Free AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Spring 2021
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Course: Genesis of Pakistan Movement (538)
Semester: Spring, 2021
Q.l Evaluate the role of Sir Syed Ahmed Khan in the development of Muslim nationalism in Indian Sub-Continent and why did he oppose the Indian National Congress? Discuss.
Belonging to a family which had roots in the old Muslim nobility, Sir Syed’s prolific authorship on the Muslim condition in India (during British rule) and his activism in the field of education, helped formulate nationalist ideas in the Muslims of the region.
These ideas went on to impact and influence a plethora of Muslim intellectuals, scholars, politicians, poets, writers and journalists who then helped evolve Syed’s concept of Muslim nationalism into becoming the ideological doctrine and soul of the very idea of Pakistan.
Syed’s influence also rang loudly in the early formation of Pakistan nationalism.
However, his influence in this context began to recede from the mid-1970s when certain drastic internal, as well as external economic events; and a calamitous war with India in 1971, severely polarised the Pakistan society.
With the absence of an established form of democracy, this polarisation began to be expressed through the airing of radical alternatives such as neo-Pan-Islamism.
The Pan-Islamic alternative managed to elicit a popular response from a new generation of urban bourgeoisie and petty-bourgeoisie. Its proliferation was also bankrolled by oil-rich Arab monarchies which had always conceived modernist Muslim nationalism as an opponent.
As a reaction, the Pakistan state changed tact and tried to retain the wavering status quo by rapidly co-opting various aspects of pan-Islamism; even to the extent of sacrificing many of the state’s original nationalist notions.
The gradual erosion of the original nationalist narrative created wide open spaces. These spaces were rapidly occupied, and then dominated by ideas which had been initially rejected by the Pakistani state and nationalist intelligentsia.
Here is from where Sir Syed’s presence begins to evaporate from the pages of textbooks and the nationalist narrative.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Spring 2021
Muslim nationalism: A theological beginning
Muslim nationalism in South Asia did not exist till the end of Muslim rule here. The decline of the Mughal Empire, rise of British Colonialism, and the political reassertion of Hindus in India, provided the materials with which Muslim nationalism would first begin to shape itself.
Dr. Mubarak Ali has insightfully noted one very important (but often ignored) factor which helped create a sense of nationhood among sections of Muslims in India: i.e. the manner in which Urdu began to replace Persian as the preferred language of Muslims in India.
As Muslim rule receded, immigrants from Persia and Central Asia stopped travelling and settling in India because now there were little or no opportunities left for them to bag important posts in the courts of Muslim regimes.
The importance and frequency of Persian ebbed, gradually replaced by Urdu – a language which began to form in India from the 14th century CE.
Largely spoken by local Muslims (most of whom were converts); by the early 19th century, Urdu had already begun to make its way into the homes of the Muslim elite as well. This helped the local Muslims to climb their way up the social ladder and begin to fill posts and positions which were once the exclusive domain of Persian and Central Asian immigrants.
This initiated the early formation of a new Muslim grouping, mostly made-up of local Muslims who were now enjoying social mobility.
But all this was happening when the Muslim empire was rapidly receding and the British were enhancing their presence in India. This also facilitated the process which saw the Hindus reasserting themselves socially and politically after remaining subdued for hundreds of years.
With no powerful and overwhelming Muslim monarch or elite now shielding the interests of the Muslims in the region, the emerging community of local Muslims became fearful of the fact that its newly-found enhanced status might be swept aside by the expansion of British rule and Hindu reassertion.
Though many local Muslims had managed to make their way up the social ladder, the ladder now led to a place which did not have a powerful Muslim ruler. Thus, the new community was politically weak. It felt vulnerable and many of its members began accusing the later-day Mughals of squandering an empire due to their decadence.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1 Code 538 Spring 2021
Even some famous Muslim rulers of yore were criticised for putting too much faith in pragmatic politics and in inclusive policies, and not doing enough to use their powers to prompt wide-scale conversions.
