l a u t h o r i t y — a f a c t t h a t was u n d e r l i n e d by the use o f the word "freedom" i n s t e a d o f such customary g l o s s e s as " s e l f - g o v e r n m e n t " o r "Dominion S t a t u s " . The t h r e e Labour m i n i s t e r s — P e t h i c k - L a w r e n c e ( S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e f o r I n d i a ) , S t a f f o r d C r i p p s 11 ( P r e s i d e n t o f the Board of Trade) and A. V. A l e x a n d e r ( F i r s t L o r d of the A d m i r a l t y ) — k n o w n c o l l e c t i v e l y as the C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n , and t h e V i c e r o y , L o r d .Wavell, spent t h r e e months i n I n d i a a t t e m p t i n g to come to terms w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s on the manner i n which a u t h o r i t y c o u l d be t r a n s f e r r e d . When they l e f t i n June 1946, h a v i n g f a i l e d t o produce such terms, t h e f i r s t phase of th e p r o c e s s of t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y ended. In December, the V i c e r o y ' s p e r s o n a l and l e s s a m b i t i o u s attempts to f i n d a means of d o i n g so a l s o h a v i n g f a i l e d , A t t l e e approached L o r d Mountbatten, a c o u s i n o f t h e K i n g and former commander of t h e A l l i e d f o r c e s i n s o u t h - e a s t A s i a , t o t a k e o v e r from t h e t i r e d d i s p i r i t e d W a v e l l . Thus began the second and f i n a l phase o f the p r o c e s s of t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y . On March 15, 1947 Mountbatten, armed w i t h p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers and the unprecedented mandate of t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y by a s p e c i f i c d a t e , a r r i v e d i n D e l h i t o become t h e l a s t V i c e r o y . F i v e months l a t e r t o t h e day, the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y was g i v e n e f f e c t i n two s e p a r a t e ceremonies, one i n I n d i a and t h e o t h e r i n P a k i s t a n . 12 CHAPTER II THE PROBLEM OF BRITISH DISENGAGEMENT  FROM INDIA Towards an explanation of B r i t i s h disengagement from India I f the f a l l of Singapore i n 1941 was "an event of the f i r s t order i n world hi s t o r y and a milestone in the process of 16 decolonisation", then so was B r i t i s h disengagement from India. Overnight, as a r e s u l t of the t r a n s f e r of authority, more than 300 m i l l i o n people and two nations occupying an area as large as a l l of Europe gained t h e i r independence, providing the impetus for the flood of c o l o n i a l disengagements across A s i a and A f r i c a that followed. That t h i s disengagement should have been the object of considerable study and speculation, therefore, i s not unexpected. In f a c t , the so-c a l l e d "transfer of power" i n India has been documented more exten-s i v e l y and s c r u t i n i s e d more c l o s e l y than perhaps any other. The r e s u l t i s that there e x i s t s today a p o s i t i v e , though at times enerva-t i n g wealth of material pertaining to that transfer—how i t occurred and why i t occurred the way i t d i d . What i s apparent from the material i s that to explain the B r i t i s h Government's r o l e i n disengagement requires an assessment of the impact and i n t e r a c t i o n of the following f i v e f a c t o r s : ( i ) B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s ; ( i i ) B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s to the m i n o r i t i e s and to the r u l e r s of the Indian States; ( i i i ) the desire for a peaceful and orderly transfer of authority; (iv) the momentum of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s m ; and 13 (v) d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n t h e f a c e of an i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l n a t i o n a l i s t movement. ( i ) B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s : As Hodson i n h i s study of t h e disengagement p e r i o d o b s e r v e s , t h e r e was i n B r i t i s h t h i n k i n g and a c t i o n s " c o n s c i o u s l y o r u n c o n s c i o u s l y ...a s t r o n g element of s e l f - i n t e r e s t which a p o w e r f u l n a t i o n f i n d s i t h a r d t o f o r e g o . . . (That) s e l f - i n t e r e s t was economic and s t r a t e g i c . " " ' " 7 In the a f t e r m a t h of an e v i d e n t l y c r i p p l i n g w o r l d war, f a c e d w i t h r e c o n s t r u c t i n g the d o m e s t i c economy and w i t h s h o r i n g up i m p e r i a l d e f e n c e s s t r a i n e d by world-wide commitments, t h i s i s h a r d l y s u r p r i s i n g . I n d i a , by v i r t u e o f her s i z e , l o c a t i o n w i t h i n t h e Empire and n a t u r a l , economic human r e s o u r c e s , was a p o t e n t i a l l y v a l u a b l e a l l y i n o f f s e t t i n g some o f t h e economic and s t r a t e g i c c o n s t r a i n t s which f a c e d a g o v e r n -ment v o t e d i n t o o f f i c e t o put B r i t a i n back on her f e e t . The B r i t i s h , a c c o r d i n g to Chaudhri Muhammad A l l , above a l l wanted to s a f e g u a r d B r i t i s h . . . e c o n o m i c and m i l i t a r y i n t e r e s t s w i t h o u t the e x p e n d i t u r e o f more B r i t i s h r e s o u r c e s i n men and money...They had n e i t h e r the w i l l nor t h e power to impose a s o l u t i o n on I n d i a , and had no d e s i r e to r i s k t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s . . . . T h e q u e s t i o n was how t o . . .promote B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s and, i n any c a s e , not p r e j u d i c e them.18 Though the p o s i t i o n i s perhaps an extreme o n e — b e c a u s e the " q u e s t i o n was not s i m p l y "how to...promote B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s " — t h e r e i s l i t t l e doubt t h a t as t h e Government attempted t o disengage i m p e r i a l r u l e from the s u b - c o n t i n e n t , s c a r c e l y months a f t e r the most d e b i l i t a t i n g war i n i n the c o u n t r y ' s h i s t o r y , c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of economic and s t r a t e g i c 14 i n t e r e s t occupied the minds of statesmen and o f f i c i a l s , and that a degree of hard-headedness prevailed. ( i i ) B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s : Though economic and s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s did indeed occupy the minds of B r i t i s h statesmen and o f f i c i a l s , and though hard-headedness i n some measure c e r t a i n l y p r e v a i l e d , the Government c l e a r l y was also concerned with matters that were not d i r e c t l y related to B r i t a i n ' s welfare. Prominent among these was the Government's desire to discharge i t s obligations to the min o r i t i e s of India ( o f f i c i a l l y the Muslims, the Sikhs, the Indian C h r i s t i a n s , the Anglo-Indians, the P a r s i s , and the Scheduled Castes and Tribes) and to the approximately f i v e hundred r u l e r s of the Indian States. Though i n the case of the min o r i t i e s there was a genuine humanitarian motive—there was a r e a l fear that i n a s e l f -governing India they would be submerged, even persecuted—the matter of obligations was also, and perhaps p r i m a r i l y , one of honour. Over the years, the Government had consciously assumed a p o s i t i o n of s p e c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for safeguarding minority and p r i n c e l y i n t e r e s t s against the possible encroachments of the majority community and B r i t i s h India respectively. The fact that on a number of occasions and i n various circumstances members of both groups had cooperated with imperial r u l e and defended the Empire i n war against i t s enemies merely reinforced the Government's commitment i n th i s respect. Thus, with the coming of the transfer of authority, the Government was conscious that f o r 15 h u m a n i t a r i a n reasons and f o r rea s o n s of i m p e r i a l honour, i t was bound t o make p r o v i s i o n f o r t h e c o n t i n u e d p r o t e c t i o n of t h o s e i n t e r e s t s i f at a l l p o s s i b l e ; f o r as C h u r c h i l l n e v e r f a i l e d t o remind h i s f e l l o w -countrymen, a f a i l u r e t o do so would c o n s t i t u t e an " i g n o b l e and s o r d i d s c u t t l e " , a t r a v e s t y o f i m p e r i a l r u l e and an a c t unworthy o f a g r e a t n a t i o n . ( i i i ) Peace and o r d e r : Another m a t t e r t h a t the B r i t i s h Government viewed w i t h growing c o n c e r n was the p r o s p e c t o f a t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y accompanied by widespread v i o l e n c e and chaos. T h e p r o s p e c t o f such a development was as a b h o r r e n t as i t was r e a l . Here a g a i n , as w i t h m i n o r i t y o b l i g a -t i o n s , t h e r e was of c o u r s e a h u m a n i t a r i a n m o t i v e , a genuine d e s i r e t o p r o t e c t t h e l i v e s and p r o p e r t y o f i n n o c e n t men, women and c h i l d r e n . There was a l s o , however, an i m p e r i a l m o t i v e . That motive was p r i d e . C h u r c h i l l ' s unique e l o q u e n c e , once more, i s i n s t r u c t i v e . Would i t n o t , he asked r h e t o r i c a l l y i n a statement on t h e I n d i a n q u e s t i o n t o the House of Commons ...be a . t e r r i b l e d i s g r a c e t o our name and r e c o r d i f . . . we a l l o w o n e - f i f t h of t h e p o p u l a t i o n o f the g l o b e , o c c u p y i n g a r e g i o n n e a r l y as l a r g e as Europe, t o f a l l i n t o chaos and carnage? Would i t not be a w o r l d crime t h a t we s h o u l d be committing, a crime t h a t would s t a i n ...our good name f o r ever?19 Though C h u r c h i l l ' s r h e t o r i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y o v e r s t a t e d the c a s e , t h e r e was the p r e v a l e n t f e e l i n g among B r i t i s h statesmen and o f f i c i a l s , and t h o s e B r i t o n s who were concerned w i t h i m p e r i a l a f f a i r s , t h a t i f i n 16 t r a n s f e r r i n g the u l t i m a t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r government peace and o r d e r were n o t m a i n t a i n e d , and v i o l e n c e and chaos p r o l i f e r a t e d , the i m p e r i a l c l a i m to "peace, o r d e r and good government" and the r e p u t a t i o n of the B r i t i s h Empire would s e r i o u s l y be c a l l e d i n t o q u e s t i o n . Thus, as Hodson i n r e v i e w i n g B r i t i s h p o l i c y i n I n d i a has w r i t t e n of the R a j , "Broad p o l i t i c a l aims a p a r t , i t s prime r e s p o n s i b i l i t y was peace and o r d e r , and t h e l a s t t h i n g t h a t i t sought was to promote f o r c e s t h a t 20 would have l e f t i t t h e h e l p l e s s s p e c t a t o r of v i o l e n c e and chaos." ( i v ) The momentum of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s m : One of t h e e n d u r i n g themes of B r i t i s h c o l o n i a l h i s t o r y i s the p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s m , w i t h c o n s t i t u t i o n a l advance t o s e l f - g o v e r n m e n t and w i t h the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y to a l e g a l l y -c o n s t i t u t e d government. C e r t a i n l y , no account of B r i t i s h r u l e i n I n d i a i n i t s l a t t e r phases c o u l d p r o p e r l y be u n d e r s t o o d w i t h o u t r e f e r e n c e t o the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l q u e s t i o n s i n v o l v e d i n the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y . What were t h o s e q u e s t i o n s p r e - e m i n e n t l y ? P r e - e m i n e n t l y , they were ( i ) what k i n d of c o n s t i t u t i o n was the l e g a l l y - c o n s t i t u t e d independent government of I n d i a to o p e r a t e under, and ( i i ) who was to d e c i d e what k i n d of c o n s t i t u t i o n i t was to o p e r a t e under. The most " l o g i c a l " answer, i n the c i r c u m s t a n c e of 1946, was t h a t t h e f u t u r e government of I n d i a o p e r a t e under a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n , and t h a t i n any case a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly d e c i d e what k i n d of c o n s t i t u t i o n b e s t s u i t e d I n d i a ' s needs: the most l o g i c a l because i t was the answer to which the combined and 17 c u m u l a t i v e momentum of B r i t i s h c o l o n i a l p o l i c y i n the Dominions and i n I n d i a p o i n t e d . A c c o r d i n g to i m p e r i a l h i s t o r i a n s such as Mansergh, t h e i d e a of convening a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e body such as a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly and the w r i t i n g o f a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n can be t r a c e d d i r e c t l y to t h e two p r i n c i p a l recommendations df Durham's famous Report on Canada a f t e r h i s v i s i t to t h e N o r t h American c o l o n i e s i n 1839, recommendations which were w i d e l y r e g a r d e d as h a v i n g " i n somewhat q u a l i f i e d form...been s u c c e s s -f u l l y a p p l i e d i n a p l u r a l s o c i e t y " and which, as a r e s u l t , "made a 21 deep impact on the mind of B r i t i s h s tatesmen". Indeed, so p r o f o u n d was the impact of those recommendations and t h e i r a p p l i c a t i o n t h a t they r a p i d l y d e v e l o p e d i n t o t h e c o r n e r s t o n e o f B r i t i s h p o l i c y i n the o t h e r s e t t l e d d e pendencies: When i n more o r l e s s comparable s i t u a t i o n s they ( i . e . B r i t i s h statesmen) sought guidance from t h e p a s t , t h e y were apt t o n o t i c e t h a t t h e r e had been an experiment i n Canada. I t was deemed s u c c e s s f u l . There f o l l o w e d o t h e r experiments i n A u s t r a l i a and New Z e a l a n d ; they were deemed s u c c e s s f u l . There f o l l o w e d y e t another e x p e r i -ment i n an a l t o g e t h e r more i n t r a c t a b l e s i t u a t i o n i n South A f r i c a ; p a r a d o x i c a l as i t was t o seem t o a l a t e r g e n e r a t i o n i t was deemed o u t s t a n d i n g l y s u c c e s s f u l . . . . Each experiment was c a r r i e d out w i t h an awareness, on the B r i t i s h s i d e , o f e a r l i e r experiments.22 The essence of Durham's p r e c e d e n t - s e t t i n g recommendations was ( i ) r e s p o n s i b l e and r e p r e s e n t a t i v e government and ( i i ) the a s s o c i a t i o n o f n e i g h b o u r i n g dependent t e r r i t o r i e s i n t o a l a r g e r whole. In p r a c t i c e , what they e n t a i l e d was the s e t t i n g up o f a b r o a d l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e body such as a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly or p a r l i a m e n t t o which r e s p o n s i -18 b i l i t y c o u l d be t r a n s f e r r e d , and t h e a s s o c i a t i o n of t h e n e i g h b o u r i n g t e r r i t o r i e s under a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n . From Montagu's s e m i n a l announcement i n 1917 of e v e n t u a l r e s p o n s i b l e government w i t h i n the Empire, the two recommendations were i n c r e a s i n g l y a p p l i e d t o I n d i a i n a s u c c e s s i o n o f r e f o r m s , d e c l a r a t i o n s , s tatements and o f f e r s . Though as Low has shown t h e p r o g r e s s i v e a p p l i c a t i o n o f t h e recommendations was not the "consequence o f l o n g -approved p o l i c y " , but r a t h e r o f B r i t i s h r e s p o n s e s t o t h e t h r e a t and f a c t of n a t i o n a l i s t a g i t a t i o n s , t h e r e was a c o n s t a n t r e s o r t t o t h e "pathway of /jDominion 7 p r e c e d e n t " , so t h a t ...whenever... the B r i t i s h were l o o k i n g f o r new f o r m u l a s to o f f e r I n d i a , they reached f o r the o n l y models they had t o hand: t h o s e of t h e w h i t e commonwealth.23 B e s i d e s Dominion p r e c e d e n t , t h e r e was a l s o a c o n s t a n t r e s o r t t o t h e growing body o f I n d i a n p r e c e d e n t s . Thus, each "new f o r m u l a " i n I n d i a proceeded from o l d e r f o r m u l a e , e v e r y f r e s h d e c l a r a t i o n o f p o l i c y was based on p a s t d e c l a r a t i o n s : ...once such d e c l a r a t i o n s had been made th e y became the r u l i n g f o u n d a t i o n f o r e v e n t u a l B r i t i s h p o l i c y t h e r e a f t e r . . . 2 4 S i n c e 1917, the corpus of t h e s e d e c l a r a t i o n s had grown to i n c l u d e such landmarks as the Montagu-Chelmsford reforms of 1919, t h e I r w i n D e c l a r a t i o n of 1929, t h e Macdonald r e s p o n s i b i l i t y - a t - c e n t r e statement of 1931, .the Government o f I n d i a A ct of 1935 , The August O f f e r of 1940 and t h e C r i p p s O f f e r of 1942. T h e i r e f f e c t , by 1946, was to g i v e c o n s i d e r a b l e momentum to t h e i d e a o f a t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y which 19 would p r o c e e d on th e b a s i s o f t h e c o nvening of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly 25 and t h e w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n . (v) D e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power and the n a t i o n a l i s t movement: We have a l r e a d y n o t e d the v i s i b l e and i n c r e a s i n g l a c k of B r i t i s h power i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t . I f power denotes, as has been assumed h e r e , the c a p a b i l i t y of a c h i e v i n g chosen ends, then the B r i t i s h Government i n c r e a s i n g l y l a c k e d t h a t c a p a b i l i t y and was c l e a r l y aware of t h e f a c t : C r i p p s ' ' r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h o u t power' statement i n the House of Commons r e f e r r e d t o e a r l i e r i s t e l l i n g i n t h i s r e g a r d . More and more, B r i t i s h p o l i c y had to r e c o g n i s e t h e c r i s i s n o t o n l y of d e c l i n i n g r e s o u r c e s , but of d e c l i n i n g w i l l , o f t i r i n g sinews and of t i r i n g s p i r i t . At t h i s e x t r a c t from the j o u r n a l of Hugh D a l t o n , C h a n c e l l o r o f t h e Exchequer i n A t t l e e ' s c a b i n e t and one of t h e Labour p a r t y ' s " B i g Three" ( H e r b e r t M o r r i s o n and E r n e s t B e v i n were the o t h e r s ) i n d i c a t e s , t h e r e was the f e e l i n g t h a t I f you are i n a p l a c e where you are not wanted and where you have not got t h e f o r c e , o r perhaps the w i l l , t o squash t h o s e who don't want you, th e o n l y t h i n g to do i s to come out.26 (My emphasis) Bt 1946, t h e r e was no doubt t h a t t h e B r i t i s h Government d i d i n d e e d w i s h " t o come out " . What was i n doubt, however, was the p r e c i s e manner of i t s coming out i n a s i t u a t i o n which s i m u l t a n e o u s l y f e a t u r e d d e c l i n i n g c o l o n i a l r e s o u r c e s and w i l l , and two i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l and m u t u a l l y h o s t i l e n a t i o n a l i s t p a r t i e s . 20 Above a l l , what d i v i d e d t h e movement was the Congress-Muslim League c o n f l i c t o v e r t h e u n i t y of t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t and t h e f o r m a t i o n of a s e p a r a t e homeland f o r th e Muslims of Ind i a i n the n o r t h -west and n o r t h - e a s t . The i n t e r n e c i n e c o n f l i c t f e a t u r e d the H i n d u -dominated, p r o - u n i t y Congress a g a i n s t the Muslim n a t i o n a l i s t , p r o -P a k i s t a n League. The Congress was determined n o t t o concede an e n t i r e l y s e p a r a t e and s o v e r e i g n Muslim s t a t e . The League, on the o t h e r hand, was e q u a l l y determined not to a c c e p t a n y t h i n g l e s s . N a t u r a l l y , t h i s c o n s i d e r a b l y c o m p l i c a t e d the q u e s t i o n of how a u t h o r i t y was to be t r a n s f e r r e d : t o t h e Congress, to th e League o r , somehow, to both? And i n what c i r c u m s t a n c e s : a u n i t e d I n d i a , a p a r t i t i o n e d I n d i a ? S t i l l , t h e c o m p l i c a t i o n s engendered by the d i v e r g i n g p o i n t s of view might not have so dominated the p o l i t i c a l scene were i t not f o r the f a c t t h a t t h e i r champions were two l a r g e , i n c r e a s i n g l y w e l l - m o b i l i s e d p a r t i e s t h a t had i n 1946 j u s t won i m p r e s s i v e e l e c t i o n v i c t o r i e s i n a campaign t h a t had been fough t on the P a k i s t a n i s s u e . As a r e s u l t of the e l e c t i o n , t h e Congress w i t h 57 s e a t s h e l d a c l e a r m a j o r i t y at the c e n t r e , w h i l e the League w i t h 30 s e a t s emerged as the u n d i s p u t e d second l a r g e s t p a r t y . T o g e t h e r , the two p a r t i e s as n e v e r b e f o r e were the p r i m a r y and i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l v e h i c l e s of d i v i d e d I n d i a n n a t i o n a l i s m . As Z i n k i n n o t e s , "the p o l a r i z a t i o n o f p o l i t i c s was v i r t u a l l y complete. P e o p l e were e i t h e r Congress, more o r l e s s , o r 24 League, more o r l e s s . " T h i s p l a c e d t h e B r i t i s h Government i n the 21 s i t u a t i o n of having—from a p o s i t i o n of r e l a t i v e weakness—to oversee a t r a n s f e r of authority to an inc r e a s i n g l y powerful and dangerously p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement. To explain how B r i t a i n attempted to disengage from India and why she did so i n the p a r t i c u l a r manner she d i d , i t was suggested, required an assessment of the impact and i n t e r a c t i o n of the f i v e factors j u s t dealt with. What the Transfer of Power documents show i s that, c l e a r l y , each of the f i v e had an impact on how the Government attempted to transfer authority: B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s were taken into consideration, as were B r i t i s h obligations to the mi n o r i t i e s and the rul e r s of the Indian States; the desire f o r a peaceful and orderly disengagement c e r t a i n l y influenced what the Government did or did not do; the momentum of past p o l i c y did a f f e c t how the Government pro-ceeded c o n s t i t u t i o n a l l y ; and, B r i t i s h statesmen and o f f i c i a l s were conscious of the problems a r i s i n g from the increasing lack of B r i t i s h resources and w i l l i n the face of a more and more powerful and divided n a t i o n a l i s t movement. However, the contention here i s that ultimately three f a c t o r s — a general consideration of B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s , the desire f o r a peaceful and orderly transfer of authority and the perception of B r i t a i n ' s increasing lack of power i n the face of a powerful and po l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement—had the greatest impact on B r i t i s h disengagement p o l i c y and that they interacted to cause the Government to proceed i n such a way as to obtain, at every stage, the 22 agreement of t h e two major p a r t i e s , Thus, a c c o r d i n g t o P h i l i p s ...by l a t e 1945 the B r i t i s h Government was c o n v i n c e d t h a t . . . B r i t a i n must withdraw from the s u b - c o n t i n e n t as soon as agreement c o u l d be reached w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s on t h e d e t a i l s o f t h e t r a n s f e r of power. And a l l B r i t i s h moves t h e r e a f t e r were d i r e c t e d t o . . . f i n d i n g a p l a n a c c e p t a b l e to the major I n d i a n p a r t i e s . . . . 