Freedom and Partition of India

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Discuss about the changes in Britain

The World War changed the balance of power in the world. Britain's economic and military power had shattered. There was a change of government in Britain. The Conservatives were replaced by the Labour Party, many of them supported the Congress demands. The British soldiers weary of the war.

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Brief introduction about Cabinet Mission and Clauses of the Cabinet Mission Plan

Clement Attlee, the new British Prime Minister, declared in the House of Commons that a Cabinet Mission would be sent to India to facilitate the process of transfer of power. The Cabinet Mission proposed a two-tier federal plan which was expected to maintain national unity while conceding the largest measure of regional autonomy.

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Discuss about revolts in the administrative agencies

The British government could not any longer rely on Indians for its civil administration or on the armed forces for suppression of the National Movement. The INA had shown that patriotic ideas had entered the ranks of the Indian army. There was a revolt of the Indian Naval ratings at Mumbai. There were strikes in the Royal Indian Air Force, etc.

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Describe about the federal union clause of Cabinet Mission Plan

There was to be federal union of the British Provinces and the Princely States. The Union Government should deal with the following subjects: i) Foreign Affairs ii) Defence and iii) Communication. The Union government should have the power to raise the finances required for the above mentioned subjects.

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Discuss about the Labour Unrest

There was a large-scale unrest all over the country.
i) Strike of postal & telegraph workers (July 1946).
ii) Railway workers' strike (August 1946).
iii) Peasant movements acquired fresh thrust after 1945, etc.

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Powers of the Union and Provincial autonomy of Cabinet Mission

The Union would have its own executive and legislature composed of members of elected by all Provinces.
The Provinces would enjoy full autonomy for all subjects other than the Union subjects.

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Brief introduction about partition of India

The Indian independence struggle had become more extensive during the period of the Second World War. The demand for the independence of India was gaining strength. The British rulers realized that it was necessary to take serious cognizance of this situation. Accordingly, the British Government began preparing various plans for granting independence to India.

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Discuss about the grouping of the provinces clause of Cabinet Mission Plan

The British Provinces were divided into groups.
Group A - Six Hindu Majority Provinces.
Group B - Three Muslim Majority Provinces
Group C - Bengal and Assam.
A province could leave any group and join another by a majority of votes.

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Discuss about the formation of a constituent assembly

A Constituent Assembly would be set up to frame the new Constitution of the Indian Union. The members of the Constituent Assembly would be elected by the Provincial Legislative Assemblies.

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Discuss about the representation of minorities clause of cabinet mission plan

As per the Cabinet Mission Plan, separate representation was to be given to Muslims and Sikhs.

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Discuss about the formation of an interim government clause of cabinet mission plan

An interim government would be formed at the Centre with 14 members. For the time being, the Viceroy would reconstitute his Executive Council consisting of representatives of all communities.

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Freedom to join the commonwealth clause of Cabinet Mission Plan

According to the Cabinet Mission Plan, India would be free to remain within the British Commonwealth or secede from it.

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Discuss about the transfer of power clause of cabinet mission plan

As per the Cabinet Mission Plan, it would be necessary to work out a treaty between the Constituent Assembly and the United Kingdom for matters arising out of the transfer of power.

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Discuss about the rejection of the demand for Pakistan by the Cabinet Mission Plan

Muslim League's demand for Pakistan was rejected by the Cabinet Mission for the following reasons:
i) The establishment of Pakistan would not solve the problem of communal minorities.
ii) There was no justification for including within Pakistan the non-Muslim districts.
iii) The Princely States would find it difficult to decide which Union to join.
iv) The armed forces, transportation, telegraph and other services were built for the whole country and partition would just increase problems.

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Reaction of Congress and Muslim League to the Cabinet Mission Plan

The Congress accepted the proposals with reservations. It accepted only that part of the scheme which dealt with the Constitution making. The Muslim League accepted it in its entirety on June 6, 1946 because it felt that the grouping of Muslim majority provinces in a way meant the formation of Pakistan.

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Conflict between the Congress and the Muslim League

In the election of July 1946, the Congress won with an overwhelming majority. The League feared it would be  out-voted in the Constituent Assembly. When Nehru and his colleagues swore in as members of the Assembly, the League kept itself out from it. In fact September 2 was observed as 'a day of mourning' by the Muslims. When the government managed to negotiate with Jinnah, the League refused to work under Nehru's leadership. The Assembly met on December 9, 1946 without the participation of the League.