During the heights of Muslim rule in India, the ulema had only been allowed to play a nominal role in the workings of the state. But as this rule receded, the ulema took it upon themselves to air the ambitions and fears of the new Muslim community.
The ulema insisted on explaining the decline of the Mughal Empire as a symptom of the deterioration of ‘true Islam’ in the region — due to the inclusive policies of the Mughals which strengthen the Hindus and extended patronage to Sufi saints and orders, and which, in turn, encouraged ‘alien ideas’ to seep into the beliefs and rituals of the region’s Muslims.
Such a disposition saw a number of ulema and clerics from the emerging Muslim community become drawn towards a radical puritan movement which had mushroomed 2000 miles away in Arabia (present-day Saudi Arabia) in the 18th century.
It was led by one Muhammad Al-Wahhab, a celebrant in the Nejd area of central Arabia who preached the expulsion and rejection of various practices and rituals from Islam which he claimed were distortions and heretical innovations.
A Muslim scholar from the Bengal in India, Haji Shariatullah, who was the son of an impoverished farmer, became smitten by Wahhab’s movement when he travelled to and stayed in Arabia in 1799.
On his return to India, he was extremely dismissive of the conduct of the last remnants of the Mughal Empire and conjectured that the Muslims of India had been declining as a community mainly due to the fact that they were practicing an inaccurate strain of Islam, which was adulterated by rituals borrowed from Hinduism.
Shariatullah was equally harsh on rituals he believed were a concoction of the centuries-old fusion of Sufism and Hinduism in the subcontinent.
Another figure in this regard was Syed Ahmad Barelvi who, though, an ardent follower of Sufism, believed that Sufism in India, too, was in need of reform, and that this could only be achieved by reintroducing the importance of following Sharia laws, something which one did not expect from the historically heterogeneous Sufi orders in India.
Sufism in the region had, in fact, largely opposed religious orthodoxy and was comfortable with the rituals and beliefs which had grown around it, especially among the local Muslims.
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Syed Ahmad theorised that the Muslim condition was in decline because the beliefs of the common Muslims of India repulsed the idea of gaining political power through force. He suggested that this could only be achieved through the practice of the Islamic concept of holy war which was missing in the make-up of Islam in the subcontinent.
Syed Ahmad gathered a following from among common Muslims and set up a movement in the present-day Pakistan province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). The area at the time was under the rule of the Sikhs who had risen to power at the end of the Aurangzeb regime.
Barelvi had gathered over 1000 followers and most of them belonged to various Pakhtun tribes. He implored them to shun their tribal customs and strive to fight a holy war against the ‘infidels’ (Sikhs and British) in the area and help him set up a state run on Sharia laws.
After offering stiff resistance to the Sikhs, Barelvi managed to establish a strong base in the region. He began to impose laws grounded in his idea of the Sharia. The move backfired when leaders of the tribes accused him of undermining their established tribal customs.
Many of these tribes which had initially helped him fight a guerrilla war against the Sikhs, rose up against him and pushed his movement deep into the rocky hills near Charsaada. In the town of Balakot, Syed Ahmad was surrounded by the Sikh army and killed in 1831.
The mutiny — remembered as a War of Liberation in present-day India and Pakistan — involved an uprising within sections of Hindus and Muslims in the British Army; but most of its civilian leaders were Muslims from the local Muslim community, and remnants of the old Muslim elite.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Spring 2021
After the bloody commotion was brought under control, the last vestiges of Mughal rule were eradicated.
According to the British — whose power grew manifold after the failure of the rebellion — it were the Muslims who had played the more active role in the rebellion. Consequently, influential British authors such as Sir William Muir began fostering the myth of the Muslim with a sword in one hand and the Qu’ran in the other.
It is interesting to note that in their writings on India before the 1857 upheaval, the British had largely conceived India to be a racial whole.
But things in this respect began to change drastically when the British (after 1857) began to investigate the social, political and cultural dynamics of the religious differences between the Muslims and the Hindus in the region, and then utilised their findings to exert more control over both the communities.