2 8 T h i s p e r s e v e r a n c e w i t h o b t a i n i n g agreement, w i t h f i n d i n g a p l a n a c c e p t a b l e to b o t h the Congress and t h e League, had th e e f f e c t o f c o n s t r a i n i n g the Governemnt's room f o r manoeuvre, whether i n the m a t t e r of s e c u r i n g s p e c i f i c economic and m i l i t a r y o b j e c t i v e s , d i s c h a r g i n g B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s to the m i n o r i t i e s and t h e r u l e r s of t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s , o r d e a l i n g w i t h t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e s i n v o l v e d i n t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y . T h i s l a c k of room f o r manoeuvre has been p a r t i c u l a r l y n o t e d by Mansergh. In a study e n t i t l e d "Some R e f l e c t i o n s on the T r a n s f e r of Power i n P l u r a l S o c i e t i e s " , f o r i n s t a n c e , he c o n c l u d e s t h a t ( i ) the l a s t phase b e f o r e t h e t r a n s f e r of power...the freedom of a c t i o n of a l l p a r t i e s d e c l i n e d . F o r the B r i t i s h i n p a r t i c u l a r t h e r e was a p r o g r e s s i v e l y d i m i n i s h i n g range of c h o i c e . 2 9 R e c e n t l y , i n another s t u d y , a comparative a n a l y s i s of the I r i s h and I n d i a n p a r t i t i o n s , he has suggested a g e n e r a l r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n of "the c o n v e n t i o n a l assessment of the i n t e r p l a y of men and e v e n t s " and an adjustment downward " o f t h e e x t e n t t o which t h e r e was freedom of 30 manoeuvre as the c l i m a x ( i . e . of c o l o n i a l r u l e ) n e a r e d " . A c c o r d i n g t o t h e f i n d i n g s of t h i s i n q u i r y such a r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n and 23 adjustment appear t o be j u s t i f i e d , at l e a s t i n r e s p e c t of t h e B r i t i s h Government. These f i n d i n g s a r e based on an a n a l y s i s o f the f i r s t phase of t h e disengagement p r o c e s s , t h a t i s , of t h e n e g o t i a t i o n s of t h e Cab i n e t D e l e g a t i o n from the m i d d l e o f March to the end of June 1946. U n f o r t u n a t e l y , t h e T r a n s f e r o f Power documents, which have been p u b l i s h e d i n t e r m i t t e n t l y , a r e not y e t f u l l y a v a i l a b l e . What i s l a c k i n g i s the m a t e r i a l p e r t a i n i n g t o t h e f i n a l phase under Mountbatten's v i c e r o y a l t y . However, though the absence of t h a t m a t e r i a l i s a drawback, i t i s not f a t a l . Much has been w r i t t e n on the Mountbatten v i c e r o y a l t y from p r i m a r y s o u r c e s — p r i m a r i l y from t h e V i c e r o y ' s p e r s o n a l a r c h i v e s c o n s i s t i n g of minutes of h i s almost d a i l y meetings w i t h h i s s t a f f , r e c o r d s o f h i s c o n v e r s a t i o n s w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s , r u l e r s o f S t a t e s , Governors of p r o v i n c e s et^ a J , f i l e s of h i s weekly l e t t e r s and r e p o r t s to t h e S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e f o r I n d i a and t o t h e K i n g — a n d i t i s c l e a r from those s o u r c e s t h a t t h e same f a c t o r s i n f l u e n c e d B r i t i s h p o l i c y then as b e f o r e and t h a t as a r e s u l t t h e broad l i n e s o f t h a t 31 p o l i c y remained unchanged. There were, however, two new elements t o t h e Mountbatten p h a s e — t h e s e t t i n g of a f i n a l d ate f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y and t h e arming of t h e V i c e r o y w i t h p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y p o w e r s — w h i c h i n t r o d u c e d a measure o f f l e x i b i l i t y i n what was o t h e r -w ise an i n t r a c t a b l e s i t u a t i o n , and t h e s e w i l l be d e a l t w i t h b r i e f l y at t h e end. 24 The C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n ' s m i s s i o n The Cabinet D e l e g a t i o n , c o n s i s t i n g o f t h e t h r e e Labour m i n i s t e r s — P e t h i c k - L a w r e n c e , C r i p p s and A l e x a n d e r — w h o s e names had been announced i n the House of Commons on F e b r u a r y 19, 1946, and i t s s t a f f , a r r i v e d i n New D e l h i on March 24 armed w i t h a top s e c r e t D i r e c t i v e from t h e C a b i n e t o u t l i n i n g t h e terms of r e f e r e n c e w i t h i n 32 which the Government wished to n e g o t i a t e the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y . The D i r e c t i v e , i n e s s e n c e , commanded the m i n i s t e r s w i t h the h e l p of t h e V i c e r o y , L o r d W a v e l l , to p e r f o r m t h r e e t a s k s . F i r s t of a l l , they were t o " s e c u r e agreement amongst I n d i a n l e a d e r s as to t h e method of a r r i v i n g at the new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e f o r I n d i a and t h e s e t t i n g up o f an I n t e r i m Government." I n d o i n g so, they were t o " d i s c u s s and e x p l o r e a l l p o s s i b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s w i t h o u t p r o c e e d i n g upon any f i x e d or r i g i d p r e - c o n c e i v e d p l a n . " Furthermore, they were t o "pay e v e r y a t t e n t i o n t o t h e c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s o f t h e m i n o r i t i e s " and do t h e i r "utmost to o b t a i n t h e i r consent t o any agreement." N e v e r t h e l e s s , t h e m i n i s t e r s were u l t i m a t e l y to come to an arrangement w i t h those whom they c o n s i d e r e d " r e p r e s e n t ( e d ) b e s t the views o f th e major p a r t i e s p r o v i n c e s . " Any such arrangement was a l s o i f p o s s i b l e t o i n c l u d e t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s whose r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the Crown would "of n e c e s s i t y be a l t e r e d by t h e change i n the s t a t u s o f B r i t i s h I n d i a . " In the l a s t r e s o r t , however, the D e l e g a t i o n was " t o p r o c e e d upon the b a s i s of B r i t i s h I n d i a a l o n e " and " t o l e a v e over the form of t h e i r e v e n t u a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n . " The D e l e g a t i o n ' s second t a s k was to ensure t h a t t h e 25 f i n a l c o n s t i t u t i o n a l arrangement i n c o r p o r a t e d f o u r " c a r d i n a l p o i n t s " o r c o n d i t i o n s . B r i e f l y , t h e s e were ( i ) some form of p r o t e c t i o n f o r t h e r e l i g i o u s and r a c i a l m i n o r i t i e s , whether by t r e a t y o r c o n s -t i t u t i o n a l means; ( i i ) a " s a t i s f a c t o r y p r o v i s i o n " f o r t h e d e f e n c e of I n d i a and t h e I n d i a n Ocean a r e a ; ( i i i ) a c l e a r r e c o g n i t i o n o f t h e f a c t t h a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p of t h e Crown t o the I n d i a n S t a t e s c o v e r e d by the term paramountcy would n o t be handed over t o an I n d i a n government; and ( i v ) a " s a t i s f a c t o r y means" of s e t t l i n g o u t s t a n d i n g f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s between I n d i a and B r i t a i n . T h i r d l y , and f i n a l l y , i n a d d i t i o n to the " c a r d i n a l p o i n t s " , t h e D e l e g a t i o n members were commanded to warn I n d i a n l e a d e r s t h a t f o l l o w i n g the i n s t i t u t i o n of the new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e B r i t a i n would want to n e g o t i a t e a t r e a t y of f r i e n d s h i p and a t r e a t y d e a l i n g w i t h commercial r e l a t i o n s . B e g i n n i n g the morning a f t e r t h e i r a r r i v a l , t h e t h r e e m i n i s t e r s and t h e V i c e r o y s e t about f u l f i l l i n g the terms of t h e D i r e c t i v e when they opened t h e i r n e g o t i a t i o n s w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s and o t h e r s on the p o s s i b i l i t i e s o f o b t a i n i n g agreement t o a new c o n s t i t u -t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e . The n e g o t i a t i o n s c o n s i s t e d of a comprehensive round of i n t e r v i e w s w i t h I n d i a n s from a broad spectrum o f g r o u p s — r e l i g i o u s , r a c i a l , r e g i o n a l , p o l i t i c a l , s o c i a l and e c o n o m i c — a n d l a s t e d t h r o u g h t h r e e f r u s t r a t i n g weeks, f r u s t r a t i n g because at the end, h a v i n g l i s t e n e d t o a l l manner of a l t e r n a t i v e s and a b s t a i n e d from any " r i g i d o r p r e - c o n c e i v e d p l a n " , t h e p r o s p e c t of o b t a i n i n g agreement 26 was remote as e v e r . I n view of t h a t gloomy p r o s p e c t , t h e D e l e g a t i o n d e c i d e d t h a t a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s e t t l e m e n t proposed by the B r i t i s h Government might be a c c e p t e d as the b a s i s of an agreement. On A p r i l 27, t h e D e l e g a t i o n produced t h e t e n t a t i v e o u t l i n e o f such a s e t t l e m e n t f o r n e g o t i a t i o n w i t h the two major p a r t i e s and i n v i t e d them to a t r i p a r t i t e c o n f e r e n c e i n S i m l a . The Congress and the League h a v i n g agreed t o n e g o t i a t e on t h e b a s i s of t h a t o u t l i n e , t h e c o n f e r e n c e began on May 5. On May 12, t h e D e l e g a t i o n was f o r c e d to announce t h a t the two p a r t i e s had f a i l e d t o agree and t h a t the c o n f e r e n c e , t h e r e f o r e , was c o n c l u d e d . F o l l o w i n g the f a i l u r e o f t h e c o n f e r e n c e , t h e D e l e g a t i o n s e t about f i l l i n g i n the d e t a i l s of t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s e t t l e m e n t t h e o u t l i n e of which had s e r v e d as the b a s i s f o r n e g o t i a t i o n s i n S i m l a , and on May 16 i t p r e s e n t e d t h e r e s u l t of t h o s e l a b o u r s i n the form of 33 a Government Statement. The Statement of May 16 d e a l t e s s e n t i a l l y w i t h t h r e e i s s u e s : ( i ) t h e r i v a l Congress-League v i e w p o i n t s r e g a r d i n g t h e p o l i t i c a l f u t u r e o f t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t , b o t h of which i t r e j e c t e d ; ( i i ) t h e b a s i c form of the new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e and the method by which the proposed s t r u c t u r e was to be brought i n t o b e i n g ; and ( i i i ) such m i s c e l l a n e o u s m a t t e r s as paramountcy and the p a r t i c i p a t i o n o f the I n d i a n S t a t e s i n t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e , an I n d o - B r i t i s h t r e a t y and t h e f o r m a t i o n of an I n t e r i m Government. The Statement, f i r s t o f a l l , c o n s i d e r e d the Congress and League p o i n t s of view as t o the f u t u r e of I n d i a . t h e Congress p o i n t o f view 27 was c o n t a i n e d i n a p l a n d e s i g n e d to concede not so much the r e a l i t y as the s p i r i t o f a s e p a r a t e homeland f o r t h e Muslims. The p l a n e n v i s a g e d f u l l autonomy f o r the p r o v i n c e s , s u b j e c t o n l y to a c e n t r e d e a l i n g w i t h f o r e i g n a f f a i r s , defence and communications. S u b s i d i a r i l y , i f the p r o v i n c e s wished to p a r t i c i p a t e i n economic and a d m i n i s t r a t i v e p l a n n i n g on a l a r g e r s c a l e , the Congress p l a n a l s o r e q u i r e d them to cede the a p p r o p r i a t e o p t i o n a l s u b j e c t s to the minimal c e n t r e . The D e l e g a t i o n , however, rega r d e d t h i s l a t t e r p r o v i s o as unworkable and as d e n y i n g the p r o v i n c e s the r i g h t to form groups o r s u b - f e d e r a t i o n s f o r a s i m i l a r p u r p o s e . T h e r e f o r e , they r e j e c t e d the p l a n . The League's p o i n t o f view as to t h e f u t u r e o f I n d i a was n o t c o n t a i n e d i n any f o r m a l p l a n . J i n n a h had, o v e r the y e a r s , s t u d i o u s l y a v o i d e d o u t l i n i n g a c o n c r e t e s e t o f p r o p o s a l s r e g a r d i n g the f o r m a t i o n o f a s e p a r a t e homeland f o r I n d i a n Muslims, and he r e f r a i n e d from do.ing so now. I n the absence o f such p r o p o s a l s , t h e D e l e g a t i o n c o n s i d e r e d t h e two most commonly h e l d views as to how t h i s c o u l d be a c c o m p l i s h e d : f i r s t o f a l l , the s e c e s s i o n o f those p r o v i n c e s i n north-west and n o r t h - e a s t I n d i a where Muslims were i n a m a j o r i t y to form a p r e d o m i n a n t l y Muslim s t a t e ; ( i i ) the s e c e s s i o n o f the Muslim-m a j o r i t y d i s t r i c t s o f t h o s e p r o v i n c e s to form a p r e d o m i n a n t l y Muslim s t a t e . F o r v a r i o u s r e a s o n s , the D e l e g a t i o n was n o t a b l e to s u p p o r t e i t h e r view. C r u c i a l l y , a P a k i s t a n c r e a t e d on e i t h e r b a s i s would l e a v e c o n s i d e r a b l e m i n o r i t i e s b o t h i n the Muslim s t a t e and i n I n d i a , and 28 would n o t t h e r e f o r e s o l v e t h e communal problem. But, t h e r e were a l s o "weighty a d m i n i s t r a t i v e , economic and m i l i t a r y " r e a s o n s ( e . g . t h e u n i t y of t h e p o s t a l , t e l e g r a p h and t r a n s p o r t a t i o n systems, and of t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i v e and m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e s ) why P a k i s t a n was not f e a s i b l e . Nor c o u l d one escape the f a c t t h a t a P a k i s t a n i n e i t h e r form would be g e o g r a p h i c a l l y u n w i e l d l y , w i t h one h a l f s e p a r a t e d from t h e o t h e r by at l e a s t seven hundred m i l e s of I n d i a n t e r r i t o r y and dependent, t h e r e f o r e , on t h e g o o d w i l l of her n e i g h b o u r . Thus, the D e l e g a t i o n r e j e c t e d the League's demand f o r P a k i s t a n . Having r e j e c t e d t h e Congress p l a n and t h e League's demand f o r P a k i s t a n , t h e Statement proceeded t o o u t l i n e t h e n a t u r e of t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e t h e D e l e g a t i o n hoped b o t h p a r t i e s would a c q u i e s c e i n . They d e a l t , f i r s t , w i t h the. b a s i c form of t h e c o n s t i -t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e : t h i s was to be a l o o s e , t h r e e - t i e r f e d e r a t i o n c o n s i s t i n g o f t h e p r o v i n c e s , groups of p r o v i n c e s ( o r s u b - f e d e r a t i o n s ) , and a f e d e r a l c e n t r e . The c e n t r e was to d e a l w i t h f o r e i g n a f f a i r s , communications and d e f e n c e , and was to have t h e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r r a i s i n g t h e revenues f o r t h o s e s u b j e c t s . A l l o t h e r s u b j e c t s and r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s were to r e s i d e w i t h t h e p r o v i n c e s and t h e S t a t e s . The Union was to have an e x e c u t i v e and a l e g i s l a t u r e c o n s i s t i n g of B r i t i s h I n d i a n and S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s , and t h e p r o v i n c e s were t o be f r e e t o form groups o r s u b - f e d e r a t i o n s w i t h e x e c u t i v e s and l e g i s l a t u r e s i f they so d e s i r e d , each group of s u b - f e d e r a t i o n 29 d e t e r m i n i n g which p r o v i n c i a l s u b j e c t s were t o be h e l d i n common. That, t h e n , was to be t h e b a s i c form of t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e . The method t o be used t o b r i n g t h i s new s t r u c t u r e i n t o b e i n g was the convening o f a broad-based c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. The assembly would c o n s i s t o f r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f the t h r e e main communities: G e n e r a l , Muslim and S i k h , t h e f i r s t b e i n g a r e s i d u a l c a t e g o r y a p p l y i n g to a l l non-Muslims and n o n - S i k h s . These r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s were t o be chosen by members of t h e i r own communities s i t t i n g i n the p r o v i n c i a l a s s e m b l i e s . Each p r o v i n c e was to be a l l o t t e d s e a t s i n p r o p o r t i o n t o i t s p o p u l a t i o n , and t h i s a l l o c a t i o n was to be d i v i d e d among the t h r e e main communities i n p r o p o r t i o n t o t h e i r p o p u l a t i o n i n each p r o v i n c e . S i n c e t h e s m a l l e r m i n o r i t i e s would, as a r e s u l t o f the p o p u l a t i o n b a s i s , have l i t t l e o r no d i r e c t r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the assembly, an A d v i s o r y Committee "on t h e r i g h t s o f c i t i z e n s , m i n o r i t i e s , and t r i b a l and e x c l u d e d a r e a s " c o n t a i n i n g " f u l l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f t h e i n t e r e s t s a f f e c t e d " would be formed t o r e p o r t t o t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly upon the l i s t of fundamental r i g h t s , t h e c l a u s e s f o r t h e p r o t e c t i o n of m i n o r i t i e s and a scheme f o r the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n o f t h e t r i b a l and e x c l u d e d a r e a s , and t o a d v i s e whether t h e i r recommendations s h o u l d be i n c o r p o r a t e d i n the u n i o n , group o r p r o v i n c i a l c o n s t i t u t i o n s . The group o r p r o v i n c i a l c o n s t i t u t i o n s would be drawn up by the t h r e e s e c t i o n s — A , B and C — i n t o which the assembly would d i v i d e d i r e c t l y a f t e r c o n v e n i n g , t h e l a t t e r two c o n s i s t i n g o f t h e M u s l i m - m a j o r i t y and 30 p r o v i n c e s of north-west and n o r t h - e a s t I n d i a , and the f i r s t c o n s i s t i n g of t h e r e s t of I n d i a . F i n a l l y , t h e Statement e x p l a i n e d ( i ) t h a t paramountcy would l a p s e and would not be t r a n s f e r r e d t o an I n d i a n governemnt; ( i i ) t h a t a t r e a t y between the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly and B r i t a i n " t o p r o v i d e f o r c e r t a i n m a t t e r s a r i s i n g out of t h e t r a n s f e r o f power" would have t o be n e g o t i a t e d ; ( i i i ) t h a t the I n d i a n S t a t e s were t o be r e p r e s e n t e d i n the assembly, but t h a t the method of s e l e c t i n g t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s would have to be "determined by c o n s u l t a t i o n " , and ( i v ) t h a t an i n t e r i m government would have t o be formed t o c a r r y on the day-to-day a d m i n i s t r a t i o n o f t h e c o u n t r y and i n p a r t i c u l a r t o p r e v e n t the danger of a t h e n l i k e l y famine, to t a k e d e c i s i o n s on post-war development, to r e p r e s e n t I n d i a i n i n t e r n a t i o n a l c o n f e r e n c e s and t o b r i n g about "as r a p i d and smooth a t r a n s i t i o n as p o s s i b l e " . The D e l e g a t i o n ended w i t h the warning t h a t t h e a l t e r n a t i v e t o a c c e p t a n c e of t h e s e p r o p o s a l s by t h e I n d i a n p a r t i e s would be "a grave danger of v i o l e n c e , chaos and even c i v i l war. The r e s u l t of such a d i s t u r b a n c e cannot be f o r e s e e n ; b u t , i t i s c e r t a i n t h a t i t would be a t e r r i b l e d i s a s t e r . . . T h i s i s a p o s s i b i l i t y which must be r e g a r d e d w i t h e q u a l abhorrence by the I n d i a n p e o p l e , our own countrymen, and t h e w o r l d as a whole". Wit h t h a t p r o s p e c t v e r y much i n mind, the remainder o f th e D e l e g a t i o n ' s s t a y was o c c u p i e d w i t h p l a n n i n g f o r v a r i o u s c o n t i n g e n c i e s (a Congress r e j e c t i o n o f t h e p r o p o s a l s f o l l o w e d by a c i v i l d i s o b e d i e n c e 31 campaign, a League r e j e c t i o n f o l l o w e d by a ' j e h a d ' , or b o t h ) , w i t h i s s u i n g c l a r i f i c a t i o n s o f t h e Statement and w i t h o b t a i n i n g Congress and League a c q u i e s c e n c e t o i t . M i r a c u l o u s l y , t h i s was a c h i e v e d . F i r s t , on June 6, the Muslim League C o u n c i l announced the p a r t y ' s a c c e p t a n c e — w i t h some r e s e r v a t i o n s — o f t h e p r o p o s a l s c o n t a i n e d i n Statement. Then, on June 25, t h e Congress f o l l o w e d , a l s o w i t h r e s e r v a t i o n s . However, the f r a g i l i t y of t h i s achievement was soon exposed. On June 16,. the D e l e g a t i o n had i s s u e d a Statement o u t l i n i n 34 t h e means of f o r m i n g an i n t e r i m government. The Congress, i n a c c e p t i n g the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o p o s a l s had r e j e c t e d t h e second Statement. The League, on the o t h e r hand, had a c c e p t e d b o t h and demanded t h a t i n the f a c e o f a Congress r e j e c t i o n i t be asked t o form a government. T h i s , t h e D e l e g a t i o n found i t s e l f u n a b l e to do. The s i t u a t i o n q u i c k l y d e t e r i o r a t e d : t h e r e c r i m i n a t i o n s on a l l s i d e s were l o u d and b i t t e r . M a t t e r s r e a c h e d a c l i m a x when on J u l y 27, a month a f t e r t h i s D e l e g a t i o n ' s d e p a r t u r e , t h e League r e p u d i a t e d i t s a c c e p t a n c e of the Statement of May 16, and c a l l e d f o r " d i r e c t a c t i o n On August 16, League meetings and p r o c e s s i o n s were h e l d throughout I n d i a . I n C a l c u t t a , they r a p i d l y d e generated i n t o a rampage of Hindus, Muslims and S i k h s . When o r d e r was r e s t o r e d at t h e end of t h e t h i r d day, some 20,000 p e o p l e had been s e r i o u s l y wounded or 35 k i l l e d . Among the c a s u a l t i e s : t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o p o s a l s . Though the Government t r i e d hard to s a l v a g e them, and though the Congress was e v i d e n t l y anxious to p r o c e e d w i t h t h e i r 32 i m p l e m e n t a t i o n , they n e v e r r e c o v e r e d from the League's s t e a d f a s t r e f u s a l t o r e s u r r e c t them i n any shape or form. W i t h t h i s background of t h e C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n ' s n e g o t i a t i o n s , we can now p r o c e e d t o c o n s i d e r t h e c e n t r a l argument of t h i s t h e s i s , namely, t h a t t h r e e f a c t o r s — B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s , t h e Government's d e s i r e f o r a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y and d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n the f a c e of an i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement—combined to cause the Government to pursue, at every s t a g e i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to produce a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , the agreement of the two major p a r t i e s , and t h a t the p u r s u i t of agreement r e s t r i c t e d the Government's room f o r manoeuvre. The argument w i l l be p r e s e n t e d i n two c h a p t e r s . The f i r s t w i l l show t h a t t h e p u r s u i t of agreement was i n d e e d c o n s t r a i n i n g . I n o r d e r t o do so i t w i l l examine f o u r a s p e c t s of th e D e l e g a t i o n ' s D i r e c t i v e and Statement: ( i ) two i s s u e s o f economic i n t e r e s t , namely, the " s a t i s f a c t o r y means" of s e t t l i n g o u t s t a n d i n g f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s between I n d i a and B r i t a i n , and t h e t r e a t y d e a l i n g w i t h commercial r e l a t i o n s , b o t h s t i p u l a t e d i n the D i r e c t i v e ; ( i i ) an i s s u e o f s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t , namely, the " s a t i s f a c t o r y p r o v i s i o n s " f o r t h e defence of I n d i a and t h e I n d i a n Ocean a r e a , a l s o from the D i r e c t i v e ; ( i i i ) t h e i s s u e of B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s to t h e m i n o r i t i e s and the r u l e r s o f t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s ; ( i v ) t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e . The second c h a p t e r w i l l show why the D e l e g a t i o n was i m p e l l e d to p u r sue 33 agreement, how B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s , the d e s i r e f o r a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y and d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n the f a c e o f more and more p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement combined t o p l a c e a premium on Congress and League a c q u i e s c e n c e a t eve r y s t a g e o f t h e n e g o t i a t i o n s . 34 CHAPTER I I I THE LACK OF ROOM FOR MANOEUVRE Two i s s u e s of economic I n t e r e s t : The Labour P a r t y ' s s u r p r i s i n g v i c t o r y i n the immediate p o s t -war e l e c t i o n of J u l y 1945 r e f l e c t e d i n l a r g e measure the e l e c t o r a t e ' s d e s i r e f o r a government t h a t would, i n the a f t e r m a t h of a d e v a s t a t i n g c o n f l i c t , i n v o l v e i t s e l f more v i s i b l y i n economic m a t t e r s , t o c r e a t e 3 6 employment, m a i n t a i n s t a b l e p r i c e s and expand s o c i a l s e c u r i t y . That the new government gave thought t o economic c o n s i d e r a t i o n s i n d i s e n g a g i n g from I n d i a i s n o t , t h e r e f o r e , unexpected. Thus, we f i n d t h a t t h e C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n ' s D i r e c t i v e i n s t r u c t e d t h e t h r e e m i n i s t e r s on two i s s u e s of economic c o n c e r n : f i r s t , the m i n i s t e r s were t o ensure t h a t th e f i n a l c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p l a n n e g o t i a t e d w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s made p r o v i s i o n f o r "a s a t i s f a c t o r y means" of s e t t l i n g o u t s t a n d i n g f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s between I n d i a and B r i t a i n ; s e c o n d l y , t h e y were t o impart to I n d i a n l e a d e r s B r i t a i n ' s e x p e c t a t i o n of n e g o t i a t i n g a t r e a t y d e a l i n g w i t h commercial r e l a t i o n s a f t e r t h e i n s t i t u t i o n o f t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e . A c c o r d i n g to t h e T r a n s f e r of Power documents, what was i n v o l v e d i n t h e f i r s t case was the s e t t l i n g o f such m a t t e r s as the s e r v i c e of v a r i o u s l o a n s , t h e payment of c i v i l and m i l i t a r y p e n s i o n s and th e d i s p o s a l of I n d i a ' s accumulated s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s . What was i n v o l v e d i n the second case was the f u t u r e of 35 B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s i n v e s t m e n t s i n I n d i a . Among these v a r i o u s economic i s s u e s , two i n p a r t i c u l a r r e q u i r e d s a t i s f a c t o r y r e s o l u t i o n s from B r i t a i n ' s p o i n t of view: t h e d i s p o s a l of I n d i a ' s accummulated s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s and t h e f u t u r e o f B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s i n v e s t m e n t s i n I n d i a . I n d i a ' s s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s had accumulated, as a r e s u l t of her p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the war, t o t h e p o i n t where they posed a t h r e a t t o the v a l u e of t h e c u r r e n c y on the i n t e r -n a t i o n a l markets. The B r i t i s h Government, f e a r f u l o f a d e c l i n e i n the v a l u e o f the s t e r l i n g and of t h e p o t e n t i a l impact on the s t e r l i n g " a r e a " , had to f i n d a means of d i s p o s i n g of o r s u b s t a n t i a l l y r e d u c i n g those b a l a n c e s . One means of d o i n g s o , o f c o u r s e , was f o r B r i t a i n t o c a n c e l o r a d j u s t them u n i l a t e r a l l y . The o t h e r was to n e g o t i a t e t h e i r c a n c e l l a t i o n or adjustment. Then t h e r e was the i s s u e o f t h e f u t u r e o f B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s i n v e s t m e n t s i n I n d i a . B r i t i s h businessmen i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t , o r t r a d i n g w i t h i t , o p e r a t e d under f a v o u r a b l e terms guaranteed by the Government o f I n d i a . These terms i n c l u d e d p r e f e r e n t i a l ownership, i n v e s t m e n t , t r a d i n g and m a r k e t i n g r i g h t s i n such d i v e r s e a r e a s as I n d i a n a g r i c u l t u r e , i n d u s t r y and r e s o u r c e development. To ensure t h e c o n t i n u a n c e o f t h o s e r i g h t s , B r i t i s h businessmen e n v i s a g e d o b t a i n i n g a s p e c i a l guarantee from I n d i a n l e a d e r s t o the e f f e c t t h a t t h e i r p r i v i l e g e d p o s i t i o n would be r e s p e c t e d by the new government 3 8 of I n d i a , a guarantee t h a t .they wished f o r m a l i s e d i n a t r e a t y . 36 Thus, i f B r i t a i n had economic i n t e r e s t s t h a t needed t o be t a k e n i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n i n the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , they c o n s i s t e d of t h e s e two i s s u e s — t h e d i s p o s a l of t h e s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s and t h e c o n t i n u a t i o n of p r e f e r e n c e s f o r B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s . I t i s s u r p r i s i n g , t h e r e f o r e , t h a t the f i r s t — i n s p i t e o f b e i n g mentioned i n the D i r e c t i v e . a s a c a r d i n a l p o i n t — i s n o t p r o v i d e d f o r i n the i n t e n d e d i n s t r u m e n t of disengagement, t h e Statement of May 16, which s i m p l y does not r e f e r t o economic, commercial and f i n a n c i a l i s s u e s of any d e s c r i p -t i o n , and t h a t the second i s mentioned i n the D i r e c t i v e m e r e l y as an i s s u e p ending the i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of the new c o n s t i t u t i o n . The T r a n s f e r  of Power documents r e v e a l , f u r t h e r m o r e , t h a t at no time i n the n e g o t i a t i o n s w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s was t h e r e more than the s l i g h t e s t nod i n the d i r e c t i o n of e i t h e r i s s u e . Why? Why f u r t h e r m o r e was t h e r e no r e c o g n i t i o n i n the Statement of p r o v i s i o n s f o r f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s such as the d i s p o s a l of t h e s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s when the D i r e c t i v e u n e q u i v o c a l l y s t a t e d t h a t such p r o v i s i o n s were to be made? And why was the commercial t r e a t y d e a l i n g w i t h the f u t u r e of B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s i nvestment m e r e l y a m a t t e r f o r n e g o t i a t i o n a f t e r the c o n s t i t u t i o n was enacted? How does one account f o r t h i s g e n e r a l l y l o w l y t r e a t m e n t of i s s u e s t h a t were c l e a r l y of some importance? The answer i s t h a t though the Government e v i d e n t l y c o n s i d e r e d them i m p o r t a n t , i t h a d — a s e a r l y as a f o r t n i g h t b e f o r e the C a b i n e t approved the D e l e g a t i o n ' s terms of r e f e r e n c e and t h r e e weeks b e f o r e i t s d e p a r t u r e — d e c i d e d t h a t 37 n e i t h e r c o u l d , at t h a t s t a g e be p r e s s e d : t h a t t h e s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s and o t h e r f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s c o u l d n o t be prominent i n the n e g o t i a t i o n s and t h e m a t t e r o f guarantees f o r B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s c o u l d s c a r c e l y be 39 broached. Why? I t might be argued t h a t t h i s c o n v i c t i o n was based on a commitment t o honour two war-time promises o f t h e C h u r c h i l l - l e d c o a l i t i o n of which Labour was a member: the f i r s t a t B r e t t o n Woods where Keynes had s t a t e d i n 1944 t h a t B r i t a i n would n o t c a n c e l o r 40 a d j u s t I n d i a ' s s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s u n i l a t e r a l l y , and t h e second i n the House of Commons at t h e time o f t h e C r i p p s M i s s i o n which had c a t e g o r i c a l l y a f f i r m e d t h a t ...a g uarantee o f s p e c i a l p r o t e c t i o n f o r B r i t i s h commercial i n t e r e s t s i n I n d i a would not be a c o n d i t i o n f o r a c c e p t a n c e o f whatever c o n s t i t u t i o n I n d i a n s might e v o l v e a f t e r the war and t h a t such p r o v i s i o n s would p r o p e r l y be a m a t t e r o f n e g o t i a t i o n w i t h the f u t u r e government o f I n d i a . 4 1 But w h i l e t h e r e may inde e d have been a d e s i r e t o honour t h e s e commit-ments, t h e r e a l r e a s o n f o r t h e Government's c o n v i c t i o n not t b p r e s s e i t h e r i s s u e stemmed from t h e f a c t t h a t i t had l i t t l e c h o i c e i n the matter i f i t wished t o t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y i n a way t h a t was a c c e p t a b l e t o t h e I n d i a n p a r t i e s , f o r as the S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e , P e t h i c k -Lawrence, n o t e d i n a l e t t e r t o t h e C h a n c e l l o r of t h e Exchequer, D a l t o n , t h e s e were i s s u e s " i n r e s p e c t t o which I n d i a n l e a d e r s tend 42 t o h o l d s t r o n g v i e w s . " At a meeting o f the t h r e e D e l e g a t i o n m i n i s t e r s , t h e i r s t a f f s and t h e Prime M i n i s t e r , w h i c h was convened t o 38 d i s c u s s the terms of the D i r e c t i v e , C r i p p s o f f e r e d the o p i n i o n t h a t o v e r ' s u c h m a t t e r s as l o a n s , p e n s i o n s and the d i s p o s a l of t h e s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s "the atmosphere might be g r e a t l y e m b i t t e r e d and t h a t the c o s t i n v o l v e d would not be worth s a c r i f i c i n g the advantages of a 43 s e t t l e m e n t " . The Prime M i n i s t e r e v i d e n t l y c o n c u r r e d . Summing up a t t h e end of t h e m e e t i n g , he n o t e d , t h a t t h o s e and o t h e r economic, commercial and f i n a n c i a l m a t t e r s were " p r o p e r l y . . . m a t t e r ( s ) of n e g o t i a t i o n w i t h the f u t u r e government of I n d i a " and t h e r e f o r e were of no p r e s s i n g s i g n i f i c a n c e . What was of p r e s s i n g s i g n i f i c a n c e was the need to produce a p l a n a c c e p t a b l e to b o t h p a r t i e s and the c o o p e r a -t i o n of I n d i a n l e a d e r s to t h a t end. T h i s was the argument t o which Pe t h i c k - L a w r e n c e was l a t e r t o r e s o r t i n a meeting b a r e l y a week b e f o r e t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s d e p a r t u r e w i t h a d e p u t a t i o n of B r i t i s h businessmen w i t h i n t e r e s t s i n I n d i a who demanded v a r i o u s commercial guarantees as a c o n d i t i o n of independence. W h i l e a s s u a g i n g the d e p u t a t i o n ' s c o n c e r n o v e r t h e p r o s p e c t of an u n f r i e n d l y f u t u r e government of I n d i a , he made i t q u i t e c l e a r t h a t t h e p r i m a r y purpose of the D e l e g a t i o n ' s m i s s i o n to I n d i a was to produce a p l a n f o r the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y t h a t was a c c e p t a b l e t o I n d i a n s and t h a t commercial g u a r a n t e e s c o u l d not be e l e v a t e d i n t o a c o n d i t i o n upon which B r i t i s h disengagement 44 depended. An i s s u e of s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t : Gupta, i n h i s study of t h e B r i t i s h Labour Movement and 39 i m p e r i a l i s m , has shown t h a t i n the post-war p e r i o d i n f l u e n t i a l L a b o u r i t e s such as B e v i n , who was S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e f o r F o r e i g n A f f a i r s , were persuaded t h a t i n o r d e r t o b u i l d t h e w e l f a r e s t a t e to w h i c h they were committed B r i t a i n had to m a i n t a i n i t s p o s i t i o n as a w o r l d power. As a r e s u l t , B r i t i s h f o r c e s were s t r e t c h e d t o t h e l i m i t i n . E u r o p e , the M i d d l e E a s t and s o u t h - e a s t A s i a . W i t h D a l t o n , who was C h a n c e l l o r of t h e Exchequer and who a l s o w i e l d e d c o n s i d e r a b l e i n f l u e n c e w i t h i n t h e p a r t y , t h r e a t e n i n g to r e s i g n o v e r the c o n s e q u e n t l y heavy defence budget (defence, e x p e n d i t u r e as a p r o p o r t i o n of n a t i o n a l income was r u n n i n g h i g h e r than i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s ) t h e r e was a s t r o n g i n c e n t i v e t o e n l i s t I n d i a ' s h e l p i n e a s i n g t h e burden on 45 B r i t a i n , o r at any r a t e i n not i n c r e a s i n g i t . One way she c o u l d h e l p ease t h e burden was to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r her own d e fence and f o r t h e d e f e n c e of th e s u r r o u n d i n g a r e a s i n s o u t h - e a s t A s i a . Thus, i n t h e D i r e c t i v e the D e l e g a t i o n was i n s t r u c t e d t o i n s i s t t h a t " s a t i s f a c t o r y p r o v i s i o n s " f o r t h e d e fence o f the s u b - c o n t i n e n t and the I n d i a n Ocean a r e a were a p a r t of t h e p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y . . J u s t how p r e p a r e d t o i n s i s t the D e l e g a t i o n was i s i l l u s t r a -t e d by an exchange of c o r r e s p o n d e n c e between the S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e and t h e V i c e r o y over the terms of t h e D i r e c t i v e . The S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e had i n f o r m e d the v i c e r o y t h a t the d e fence p r o v i s i o n s was a p o i n t t h a t t h e Government i n t e n d e d t o be f i r m on i n the f o r t h c o m i n g n e g o t i a t i o n s . The V i c e r o y , i n h i s r e p l y and w i t h the c o n c u r r e n c e of 40 the Commander-in-Chief, A u c h i n l e c k , c h a l l e n g e d the a d v i s a b i l i t y o f a h a r d l i n e , a r g u i n g t h a t t h e l e a d e r s of t h e Congress and th e League would, i f p r e s s e d , b a l k a t any d e fence p r o v i s i o n s proposed by the 46 B r i t i s h Government. Both were persuaded i n s t e a d t h a t I n d i a n l e a d e r s , g i v e n t i m e , would of themselves b r i n g up t h e s u b j e c t and s h o u l d be l e f t t o do so. They s u g g e s t e d , t h e r e f o r e , t h a t the d e fence p r o v i s i o n s i n the D i r e c t i v e be e x c l u d e d . But t h e D e l e g a t i o n , not c o n v i n c e d of t h e c o r r e c t n e s s of t h e i r view, demurred. P e t h i c k - L a w r e n c e e v e n t u a l l y r e p l i e d t h a t from e x c l u d i n g them, t h e Government r e g a r d e d the i n c l u s i o n of defence p r o v i s i o n s i n the p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y and i n the new c o n s t i t u t i o n "an i m p o r t a n t p r i n c i p l e " (no l e s s ) and t h a t o n l y i f i t " a l o n e seemed l i k e l y t o b r e a k an o t h e r w i s e s a t i s f a c t o r y s e t t l e m e n t " would t h e D e l e g a t i o n ask t h e C a b i n e t t o 47 r e c o n s i d e r t h e terms of the D i r e c t i v e . Nor was t h e D e l e g a t i o n c o n t e n t t o l e a v e t h e m a t t e r i n the a b s t r a c t realm of p r i n c i p l e . The S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e r e q u e s t e d and r e c e i v e d from t h e C h i e f s of S t a f f a d e t a i l e d a p p r e c i a t i o n of B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t and the p r e c i s e d e fence 48 p r o v i s i o n s t h a t were n e c e s s a r y to s a f e g u a r d t h o s e i n t e r e s t s . Thus, on the C h i e f s of S t a f f ' s recommendation, t h e D e l e g a t i o n brought the f o l l o w i n g l i s t o f p r o v i s i o n s : f i r s t , t h a t I n d i a be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h e d e fence of her own f r o n t i e r s a g a i n s t l a n d , sea o r a i r a t t a c k ; s e c o n d l y , t h a t she be w i l l i n g to p r o v i d e l a n d , sea and a i r f o r c e s and f a c i l i t i e s f o r c o a s t a l d e f e n c e and f o r those a r e a s o u t s i d e I n d i a 41 v i t a l f o r her s e c u r i t y ; t h i r d l y , t h a t she be a b l e t o m a i n t a i n i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y ; and, . f o u r t h l y , t h a t i n the event of p a r t i t i o n , t h e sub-c o n t i n e n t m a i n t a i n a s i n g l e "defence a u t h o r i t y " . Y e t , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e T r a n s f e r o f Power documents, i n s p i t e of t h e Government's p r e p a r e d n e s s and d e t e r m i n a t i o n t o be f i r m i n t h i s m a tter, t h e y i e l d was meagre at b e s t . Of t h e f o u r d e fence p r o v i s i o n s recommended by the C h i e f s of S t a f f and s u b s e q u e n t l y endorsed by the Cabin e t o n l y one was s e c u r e d : a u n i f i e d d e f e n c e a u t h o r i t y . The Statement of May 16 i n p r o v i d i n g f o r a f e d e r a l system w i t h a c e n t r e r e s p o n s i b l e n ot o n l y f o r f o r e i g n a f f a i r s and communications, but a l s o f o r d e f e n c e , had ensured t h a t such an a u t h o r i t y would be m a i n t a i n e d . However, t h e o t h e r p r o v i s i o n s were n o t i c e a b l y absent ( i n d e e d , as the documents show, -the s u b j e c t of t h e i r i n c l u s i o n i n t h a t or any o t h e r — perhaps l e s s p u b l i c — d o c u m e n t , w i t h one e x c e p t i o n , was p r o b a b l y n e v e r even r a i s e d ) . So c o n s p i c u o u s was t h e i r absence and so b e r e f t of any m e a n i n g f u l defence p r o v i s i o n s was the Statement, t h a t C a b i n e t members were f o r c e d t o p r o t e s t what they r e g a r d e d as the s i n g u l a r l a c k of p r o t e c t i o n f o r B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s . When the Statement was r e f e r r e d t o them f o r a p p r o v a l , they p r e s s e d f o r t h e a d d i t i o n o f a c l a u s e s p e c i f y i n g a t r e a t y c o v e r i n g n ot o n l y "matters a r i s i n g out o f t h e t r a n s f e r of power" as p r o v i d e d f o r , b u t a l s o " i n 49 p a r t i c u l a r , f o r common de f e n c e i n t e r e s t s " . Why, t o r e t u r n to t h e i d i o m , was the y i e l d so meagre? What 42 f o r c e d t h e D e l e g a t i o n t o abandon t h i s " p r i n c i p l e " t h a t i t had in f o r m e d the V i c e r o y was so v i t a l ? The answer i s t h a t the D e l e g a t i o n p e r c e i v e d t h a t i n s i s t e n c e on d e f e n c e p r o v i s i o n s would, as the V i c e r o y and Commander-in-Chief had warned, encounter s t i f f r e s i s t a n c e from I n d i a n l e a d e r s and thus g r a v e l y endanger t h e chances of o b t a i n i n g t h e i r agreement to any p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y . From t h e documents, i t appears t h a t t h e D e l e g a t i o n were a l e r t e d t o t h i s l i k e -l i h o o d e a r l y i n t h e i r n e g o t i a t i o n s : when, i n t h e i r f i r s t i n t e r v i e w w i t h Maulana Azad, P r e s i d e n t of t h e Congress, they r a i s e d the i s s u e o f " d e f e n c e arrangements" w i t h B r i t a i n , they were t o l d t h a t t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y c o u l d n ot depend on the acc e p t a n c e o f t h o s e s o r t s of arrangements, but t h a t "once a s e t t l e m e n t had been n e g o t i a t e d I n d i a would l o o k at t h e whole m a t t e r from the i n t e r n a t i o n a l p o i n t o f view.""'^ A l e r t e d by t h i s f i r s t - h a n d c o n f i r m a t i o n o f the V i c e r o y and Commander-in-Chief's o p i n i o n , the D e l e g a t i o n members a v o i d e d the i s s u e t h e r e a f t e r . What they f e a r e d s p e c i f i c a l l y was t h a t i n s i s t e n c e on the p o i n t would add f u e l t o Congress e x t r e m i s t f i r e s which would consume t h e moderates w i t h i n the p a r t y , t h e r e b y j e o p a r d i s i n g t h e chances o f o b t a i n i n g Congress agreement t o t h e p l a n they had i n mind. As they e x p l a i n e d t o t h e Prime M i n i s t e r i n r e j e c t i n g t h e C a b i n e t ' s p r oposed amendment on defence arrangements: . . . i n s i s t e n c e on d e f e n c e w i l l arouse s u s p i c i o n t h a t w e...intend t o keep B r i t i s h t r o o p s i n I n d i a a g a i n s t t h e w i l l of t h e I n d i a n p eople.51 43 T h i s s u s p i c i o n , they argued p o w e r f u l l y and e v e n t u a l l y to a v a i l , would be and was a l r e a d y b e i n g used by the e x t r e m i s t s i n the Congress " t o work f o r t h e r e j e c t i o n o f t h i s o f f e r " — t h e Statement of May 16. Was the D e l e g a t i o n c o r r e c t ? Was t h e r e i n f a c t a s e r i o u s e x t r e m i s t t h r e a t ? C l e a r l y , whether t h e r e was o r n o t , the D e l e g a t i o n members c o u l d not but b e l i e v e t h e r e was. F o r , i n a c o n f i d e n t i a l l e t t e r t o W a v e l l , Azad—who h e l d th e V i c e r o y i n h i g h r e g a r d and who was "a man of t r a n s p a r e n t s i n c e r i t y " — h a d warned: I may t e l l you t h a t t h e r e a r e elements w i t h i n the Working Committee and o u t s i d e who would p r e f e r a more m i l i t a n t a t t i t u d e . 5 ^ Who were t h e s e m i l i t a n t elements? They were, i n a l l p r o b a b i l i t y , the members of t h e Congress " l e f t - w i n g " many of whom were l a t e r t o secede from the p a r t y a l t o g e t h e r , and who at t h e time were p r e s s i n g f o r an end t o n e g o t i a t i o n and t h e s t a r t of a c i v i l d i s o b e d i e n c e campaign on the l i n e s o f t h e 1942 Q u i t I n d i a Movement. W i t h i n the Working Committee, the p e r s o n most sy m p a t h e t i c to and c l o s e l y i d e n t i f i e d w i t h t h i s group was t h e F a b i a n S o c i a l i s t , J a w a h a r l a l Nehru. O u t s i d e the Committee, i t s c h i e f spokesman was the more r a d i c a l l y s o c i a l i s t , 53 Congressman, J a y a p r a k a s h Narayan. One a s p e c t of t h e i r m i l i t a n t a t t i t u d e the D e l e g a t i o n had f i r s t - h a n d knowledge o f : i t was the demand t h a t d u r i n g the i n t e r i m p e r i o d — t h a t i s , between the c o n v e n i n g of the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly and i n d e p e n d e n c e — B r i t i s h t r o o p s s h o u l d no l o n g e r be s t a t i o n e d i n I n d i a . T h i s t h e D e l e g a t i o n r e j e c t e d on the grounds t h a t B r i t a i n would s t i l l be u l t i m a t e l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r g o v e r n i n g I n d i a . 