British authors were squarely criticised by Muslim scholars in India for looking at Islamic history from a Christian point of view and presenting the legacy of Islam as something which was destructive and retrogressive.
One of the first Muslim scholars to offer a detailed rebuttal did not come from the ulema circle and neither was he a cleric. He belonged to a family which had roots in the old Muslim nobility and elite. His name was Sir Syed Ahmad Khan.
It is with him that the second (and more dominant) dimension of Muslim nationalism emerges in India.
And it is this dimension which evolved into becoming a movement that strived to carve out a separate Muslim-majority country in the subcontinent, and then further evolve to become Pakistani nationalism.
During the 1857 mutiny, Sir Syed had already established himself as a member of the scholarly Muslim gentry who had studied Sufism, mathematics, astronomy, and the works of traditional Islamic scholars.
After the Mutiny was crushed and literature, which cast a critical eye on Muslim history began to emerge, Khan put forward a detailed proposal which he hoped would not only contest the perceptions of Islam being formulated by the British, but also help the region’s Muslim community to reassess their beliefs, character and status according to the changes taking shape around it.
Khan reminded the British that Islam was inherently a progressive and modern religion which had inspired the creation of some of the world’s biggest empires, which in turn had encouraged the study of philosophy and the sciences during a period in which Europe was lurking aimlessly in the ‘Dark Ages.’
Sir Syed also asserted that the scientific and military prowess of the West was originally inspired and informed by the scholarly endeavors of medieval Muslim scientists and philosophers and that the Muslims had been left behind because this aspect of Islam stopped being exercised by them.
Interestingly, this thesis first put forward by the likes of Syed Ahmad Khan in the 19th century, still prevails within large sections of Muslims around the world today.
Sir Syed then turned his attention towards his own community. He was vehemently opposed to the militancy of men like Shariatullah and Syed Ahmad Barelvi, and he was also critical of the 1857 uprising, suggesting that such endeavors did more harm to Islam and the Muslims.
However, he refused to agree with the assessment of the British that it were the Muslims alone who instigated the 1857 mutiny. He wrote that the mutiny had been triggered by reckless British actions based on their ill-informed conceptions about Indian society.
According to noted historian, Ayesha Jalal, the concept of both Muslim and Hindu nationalism was largely the result of British social engineering which they began as a project after the 1857 Mutiny.
The project began when the British introduced the whole idea of conducting a census. A lot of emphasis was stressed upon the individual’s faith; and the results of the census were then segmented more on the bases of religion than on economic or social status.
The outcome was the rather abstract formation of communities based on faith, constructed through an overwhelmingly suggestive census, undertaken, not only to comprehend the complex nature of Indian society, but to also devise a structural way to better control it.
Sir Syed was quick to grasp this, and also the fact that the Hindu majority was in a better position to shape itself into a holistic community because of its size and better relations with the British after the 1857 Mutiny.
Sir Syed’s thesis correctly theorised that the Muslims needed to express themselves as a holistic community too, especially one which was positively responsive to the changes the British were implementing in the social, judicial and political spheres of India.
This constituted a break from the early dimensions of Muslim nationalism conjectured by the likes of Shariatullah and Syed Khan who had tried to express the idea of forming a Muslim community in India as a purely religious endeavor. The endeavor was to construct a homogenous Muslim whole in India which followed a standardised pattern of Muslim rituals and beliefs.
Nevertheless, this scheme was largely a failure because within the Muslim communities of the region were stark sectarian, sub-sectarian, class, ethnic and cultural divisions. And as was seen during Syed Ahmad Barelvi’s uprising in KP, once he began to implement his standardised ideas of the Sharia, he faced a fateful rebellion by his erstwhile supporters who accused him of trying to usurp their tribal influence and customs.
Sir Syed was conscious of these divisions and decided to address it by localising the European concept of nationalism.
So when the British began to club together economically, ethnically and culturally diverse groups into abstract Muslim, Hindu and Sikh communities, reformers from within these communities leveraged the idea of European nationalism to overcome the contradictions inherent in the whole idea of community-formation by the British.