44 Congress l e a d e r s never s e r i o u s l y pursued the m a t t e r , but the mere f a c t o f such a demand was warning enough t h a t any r e f e r e n c e t o t h e h i g h l y v o l a t i l e q u e s t i o n of defence p r o v i s i o n s o r arrangements w i t h B r i t a i n would, perhaps i r r e t r i e v a b l y , c r e d i t t h e view o f the l e f t - w i n g e x t r e m i s t s t h a t B r i t a i n was p r e p a r e d t o g i v e I n d i a o n l y q u a l i f i e d independence. U s i n g t h a t as a r a l l y i n g c r y , they c o u l d undermine the p o s i t i o n of t h e moderate Congressmen and r e i n them i n , a development t h a t c o u l d not but be a d v e r s e t o t h e chances of s e c u r i n g agreement t o a p l a n f o r the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y . Once a g a i n , t h e n , t h e c o n c e r n w i t h o b t a i n i n g agreement e x e r c i s e d a l i m i t i n g i n f l u e n c e on what the Government c o u l d o r c o u l d not do. That t h e D e l e g a t i o n was a b l e t o s e c u r e one of t h e p r o v i s i o n s recommended by the C h i e f s o f S t a f f — a u n i f i e d d e f ence a u t h o r i t y — i s e x p l a i n e d not so much by i t s unwavering commitment t o t h a t p r o v i s i o n , but by the f a c t t h a t i t s i n c l u s i o n had t h e a c t i v e support of one major p a r t y and t h e g r u d g i n g support of t h e o t h e r : t h e Congress, of c o u r s e , was s t r o n g l y i n f a v o u r of a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l scheme which would i n c o r -p o r a t e a c e n t r e f o r d e f e n c e ; and t h e League, when q u e s t i o n e d c l o s e l y , a d m i t t e d t h a t even i f P a k i s t a n was r e a l i s e d an a l l i a n c e w i t h 54 " H i n d u s t a n " on m i l i t a r y m a t t e r s would be n e c e s s a r y . The p o i n t i s t h a t t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s s u c c e s s i n t h i s case was a c h i e v e d not d e s p i t e but because of agreement. 45 O b l i g a t i o n s t o t h e m i n o r i t i e s : The B r i t i s h Government, we have n o t e d , i n t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y wished to d i s c h a r g e i t s o b l i g a t i o n s t o the r e l i g i o u s and r a c i a l m i n o r i t i e s . Over the y e a r s the Government had assumed a p o s i t i o n o f s p e c i a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e i r i n t e r e s t s and f e l t bound to e n s u r e — t o the e x t e n t t h a t t h i s was p o s s i b l e — t h a t t h o s e i n t e r e s t s would be p r o t e c t e d i n an independent I n d i a . I n 1942, at t h e time of the C r i p p s M i s s i o n , the B r i t i s h Government had e n v i s a g e d the i n s t i t u t i o n o f a t r e a t y between I n d i a and B r i t a i n " f o r t h e p r o t e c t i o n of t h e m i n o r i t i e s i n a c c ordance w i t h B r i t i s h u nder-t a k i n g s " ."^ P r e c i s e l y what t h e s e u n d e r t a k i n g s were was n e v e r s p e c i f i e d , though we might assume t h a t they were such measures as s e p a r a t e e l e c t o r a t e s , and w e i g h t e d and r e s e r v e d r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the v a r i o u s a s s e m b l i e s . However, i n 1946, a c c o r d i n g to the D i r e c t i v e , t h e Government appears t o have c o n c e i v e d of i t s u n d e r t a k i n g s i n r a t h e r more g e n e r a l terms: f i r s t o f a l l , the need to c o n s u l t w i t h the m i n o r i t i e s , to take i n t o account t h e i r " c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s " , i n t h e p r o c e s s of e v o l v i n g a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y ; and s e c o n d l y , i n view o f t h o s e c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s , the n e e d — whether by c o n s t i t u t i o n a l o r t r e a t y m e a n s — t o p r o v i d e f o r t h e i r p r o t e c t i o n . But who p r e c i s e l y was to be c o n s u l t e d and whose p r o t e c t i o n p r o v i d e d f o r ? Who, i n o t h e r words, c o n s t i t u t e d the r a c i a l and 46 r e l i g i o u s m i n o r i t i e s ? O f f i c i a l l y (as no t e d e a r l i e r ) , t h e r a c i a l and r e l i g i o u s m i n o r i t i e s c o n s i s t e d o f the Muslims, S i k h s , I n d i a n C h r i s t i a n s , A n g l o - I n d i a n s , P a r s i s , Scheduled C a s t e s and Scheduled T r i b e s . O p e r a t i o n a l l y , however, t h e Muslims c o u l d s c a r c e l y be and indeed were not c o n s i d e r e d a m i n o r i t y : by 1946, under t h e l e a d e r s h i p o f t h e League, which was t h e second l a r g e s t p a r t y i n the c e n t r a l l e g i s l a t u r e , t h e r e c o u l d be no q u e s t i o n o f the B r i t i s h Government i g n o r i n g t h e i r c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s ; n o r was t h e r e much q u e s t i o n but t h a t t h e Government had to p r o v i d e f o r t h e p r o t e c t i o n o f t h i e r i n t e r e s t s , whether they f e l t an o b l i g a t i o n to o r n o t , because c l e a r l y no p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y was f e a s i b l e w i t h o u t such a p r o v i s i o n . Thus, i n t h i s d i s c u s s i o n , t h e m i n o r i t i e s w i l l i n c l u d e a l l of t h e above groups except the Muslims, groups which l a c k e d the l e a d e r s h i p and t h e numbers t o a s s e r t themselves i n the manner of t h a t community, and thus were almost c o m p l e t e l y dependent on the g o o d w i l l o f t h e m a j o r i t y and the e f f o r t s o f t h e B r i t i s h Government on t h e i r b e h a l f . The D e l e g a t i o n d i d , i n f a c t , c o n s u l t t h e " l e s s e r " m i n o r i t i e s w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e i r v a r i o u s c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s , a t l e a s t i n the opening phase o f t h e n e g o t i a t i o n s . The e x h a u s t i v e round o f i n t e r -views canvassed t h e o p i n i o n among o t h e r s of t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f the S i k h s , I n d i a n C h r i s t i a n s , A n g l o - I n d i a n s , P a r s i s , Scheduled Castes and S c h e d u l e d T r i b e s , and even of t h e Europeans and such d i s a d v a n t a g e d groups as women and l a b o u r . I n some c a s e s , as i n t h a t o f the S i k h s 47 and t h e Scheduled Castes f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e D e l e g a t i o n canvassed t h e o p i n i o n o f not j u s t one but v a r i o u s s e t s o f r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . Thus, the D e l e g a t i o n on b e h a l f of t h e Government c e r t a i n l y d i s c h a r g e d one asp e c t of B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s t o the m i n o r i t i e s . But u l t i m a t e l y to what e f f e c t i n c o n c r e t e terms? The Statement of May 16, which was the p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , s u g g e s t s t h a t i n c o n c r e t e terms the c o n s u l t a t i o n had l i t t l e e f f e c t . P r o t e c t i o n s f o r t h e m i n o r i t i e s were s p a r s e i n d e e d . The S i k h s , the most i m p o r t a n t m i n o r i t y because o f t h e i r s t r a t e g i c p o s i t i o n i n the Punjab and i n the army, were g i v e n the r i g h t t o choose t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s t o the proposed c o n s t i t u e n t assembly i n s e p a r a t e , communal e l e c t o r a t e s and, i n t h e o r y , t h e r e f o r e , had a chance o f i n f l u e n c i n g the terms o f new c o n s t i t u t i o n (though w i t h 4 s e a t s out of 292 t h a t d i d n o t amount to much of a c h a n c e ) . The o t h e r s — t h e I n d i a n C h r i s t i a n s , the A n g l o - I n d i a n s , t h e P a r s i s , and t h e Scheduled Castes and Scheduled T r i b e s , however, d i d n o t even have t h a t chance. In f a c t , t h e o n l y p r o t e c t i o n a f f o r d e d them was the f o r m a t i o n o f an A d v i s o r y Committee on m i n o r i t i e s , t h e f u n c t i o n of which would be t o recommend t o t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly how m i n o r i t y r i g h t s might be p r o t e c t e d . T h i s Committee would c o n s i s t o f r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s from each of t h e m i n o r i t i e s , l a r g e and s m a l l , and g e n e r a l l y of men "commanding c o n f i d e n c e " i n the c o u n t r y as a whole; however, t h e recommendations i t handed down would remain j u s t t h a t — r e c o m m e n d a t i o n s — a n d , would not be b i n d i n g on the assembly. 48 Why d i d t h e l e n g t h y and a p p a r e n t l y w e l l - i n t e n t i o n e d round of i n t e r v i e w s o f m i n o r i t y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s and groups y i e l d such poor r e s u l t s ? Why were the proposed p r o t e c t i o n s i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g p r o c e s s so innocuous? Why d i d t h e D e l e g a t i o n not attempt t o n e g o t i a t e a p r o t e c t i v e t r e a t y ? Were the i n t e r v i e w s a sham, an o b l i g a t o r y but i n c o n s e q u e n t i a l s e t of c o n s u l t a t i o n s i n t e n d e d f o r p u b l i c consumption? I t seems u n l i k e l y : f o r one t h i n g , t h e I n d i a n summer i s s c a r c e l y c o n d u c i v e to such a c o n s p i c u o u s waste o f t i m e . I f t h e members of the D e l e g a t i o n s , from the b e g i n n i n g , had no i n t e n t i o n of t a k i n g i n t o account m i n o r i t y c l a i m s and a n x i e t i e s , they expended much u s e l e s s energy when the demands on t h e i r e n e r g i e s were c o n s i d e r a b l e . No, the reason the p r o c e s s of c o n s u l t a t i o n d i d not y i e l d b e t t e r r e s u l t s , t h a t t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o t e c t i o n s were not s t r o n g e r and t h a t a p r o t e c t i v e t r e a t y was n o t n e g o t i a t e d was t h a t once a g a i n the d e s i r e t o t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y by means of a p l a n a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h the Congress and t h e League s t r i c t l y c i r c u m s c r i b e d the D e l e g a t i o n ' s room f o r manoeuvre. To see t h i s l e t us t a k e , f o r i n s t a n c e , t h e q u e s t i o n of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o t e c t i o n s . One way of enhancing the p r o s p e c t of such p r o t e c t i o n s was to g i v e t h e m i n o r i t i e s enough r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly t o e n a b l e them t o i n f l u e n c e t h e drawing up of t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n . That, i n e f f e c t , was what t h e C a b i n e t urged on the D e l e g a t i o n when i t was asked to approve the Statement of May 16 f o r p u b l i c a t i o n . U n e n t h u s i a s t i c over the i d e a of t h e A d v i s o r y 49 Committee, A t t l e e on b e h a l f o f h i s c o l l e a g u e s wrote t h a t i t " d i d n o t meet t h e c a s e " as f a r as m i n o r i t y r e p r e s e n t a t i o n and p r o t e c t i o n went."^ To t h i s the D e l e g a t i o n r e p l i e d t h a t a f t e r much c o n s i d e r a t i o n of t h e problem t h a t was t h e o n l y s o l u t i o n they c o u l d recommend. The p a u c i t y i n numbers of t h e m i n o r i t i e s , they argued, meant t h a t i n a system of p r o p o r t i o n a l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s e p a r a t e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n f o r t h e l e s s e r m i n o r i t i e s would be so s m a l l t h a t i t would have no d i s c e r -n i b l e i n f l u e n c e on t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly's p r o c e e d i n g s . F a r b e t t e r , t h e r e f o r e , t h e D e l e g a t i o n contended, t h a t they be r e p r e s e n t e d i n an A d v i s o r y Committee which, i n p r a c t i c e , would e x e r t c o n s i d e r a b l e p r e s s u r e . F i n a l l y , a n t i c i p a t i n g a counterargument i n f a v o u r of weighted r e p r e s e n t a t i o n , i t n o t e d t h a t such a w e i g h t i n g , t o be e f f e c t i v e , would have t o be so d i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e t h a t the b a l a n c e between the two major p a r t i e s would have to be s a c r i f i c e d , an e v e n t u a l i t y which would g r a v e l y r i s k a l i e n a t i n g them and t h e i r a g r e e -ment.^ 7 The C a b i n e t , c o n f r o n t e d w i t h t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y , d i d not pursue the m a t t e r any f u r t h e r . Another way of p r o t e c t i n g the m i n o r i t i e s c o n s t i t u t i o n a l l y was f o r t h e B r i t i s h Government t o i n t e r v e n e i n the c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g p r o c e s s and to i n t r o d u c e a b i l l of r i g h t s f o r a l l c i t i z e n s which would t h e n be e n f o r c e a b l e t h r o u g h the c o u r t s . However, to do s o — a s t h e D e l e g a t i o n members r e a l i s e d — w o u l d be t o i n f r i n g e d r a s t i c a l l y on I n d i a n s o v e r e i g n t y . That, as they c o n c l u d e d , would s i m p l y not be 50 a c c e p t a b l e t o t h e Congress, which had e x p l i c i t l y s t a t e d t h a t i t r e g a r d e d the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly "a s o v e r e i g n body f o r t h e p u r p o s e s 58 o f t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n . " Congress f e e l i n g on t h i s p a r t i c u l a r i n -f r i n g e m e n t , moreover, was l i k e l y t o be h i g h . Over the y e a r s , the p a r t y had c o n s i s t e n t l y preached a s e l f - c o n s c i o u s l y s e c u l a r p o l i t i c a l message i n o p p o s i t i o n to t h e League's " e x c l u s i v i s m " . As a r e s u l t , the Congress l e a d e r s h i p was p l e d g e d to s p e c i a l c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o v i s i o n s f o r t h e m i n o r i t i e s i n an independent I n d i a . To have the B r i t i s h Government d i c t a t e t h o s e p r o v i s i o n s , however, would be anathema. To a c c e p t them would be i m p o s s i b l e , because t h e e f f e c t o f such an a c c e p -tance would be t o c a s t s e r i o u s a s p e r s i o n s on the p a r t y ' s s e c u l a r i s m , the weapon i t most o f t e n b r a n d i s h e d a g a i n s t t h e " f a s c i s t " League. Disarmed of t h a t weapon, Congress power would i n e v i t a b l y s u f f e r . F o r B r i t a i n t o l a y down a b i l l o f r i g h t s i n , o r d e r t o p r o t e c t the m i n o r i t i e s , t h e r e f o r e , e n t a i l e d . i n c u r r i n g t h e f u l l e s t w rath o f the Congress, something the D e l e g a t i o n c l e a r l y d i d not w i s h to do. That r o u g h l y i s why B r i t a i n d i d not attempt t o n e g o t i a t e a p r o t e c t i v e t r e a t y e i t h e r . A t r e a t y would impinge on I n d i a n s o v e r e i g n t y , s e r i o u s l y undermine the impact o f t h e Congress' s e c u l a r p r e a c h i n g s and thus provoke i t s i r e . Thus, any s u g g e s t i o n s of such a t r e a t y as a p a r t of a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y was l i k e l y to be f a t a l t o the chances of i t s a c c e p t a n c e . 51 O b l i g a t i o n s to t h e r u l e r s of t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s : B r i t a i n ' s o b l i g a t i o n s to t h e p r i n c e s were embodied i n an a r r a y o f t r e a t i e s d e a l i n g w i t h such m a t t e r s as B r i t i s h i n v o l v e m e n t i n d y n a s t i c s u c c e s s i o n , revenue c o l l e c t i o n , t h e maintenance of i n t e r n a l o r d e r , p r o t e c t i o n from e x t e r n a l a g g r e s s i o n , g e n e r a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and r e l a t i o n s between the S t a t e s and B r i t i s h I n d i a . However, B r i t a i n ' s a b i l i t y to i n v o l v e h e r s e l f i n these m a t t e r s depended on paramountcy, a term used t o d e s c r i b e t h e Crown's o v e r a l l r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the p r i n c e s , whereby they acknowledged t h e Crown's pre-eminence i n I n d i a i n r e t u r n f o r i t s p r o t e c t i o n . I n 1942, a t the time of th e C r i p p s O f f e r , t h e B r i t i s h Government had g i v e n n o t i c e t h a t a l l a s p e c t s of t h e Crown's i n v o l v e m e n t 59 w i t h the S t a t e s would, a f t e r t h e war, have to be r e a s s e s s e d . I t was r e a l i s e d at t h e time t h a t w i t h independence and w i t h t h e d e p a r t u r e of B r i t i s h o f f i c i a l s and armed p e r s o n n e l from the s u b - c o n t i n e n t the means of m a i n t a i n i n g p a r a m o u n t c y — u p o n which the t r e a t i e s embodying B r i t a i n ' s o b l i g a t i o n s r e s t e d — w o u l d no l o n g e r be a v a i l a b l e . Thus, w i t h disengagement, paramountcy would have t o l a p s e and so too the t r e a t i e s s i g n e d and t h e o b l i g a t i o n s i n c u r r e d . F o r p r a c t i c a l r e a s o n s , t h e n , t h e B r i t i s h Government d i v e s t e d i t s e l f o f r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n such m a t t e r s as d y n a s t i c s u c c e s s i o n , revenue c o l l e c t i o n , t h e main-tenance of i n t e r n a l o r d e r , p r o t e c t i o n from e x t e r n a l a g g r e s s i o n , g e n e r a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and S t a t e s - B r i t i s h I n d i a r e l a t i o n s . But i n d o i n g so, t h e Government i n c u r r e d a f i n a l o b l i g a t i o n : not t o 52 transfer the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r those matters to the new Indian government. As the Government saw i t , when one party entered into an agreement with another, l e g a l l y speaking i t was impossible to tran s f e r the o b l i g a t i o n s thus contracted to a t h i r d party without the consent of the second. The consent of the princes in t h i s case being inconceivable, the Government was obliged not to e f f e c t such a t r a n s f e r . The lapsing and n o n - t r a n s f e r a b i l i t y of paramountcy together meant that the States would, in theory, become independent e n t i t i e s . However, as the Government r e a l i s e d , t h e o r e t i c independence was one thing; r e a l independence was quite another. There were in 1946 some 600 States, many of whom were no more (to quote the Nizam of Hyderabad) than "petty zamindars (l a n d l o r d s ) " . Real independence from B r i t i s h India for them was out of the question. Even for the bigger and more powerful States there could be no escaping the fact of t h e i r extensive c u l t u r a l , p h y s i c a l and economic l i n k s with the rest of India. C l e a r l y , therefore, the States would have to be associated however tenuously with independent B r i t i s h India. The terms of that a s s o c i a t i o n , according to the Government, were a matter f o r negotiation between the princes and the leaders of B r i t i s h India. The Government r e a l i s e d , however, that i n the absence of the paramount power the outcome of those negotiations would weigh heavily against the princes. To prevent such an outcome would require 53 the intervention of the B r i t i s h Government before disengagement was completed. Thus, the B r i t i s h Government es s e n t i a l l y perceived that i t had two obligations to the princes: f i r s t , to ensure that para-mountcy would not be transferred to an Indian government; and secondly, to help the States obtain favourable terms of association with the rest of India. On the matter of paramountcy, the Government appears to have been firmly committed from the beginning. The "cardinal point" in the Directive addressed the issue d i r e c t l y , leaving no room for equivocation: paramountcy could, under no circumstances, be trans-ferred to an Indian government. When before the Delegation's a r r i v a l i n India, the Viceroy questioned the inclusion of the paramountcy clause i n the "cardinal points" of the D i r e c t i v e , ^ the Secretary of S t a t e — t o underscore the Government's commitment i n the matter— replied categorically that as with defence provisions t h i s was "a 62 p r i n c i p l e to which we must adhere". And adhere i t did. As the Transfer of Power documents indicate, at no time during the Delegation's negotiations with Indian leaders did the three ministers waver from t h e i r stand that i t was l e g a l l y impossible to transfer paramountcy to the successor government. They held to that stand consistently and eventually wrote i t into the Statement of May 16, i t e r a t i n g without reservation that "Paramountcy can neither be retained by the B r i t i s h Crown nor transferred to the new government." Why was the Delegation able to adhere to t h i s point? 54 Because i t c o u l d a f f o r d t o . We have seen t h a t i n such m a t t e r s as t h e d i s p o s a l of t h e s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s , g u a r a n t e e s f o r B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s , d e f e n c e p r o v i s i o n s and t h e p r o t e c t i o n o f t h e m i n o r i t i e s , t h e Government t r i e d t o a v o i d a n t a g o n i s i n g I n d i a n — e s p e c i a l l y C o n g r e s s — l e a d e r s . In the case of paramountcy, however, t h e r e appears to have been l i t t l e r i s k of d o i n g t h a t . A c c o r d i n g t o t h e T r a n s f e r of Power documents, t o the l e a d e r s of t h e Muslim League at t h i s s t a g e the I n d i a n S t a t e s "were r e a l l y b e s i d e s the p o i n t . I n t h e i r e s t i m a t i o n , t h e p r i n c e s would almost unanimously choose t o accede t o " H i n d u s t a n " , 63 a p r o s p e c t t h a t J i n n a h f o r one a p p a r e n t l y viewed w i t h e q u a n i m i t y . Appearances, of c o u r s e , can be d e c e p t i v e : i t may w e l l be t h a t h i s l a c k o f c o n c e r n was a t a c t i c a l p l o y , m e r e l y a way of d e m o n s t r a t i n g t o t h e Congress and t o t h e B r i t i s h t h a t he had t e r r i t o r i a l a m b i t i o n s i n B r i t i s h I n d i a o n l y and t h a t t h e y were o f such a modest n a t u r e t h a t t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t ' s i n t e g r i t y as a u n i t would not be s e r i o u s l y a f f e c t e d . W i t h the I n d i a n S t a t e s , he remarked to the D e l e g a t i o n , t h e 64 Congress would have o v e r t h r e e - q u a r t e r s o f s u b - c o n t i n e n t a l I n d i a . The Muslim League's p r i c e , t h e r e f o r e , was s m a l l ; i t was the p e t t y -minded t r a d e r o r " b a n i a " a t t i t u d e of t h e Congress l e a d e r s t h a t p r e v e n -t e d them from s e e i n g t h e g e o g r a p h i c i m p l i c a t i o n s of P a k i s t a n i n p e r s p e c t i v e . At any r a t e , whether J i n n a h ' s i n d i f f e r e n c e to t h e q u e s t i o n o f t h e n o n - t r a n s f e r a b i l i t y of paramountcy was but a t a c t i c a l d e v i c e o r n o t , t h e p o i n t i s t h a t i n A p r i l 1946 t h e League was n o t 55 opposed t o t h e B r i t i s h Government's view o f t h e m a t t e r . I f t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s were b e s i d e t h e p o i n t f o r t h e League, they were f a r from b e i n g so f o r t h e Congress. I n d i a w i t h o u t them c o n j u r e d up v i s i o n s of a d i s a s t r o u s b a l k a n i s a t i o n o f t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t . N o n e t h e l e s s , t h e p a r t y d i d n o t s e r i o u s l y o b j e c t t o t h e Government's 65 s t a n d on paramountcy. A p r o b a b l e e x p l a n a t i o n i s t h a t , a t t h e t i m e , Congress l e a d e r s were p r e p a r e d t o postpone t h e i r r e c k o n i n g w i t h the p r i n c e s u n t i l a f t e r independence when th e y would be r i d o f t h e P a k i s t a n i s s u e one way o r the o t h e r and r i d of t h e B r i t i s h t o o , and c o u l d from a p o s i t i o n of c o n s i d e r a b l e s t r e n g t h d i c t a t e such terms as they wished. The e v e n t u a l r a p i d i n t e g r a t i o n o f t h e S t a t e s a f t e r independence by Sa r d a r P a t e l arid V. P. Menon i n d i c a t e s , p a r t l y , t h a t t h a t may inde e d have been a r e a s o n a b l e c a l c u l a t i o n . That such a c a l c u l a t i o n — t o postpone t h e Congress' c o n f r o n t a t i o n w i t h the p r i n c e s — had been made, at any r a t e , was v e r y much t h e v i e w p o i n t of t h e V i c e r o y and t h e D e l e g a t i o n . T h e i r s u s p i c i o n of Congress i n t e n t i o n s towards the S t a t e s was e s p e c i a l l y s t r o n g i n June 1946 when i t seemed l i k e l y t h a t t h e Working Committee would n o t a c c e p t t h e Statement o f May 16: i t was t h e i r o p i n i o n t h e n t h a t t h e Congress would r e j e c t t h e Statement because i t had d e c i d e d t o oust t h e B r i t i s h and then d e a l 6 6 w i t h such groups as t h e Muslims, the m i n o r i t i e s and t h e S t a t e s . In any c a s e , t h e f a c t remains t h a t t h e Government c o u l d a f f o r d t o be f i r m l y committed t o not t r a n s f e r r i n g paramountcy because 56 of the lack of Congress or League opposition. P r e c i s e l y why there was no opposition i s not c l e a r . The League may have been genuinely d i s i n t e r e s t e d i n the matter; perhaps d i s i n t e r e s t was merely a temporary t a c t i c a l device. The Congress may have been merely biding i t s time. I t may even be that the l e g a l grounds on which the Government based i t s stand struck a responsive chord i n men l i k e Jinnah, Nehru and Gandhi, lawyers a l l , who could accept a l e g a l n i c e t y which they knew could be bent i f and when p o l i t i c a l expediency demanded i t should. Whatever the explanation, i n t h i s case the B r i t i s h Government was able to t r a n s l a t e " p r i n c i p l e " into action. Whether i t would have done so i f e i t h e r of the major p a r t i e s had strenuously objected though i s a moot point, because as we have seen the Govern-ment was at some pains to avoid antagonising them. That, as we s h a l l now see, was a factor i n how the Government dealt with i t s other o b l i g a t i o n to the princes, namely, helping the States obtain favourable terms of association with B r i t i s h India. From the beginning the Government's approach i n t h i s case was more subdued. The D i r e c t i v e merely urged the Delegation to include the States i n the " c o n s t i t u t i o n a l structure" i f p o s s i b l e . In the l a s t r e s o r t , however, i t was "to proceed upon the basis of B r i t i s h India alone" leaving to the future "the form of t h e i r eventual p a r t i c i p a t i o n " . As matters turned out, of course, the Delegation was able to include them in the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l structure. The Statement of May 16 provided for the i n c l u s i o n of the Indian States in the 57 proposed c o n s t i t u e n t assembly, and i n t h e u n i o n of I n d i a s u b j e c t o n l y t o t h e c o n d i t i o n t h a t t h e y , l i k e t h e p r o v i n c e s , cede t h r e e s u b j e c t s t o t h e c e n t r e — f o r e i g n a f f a i r s , d e f e n c e and communications. I f t h e p r i n c e s wished t o n e g o t i a t e w i t h B r i t i s h I n d i a an a s s o c i a t i o n which would g i v e t h e S t a t e s maximum autonomy w i t h t h e b e n e f i t s of p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n a l a r g e r p o l i t i c a l and economic e n t i t y , t h e n t h i s m i n i m a l l y f e d e r a l arrangement went a c o n s i d e r a b l e d i s t a n c e i n s a t i s f y i n g t h a t w i s h . To t h a t e x t e n t , t h e terms o f a s s o c i a t i o n were i n d e e d f a v o u r a b l e . However, they o n l y d e f i n e d t h e b a r e s t form of t h e proposed a s s o c i a t i o n between t h e S t a t e s and t h e r e s t of I n d i a . W i t h i n t h o s e terms a good d e a l might be done i n the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly i n the fr a m i n g o f t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n t h a t would undermine the p o s i t i o n o f the p r i n c e s i n the f u t u r e , a f a c t t h a t they were k e e n l y aware o f Thus, t h e Nawab of B h o p a l , on b e h a l f o f t h e Chamber of P r i n c e s r e p e a t e d l y p r e s s e d f o r c e r t a i n amendments t o t h e Statement o f May 67 16. These amendments i n c l u d e d : t h a t t h e S t a t e s a l o n e d e c i d e whether t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s t o t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly be e l e c t e d or n o t ; t h a t t h e S t a t e s be a l l o w e d t o ask f o r a r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f any c o n s t i t u t i o n worked out by t h e assembly a f t e r an i n i t i a l t e n -year p e r i o d and every t e n y e a r s a f t e r t h a t ; t h a t t h e A d v i s o r y Committee not be p e r m i t t e d t o d e a l w i t h the s u b j e c t o f r i g h t s and p r o t e c t i o n s w i t h r e s p e c t t o t h e S t a t e s ; and t h a t any r e s o l u t i o n of major s i g n i f i c a n c e t o t h e S t a t e s i n t h e assembly r e q u i r e a 57a m a j o r i t y of t h e S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . However, t h e V i c e r o y merely r e p l i e d t h a t the proposed amendments were p r o p e r l y m a t t e r s f o r n e g o t i a t i o n between the assembly and t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s of t h e 68 S t a t e s ; and e v e n t u a l l y t h e p r i n c e s were f o r c e d , by the V i c e r o y ' s s t e a d f a s t r e f u s a l to i n t e r v e n t any f u r t h e r , t o a c c e p t the D e l e g a t i o n ' s d e c i s i o n i n t h e m a t t e r . Why d i d t h e D e l e g a t i o n and the V i c e r o y r e f u s e to i n t e r v e n e any f u r t h e r ? Because, as i n the case of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s a f e g u a r d s f o r t h e m i n o r i t i e s , t h e D e l e g a t i o n was aware t h a t the Congress r e g a r d e d the assembly as a s o v e r e i g n body and t h a t t o i n t e r -f e r e w i t h what the assembly d i d o r d i d not do and how i t d i d beyond a p o i n t was to r i s k Congress p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n i t and i n the o v e r a l l p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , something t h a t the Government d i d n o t w i s h to do. T h i s u n w i l l i n g n e s s to a n t a g o n i s e the Congress can be seen i n the m a t t e r of S t a t e s ' r e s p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. One way of p r e v e n t i n g t h e f r a m i n g of a c o n s t i t u t i o n t h a t might s e r v e t o undermine the p o s i t i o n of t h e p r i n c e s i n an independent I n d i a was f o r them to be s t r o n g l y r e p r e s e n t e d i n the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. Strong r e p r e s e n t a t i o n was n o t so much a q u e s t i o n of n u m b e r s — t h e S t a t e s had been a s s i g n e d one q u a r t e r of t h e s e a t s i n the a s s e m b l y — as i t was a q u e s t i o n of h a v i n g r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s p e r s o n a l l y l o y a l t o t h e p r i n c e s . Thus, one of. the amendments p r e s s e d most s t r o n g l y on t h e D e l e g a t i o n by t h e S t a t e s was f o r a g uarantee t h a t t h e r u l e r s would, i n p r i n c i p l e at l e a s t , have t h e r i g h t t o choose e i t h e r to e l e c t or t o a p p o i n t t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I f a l l S t a t e s ' 58 r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s were e l e c t e d , d i r e c t l y o r i n d i r e c t l y , by t h e p e o p l e a t l a r g e , t h e p r i n c e s f e a r e d t h e y w o u l d — i n c o n c e r t w i t h t h e C o n g r e s s — s u b v e r t p r i n c e l y r i g h t s and p r i v i l e g e s by means o f t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n . I t was c r u c i a l , t h e r e f o r e , t h a t t h e p r i n c e s r e t a i n e d t h e r i g h t t o a p p o i n t some o r a l l of t h e S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . The D e l e g a t i o n 69 was, however, u n a b l e t o support t h i s r i g h t . Thus, when t h e D e l e g a t i o n l e f t i n June, the Statement's p r o v i s i o n t h a t the method of s e l e c t i o n f o r t h e S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s was a m a t t e r f o r n e g o t i a t i o n remained u n a l t e r e d . Why was the D e l e g a t i o n u n a b l e t o su p p o r t t h e p r i n c e s ' r i g h t t o choose t h e b a s i s on which the S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a -t i v e s were s e l e c t e d ? One might argue t h a t i t was because B r i t i s h sympathy f o r t h e p r i n c e s was at a d i s t i n c t l y low ebb. I n 1935, i n the Government o f I n d i a A c t , B r i t a i n had g i v e n t h e S t a t e s , i n a d d i t i o n t o t h e r i g h t to a p p o i n t t h e i r r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s t o t h e c e n t r a l l e g i s l a t u r e , d i s p r o p o r -t i o n a t e r e p r e s e n t a t i o n at t h e c e n t r e , t h e r i g h t t o c o n f e r on t h e c e n t r e such powers as t h e r u l e r s i n d i v i d u a l l y wished, and a v i r t u a l v e t o over t h e e n t i r e f e d e r a l s e c t i o n o f t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n . That was the h i g h p o i n t o f t h e S t a t e s i n r e s p e c t o f B r i t i s h s u p p o r t . By 1946, the s i t u a t i o n had changed. . The p r i n c e s now were no l o n g e r d e a l i n g w i t h a symp a t h e t i c C o n s e r v a t i v e government which was l o o k i n g f o r a way to use t h e S t a t e s i n c o u n t e r b a l a n c i n g n a t i o n a l i s t — s p e c i f i c a l l y C o n g r e s s — p o w e r , 7 ^ but w i t h a r e l a t i v e l y u n s ympathetic Labour 59 government whose p r i m a r y aim was to t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y t o t h e n a t i o n a l i s t s , i n c l u d i n g t h e Congress, t h e v e r y p o l i t i c a l f o r c e d e d i c a t e d t o b r i n g i n g an end t o p r i n c e l y r u l e . The l a c k o f Labour sympathy was n o t something p a r t i c u l a r l y new e i t h e r . A c c o r d i n g t o Gupta, two key ' I n d i a n ' L a b o u r i t e s , A t t l e e and C r i p p s , had as f a r back as June 1938 worked out w i t h Nehru t h e terms of a t r e a t y whereby the Labour p a r t y on assuming o f f i c e would t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y to I n d i a n h a n d s . ^ One of t h e h i g h l i g h t s of t h e t r e a t y was t h a t a l l r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s t o t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly were t o be e l e c t e d and t h a t o n l y t h o se S t a t e s which a c c e p t e d e l e c t e d r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s t o t h e assembly would p a r t i c i p a t e i n i t . But i f t h e r e was by 1946 a d i s t i n c t l a c k of sympathy w i t h i n the government f o r t h e p r i n c e s , i t was by no means c o n f i n e d t o t h e Labour l e a d e r s h i p o r even to the p a r t y as a whole: t h e r e was a g e n e r a l f e e l i n g t h a t w i t h some e x c e p t i o n s t h e S t a t e s ' r u l e r s were an a n a c h r o n i s t i c , o f t e n d i s s o l u t e , a u t o c r a t i c and greedy group o f men. Thus, i t might w e l l be t h a t t h e r e l u c t a n c e t o be h e l p f u l i n the m a t t e r of S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i o n was due t o a c e r t a i n l a c k of u n o f f i c i a l sympathy. However, i t appears t h a t though t h e r e c e r t a i n l y was an a p p r e c i a b l e l a c k of sympathy, the a t t i t u d e predomi-n a n t l y was t h a t t h e B r i t i s h c o u l d n o t h o n o u r a b l y abandon t h e s e men. As W a v e l l wrote i n a l e t t e r t o t h e K i n g i n which he o u t l i n e d at some l e n g t h t h e f o i b l e s and f a u l t s o f " t h e p r i n c e s , " I t i s d i f f i c u l t t o defend an Order whose p r i n c i p a l members are as above; b u t , they 60 a r e e n t i t l e d . . . t o our p r o t e c t i o n . " Thus, t h e r e was a genuine d e s i r e to do the r i g h t t h i n g by them, i f p o s s i b l e . But was i t p o s s i b l e ? Not r e a l l y . Congress o p p o s i t i o n to t h e r i g h t o f the p r i n c e s to a p p o i n t the S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s was e x c e e d i n g l y determined. The p a r t y had l o n g been committed to i n t r o d u c i n g demo-c r a t i c government i n t o what i t r e g a r d e d as p o o r l y a d m i n i s t e r e d semi-f e u d a l a u t o c r a c i e s , out o f s t e p w i t h the r e s t o f I n d i a and the modern w o r l d , and i t warned, on s e v e r a l o c c a s i o n s , t h a t i t was u t t e r l y opposed to the g r a n t i n g o f any such r i g h t . A t the S i m l a c o n f e r e n c e i n May, Nehru was b l u n t : The S t a t e s must come i n on the same b a s i s as B r i t i s h I n d i a , i . e . , they must be r e p r e s e n t e d by e l e c t e d r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f the p e o p l e . The Congress c o u l d not  a s s e n t to t h e i r b e i n g r e p r e s e n t e d by nominees of the R u l e r s . 7 3 And as Maulana Azad wrote to the S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e : . . . i t i s c l e a r t h a t S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s who come i n t o c o n s t i t u e n t assembly must do so more o r l e s s i n the same way as the r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s o f the p r o v i n c e s . The c o n s t i t u e n t assembly cannot be formed of e n t i r e l y d i s p a r a t e e l e m e n t s . 7 ^ Faced w i t h the p r o s p e c t o f s e r i o u s l y a n t a g o n i s i n g the Congress and w i t h damaging the chances o f o b t a i n i n g i t s a c c e p t a n c e to the o v e r a l l p l a n f o r the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y , the D e l e g a t i o n i n a c c o r d a n c e w i t h the terms o f t h e i r D i r e c t i v e chose to l e a v e o v e r the d e t a i l s o f the S t a t e s ' r e p r e s e n t a t i o n to f u t u r e n e g o t i a t i o n s between the assembly and the p r i n c e s . 61 The c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e s : The D e l e g a t i o n ' s p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y was above a l l a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p l a n . As we n o t e d e a r l i e r , t h e r e were b a s i c a l l y two c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e s f a c i n g the I n d i a n p a r t i e s and t h e B r i t i s h Government as the l a t t e r p r e p a r e d t o d i s e n g a g e . F i r s t o f a l l , what k i n d o f c o n s t i t u t i o n was the f u t u r e government of I n d i a t o o p e r a t e under? S e c o n d l y , who was to d e c i d e what k i n d of c o n s t i t u t i o n i t was t o o p e r a t e under? The answer t o the second q u e s t i o n a c c o r d i n g t o the Govern-ment's way of t h i n k i n g , as r e f l e c t e d i n t h e D i r e c t i v e , was t h a t I n d i a n s themselves s h o u l d d e c i d e . The purpose o f t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s m i s s i o n , as the D i r e c t i v e s t a t e s , was to h e l p " s e c u r e agreement amongst I n d i a n l e a d e r s as to the method of a r r i v i n g at t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e . " But what was t h e method to be? From the b e g i n n i n g , i t appears t h a t what was e n v i s a g e d was the co n v e n i n g o f a b r o a d l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g body such as a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. As t h e S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e e x p l a i n e d p a t i e n t l y i n a l e t t e r t o t h e V i c e r o y ...the words "method of a r r i v i n g a t new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e " were used t o c o v e r t h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f more than one c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g body b e i n g n e c e s s a r y . 7 5 C l e a r l y , t h e Labour Government d i d not w i s h t o p r e j u d g e t h e p a r t i t i o n i s s u e and thus f o r e c l o s e any p o l i c y o p t i o n s . However, from t h e p o i n t of view of t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l approach to disengagement what s h o u l d 62 be n o t e d i s t h a t i n e i t h e r c a s e — t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y to a u n i t e d o r a d i v i d e d I n d i a — t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly r o u t e t o c o n s t i t u t i o n - b u i l d i n g was the r o u t e t h a t was e n v i s a g e d . At t h a t s t a g e — t h a t i s p r i o r t o the D e l e g a t i o n ' s a r r i v a l i n I n d i a — t h e Govern-ment seems to have had n o t h i n g much more d e f i n i t e i n mind. But by t h e time of the Statement of May 16 much had changed. The Government now e n v i s a g e d not o n l y the c o nvening of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly, but a l s o the w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n i n which the c e n t r e would be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r d e f e n c e , f o r e i g n a f f a i r s and communications (and f o r r a i s i n g t h e r e q u i s i t e revenues) and i n which t h e r e would be n o t the u s u a l two, but t h r e e , t i e r s of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y : t h e f e d e r a l , t h e s u b - f e d e r a l o r group, and th e p r o v i n c i a l . How d i d t h i s come about? Why the c o nvening of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly and why the w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n ? P a r t o f t h e e x p l a n a t i o n i s t h a t t h e momentum of p a s t B r i t i s h p o l i c y i n t h e Dominions and i n I n d i a p o i n t e d i n the d i r e c t i o n of such a s o l u t i o n to t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e s , and so t h a t was the most l o g i c a l c o u r s e t o f o l l o w . The r e s t of t h e e x p l a n a t i o n though i s t h a t a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p l a n t h a t i n c o r p o r a t e d t h e c o n v e n i n g of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly and the w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n had a b e t t e r chance of b e i n g a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h p a r t i e s than one t h a t d i d n o t . In 1946, t h e momentum b e h i n d t h e i d e a of c o nvening a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly came most p a l p a b l y from t h e two s e m i n a l war-time 63 d e c l a r a t i o n s o f B r i t i s h p o l i c y — t h e August 1940 O f f e r and t h e C r i p p s O f f e r o f 1 9 4 2 — b o t h o f which e x p r e s s l y s t a t e d t h e Government's i n t e n t i o n o f convening a c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g body. The August 1940 O f f e r conceded, f o r t h e f i r s t t i m e , t h e Government's w i l l i n g n e s s t o convene " a f t e r t h e c o n c l u s i o n o f t h e war...a body r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f th e p r i n c i p a l elements i n I n d i a ' s n a t i o n a l l i f e i n o r d e r t o d e v i s e the 7 6 framework o f a new c o n s t i t u t i o n . " When t h a t p r o v e d t o be i n s u f f i -c i e n t i n a s s u a g i n g (mainly) Congress f e e l i n g s over t h e l a c k o f I n d i a n c o n t r o l o v e r t h e w a r - e f f o r t , t h e Government made t h e 1942 O f f e r i n which i t conceded—among o t h e r t h i n g s — t h a t t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e body would be a c o n s t i t u e n t a s s e m b l y . 