But this was easier said than done. Nationalism was a modern European idea which required a particular way of understanding history, society and politics for a people to come together as a nation.
This idea was absent in India before the arrival of the British. As Muslim rule began to ebb, men such as Shariatullah and Syed Khan attempted to club the Muslims of India as a community which shared theological commonalities with Muslim communities elsewhere in the world, and especially those present in Arabia. During the last days of Muslim rule, clerics in Indian mosques had begun to replace the names of Mughal kings in their sermons (khutba) with those of the rulers of the Ottoman Empire, as if to suggest that the interests of the Muslims of India were inherently rooted outside India.
AIOU Solved Assignment 2 Code 538 Spring 2021
Indeed, the ulema had begun to conceive the Muslims of India as a unified whole, but this whole was not explained as a nation in the modern context, but as part of a larger Muslim ummah.
Sir Syed saw a problem in this approach. He decried that such an approach went against the changing tides of history.
He was perturbed by three main attitudinal negatives which he believed had crept into the psyche of the Muslims and were stemming their intellectual growth, and, consequently, causing their economic and political decline.
Khan wrote that after reaching the heights of imperial power, Muslims had become decadent and lazy. When this led to them losing political power, they became overtly nostalgic about past glories which, in turn, solidified their inferiority complex (prompted by their current apathetical state in the face of the rise of the West). This caused a hardening of views in them against modernity and change and the emergence of a dogmatic attitude.
To Syed, the Muslims of India stood still, unmoving, and, in fact, refusing to move because they believed a great conspiracy had been hatched against them. He suggested that the Muslims (of India) had lost political power because ‘they had lost their ability to rule.’
He castigated the ulema for forcing the Muslims to reject science (because it was ‘Western’); he warned that such a view towards the sciences will keep Muslims buried under the weight of superstition on the one hand, and dogma on the other.
When the ulema responded by accusing him of creating divisions in a community which they were trying to unite, he wrote that since he was a reformist, his job was not to unite but to jolt members of his community by questioning established (but corrosive) social, intellectual and political norms.
He asked the ulema: The Greeks learned from the Egyptians; the Muslims from the Greeks; the Europeans from the Muslims … so what calamity will befall the Muslims if they learned from the British?
But, of course, he was using an evolutionary model of history to understand how knowledge flows between civilizations; whereas to most of his orthodox critics, history was a set of traditions passed on by one Muslim scholar to another and disseminated among the masses by the ulema and the clerics.
Syed’s initial work was largely analytical and pedagogic. He did not have the kind of platform which his detractors had (i.e. the mosques and madrassas). But this did not seem to worry him. He believed that the changing reality (under the British) will impact the Muslims in such a manner that many of them would eventually come to understand his point of view.
He wanted them to overcome their cultural and theological inertias and embrace what was on offer: Modern education.
There was to be no meeting point between the ulema and him, simply because both where viewing the Muslim condition in India from different lenses.
However, Syed did try to meet them by dissecting their theological critiques of modernity. He wrote that a man’s spiritual and moral life cannot improve without the flourishing of his material life.
Writing in a journal which he launched in 1870, he reminded his critics that not only were Muslims once enthusiastic patrons of science (between the 9th and 13th centuries), but the Qu’ran too, urged its readers to ‘research the universe’ which was one of God’s greatest creations.
To further his argument that Islam was inherently a progressive religion, and, in essence, timeless (in the sense that it was easily adaptable to ever-changing zeitgeists), Khan authored a meticulously researched and detailed commentary on the Qu’ran.
Tafslr Qu’ran was published in 1880 and for its time, was a rather original and even bold interpretation of Islam’s holiest book because it tried to construe the book’s contents in the light of the 19th century.
Khan insisted that decrees passed by ancient ulema were time-bound and could not be imposed in a much-changed scenario of what was taking place here and now. He wrote that the Muslims were in need of a ‘new theology of Islam’ which was rational and rejected all doctrinal notions that were in disagreement with common sense, reason and with the essence of the Qu’ran.
In 1879 one of Sir Syed’s staunchest supporters, the poet and intellectual, Altaf Hussain Hali, wrote a long poem which passionately forwarded Syed’s ideas of reform and modernity. But the most protuberant aspect of the poem was when Hali declared the Muslims of India as a separate cultural entity, distinct from other communities in India, especially compared to the Hindu majority.
But Hali explained that this distinction was not based on any hostility towards the non Muslims of the region; but on the notion (which Hali believed was a fact) that the Muslims of India were descendants of foreigners who came and settled here during Muslim rule.
By the late 19th century, many local Muslims had begun to claim foreign ancestry (Persian, Central Asian and Arabian) mainly because with the erosion of Muslim rule in India, Muslim empires still existed elsewhere in the Middle East. The claim of having foreign ancestry was also a way to express the separateness of India’s Muslims.
Another aspect in this context was the rise of the Urdu language among the Muslims. Though having (and claiming to have) Persian, Central Asian and Arabic ancestry was a proud attribute to flaunt; Urdu, which had been the language of ‘lower Muslims’ of (North) India, ascended and began to rapidly develop into a complex literary language.
The British didn’t have a problem with this. Because since Persian had been the language of the court during Muslim rule, its rollback symbolised the retreat of the memory and influence of Muslim rule in India.
In 1837, the British replaced Persian with Urdu (in the northern regions of India) as one of the officially recognised vernacular languages of India. But in the 1860s, Urdu became a symbol of Muslim separatism not through the efforts of the Muslims, but, ironically, due to the way some Hindus reacted to Urdu becoming an official language.
The resultant controversy triggered by Hindu reservations helped establish Urdu as an additional factor which separated the Muslims from the Hindus.
Syed Ahmad Khan had managed to attract the support and admiration of a growing number of young intellectuals, journalists, authors and poets. But he was the target of some vicious polemical attacks as well.
The conservative ulema were extremely harsh in their criticism and one of them even went on to accuse him of being an apostate. They blamed him for trying to tear the Muslims away from the unchangeable tenants of their religion, and for promoting ‘Angraziat’ (Western ethics and customs) among the believers.
Syed also received criticism from the supporters of Afghani’s pan-Islamism. Afghani himself admonished Khan for not only undermining the idea of global Muslim unity (by alluding to Muslim nationalism in the context of India’s Muslims only); but he also censured him for creating divisions between India’s Muslims and Hindus.
Afghani was of the view that Hindu-Muslim unity was vital in India to challenge British rule in the region.
Despite the attacks — which mostly came his way through statements, editorials and articles in the plethora of Urdu newspapers which began to come up after the proliferation of the printing press in India – it were his ideas which managed to dominate the most prominent dimensions of Muslim nationalism in India.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Spring 2021
Q.2 Give a critical appraisal of the partition of Bengal of 1905 focusing on Hindu-Muslim relations and attitude of British Administration.