7 7 Nor was t h i s m erely a m a t t e r of p r i n c i p l e , f o r t h e O f f e r o u t l i n e d t h e p r e c i s e p r o c e d u r e by which t h e Government e n v i s a g e d b r i n g i n g t h e assembly i n t o b e i n g . A c c o r d i n g t o t h a t p r o c e d u r e , immediately a f t e r t h e war e l e c t i o n s would be h e l d i n the p r o v i n c e s on the b a s i s of which an e l e c t o r a l c o l l e g e — c o n s i s t i n g of the e n t i r e membership o f t h e lower houses o f t h e p r o v i n c i a l l e g i s l a t u r e s — w o u l d be formed. The e l e c t o r a l c o l l e g e so formed would then choose r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s to t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly which would i n c l u d e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s from t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s . Though the O f f e r had not been a c c e p t e d by e i t h e r of t h e major p a r t i e s , i t remained open f o r t h e d u r a t i o n o f t h e war, and was adopted as t h e b a s i s o f B r i t i s h p o l i c y f o r I n d i a by the new government on assuming o f f i c e . Almost the f i r s t a c t o f t h e Labour government was to r e l e a s e Congress l e a d e r s 64 from war-time inter n m e n t i n o r d e r t o p r o c e e d w i t h e l e c t i o n s . Thus g o i n g i n t o 1946 and t h e a r r i v a l o f t h e C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n , t h e momentum of p a s t p o l i c i e s had l a i d f i r m l y i n p l a c e t h e groundwork f o r t h e convening of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. However, i f one i s t o make t h e d i s t i n c t i o n between a n e c e s s a r y and a s u f f i c i e n t c o n d i t i o n , t h e e x i s t e n c e o f t h a t groundwork was n ot by i t s e l f s u f f i c i e n t to make t h e i d e a o f co n v e n i n g a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly so c e n t r a l t o t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s t h i n k i n g on the c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p l a n . I t was however n e c e s s a r y . Without t h a t ground-work t h e q u e s t i o n of convening a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly might n e v e r have a r i s e n ; but w i t h i t the q u e s t i o n s t i l l remained whether o r not the c o n s t i t u e n t assembly r o u t e was one t h a t had t o be t r a v e l l e d . What made t h e n e c e s s a r y s u f f i c i e n t , i . e . , what ensured t h a t t h e con s -t i t u e n t r o u t e had to be t r a v e l l e d was t h e absence, as the n e g o t i a t i o n s p r o g r e s s e d , of any a l t e r n a t i v e r o u t e s . I f t h e Government were d e t e r -mined t o t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y i n such a way as was a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h major p a r t i e s i t s room f o r manoeuvre was s t r i c t l y c i r c u m s c r i b e d . F o r , t h e Congress was f i r m l y committed t o t h e i d e a o f a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. The i d e a o f convening a b r o a d l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e assembly to w r i t e a c o n s t i t u t i o n had had Congress support s i n c e the March 1940 Working Committee meeting h e l d t o condemn the Government's h i g h -handedness i n d e c l a r i n g I n d i a ' s e n t r y i n t o t h e war w i t h o u t c o n s u l t i n g I n d i a n l e a d e r s . Indeed, t h e r e s o l u t i o n adopted by the Committee was 65 p r o b a b l y the f i r s t time t h a t t h e i d e a of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly was s e r i o u s l y broached i n I n d i a n p o l i t i c s . A c c o r d i n g t o Hodson, the Government's 1940 O f f e r of a c o n s t i t u t i o n - m a k i n g body was a d i r e c t r e s ponse to t h e Committee's i n s i s t e n c e t h a t "The p e o p l e of I n d i a a l o n e can shape t h e i r own c o n s t i t u t i o n . . . t h r o u g h a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly 78 e l e c t e d on t h e b a s i s of a d u l t s u f f r a g e . " Thus, a c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p l a n t h a t attempted to c i r c u m v e n t t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly was u n l i k e l y t o o b t a i n Congress a c c e p t a n c e . I t i s t r u e , of c o u r s e , t h a t i f t h e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly r o u t e c o u l d be counted on to a t t r a c t the Congress, i t c o u l d a t t h e same ti m e be counted upon to r e p e l the League and t h e r e b y i n c r e a s e t h e chances of i t s n o t a c c e p t i n g the p l a n . But t h a t was p r o b a b l y l e s s s e r i o u s because t h e r e was always the hope t h a t i f — a s i n t h e C r i p p s O f f e r — J i n n a h were g i v e n t h e o p t i o n o f r e j e c t i n g t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n produced by the assembly, and i f he were o f f e r e d s u b s t a n t i a l s a f e g u a r d s i n th e assembly, he would l e a d h i s p a r t y i n t o i t . That t h a t was a r e a s o n a b l e hope may be i n f e r r e d from h i s e v e n t u a l a c c e p t a n c e of the Statement of May 16 which d i d i n d e e d o f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t s a f e g u a r d s i n th e c o n s t i t u e n t assembly, such as communally e l e c t e d r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s and t h e r i g h t t o demand t h a t any r e s o l u t i o n d e s i r i n g t o change the b a s i c form of the proposed c o n s t i t u -t i o n a l set-up o r r a i s i n g a major communal i s s u e would r e q u i r e a m a j o r i t y of t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s of t h e two major communities. What i s a l s o worth n o t i n g i s t h a t though the Statement d i d n o t g i v e him 66 t h e o p t i o n t h e C r i p p s O f f e r d i d of r e j e c t i n g t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n produced by the assembly, i t d i d g i v e him t h e d e l a y e d o p t i o n of demanding a r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n of t h e terms of the c o n s t i t u t i o n a f t e r an i n i t i a l t e n - y e a r p e r i o d and e v e r y ten y e a r s t h e r e a f t e r . O v e r a l l , t h e r e f o r e , t h e chances of o b t a i n i n g Congress and League a c c e p t a n c e t o a p l a n t h a t p r o v i d e d f o r t h e c o nvening of a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly were b e t t e r t h a n one t h a t d i d n o t . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , on the one o c c a s i o n t h a t t h e D e l e g a t i o n attempted to o b t a i n a c c e p t a n c e of a p l a n than d i d n o t i n v o l v e a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly i t f a i l e d 79 u t t e r l y . That attempt i n v o l v e d a t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y to a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e i n t e r i m government t h a t would s e t up an a l l - I n d i a Commission charged w i t h d e t e r m i n i n g ( i ) c o n s t i t u t i o n a l p r o v i s i o n s f o r t h e m i n o r i t i e s , and ( i i ) whether B r i t i s h I n d i a s h o u l d be d i v i d e d i n t o two s o v e r e i g n s t a t e s o r n o t . The Commission would be a l l o t t e d t h i r t y days to d e c i d e t h e second i s s u e depending on i t s answer t o t h e f i r s t . F a i l i n g agreement i n t h a t t i m e , t h e Muslim r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s i n the a s s e m b l i e s of S i n d , North-West F r o n t i e r P r o v i n c e (N.W.F.P.), Punjab and B e n g a l would v o t e f o r o r a g a i n s t t h e s e p a r a t i o n o f t h e i r p r o v i n c e s from the r e s t of I n d i a , a 75% m a j o r i t y b e i n g r e q u i r e d t o c a r r y the m otion. In t h e event of a v o t e f o r s e p a r a t i o n , t h e non-Muslims i n the Muslim m a j o r i t y d i s t r i c t s c o n t i g u o u s to I n d i a , would be a l l o w e d to v o t e on j o i n i n g I n d i a o r t h e s e p a r a t i n g p r o v i n c e s . B o t h the Congress and t h e League r e j e c t e d t h e p l a n out of hand and t h e r e a f t e r the 67 D e l e g a t i o n made no f u r t h e r attempt t o o b t a i n a c c e p t a n c e o f a p l a n t h a t d i d not I n v o l v e a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly. The Statement o f May 16, however, e n v i s a g e d n ot o n l y the convening o f a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly, but a l s o the w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n . Why a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n ? Here a g a i n , p o l i t i c a l momentum was p a r t l y r e s p o n s i b l e . There was, by 1946, a f e d e r a l ground-work a l r e a d y i n p l a c e . T h i s groundwork c o n s i s t e d o f s u c c e s s i v e B r i t i s h r e f o r m s — M i n t o - M o r l e y , Montagu-Chelmsford and t h e Government of I n d i a A ct o f 1935. The e f f e c t o f t h e s e r eforms was to r e n d e r t h e d i v i s i o n of r e s p o n s i b i l i t y between a c e n t r e and t h e p r o v i n c e s an e s s e n t i a l and i n c r e a s i n g l y i m p o r t a n t f e a t u r e of t h e I n d i a n p o l i t i c a l system. The 1935 A c t , under which I n d i a was then governed, i n p a r t i c u l a r , p r o v i d e d e x p l i c i t l y f o r such a d i v i s i o n and was the f i r s t t r u l y f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n o f t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t . Thus, even though the f e d e r a l p a r t of t h e Act was n e v e r implemented, t h e groundwork on which w i t h r e l a t i v e ease and speed a new f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n might be b u i l t , was a l r e a d y . v e r y much i n p l a c e . But t h e e x i s t e n c e o f t h e groundwork, a g a i n , by i t s e l f , was n o t s u f f i c i e n t t o make t h e D e l e g a t i o n attempt t o f o r m u l a t e a c o n s t i t u -t i o n a l p l a n on the b a s i s o f i t . The i d e a may c e r t a i n l y have been a t t r a c t i v e on t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f Canada, A u s t r a l i a and South A f r i c a , but i t i s c l e a r t h a t the D e l e g a t i o n t u r n e d t h e i r minds to i t o n l y when t h e r e seemed t h e r e was a chance t h a t both major p a r t i e s might f i n d i t 68 a c c e p t a b l e . C e r t a i n l y , t h e D e l e g a t i o n d i d not come o u t to I n d i a w i t h the o b j e c t of h e l p i n g t o draw up a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n ( o r any c o n s t i t u t i o n f o r t h a t m a t t e r ) . As t h e T r a n s f e r of Power documents show, the D e l e g a t i o n was commanded and was determined t o be open-minded. A c c o r d i n g to the D i r e c t i v e , t h e t h r e e m i n i s t e r s were t o " d i s c u s s and e x p l o r e a l l p o s s i b l e a l t e r n a t i v e s w i t h o u t p r o c e e d i n g upon any f i x e d o r r i g i d p r e - c o n c e i v e d p l a n " and t h e r e i s no e v i d e n c e t h a t t o suggest t h a t they c o n t r a v e n e d t h o s e i n s t r u c t i o n s . At a p r e s s c o n f e r e n c e i n K a r a c h i on the morning of t h e i r a r r i v a l i n I n d i a , t h e y were at p a i n s to 'stress, t h i s open-mindedness: We have n o t come w i t h any s e t views. We a r e here t o i n v e s t i g a t e and i n q u i r e . 8 Q Nor was t h i s mere r h e t o r i c . B e f o r e t h e i r a r r i v a l , W a v e l l had urged them to commit themselves e i t h e r t o s u p p o r t i n g o r to r e j e c t i n g 81 P a k i s t a n . I n s p i t e of h i s u r g i n g , however, they had r e f u s e d t o do so. They c o u l d not be unaware o f t h e p o t e n t i a l i t i e s of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n f o r I n d i a knowing h e r c o n s t i t u t i o n a l h i s t o r y and p r i v a t e l y may even have c o n s i d e r e d i t the o n l y v i a b l e c o n s t i t u t i o n f o r an independent I n d i a , but they were c l e a r l y u n w i l l i n g to b e g i n t h e i r n e g o t i a t i o n s from t h a t p o s i t i o n . Y e t w i t h i n days of t h e i r a r r i v a l i n I n d i a , d e s p i t e t h e i r r e s o l v e to be open-minded, t h e y were a c t i v e l y p u r s u i n g t h e w r i t i n g of a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n . The r e a s o n f o r t h a t i s t h a t i t was soon apparent t o them t h a t t h e chances of o b t a i n i n g the a c c e p t a n c e of b o t h p a r t i e s t o a p l a n i n v o l v i n g a f e d e r a l 69 c o n s t i t u t i o n were b e t t e r than one t h a t d i d n o t . The r e a s o n t h e chances were b e t t e r was s i m p l y t h a t as i n the case o f t h e convening o f a c o n s t i t u e n t assembly such a p l a n had t h e a c t i v e s u p port of one p a r t y and t h e p o t e n t i a l s u p p o r t — i n t h e r i g h t c i r c u m s t a n c e — o f t h e o t h e r . That c i r c u m s t a n c e was a t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y to a f e d e r a t i o n t h a t would a l l o w t h e p r o v i n c e s a wide measure of autonomy. There was good r e a s o n t o b e l i e v e , i n 1946, t h a t s h o u l d a m i n i m a l l y f e d e r a l I n d i a be proposed b o t h t h e Congress and t h e League c o u l d be persuaded t o agree t o i t . The Congress had l o n g s u p p o r t e d the i d e a o f a f e d e r a l I n d i a . However, i t s support o f a m i n i m a l l y f e d e r a l I n d i a was r e c e n t , g o i n g back l e s s t h a n two y e a r s . I n A p r i l 1944, a former member of t h e Congress,C. R. R a j a g o p a l a c h a r i , had p u b l i s h e d a s e t of p r o p o s a l s aimed a t s e t t l i n g Congress-League d i f f e r e n c e s . In J u l y o f t h a t y e a r , t h e Working Committees o f b o t h p a r t i e s e x p r e s s e d t h e i r w i l l i n g n e s s t o open n e g o t i a t i o n s on the b a s i s of what had by t h a t time been dubbed the " R a j a g o p a l a c h a r i Formula". The es s e n c e of h i s f o r m u l a was the f o r m a t i o n o f a commission which would demarcate c o n t i g u o u s Muslim-m a j o r i t y d i s t r i c t s i n n o r t h - w e s t e r n and n o r t h - e a s t e r n I n d i a and would o v e r s e e a p l e b i s c i t e f o r o r a g a i n s t s e p a r a t i o n i n t h o s e a r e a s . I n the event of a s e p a r a t i o n , however, an agreement would be e n t e r e d i n t o by the independent s t a t e s f o r such e s s e n t i a l common pu r p o s e s as d e f e n c e , f o r e i g n a f f a i r s , communications and commerce. Though J i n n a h , a f t e r 70 a s e r i e s o f meetings w i t h Gandhi r e j e c t e d t h e o f f e r of a P a k i s t a n — t h a t was " a shadow and a husk...maimed, m u t i l a t e d and m o t h - e a t e n " — t h e Formula s t r u c k a r e s p o n s i v e chord i n the Congress. When the D e l e g a t i o n a r r i v e d i n I n d i a i n March 1946, the Congress u n v e i l e d a p l a n whereby I n d i a would be governed under a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n , w i t h a c e n t r e t h a t would be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r t h r e e o f t h e f o u r s u b j e c t s proposed by t h e R a j a g o p a l a c h a r i Formula: d e f e n c e , f o r e i g n a f f a i r s and communications. I f t h e p r o v i n c e s wished t o p a r t i c i p a t e i n c e n t r a l p l a n n i n g , t h e y would have t o cede t h e a p p r o p r i a t e s u b j e c t s t o t h e c e n t r e . T h i s was t h e p l a n the D e l e g a t i o n l a t e r r e j e c t e d i n the Statement of May 16, w h i l e r e t a i n i n g the i d e a of t h e mi n i m a l c e n t r e . The p o i n t t o be made though i s t h a t even b e f o r e opening i t s n e g o t i a -t i o n s , t h e D e l e g a t i o n was aware t h a t a t l e a s t one o f the two major p a r t i e s a c t i v e l y s u p p o r t e d a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n . I f , a t t h a t s t a g e , the i d e a of such a c o n s t i t u t i o n as an i n t e g r a l p a r t o f a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y was mer e l y a p o s s i b i l i t y i n t h e minds o f t h e D e l e g a t i o n , h e r e was a p o w e r f u l r e a s o n to e l e v a t e i t i n t o something more s u b s t a n t i a l . The Muslim League had once su p p o r t e d t h e i d e a o f a f e d e r a l c o n s t i t u t i o n , but had c o n s i s t e n t l y opposed i t s i n c e the famous 1940 P a k i s t a n r e s o l u t i o n . At t h e time of R a j a g o p a l a c h a r i Formula t a l k s w i t h Gandhi, J i n n a h had r e j e c t e d the i d e a o f share d r e s p o n s i b i l i t y i n de f e n c e , f o r e i g n a f f a i r s , communications and commerce, a r g u i n g t h a t 71 t h a t was n o t c o m p a t i b l e w i t h a s o v e r e i g n P a k i s t a n . Those s u b j e c t s were i n t e g r a l t o any n o t i o n o f s o v e r e i g n t y , he c l a i m e d , and c o u l d not be d e l e g a t e d . By March 1946, however, t h e r e a p p e a r e d — t o the D e l e g a t i o n , at any r a t e — t o be a d i s c e r n i b l e s o f t e n i n g i n J i n n a h ' s s t a n d . A c c o r d i n g t o C r i p p s and a c c o r d i n g t o one o f h i s a i d e s , Woodrow Wyatt, who had c l o s e l i n k s w i t h t h e League, J i n n a h was w i l l i n g t o n e g o t i a t e m a t t e r s o f common co n c e r n such as t h o s e e n v i s a g e d by the R a j a g o p a l a c h a r i Formula and t h e Congress p l a n , once t h e " p r i n c i p l e " of a s e p a r a t e 82 Muslim s t a t e had been conceded. Though t h i s was s t i l l a l o n g way from i n d i c a t i n g League su p p o r t o f a f e d e r a l I n d i a , t h e r e was the hope, f i r s t of a l l , t h a t i f P a k i s t a n were e i t h e r r e j e c t e d o r made u n a t t r a c t i v e , J i n n a h would e v e n t u a l l y agree t o a f e d e r a l s o l u t i o n , and s e c o n d l y , t h a t h i s p r e s e n t o p p o s i t i o n was a b a r g a i n i n g p o s i t i o n , t h a t t h e u s u a l J i n n a h t a c t i c o f co n c e d i n g n o t h i n g and l e t t i n g t h e B r i t i s h and t h e Congress do t h e messy b u s i n e s s of f o r m u l a t i n g s o l u t i o n s was at work a g a i n . From the T r a n s f e r of Power documents, i t would seem t h a t such a hope was not unfounded. When C r i p p s i n a p r i v a t e i n t e r v i e w w i t h J i n n a h p l a c e d two a l t e r n a t i v e p l a n s b e f o r e him, o n e — P l a n A — t h a t p r o v i d e d f o r a t h r e e -t i e r f e d e r a l u n i o n and t h e o t h e r — P l a n B — - t h a t p r o v i d e d f o r a minimum s o v e r e i g n P a k i s t a n (a P a k i s t a n t h a t he had r e f e r r e d t o as "a shadow and a husk...maimed, m u t i l a t e d and moth-eaten"), J i n n a h r e j e c t e d t h e second p l a n , s a y i n g t h a t "he was p r e p a r e d , however, t o 72 c o n s i d e r P l a n A i f t h e Congress were p r e p a r e d t o c o n s i d e r i t and i f he c o u l d be a s s u r e d o f t h a t he would put i t t o the Muslim 83 League Working Committee." The League was l a t e r t o a c c e p t the t h r e e - t i e r f e d e r a l s t r u c t u r e when i t a c c e p t e d t h e Statement of May 16. Thus, i n March 1946, t h e chances of o b t a i n i n g t h e a c c e p t a n c e of b a t h p a r t i e s to a p l a n f o r the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y which i n v o l v e d a m i n i m a l l y f e d e r a l I n d i a were b e t t e r than one t h a t d i d n o t . 7 3 CHAPTER IV THE THREE IMPERATIVES AFFECTING  BRITISH DISENGAGEMENT The p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r has attempted t o show how i n f o u r d i f f e r e n t s i t u a t i o n s i n the disengagement p r o c e s s t h e p u r s u i t of a g r e e -ment l a r g e l y determined what the Government c o u l d o r c o u l d not do and what i t d i d or d i d not do. From the b e g i n n i n g , agreement was th e Government's p r i m a r y o b j e c t i v e . The D i r e c t i v e t o t h e D e l e g a t i o n was u n e q u i v o c a l : "your purpose i s to s e c u r e agreement amongst I n d i a n l e a d e r s as t o t h e method o f a r r i v i n g at t h e new c o n s t i t u t i o n a l s t r u c t u r e " . In accordance w i t h t h a t s t i p u l a t i o n , t h e t h r e e m i n i s t e r s w i t h t h e c o o p e r a t i o n of t h e V i c e r o y compiled a l i s t of I n d i a n s , r e f l e c t i n g a l l shades o f o p i n i o n , whom they wished t o i n t e r v i e w . B e g i n n i n g the morning a f t e r t h e i r a r r i v a l and f o r t h e e n s u i n g t h r e e weeks, as a means of e l i c i t i n g the b a s i s of agreement, the D e l e g a t i o n members canvassed the o f t e n w i d e l y d i s p a r a t e o p i n i o n s they had i n s i s t e d on s o l i c i t i n g . In t hose t h r e e c o n c e n t r a t e d and g r u e l l i n g summer weeks, they sought and r e c e i v e d t h e views of n e a r l y one hundred p e r s o n s r e p r e s e n t i n g numerous i n t e r e s t s . Among the hundred were: the p r e m i e r s of t h e p r o v i n c e s ; The C h a n c e l l o r and S t a n d i n g Committee of Chamber of P r i n c e s ; i n d i v i d u a l r u l e r s and t h e i r dewans ( p r e m i e r s of I n d i a n S t a t e s ) ; v a r i o u s " e l d e r statesmen" such as Sapru, 74 Jayakar, Kunzru and Sarat Bose; the Congress and non-Congress representatives of the Scheduled Castes; the representatives of the Sikhs and of the other minorities; representatives from Indian labour and women, and from the Indian Communist Party; and, of course, on more than one occasion, the representatives of the Congress and the Muslim League. In obtaining their opinions, the Delegation conspicuously refrained from expressing their own, preferring to listen and inter-jecting only now and then to ask for clarifications or details. Though some opinions were more important than others—as reflected in the length of the interview accorded the various representatives— the format did not vary. Those interviewed were encouraged to give their opinion on how the new constitution ought to be brought into being, what form the constitution ought to take and what provisions in that constitution were required to safeguard their interests. Thus, there was a concerted effort to secure as many points of view as possible in order to get the widest measure of agreement to the plan for the transfer of authority. The question we w i l l address here is the following: why was the Br i t i s h Government so intent on obtaining Indian agreement, particularly the agreement of the two major parties? The fundamental reason for the Government's singular pursuit of agreement was the situation that confronted i t as i t attempted to transfer authority. That was a situation which, pre-eminently, had two outstanding features: f i r s t of a l l , the increasing power and 75 p o l a r i s a t i o n o f t h e n a t i o n a l i s t movement; and s e c o n d l y , d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t . The c o m b i n a t i o n of a p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement meant t h a t any attempt t o t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y which d i d not p r o c e e d on the b a s i s of t h e consent o f b o t h of t h e major p a r t i e s was l i k e l y t o r e s u l t i n w i d e s pread c i v i l d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e . T h i s the Government was p a i n f u l l y aware o f . Thus, i n the Statement of May 16, h a v i n g o u t l i n e d t h e p l a n a c c o r d i n g to which i t proposed t o t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y , the D e l e g a t i o n warned i n sombre tones of the p r o b a b l e consequences of Congress and League r e j e c t i o n : : ...a grave danger of v i o l e n c e , chaos, and even c i v i l war. The r e s u l t and d u r a t i o n of such a d i s t u r b a n c e cannot be f o r e s e e n ; but i t i s c e r t a i n t h a t i t would be a t e r r i b l e d i s a s t e r . . . .84 P r i v a t e l y , the D e l e g a t i o n had c a l c u l a t e d t h a t any p l a n t h a t was imposed and t h a t was p e r c e i v e d of as d e t r i m e n t a l t o t h e i n t e r e s t s o f e i t h e r p a r t y would prompt a c a l l t o c i v i l d i s o b e d i e n c e ; i n the t e n s e atmosphere of p o s t - e l e c t i o n r i v a l r y and s u s p i c i o n even a p e a c e f u l d e m o n s t r a t i o n o r s t r i k e was l i k e l y t o t u r n u g l y . E s p e c i a l l y t r o u b l i n g though was th e thought of a C o n g r e s s - l e d "mass s t r u g g l e on 1942 l i n e s but more widespread and b e t t e r o r g a n i s e d " ; n o r c o u l d the p r o s p e c t 85 of a Muslim League i n s p i r e d "Jehad" be d i s c o u n t e d . What was most s i g n i f i c a n t i n t h e i r c a l c u l a t i o n s , however, was t h a t i n n e i t h e r c a s e — a Congress- o r Muslim L e a g u e - l e d r e b e l l i o n — w a s d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h 76 power c a p a b l e of c o n t r o l l i n g t h e r e s u l t i n g d i s t u r b a n c e s - B r i t i s h r e s o u r c e s i n the s u b - c o n t i n e n t , b o t h a d m i n i s t r a t i v e and c o e r c i v e , were s e r i o u s l y i n e c l i p s e and t h e r e was s i m p l y no p o s s i b i l i t y of r e f u r b i s h i n g them i n the immediate f u t u r e . The p r e v a l e n t f e e l i n g among the e x p e r i e n c e d and i n e x p e r i e n c e d a l i k e , t h e r e f o r e , was t h a t a s e r i o u s c h a l l e n g e to law and o r d e r e n s u i n g from a f a i l u r e t o o b t a i n Congress and League a c c e p t a n c e to a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y c o u l d not be r e s i s t e d . As the V i c e r o y wrote i n h i s " A p p r e c i a t i o n o f P o s s i b i l i t i e s i n I n d i a , May 1946" ( w i t h h i s eye p a r t i c u l a r l y on the C o n g r e s s ) : A w i d e spread mass movement...would be l i k e l y soon t o take a v i o l e n t form even i f n o m i n a l l y begun on non-v i o l e n t l i n e s and I t would be beyond our r e s o u r c e s to s u p p r e s s i t . 