In 1905 the decision of the Partition of Bengal and creation of a new province (Eastern Bengal and Assam) by Lord Curzon was an epoch making step of the British Government. It created a new sensation both in political and social history of Bengal & the Indian Sub-continent. The event also brought out an unprecedented awakening in the Muslim education of East Bengal. However, there was a mixed reaction in the two major communities of Bengal viz. Hindus and Muslims after the partition of Bengal. The Muslims, the majority community of this part, welcomed the decision; on the other hand, the educationally more developed Hindu community rejected it. To them, the partition of Bengal was done merely to weaken the Indian nationalistic movement. But the so long disregarded Muslim society of Eastern Bengal felt rather much encouraged and regarded it as a correct step in the development of their own society.1 The difference and disagreement on this issue caused collision between these two communities. Alongside, it gave birth to political unrest in the form of terrorist and allied movement of ‘Swadeshi’.2 In the face of terrorist agitation, the British Government was compelled to announce its annulment in 1911. But despite so many negative reactions, the positive influence of the Partition of Bengal in the educational arena of East Bengal was unprecedented and surprising in the contemporary social history of Bengal. Especially at that time, extension in the education sector, which was recorded in the Muslim majority Eastern Bengal, was quickest ever at any period of British India. So Partition of Bengal deserves a special study in the history of Bengali Muslims and the spread of education. So the main purpose of this article is to elaborate this development. Since the spread of Muslim education in the Eastern part in the new province was remarkable compared to the Assam region, geographically the study focuses only on the Eastern Bengal. On 16th October 1905, the then Viceroy of British India, LordCurzon (1859-1925), divided Bengal into two provinces to meet the administrative necessities and constituted a new province called ‘Eastern Bengal and Assam’.* But many scholars believed that there were some political reasons behind the decision of Lord Curzon and it was to make a division in the newly emerging power of Indian Nationalism.3 But whatever the purpose, by getting a new province and opportunities, the people of Eastern Bengal and Assam became much enthusiastic in increasing their focus on education. In 1905, the educational system of Eastern Bengal was very much neglected and miserable in all the stages from primary to higher. It was known from the contemporary educational report that primary and secondary education was affected by various problems. Primary schools were fewer in number than required. Moreover, the standard of teaching in these conventional schools was not up to the mark. School buildings were much decayed. The heights of these buildings were too low, dark and hence unhygienic for the students.4 In the government secondary schools among the English teachers, there were only 20% B.A. and 4% MA. degree holders. Very few of them were trained.5 Circumstances being so, one can easily guess the output. The conditions in the non-government secondary schools were more miserable. In this context, the additional commissioner of Dhaka district, Robert Nathan, said that maximum number of schools depended on students’ payment. School buildings were not suitable for holding classes, furniture was insufficient and surrounding environment was very dirty. He further reported that educational qualification of the teachers was very poor and they were not financially solvent. So, it could never be possible on their part to enable their students develop into good citizens. Being deprived of getting sufficient moral training, many students went astray and quitting schools became engaged in criminal activities.
Free AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Spring 2021
Q.3 Briefly analyze the origin and development of the Hindu revivalist movement in Sub-Continent.
During the seventh of the nineteenth century in Bengal and eighties in Maharashtra. Hindu revivalism began to replace in popularity the creed of Brahmo Samaj and Prarthana Samaj, and a new note of assertive, even aggressive Hinduism began to be heard above the voice of rationalism which had reverberated in the land for nearly forty years.
In Bengal this tendency found expression through the leadership of the orthodox section of the Hindu middle class led by Radhakanto Deb of Sova Bazar who had founded the Dharma Sabha in opposition to Ram Mohan Roy’s Brahmo Sabha in 1830.
But this movement could not make any head-way and the radicals of Young Bengal and the reformers like Dwarakanath and Devendranath held the field for nearly half a century.
The social reform movement was supported by Akshay Kumar Datta, Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar, Ramtanu Lahiri, Rajnarayan Bose and others whose co-operation largely enhanced the reputation of the Brahmo society.
In the decades following the Revolt of 1857, new factors came into play and modified social attitudes. The ideas and influence of radicalism and the urgency for social reforms began to recede bringing conservative tendencies into the foreground. The change became marked in Bengal in the seventies and in Maharashtra in the eighties.
In Bengal two ideas—those of nationalism and romanticism swayed the minds of the people. There were feelings of individual self assertion and of pride in the past heritage, resentment against the haughtiness and oppression of the ruling class, sympathy for the misery and poverty of the rural people and yearning for liberty and equality. These urges naturally stimulated the desire for political emancipation without which the social reforms seemed to be impossible.
A deep sense of pride was roused by religious movements initially. It was fed by archaeological discoveries and the works of the Indo-logists as also by historical studies. “Ancient literature, philosophy, science, law, arts and monuments which had been buried in oblivion were raised to life, and they enormously enhanced the reputation of India in the world and the self-respect of the people in their own estimation”. The result was a revulsion against the Western culture and religion and an eagerness to repudiate Western superiority of every kind.
The movement that followed came to be known as neo-Hindu- ism which had numerous adherents who were divided into two schools, one totally opposed to all reforms and the other while admitting reforms would not agree to changes in substance. The first school was pioneered by Sasadhar Tarkachuramani and the second by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee. Those who were nearer to the views of Pandit Sasadhar Tarkachuramani were Krishnaprasanna Sen, Nabin Chandra Sen, Hem Chandra Bandyopadhyaya. “The most influential pioneer of the movement in Bengal was Bankim Chandra Chatterjee. He represented the general awakening which was taking place in the old traditional sects in the nineteenth century”.
But Utilitarianism of Bentham, nor Hedonism of Spencer nor godless positivism of Comte could satisfy him fully. He found intellectual satisfaction in the study of Hindu-Philosophy and religion. His methodology was, however, of Western philosophy which shaped his approach towards religion. ‘His aim was to develop independence of outlook, to overthrow the domination of Western thought, and speak to the masses in the languages they understand.” ‘Religion to him was the instrument for the moral and political regeneration society.’
In Ramkrishna Mission is to be found a synthesis of the Oriental and the Western forces and ideas which characterised the last religious and social movements of the nineteenth century. The mission is named after Ramkrishna (1836-1886), the saint of Dakshineswar who was a poor priest in a Dakshineswar temple in the northern outskirts of Calcutta.
He was uneducated in the formal sense of the term but carried an extra-ordinary element of ‘charm, sweetness and grace’ and an unparalleled humanism in his personality.
He believed in the inherent truth of all different religions and beliefs and put his conviction to test by practising religious rites of not only of the different Hindu sects but also of Islam and Christianity. “He was an illiterate Brahmin who by sheer force of character and personal magnetism as also homely wisdom stormed the hearts of thousands and earned the respect of even those who could not agree with his preachings”. He was a God-intoxicated mystic who saw in all forms of worship the adoration of Supreme Being. “This poor, illiterate, shrunken, unpolished, diseased, half idolatrous, friendless Hindu devotee stirred Bengal to its depth.” He worked as a powerful magnet for the sophisticated, Westernised Bengali middle class who were attracted by his humility and spiritual integrity, and even men like Narendranath Datta, later Swami Vivekananda, a Calcutta University graduate, Keshab Chandra Sen and others either came to stay with him or to dedicate their lives to spread his gospel or to receive instruction from him. The most famous of them was however, Vivekananda who carried the message of Ramkrishna all over India. “His learning, eloquence, spiritual fervour and wonderful personality gathered round him a band of followers which included prince and peasant.” Vivekananda’s speeches at the Parliament of Religions at Chicago and other places in the U.S.A. and the U.K. brought him both fame and friends and from that time the teachings of Ramkrishna as interpreted by Vivekananda became a world force and Hinduism assumed an international character.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Autumn 2021
Q.4 Discuss the nature and purpose of Khilafat movement. Critically examine the impact of this movement on the subsequent development of Muslim Politics in India.
The Khilafat movement (1919-1924) was an agitation by Indian Muslims allied with Indian nationalism in the years following World War I. Its purpose was to pressure the British government to preserve the authority of the Ottoman Sultan as Caliph of Islam following the breakup of the Ottoman Empire at the end of the war. Integral to this was the Indian Muslims’ desire to influence the treaty-making process following the war in such a way as to restore the 1914 boundaries of the Ottoman Empire, even though the Turks, allies of the Central Powers, had been defeated in the war. Indian supporters of the Khilafat cause sent a delegation to London in 1920 to plead their case, but the British government treated the delegates as quixotic pan-Islamists, and did not change its policy toward Turkey. The Indian Muslims’ attempt to influence the provisions of the Treaty of Sevres thus failed, and the European powers, most notably Great Britain and France, went ahead with territorial adjustments, including the institution of mandates over formerly Ottoman Arab territories.