8 6 The r e s o u r c e s W a v e l l was r e f e r r i n g to were, p r e - e m i n e n t l y , t h e p o l i c e , t h e armed s e r v i c e s and t h e c i v i l s e r v i c e , whose e f f i c i e n c y and e f f i c a c y i n the c i r c u m s t a n c e s o f 1946 were s e r i o u s l y i n q u e s t i o n . The I n d i a n members o f t h e s e r v i c e s , s u b j e c t e d i n c r e a s i n g l y t o the c o n f l i c t i n g p r e s s u r e s of n a t i o n a l i s m and p r o f e s s i o n a l d u t y , were showing s i g n s of s t r a i n , and t h e V i c e r o y doubted whether t h e y were c a p a b l e of d e a l i n g w i t h a mass d i s o b e d i e n c e campaign launched by e i t h e r t h e Congress or t h e League, o r w i t h l a r g e - s c a l e communal t r o u b l e . The January 1946 n a v a l mutiny had shown j u s t how p r e c a r i o u s t h e l o y a l t y o f t h e e r s t w h i l e s t a l w a r t f o r c e s was becoming; 77 t h e t r i a l s o f p r i s o n e r s from t h e I n d i a n N a t i o n a l A r m y — a group of d e s e r t e r s from t h e I n d i a n Army and freedom f i g h t e r s l e d by Subhash Bose who f o u g h t a l o n g s i d e t h e Japanese d u r i n g the w a r — w e r e a f u r t h e r s t r a i n on t h i s l o y a l t y . At t h e same t i m e , t h e B r i t i s h members of b o t h s e r v i c e s were to o few and too d e m o r a l i s e d t o be e f f e c t i v e i n the f a c e o f a c o n c e r t e d r e b e l l i o n . Thus, t h e o n l y p o s s i -b i l i t y of m a i n t a i n i n g law and o r d e r was t o c a l l i n B r i t i s h r e i n f o r c e -ments; b u t , i n the o p i n i o n of t h e C h i e f s of S t a f f , i n the a f t e r m a t h of t h e war, t h e r e were no r e i n f o r c e m e n t s to be had. B r i t a i n was w i d e l y committed, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t h e M i d d l e E a s t and Europe, and any r e i n f o r c e m e n t s would have t o come from t h e s e commitments, from 87 Germany, I t a l y , Greece and t h e M i d d l e E a s t . T h i s the Government was not p r e p a r e d t o do because o f t h e a l a r m i n g p r o s p e c t t h a t i t would a l l o w the S o v i e t Union " t o pursue (her) p o l i c i e s i n t h e s e 88 a r e a s . " Thus, o b t a i n i n g agreement amongst the two major p a r t i e s was a b s o l u t e l y e s s e n t i a l . What s h o u l d be n o t e d here e s p e c i a l l y i s t h a t t h e Government f a c e d a s i t u a t i o n where the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y had t o be e f f e c t e d i n t h e c o n t e x t o f two n a t i o n a l i s t p a r t i e s t h a t were at the same time b o t h p o w e r f u l and m u t u a l l y h o s t i l e . In such a s i t u a t i o n the p o t e n t i a l f o r d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e , and t h e consequent need f o r agreement, was t h a t much h i g h e r . No o t h e r c o m b i n a t i o n would have p l a c e d such a premium on agreement because no o t h e r c o m b i n a t i o n was 78 as p o t e n t i a l l y v o l a t i l e . A movement t h a t was e i t h e r weak and u n i t e d , o r weak and p o l a r i s e d , would s c a r c e l y have been c a p a b l e o f f e r m e n t i n g d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e on a s c a l e w hich t h e Government c o u l d n o t c o n t r o l . A movement t h a t was p o w e r f u l and u n i t e d would have been f a r more f o r m i d a b l e than e i t h e r o f t h o s e two, but t h e l i k e l i h o o d of d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e i n t h a t case would have r e s t e d on a s i n g l e c o n f r o n t a t i o n : between t h e Government and t h e movement as a whole. A movement, on the o t h e r hand, t h a t was p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d , as i n the I n d i a n c a s e , meant t h a t t h e l i k e l i h o o d o f d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e r e s t e d n o t on a s i n g l e c o n f r o n t a t i o n , but on f o u r c o n f r o n t a t i o n s : between the Government and one p a r t y ; between the Government and the o t h e r p a r t y ; between the Government and b o t h p a r t i e s s i m u l t a n e o u l y ; and between t h e two p a r t i e s t h e m s e l v e s . I n such a s i t u a t i o n the Government had to o b t a i n agreement on two f r o n t s s i m u l t a n e o u s l y : between i t s e l f and t h e two p a r t i e s , and between the two p a r t i e s themselves. But why d i d the Government have t o o b t a i n agreement? Could i t n o t si m p l y have d e s i g n a t e d a s u c c e s s o r government and then w i t h due p r e c a u t i o n withdrawn i t s o f f i c i a l s and armed p e r s o n n e l and o t h e r c i t i z e n s , and l e f t I n d i a t o h e r own d e v i c e s and f a t e ? Why was the Government f o r c e d t o s t a y and o v e r s e e a t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y which had t h e agreement of t h e two major p a r t i e s ? There was, of c o u r s e , a h u m a n i t a r i a n r e a s o n why. The Government exp e c t e d t h a t i n the event of a w i t h d r a w a l which had f a i l e d , 79 o r not attempted, to o b t a i n t h e agreement o f t h e two p a r t i e s , t h e r e would be c i v i l war. Innocent men, women and c h i l d r e n would l o s e l i f e , l i m b and p r o p e r t y i n such a c o n f l a g r a t i o n and t h i s t h e Govern-ment n a t u r a l l y wished t o p r e v e n t . There were, however, two o t h e r , perhaps even more c o m p e l l i n g r e a s o n s why the Government was f o r c e d to s e c u r e agreement. The f i r s t was a s t r a t e g i c r e a s o n . The B r i t i s h Government, we have n o t e d , e v i d e n t l y c o n s i d e r e d I n d i a s t r a t e g i c a l l y i m p o r t a n t . Why? A c c o r d i n g to t h e C h i e f s of S t a f f , I n d i a was of s t r a t e g i c v a l u e f o r b r o a d l y s p e a k i n g t h r e e r e a s o n s : f i r s t o f a l l , because of her human r e s o u r c e s ; s e c o n d l y , because of her g e o g r a p h i c r e s o u r c e — h e r l o c a t i o n on the map; and 89 t h i r d l y , because of her i n d u s t r i a l and n a t u r a l r e s o u r c e s . On the e x p e r i e n c e of World War I I , t h e C h i e f s r e a s o n e d , B r i t a i n would r e q u i r e e v e r g r e a t e r manpower " r e s e r v o i r s " , which I n d i a w i t h her v a s t p o p u l a t i o n c o u l d n a t u r a l l y s u p p l y . At the same tim e , I n d i a ' s g e o g r a p h i c l o c a t i o n w i t h i n t h e empire was v i t a l . From I n d i a , B r i t i s h a i r , and sea power c o u l d be d e p l o y e d a g a i n s t t a r g e t s i n the A r a b i a n Sea and t h e P e r s i a n G u l f , t h e Bay of B engal and s o u t h - e a s t A s i a (Burma, T h a i l a n d , F r e n c h I n d o - C h i n a and M a l a y s i a ) , and as f a r n o r t h as t h e i n d u s t r i a l a r e a s of t h e U r a l s and Western S i b e r i a i n S o v i e t R u s s i a . Moreover, I n d i a was a key l i n k i n the network of B r i t i s h a i r communications from the M i d d l e E a s t t o t h e F a r E a s t . F i n a l l y , t h e C h i e f s argued, though I n d i a n i n d u s t r y was t e c h n o l o -g i c a l l y backward, I n d i a ' s " i n d u s t r i a l e f f o r t (was) l i k e l y t o become of much g r e a t e r importance i n th e f u t u r e " and t h a t t h e r e f o r e she 80 had to be r e g a r d e d as h a v i n g a " s u p p l y p o t e n t i a l " . More i m p o r t a n t l y , however, South I n d i a had the l a r g e s t known t h o r i u m r e s e r v e s i n the w o r l d , an element w h i c h — i n t h e i r o p i n i o n — w o u l d i n c r e a s i n g l y be used f o r n u c l e a r energy. Thus, I n d i a c o u l d be a v a l u a b l e a l l y . Her e f f e c t i v e n e s s as an a l l y , however, depended on how i n t e r n a l l y s t a b l e she was. Thus, one o f t h e p r o v i s i o n s the C h i e f s o f S t a f f recommended the D e l e g a t i o n s e c u r e from I n d i a n l e a d e r s was an u n d e r t a k i n g t h a t I n d i a would m a i n t a i n i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y . But the maintenance o f i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y and s t a b i l i t y depended on t h e f u n c t i o n i n g o f the p o l i t i c a l system which, i n t u r n , depended on the e x i s t e n c e o f a "compact" between the major elements o f the system, the Congress and th e League, on t h e fundamentals o f the system i t s e l f . A c c o r d i n g to the T r a n s f e r o f Power documents, the Government was k e e n l y aware o f t h i s and o f the r e l a t i o n s h i p between p o l i t i c a l s t a b i l i t y and s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t . The C h i e f s o f S t a f f ' s memorandum to the D e l e g a t i o n on what p r o v i s i o n s i t was to o b t a i n from I n d i a n l e a d e r s i s i n s t r u c t i v e i n t h i s r e g a r d , as t h e f o l l o w i n g e x t r a c t shows: A c o n t e n t e d and p o l i t i c a l l y s t a b l e I n d i a i s o f the g r e a t e s t importance to us i n o r d e r to ensure the s e c u r i t y o f I n d i a as a m i l i t a r y base and as a s o u r c e o f manpower and i n d u s t r i a l war p o t e n t i a l . So, i n d i s e n g a g i n g , t h e r e were c o m p e l l i n g s t r a t e g i c reasons why B r i t a i n c o u l d not simply, withdraw and l e a v e I n d i a to h e r f a t e . The second r e a s o n she c o u l d not do so was, i n i t s own way, j u s t as c o m p e l l i n g : i m p e r i a l p r i d e . The B r i t i s h Government viewed t h e m a t t e r o f a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y as a 81 m a t t e r o f p r e s t i g e . As t h e S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e n o t e d at h i s f i r s t p r e s s c o n f e r e n c e i n New D e l h i : I t i s of t h e g r e a t e s t importance t h a t t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y s h o u l d be smoothly and e f f i c i e n t l y c a r r i e d t h r o u g h . T h i s i s p r i m a r i l y an I n d i a n , but a l s o a B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t and i t w i l l be a f r e s h s o u r c e of p r i d e t o I n d i a and B r i t a i n i f we can demonstrate to the w o r l d our a b i l i t y to make a smooth and p e a c e f u l change of so f a r - r e a c h i n g c h a r a c t e r . 9 1 Why would a "smooth and p e a c e f u l " t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y be "a s o u r c e of p r i d e " t o B r i t a i n ? Because perhaps t h e p r i n c i p a l j u s t i f i c a t i o n o f i m p e r i a l r u l e i n I n d i a o r elsewhere f o r t h a t m a t t e r was the r e l a t i v e peace and o r d e r e f f e c t e d by B r i t i s h Government and a d m i n i s -t r a t i o n . Having found I n d i a i n a s u p p o s e d l y near-Hobbesian c o n d i t i o n , B r i t a i n was determined t o l e a v e b e h i n d a more i m p r e s s i v e l e g a c y . To a l l o w l i f e once more t o be r e d u c e d t o t h e n a s t y , p o o r , b r u t i s h and s h o r t e x i s t e n c e d e c r i e d by the s t e r n p h i l o s o p h e r would be t o c a l l i n t o q u e s t i o n B r i t i s h i m p e r i a l achievements and i t s j u s t i f i c a t i o n . I f I n d i a were t o r e v e r t to anarchy i n the a f t e r m a t h of B r i t i s h w i t h d r a w a l t h a t would be e v i d e n c e t h a t i m p e r i a l r u l e , i n f a c t , had a c h i e v e d l i t t l e o r n o t h i n g , t h a t i t had been m a i n t a i n e d by d i n t of f o r c e and t h a t i t had o n l y been e x p l o i t a t i v e . T h i s , t h e T r a n s f e r  of Power documents r e v e a l , was anathema t o t h e man who was among th o s e c h i e f l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r B r i t i s h p o l i c y i n I n d i a a f t e r t h e war: Clement A t t l e e . B r i t i s h r u l e i n I n d i a , and i n o t h e r p a r t s of empire, A t t l e e b e l i e v e d , r e s t e d on a more l e g i t i m a t e base than power. 82 In 1942, i n a s e c r e t n o t e to t h e War C a b i n e t , he v i g o r o u s l y denounced the V i c e r o y — L o r d L i n l i t h g o w — f o r h i s a s s e r t i o n t h a t I n d i a (and Burma) were "conquered c o u n t r i e s which have been brought t h e r e ( i . e . i n t o t h e Empire) by f o r c e , (and) kept t h e r e by our own c o n t r o l . . . " Such an a s s e r t i o n , he p r o t e s t e d , "sounds more l i k e an e x t r a c t from an a n t i - i m p e r i a l i s t propaganda speech." I t r e f l e c t e d a p o i n t of view he c o u l d not a c c e p t because I t i f were t r u e i t would form the g r e a t e s t p o s s i b l e condemnation of our r u l e i n I n d i a and would amply j u s t i f y the a c t i o n of e v e r y e x t r e m i s t i n I n d i a . But i t i s not t h e whole t r u t h . A l l I n d i a was n o t t h e f r u i t o f conquest; l a r g e p a r t s o f i t came under our r u l e t o escape from t y r a n n y and anarchy.92 A t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y t h a t was n o t e f f e c t e d by agreement of t h e two major p a r t i e s was l i k e l y t o l e a d t o a breakdown i n law and o r d e r t h a t would r e s u l t i n w i d e s p r e a d d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e , i n t h e " t y r a n n y and a n a r c h y " so a b h o r r e n t t o A t t l e e ' s way o f t h i n k i n g . I f t h a t o c c u r r e d , s e r i o u s a s p e r s i o n s would be c a s t on the p r o g r e s s i v e a s p e c t of i m p e r i a l r u l e so c l o s e t o B r i t i s h (and i n many c a s e s I n d i a n ) h e a r t s . Indeed, i m p e r i a l r u l e would be judged a f a i l u r e t h a t c o u l d n o t but r e f l e c t on the g u a r d i a n s as w e l l the wards of t h a t r u l e . Such a judgment, i f w i d e s p r e a d , would have s e r i o u s r e p e r c u s s i o n s f o r t h e f u t u r e o f B r i t i s h r u l e i n the r e s t o f A s i a and i n A f r i c a . Though t h e r e i s no p r e c i s e i n d i c a t i o n o f t h i s i n The T r a n s f e r o f Power documents, t h e i n f e r e n c e would appear t o be a r e a s o n a b l e one. B r i t a i n ' s r u l e i n her f a r - f l u n g empire depended, i n l a r g e measure on 83 t h e l e g i t i m a c y a c q u i r e d by h a v i n g extended r e l a t i v e peace and o r d e r 93 to her c o l o n i e s . I f , i n d i s e n g a g i n g from her most im p o r t a n t c o l o n y , B r i t a i n was f o r c e d t o " s c u t t l e " , the b a s i s o f her r u l e i n t h e r e s t o f t h e empire would undoubtedly s u f f e r : t h e l e g i t i m a c y of her r u l e — " P a x B r i t a n n i c a " — w o u l d be c a l l e d i n t o q u e s t i o n , e n c o u r a g i n g n a t i o n a l i s t movements to p r e s s t h e i r c l a i m s f o r independence and undermining t h e morale of i m p e r i a l a d m i n i s t r a t o r s . T h i s cannot but have been o f s e r i o u s c o n c e r n f o r t h e Labour Government which, f o r a l l i t s r e p u t e d sympathy f o r n a t i o n a l i s t c a u s e s , was n o t y e t ready t o p r e s i d e o v e r t h e complete d i s m a n t l i n g o f empire. The F i n a l Phase: Mountbatten's M i s s i o n : I t was suggested a t t h e b e g i n n i n g of t h e t h e s i s t h a t i n the f i n a l phase o f disengagement the same f a c t o r s i n f l u e n c e d B r i t i s h p o l i c y as had i n f l u e n c e d p o l i c y i n t h e e a r l i e r phase and t h a t as a r e s u l t t h e broad l i n e s of B r i t i s h p o l i c y remained unchanged. That t h i s i s so i s c l e a r from the Prime M i n i s t e r ' s " L e t t e r of I n s t r u c t i o n s " 94 to Mountbatten b e f o r e h i s d e p a r t u r e f o r I n d i a i n March 1947. The L e t t e r , f i r s t o f a l l , i n s t r u c t e d Mountbatten to " o b t a i n a u n i t a r y form of Government f o r B r i t i s h I n d i a and t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s , i f p o s s i b l e w i t h i n t h e B r i t i s h Commonwealth, th r o u g h the medium o f a C o n s t i t u e n t Assembly, s e t up and run i n accordance w i t h t h e C a b i n e t M i s s i o n ' s p l a n " . The D e l e g a t i o n ' s p l a n had a l r e a d y r e j e c t e d t h e 84 p a r t i t i o n i n g o f t h e s u b - c o n t i n e n t so t h a t t h i s s t r i c t u r e was no b r e a k w i t h p a s t p o l i c y . Nor was t h e L e t t e r ' s second i n s t r u c t i o n , which warned Mountbatten t h a t s i n c e t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s p l a n c o u l d " o n l y become o p e r a t i v e i n r e s p e c t of B r i t i s h I n d i a by agreement between the major p a r t i e s , t h e r e /_coul47 be no q u e s t i o n of c o m p e l l i n g e i t h e r major p a r t y to a c c e p t i t " . Agreement, as we have seen, was the c o r n e r s t o n e of t h e D e l e g a t i o n ' s terms of r e f e r e n c e and methods. T h i r d l y , t h e L e t t e r reminded Mountbatten t h a t t h e I n d i a n S t a t e s would have t o " a d j u s t t h e i r r e l a t i o n s w i t h t h e a u t h o r i t i e s t o whom i t i s i n t e n d e d t o hand over power", t h a t he would have t o " a i d and a s s i s t the S t a t e s i n coming t o f a i r and j u s t arrangements w i t h the l e a d e r s o f B r i t i s h I n d i a as t o t h e i r f u t u r e r e l a t i o n s h i p s " and t h a t paramountcy c o u l d not be t r a n s f e r r e d t o t h e s u c c e s s o r government. F o u r t h l y , t h e L e t t e r n o t e d t h a t Mountbatten was to " t a k e e v e r y o p p o r t u n i t y of s t r e s s i n g the importance of e n s u r i n g t h a t the t r a n s f e r of power i s e f f e c t e d w i t h f u l l r e g a r d t o t h e defence r e q u i r e m e n t s of I n d i a " . What t h i s e n t a i l e d was k e e p i n g the I n d i a n Army i n t a c t , m a i n t a i n i n g an a l l - I n d i a d e f e n c e a u t h o r i t y and s e c u r i n g I n d i a n c o l l a b o r a t i o n i n t h e d e f e n c e of t h e I n d i a n Ocean a r e a . Here a g a i n the ground had been c o v e r e d by t h e D e l e g a t i o n and W a v e l l and what was i n v o l v e d was merely an i t e r a t i o n o f p o l i c y . F i f t h l y , i n another i t e r a t i o n , t h e L e t t e r s t r e s s e d t h a t " I t i s e s s e n t i a l t h a t t h e r e s h o u l d be t h e f u l l e s t c o o p e r a t i o n w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s i n a l l s t e p s t h a t a r e taken to withdraw B r i t i s h power so t h a t t h e p r o c e s s may go f o r w a r d as smoothly as p o s s i b l e " . 85 C l e a r l y , t h e n , t h e c o n c e r n s and i m p e r a t i v e s t h a t had moved t h e D e l e g a t i o n and W a v e l l were v e r y much at work as the new V i c e r o y assumed o f f i c e . And they might have combined to produce the same s u f f o c a t i n g l a c k o f manoeuvre as had e a r l i e r been t h e case had i t n o t been f o r two elements i n the new v i c e r o y a l t y : the s e t t i n g o f f i n a l d ate f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y and t h e arming of t h e V i c e r o y w i t h p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers. The f i r s t was announced i n P a r l i a m e n t a t t h e time of Mountbatten's appointment as W a v e l l ' s s u c c e s s o r : H i s M a j e s t y ' s Government w i s h to make i t c l e a r t h a t i t i s t h e i r d e f i n i t e i n t e n t i o n to take n e c e s s a r y s t e p s to e f f e c t t h e t r a n s f e r o f power t o r e s p o n s i b l e I n d i a n hands by a d a t e n o t l a t e r t h a n June 1948.95 The second, a c c o r d i n g to v a r i o u s a c c o u n t s , Mountbatten o b t a i n e d p r i v a t e l y i n a m e e t i n g w i t h A t t l e e and C r i p p s as a c o n d i t i o n of h i s 96 a c c e p t a n c e of t h e v i c e r o y a l t y . T o g e t h e r , t h e y h e l p e d r e s c u e B r i t i s h p o l i c y i n I n d i a from t h e dead-end at which i t had a r r i v e d . B e f o r e d e a l i n g w i t h how t h e y d i d so, what i s worth emphasising i s t h a t t h a t p o l i c y i n essence had n o t changed w i t h Mountbatten's assuming charge. The C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n , w i t h the p r o s p e c t of d i s o r d e r and v i o l e n c e i n t h e absence of agreement, had s t r i v e n t o produce a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y which would be a c c e p t a b l e to b o t h of t h e major p a r t i e s . The "Great C a l c u t t a K i l l i n g " o f August 1946 r e f e r r e d t o e a r l i e r , and t h e f u r t h e r s e r i o u s o u t b r e a k s of communal t r o u b l e i n E a s t Bengal and B i h a r i n O c t o b e r , had c o n f i r m e d t h e 86 Government's worst f e a r : i n t h e absence of agreement t h e r e would i n d e e d be c i v i l d i s t u r b a n c e s on a s c a l e t h a t t h e Government c o u l d n o t c o n t r o l . Thus, Mountbatten's p r i m a r y t a s k , as had been the D e l e g a t i o n ' s and W a v e l l ' s , was to b r i n g about a t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y t h a t was a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h t h e Congress and the League. What t h e s e t t i n g of a f i n a l d ate f o r t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y and t h e g r a n t i n g o f p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers d i d was to enhance the new V i c e r o y ' s a b i l i t y to a c c o m p l i s h t h a t t a s k . Though the fundamental g o a l of B r i t i s h p o l i c y remained the same, i . e . o b t a i n i n g I n d i a n agreement, t h e r e was a r e a l i s a t i o n by 1947 t h a t t h e Government l a c k e d t h e r e s o u r c e s to a c h i e v e t h a t g o a l . Mountbatten's appointment i t s e l f i s s i g n i f i c a n t i n t h i s r e s p e c t . W a v e l l , t h e A t t l e e Government was c o n v i n c e d , no l o n g e r p o s s e s s e d t h e c a p a b i l i t y o f b r i d g i n g t h e d i f f e r e n c e s which s e p a r a t e d t h e Congress and t h e League. As the Prime M i n i s t e r e x p l a i n e d to Mountbatten, the problem i n I n d i a was not so much one of p o l i c y , but one "more...of 97 p e r s o n a l i t y " . In o t h e r words, W a v e l l l a c k e d t h e p e r s o n a l r e s o u r c e s — d i p l o m a c y , charm, p o l i t i c a l acumen, d y n a m i s m — t h a t were n e c e s s a r y i n an i n c r e a s i n g l y d i f f i c u l t s i t u a t i o n . Mountbatten, on th e o t h e r hand, had t h e s e i n abundance. He a l s o had t h e i n v a l u a b l e r e s o u r c e of r o y a l b l o o d and a r e c o r d , d u r i n g h i s t e n u r e as A l l i e d Commander i n S o u t h - e a s t A s i a , of l i b e r a l v iews w i t h r e s p e c t t o the a s p i r a t i o n s of n a t i o n a l i s t movements. : However, i t was n o t m e r e l y a q u e s t i o n o f 87 p e r s o n a l r e s o u r c e s . Mountbatten might p e r s o n a l l y be b e t t e r equipped than W a v e l l t o c a j o l e and coax, but what was needed t o get I n d i a n l e a d e r s t o agree among themselves was a measure o f b u l l y i n g and c o e r c i o n . T h i s was p r o v i d e d by the s e t t i n g o f a f i n a l d ate f o r the t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y . The e f f e c t of t h i s was to s e r v e n o t i c e t o I n d i a n l e a d e r s t h a t t h e B r i t i s h Government was p r e p a r e d t o go beyond j u s t p e r s u a d i n g them to come t o an agreement. I f an agreement c o u l d not be reached by n e g o t i a t i o n and r a t i o n a l debate (as the D e l e g a t i o n had attempted t o d o ) , then t h e Government was ready t o i n d u l g e i n a j u d i c i o u s t w i s t i n g o f arms to o b t a i n agreement, t h r e a t e n i n g i n the l a s t r e s o r t t o impose a s o l u t i o n . I n announcing Mountbatten's appointment as V i c e r o y , the Government warned t h e Congress and t h e League t h a t i f they c o u l d n ot agree t o the method by which the t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y s h o u l d be e f f e c t e d H i s M a j e s t y ' s Government w i l l have t o c o n s i d e r t o whom the powers o f t h e C e n t r a l Government... s h o u l d be handed o v e r , on t h e due d a t e , whether as a whole t o some form of C e n t r a l Government f o r B r i t i s h I n d i a , o r i n such o t h e r way as may seem most r e a s o n a b l e and i n the b e s t i n t e r e s t s of t h e I n d i a n people.98 That t h e Government was aware o f t h e import and i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h i s announcement i s i l l u s t r a t e d i n C r i p p s ' statement t o t h e House o f Commons d u r i n g t h e debate on t h e d e c i s i o n t o r e p l a c e W a v e l l w i t h Mountbatten and t h e i n t e n t i o n t o dise n g a g e B r i t i s h r u l e from I n d i a by June 1948. In d e f e n d i n g the l a t t e r , C r i p p s a l l u d e d t o t h e "run-down 88 of the B r i t i s h element i n t h e I n d i a n s e r v i c e s " i n the c o n t e x t o f t h e d e t e r i o r a t i n g law and o r d e r s i t u a t i o n , and asked r h e t o r i c a l l y what the a l t e r n a t i v e s were. The f i r s t , u n t h i n k a b l y , was t o " s t r e n g t h e n B r i t i s h c o n t r o l . . . o n the b a s i s o f an expanded p e r s o n n e l i n the S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e ' s S e r v i c e s , and a c o n s i d e r a b l e r e i n f o r c e m e n t of B r i t i s h t r o o p s " which as he p o i n t e d out was tantamount t o a d e c i s i o n t o "remain i n I n d i a f o r a t l e a s t 15 t o 20 y e a r s . . . ( i n o r d e r ) t o r e o r g a n i s e t h e S e r v i c e s on a s t a b l e and sound b a s i s . . . " The second a l t e r n a t i v e was t o ...make a f u r t h e r attempt t o persuade t h e I n d i a n s to come t o g e t h e r , w h i l e a t t h e same time warning them t h a t t h e r e was a l i m i t of time d u r i n g which we .were p r e p a r e d t o m a i n t a i n our r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w h i l e a w a i t i n g t h e i r agreement.99 (^y emphasis.) B e f o r e , the Government had mer e l y dangled c a r r o t s i n f r o n t o f I n d i a n l e a d e r s ; now i t dangled c a r r o t s and a s t i c k . That s t i c k , o f c o u r s e , c o u l d have had one of two e f f e c t s : i t c o u l d e i t h e r have " i n f u s e ( d ) ( I n d i a ' s ) . . . l e a d e r s w i t h t h e sense of urgency needed t o get them i n t o r e a l i s t i c n e g o t i a t i o n s " " ' " ^ o r i t c o u l d have caused them t o harden t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e p o s i t i o n s and await a r e s o l u t i o n t h a t was i n t h e i r f a v o u r , o r i f i t was n o t , t h a t they would o b t a i n by the t h r e a t or use of f o r c e . What p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers d i d was t o g i v e t h e V i c e r o y the f l e x i b i l i t y n e c e s s a r y to ch a n n e l t h e c o u r s e of e v e n t s towards t h e former: t h a t i s , n e g o t i a t i o n r a t h e r than i n t r a n s i g e n c e . As Mountbatten n o t e d r e t r o s p e c t i v e l y i n s p e a k i n g of p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers, " I t made 89 a l l t h e d i f f e r e n c e " . The d i f f e r e n c e i t and t h e s e t t i n g o f a f i n a l d ate f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y t o g e t h e r made was to e n a b l e the B r i t i s h Government e v e n t u a l l y to get t h e Congress and t h e League agree t o a method o f t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y , and t o dise n g a g e B r i t i s h r u l e i n r e l a t i v e peace and o r d e r . The D e l e g a t i o n ' s p u r s u i t o f agreement and the r e s u l t i n g l a c k o f room f o r manoeuvre was a t t r i b u t e d t o ( i ) d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power, i . e . r e s o u r c e s and w i l l , i n the f a c e o f the n a t i o n a l i s t movement, ( i i ) B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s and ( i i i ) B r i t i s h p r i d e i n a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y disengagement. What the s e t t i n g o f a f i n a l d a te f o r t h e t r a n s f e r o f a u t h o r i t y and p l e n i p o t e n t i a r y powers d i d was to stem, even recoup to some e x t e n t , t h e l o s s o f B r i t i s h power by the a d d i t i o n o f two v a l u a b l e r e s o u r c e s . They c o u l d n ot o b v i a t e t h e need f o r o b t a i n i n g agreement, but they c o u l d and d i d h e l p t h e V i c e r o y e f f e c t t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y i n a way t h a t was a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h major p a r t i e s . 90 CHAPTER V CONCLUSION The purpose of t h i s t h e s i s was to e x p l a i n how B r i t a i n attempted t o d i s e n g a g e — t h a t i s , t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y o r t h e u l t i m a t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r government from B r i t i s h t o I n d i a n h a n d s — a n d why she d i d so i n a p a r t i c u l a r manner. In o r d e r to do t h i s , i t was s u g g e s t e d , the impact and i n t e r a c t i o n of f i v e f a c t o r s had to be c o n s i d e r e d — B r i t i s h i n t e r e s t s , B r i t i s h o b l i g a t i o n s to the m i n o r i t i e s and t h e p r i n c e s , t h e Government's d e s i r e f o r a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , t h e momentum of c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s m and d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n t h e f a c e of an i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement. Three of t h o s e f a c t o r s , i t was argued, i n t e r a c t e d t o cause the Government t o p u r sue the agreement of t h e Congress and t h e League, t o a r r i v e at a p l a n f o r t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y t h a t was a c c e p t a b l e t o b o t h p a r t i e s . The p u r s u i t of a g r e e -ment and t h e n e g o t i a t i o n o f such a p l a n , i t was f u r t h e r argued, had th e e f f e c t of r e s t r i c t i n g t h e Government's room f o r manoeuvre i n d e a l i n g w i t h I n d i a n l e a d e r s . Thus, i t has been shown, i n the f i r s t p l a c e , how the p u r s u i t of agreement a f f e c t e d what the C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n c o u l d o r c o u l d not do w i t h r e s p e c t t o f o u r key i s s u e a r e a s : ( i ) two i s s u e s of economic i n t e r e s t , namely, t h e d i s p o s a l of I n d i a ' s accumulated s t e r l i n g b a l a n c e s and o b t a i n i n g g u a r a n t e e s f o r B r i t i s h b u s i n e s s ; 91 ( i l ) an i s s u e o f s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t , namely, s e c u r i n g c e r t a i n d e f e n c e p r o v i s i o n s from I n d i a n l e a d e r s ; ( i i i ) t h e i s s u e of d i s c h a r g i n g B r i t a i n ' s o b l i g a t i o n s to t h e m i n o r i t i e s and t h e p r i n c e s ; and ( i v ) t h e c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s s u e s . I n t h e second p l a c e , i t was shown why the p u r s u i t o f agreement was n e c e s s a r y , how d e c l i n i n g B r i t i s h power i n t h e f a c e of t h e i n c r e a s i n g l y p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement, a g e n e r a l a p p r e c i a t i o n of B r i t a i n ' s - s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s , and i m p e r i a l p r i d e which was m a n i f e s t e d i n th e d e s i r e f o r a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y , combined t o make Congress and League a c q u i e s c e n c e e s s e n t i a l i n t h e disengagement p r o c e s s . What i s the i m p l i c a t i o n i n t h i s f o r an e x p l a n a t i o n of B r i t i s h disengagement from I n d i a and f o r B r i t i s h disengagements g e n e r a l l y ? As f a r as B r i t i s h disengagement from I n d i a i s c oncerned the i m p l i c a t i o n i s t h a t , as s u g g e s t e d , at the b e g i n n i n g , a p e s s i m i s t i c r e c o n s i d e r a t i o n of t h e room f o r manoeuvre of t h e B r i t i s h Government from the end of t h e war onwards i s p r o b a b l y j u s t i f i e d . Mansergh has argued t h a t i f t h i s l a c k of m a n o e u v r a b i l i t y were p a r t i c u l a r l y t r u e f o r t h e B r i t i s h , i t was a l s o i n l a r g e measure t r u e f o r t h e Congress and the League. He has, f u r t h e r m o r e , argued t h a t t h i s was and i s i n h e r e n t i n a disengagement which f e a t u r e s a t r i a n g u l a r r e l a t i o n s h i p i n v o l v i n g the c o l o n i a l government, a m a j o r i t y community and a m i n o r i t y community. Though t h i s t h e s i s has n o t d e a l t w i t h the Congrss and League i n any d e t a i l t h e r e i s r e a s o n t o b e l i e v e t h a t t h e i r room f o r manoeuvre was 92 i n f a c t c i r c u m s c r i b e d . We have seen, i n d i s c u s s i n g t h e i s s u e of d e f ence p r o v i s i o n s , t h a t i n t h e case of t h e Congress the p r e s e n c e of a group of " e x t r e m i s t s " was p r o b a b l y a c o n s t r a i n t on what the p a r t y c o u l d o r c o u l d n o t a c c e p t i n t h e t r a n s f e r of a u t h o r i t y . There i s no such t a n g i b l e i n d i c a t i o n i n t h e c a s e o f t h e Muslim League, but P h i l i p s , i n q u e s t i o n i n g why J i n n a h e v e n t u a l l y withdrew the League's a c c e p t a n c e of t h e C a b i n e t D e l e g a t i o n ' s p l a n , s u g g e s t s t h a t "perhaps t h e League welcomed t h e o p p o r t u n i t y to withdraw i t s a c c e p t a n c e o f t h e p l a n because i t had come t o r e a l i s e t h a t i t no l o n g e r had complete c o n t r o l o f t h e movement; the working committee might be w i l l i n g to 1 0 : a c c e p t l e s s than P a k i s t a n , but p o s s i b l y t h e rank and f i l e were n o t . " Why would the l a c k of manoeuvre be i n h e r e n t though? I t would be i n h e r e n t because o f t h e c o n f i g u r a t i o n of t h e s i t u a t i o n : t h e B r i t i s h Government p o s s e s s i n g a u t h o r i t y o r the u l t i m a t e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r government, but d w i n d l i n g power; t h e Congress and the League i n c r e a s i n g l y p o s s e s s i n g e f f e c t i v e power, but n o t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . In such a s i t u a t i o n , t h e B r i t i s h who had r e s p o n s i b i l i t y w i t h o u t e f f e c t i v e power would be p r e d i s p o s e d t o seek agreement, t o p e r s u a d e , r e c o n c i l e , d e b a t e , r e a s o n and n e g o t i a t e , and t h e Congress and League who had e f f e c t i v e power w i t h o u t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y would be p r e d i s p o s e d to r e s o r t t o i n t r a n s i g e n c e and an u n w i l l i n g n e s s to compromise. However, i t s h o u l d be n o t e d t h a t w h i l e t h e l a c k of room f o r manoeuvre was t o some e x t e n t i n h e r e n t i n t h e s i t u a t i o n , t h i s s h o u l d not cause one t o t a k e an o v e r l y d e t e r m i n i s t i c view of t h e disengagement p r o c e s s . F o r 93 i n s t a n c e , t h a t t h e i n c r e a s i n g l a c k of B r i t i s h power i n the c o n t e x t of a more and more p o w e r f u l and p o l a r i s e d n a t i o n a l i s t movement p r e d i s p o s e d t h e B r i t i s h Government t o o b t a i n a g r e e m e n t — w h i c h l i m i t e d i t s room f o r m a n o e u v r e — i s t r u e ; b u t , what made t h e Government determined to o b t a i n agreement was t h e f a c t o f c e r t a i n B r i t i s h o b j e c t i v e s — t o p r o t e c t B r i t i s h s t r a t e g i c i n t e r e s t s and to t r a n s f e r a u t h o r i t y i n a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y manner. I f t h e Government had not taken I n d i a ' s s t r a t e g i c importance i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n and i f i t had been w i l l i n g to f o r s a k e c o n s i d e r a t i o n s of i m p e r i a l p r i d e w i t h r e s p e c t to a p e a c e f u l and o r d e r l y disengagement, i t c o u l d m e r e l y have withdrawn l e a v i n g I n d i a n s to work out t h e i r f u t u r e as b e s t o r as worst they may. But t h a t , as we have seen, was t r a n s p a r e n t l y n o t the c a s e : t h e v a l u e o f I n d i a s t r a t e g i c a l l y was v e r y much a c o n s i d e r a t i o n , and i n what c i r c u m s t a n c e s B r i t a i n d isengaged from I n d i a was, i f not of w i d e s p read p u b l i c c o n c e r n , of c o n c e r n to t h e men who made t h e d e c i s i o n s — A t t l e e , C r i p p s , P e t h i c k - L a w r e n c e , A l e x a n d e r , B e v i n , M o r r i s o n , D a l t o n , W a v e l l , s e n i o r o f f i c i a l s i n London and New D e l h i — and t o t h o s e who i n f l u e n c e d p u b l i c debate and o p i n i o n , such as C h u r c h i l l , H a l i f a x , Hoare and Simon among o t h e r s . What t h e n , f i n a l l y , i s t h e i m p l i c a t i o n o f a l l t h i s f o r B r i t i s h and o t h e r c o l o n i a l disengagements i n g e n e r a l ? F i r s t o f a l l , i t i s t h a t i n c o n s i d e r i n g t h e r o l e o f t h e d e p a r t i n g c o l o n i a l g o v e r n -ment, a number o f f a c t o r s appear t o be s i g n i f i c a n t s u ch a s : i m p e r i a l i n t e r e s t s , i m p e r i a l o b l i g a t i o n s , i m p e r i a l p r e s t i g e , c o n s t i t u t i o n a l i s m , 94 and t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p — o f r e l a t i v e s t r e n g t h or w e a k n e s s — o f t h e c o l o n i a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n to t h e n a t i o n a l i s t movement. S e c o n d l y , i t i s t h a t i n any disengagement, but p a r t i c u l a r l y one i n which t h e c o l o n i a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n i n c r e a s i n g l y l a c k e d power i n th e f a c e o f a n a t i o n a l i s t movement t h a t was b o t h p o w e r f u l and d i v i d e d w i t h i n i t s e l f , t h e room f o r manoeuvre of a l l p a r t i e s — a n d e s p e c i a l l y of t h e c o l o n i a l government—was l i m i t e d . T h i s was p a r t l y i n h e r e n t i n the c o n f i g u r a t i o n o f the s i t u a t i o n and p a r t l y i n the o b j e c t i v e s of t h e p a r t i e s concerned. Thus, a more p e s s i m i s t i c p o i n t o f view than i s u s u a l l y a d m i t t e d of what accommodations and p o l i t i c a l arrangements the d e p a r t i n g i m p e r i a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n s and n a t i o n a l i s t movements c o u l d o r c o u l d not make i n the p r o c e s s of t r a n s f e r r i n g a u t h o r i t y may be w a r r a n t e d . 95 FOOTNOTES 1. D. K. F i e l d h o u s e , C o l o n i a l Empires (London: W e i d e n f e l d and N i c h o l s o n , 1966), p. 395. 2. N. Mansergh, " B r i t a i n Leaves I n d i a , " i n Tony Smith (ed.) , The End of t h e European C o l o n i a l Empire ( T o r o n t o : D. C. Heath and Co., 1975), pp. 23-30. 3. F. H u t c h i n s , " I n d i a Leaves B r i t a i n , " i n Smith ( e d . ) , The End of  t h e European C o l o n i a l Empire, pp. 31-41. 4. F i e l d h o u s e , C o l o n i a l E m p i r e s , p. 396. 5. G. Freund, "Disengagement" i n D. S i l l s ( e d . ) , I n t e r n a t i o n a l  E n c y c l o p e d i a of t h e S o c i a l S c i e n c e s , V o l . IV (U.S.A.: The M a c m i l l a n Co. and The F r e e P r e s s , 1968), p . 211. 6. I b i d . , p. 211. 7. Tony Smith, " I n t r o d u c t i o n " i n Smith ( e d . ) , The End of t h e European  C o l o n i a l Empire, p. XVII. 8. I b i d . , p. XVII. 9. N. Mansergh and P. Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power i n I n d i a  1942-1947, Volumes 1-7 (London: Her M a j e s t y ' s S t a t i o n e r y O f f i c e , 1970- ) . 10. D. A. Low, L i o n Rampant, (London: Frank Cass, 1973), p. 9 11. C. Muhammad A l i , The Emergence of P a k i s t a n (New York: Columbia U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1967), p. 96. 12. H. V. Hodson, The Gre a t D i v i d e (London: H u t c h i n s o n , 1969), p. 203. 13. I b i d . , p. 7. 14. I b i d . , p. 202. 15. Quoted i n Smith ( e d . ) , The End p f European C o l o n i a l Empire, p. 43. 16. R u d o l f von A l b e r t i n i , D e c o l o n i s a t i o n (Garden C i t y , New Y o r k : Doubleday, 1971), p. 21. 17. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 3. 96 18. C. Muhammad A l i , The Emergence of P a k i s t a n , p. 118. 19. Quoted i n Smith (ed.) , The End of t h e European C o l o n i a l  Empire, p. 59. 20. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 59. 21. N. Mansergh, "Some R e f l e c t i o n s on t h e T r a n s f e r o f Power i n P l u r a l S o c i e t i e s , " i n C. H. P h i l i p s and M. D. Wainwright ( e d s . ) , The P a r t i t i o n o f I n d i a (London: George A l l e n and Unwin, 1970), p. 44. 22. I b i d . , p. 44. 23. Low, L i o n Rampant, pp. 169-170. 24. I b i d . , p. 169. 25. See M. Gwyer and A. A p p a d o r a i ( e d s . ) , Speeches and Documents on  the I n d i a n C o n s t i t u t i o n 1921-1947. (London: O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1957). 26. Quoted i n Smith ( e d . ) , The End of t h e European C o l o n i a l Empire, p. x x i . 27. M. S i n k i n , " I mpressions 1938-1947," P h i l i p s and Wainwright ( e d s . ) , The P a r t i t i o n o f I n d i a , p. 548. 28. C. H. P h i l i p s , " I n t r o d u c t i o n " i n P h i l i p s and Wainwright ( e d s . ) , The P a r t i t i o n o f I n d i a , p. 18. 29. N. Mansergh, "Some R e f l e c t i o n s , " p. 50. 30. N. Mansergh, The P r e l u d e t o P a r t i t i o n : Concepts and Aims i n  I r e l a n d and I n d i a (Cambridge: Cambridge U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1978), p. 59. 31. Hodson, The Gre a t D i v i d e , p. x. 32. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 6, No. 507, pp. 1124-1125. 33. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 7, No. 303, pp. 582-594. 34. I b i d . , No. 550, pp. 954-955. 97 35. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 116. 36. P. S. Gupta, I m p e r i a l i s m and t h e B r i t i s h Labour Movement - 1914-1964 (London: M a c m i l l a n , 1975), p. 283. 37. Mansergh and Moon (eds.) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 6, No. 468, pp. 1058-1059. 38. I b i d . , No. 534, pp. 1202-1207. 39. I b i d . , No. 468, p. 1059. 40. I b i d . , No. 409, p. 918. 41. I b i d . , No. 465, p. 1050. 42. I b i d . , No. 508, p. 1127. 43. I b i d . , No. 468. p. 1059. 44. I b i d . , No. 534, p. 1033. 45. Gupta, I m p e r i a l i s m and t h e B r i t i s h Labour Movement 1914-1964, p. 284. 46. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 6, No. 491, p. 1104. 47. I b i d . , No. 529, p. 1198. 48 I b i d . , No. 521, pp. 1166-1173. 49. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 7, No. 283, p. 554. 50. I b i d . , No. 46, p. 116. 51. I b i d . , No. 285, p. 558. 52. I b i d . , No. 378, p. 691. 53. See, f o r i n s t a n c e , P. Moon ( e d . ) , W a v e l l : the V i c e r o y ' s J o u r n a l (London: Oxfo r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1973), Appendix V I I I , p. 496. 54. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 7, No. 48, p. 123. 55. Quoted i n Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 96. 98 56. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 7, No. 284, p. 556. 57. I b i d . , No. 285, pp. 557-558. 58. I b i d . , No. 340, p. 639. 59. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 6, No. 515, pp. 1139-1152. 60. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s e r o f Power, V o l . 7, No. 100 p. 247. 61. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 6, No. 491, p. 1104. 62. I b i d . , No. 529, p. 1197. 63. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 7, No. 116, p. 283. 64. I b i d . , No. 116, p. 283. 65. I b i d . , No. 128, p. 313. 66. I b i d . , No. 320. p. 616. 67. I b i d . , No. 312 and 313, pp. 605-607 and pp. 608-609. 68. I b i d . , No. 402, p. 727. .69. I b i d . , No. 402, p. 726. 70. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p . 53. 71. Gupta, I m p e r i a l i s m and t h e B r i t i s h Labour Movement 1914-1964, p. 258. 72. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 7, Appendix, p. 1094. 73. I b i d . , No. 203, p. 440. 74. I b i d . , No. 340, p. 640. 75. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r of Power, V o l . 6, No. 504, p. 1122. 99 76. Quoted i n Hodson, The Gre a t D i v i d e , p. 85. 77. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 96. 78. Quoted i n Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 79. 79. Hodson, The Great D i v i d 80. Mansergh and Moon (eds. 81. 82. No. 1, p. 2. Mansergh and Moon No. 490, p. 1102. p. 141. The T r a n s f e r of Power The T r a n s f e r of Power The T r a n s f e r of Power No. 22, p. 54. 83. I b i d . , No. 144, p. 342. 84. I b i d . , No. 303, p. 591. 85. I b i d . , No. 442, pp. 787-795. 86. I b i d . , No. 407, p. 733. 87. I b i d . , No. 557, p. 965. 88. I b i d . , No. 528, p. 932. 89. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 6, No. 521, p. 1168. 90. I b i d . , No. 521, p. 1170. 91. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 7, No. 2 , p . 3. 92. Mansergh and Moon ( e d s . ) , The T r a n s f e r o f Power, V o l . 1, 93. Low, L i o n Rampant, p. 25. 94. See Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , Appendix I , pp. 545-547. 95. Quoted i n Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 199. 100 96. See, f o r example, Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 201; L. C o l l i n s and D. L a p i e r r e , Freedom a t M i d n i g h t (New York: Simon and S c h u s t e r , 1975), p. 19; J . T e r r a i n e , The L i f e and Times of  L o r d L o u i s Mountbatten (London: H u t c h i n s o n , 1969), p. 148. 97. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 192. 98. Quoted i n Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 199. 99. Hodson, The Great D i v i d e , p. 202. 100. T e r r a i n e , The L i f e and Times of L o r d L o u i s Mountbatten, p. 19. 101. I b i d . , p. 148. 102. P h i l i p s , " I n t r o d u c t i o n , " i n P h i l i p s and Wainwright ( e d s . ) , The P a r t i t i o n o f I n d i a , p. 38. 101 BIBLIOGRAPHY A l b e r t i n i , R u d o l f von. D e c o l o n i s a t i o n . Garden C i t y , New Y o r k : Doubleday, 1971. A l i , C. Muhammad. The Emergence o f P a k i s t a n . New Y ork: Columbia U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1967. C o l l i n s , L. and L a p i e r r e , D. Freedom At M i d n i g h t . New Y ork: Simon and S c h u s t e r , 1975. F i e l d h o u s e , D. K. C o l o n i a l Empires. London: W e i d e n f e l d and N i c h o l s o n , 1966. Freund, G. "Disengagement" i n D. S i l l s ( e d . ) , I n t e r n a t i o n a l  E n c y c l o p e d i a o f t h e S o c i a l S c i e n c e s . 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