Significance and Leadership
The significance of the Khilafat movement, however, lies less in its supposed pan-Islamism than in its impact upon the Indian nationalist movement. The leaders of the Khilafat movement forged the first political alliance among western-educated Indian Muslims and ‘ulema over the religious symbol of the khilafat (caliphate). This leadership included the ‘Ali brothers – Muhammad ‘Ali (1878-1931) and Shaukat ‘Ali (1873-1938) – newspaper editors from Delhi; their spiritual guide Maulana Abdul Bari (1878-1926) of Firangi Mahal, Lucknow; the Calcutta journalist and Islamic scholar Abu’l Kalam Azad (1888-1958); and Maulana Mahmud ul-Hasan (1851-1920), head of the madrasa at Deoband, in northern India. These publicist-politicians and ‘ulema viewed European attacks upon the authority of the Caliph as an attack upon Islam, and thus as a threat to the religious freedom of Muslims under British rule.
The Khilafat and Indian Nationalism
The Khilafat issue crystallized anti-British sentiments among Indian Muslims that had increased since the British declaration of war against the Ottomans in 1914. The Khilafat leaders, most of whom had been imprisoned during the war because of their pro-Turkish sympathies, were already active in the Indian nationalist movement. Upon their release in 1919, they espoused the Khilafat cause as a means to achieve pan-Indian Muslim political solidarity in the anti-British cause. The Khilafat movement also benefited from Hindu-Muslim cooperation in the nationalist cause that had grown during the war, beginning with the Lucknow Pact of 1916 between the Indian National Congress and the Muslim League, and culminating in the protest against the Rowlatt anti-Sedition bills in 1919. The National Congress, led by Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948), called for non-violent non-cooperation against the British. Gandhi espoused the Khilafat cause, as he saw in it the opportunity to rally Muslim support for nationalism. The ‘Ali brothers and their allies, in turn, provided the non-cooperation movement with some of its most enthusiastic followers.
Importance and Collapse of the Movement
The combined Khilafat Non-Cooperation movement was the first all-India agitation against British rule. It saw an unprecedented degree of Hindu-Muslim cooperation and it established Gandhi and his technique of non-violent protest (satyagraha) at the center of the Indian nationalist movement. Mass mobilization using religious symbols was remarkably successful, and the British Indian government was shaken. In late 1921, the government moved to suppress the movement. The leaders were arrested, tried, and imprisoned. Gandhi suspended the Non-Cooperation movement in early 1922. Turkish nationalists dealt the final blow to the Khilafat movement by abolishing the Ottoman sultanate in 1922, and the caliphate in 1924.
AIOU Solved Assignment Code 538 Autumn 2021
Q.5 Write a detailed not on the history of Hindu Muslim relationship as it evolved through the period of Muslim supremacy in India (712-1707).
The kingdoms of Kapisa-Gandhara in modern-day Afghanistan, Zabulistan and Sindh (which then held Makran) in modern-day Pakistan, all of which were culturally and politically part of India since ancient times, were known as “The Frontier of Al Hind”. The first clash between a ruler of an Indian kingdom and the Arabs took place in 643 AD, when Arab forces defeated Rutbil, King of Zabulistan in Sistan. Arabs led by Suhail b. Abdi and Hakam al Taghilbi defeated an Indian army in the Battle of Rasil in 644 AD at the Indian Ocean sea coast, then reached the Indus River. Caliph Umar ibn Al-Khattab denied them permission to cross the river or operate on Indian soil and the Arabs returned home.
Abdullah ibn Aamir led the invasion of Khurasan in 650 AD, and his general Rabi b. Ziyad Al Harithi attacked Sistan and took Zaranj and surrounding areas in 651 AD while Ahnaf ibn Qais conquered the Hepthalites of Herat in 652 AD and advanced up to Balkh by 653 AD. Arab conquests now bordered the Kingdoms of Kapisa, Zabul and Sindh in modern-day Afghanistan and Pakistan. The Arabs levied annual tributes on the newly captured areas, and leaving 4,000 men garrisons at Merv and Zaranj retired to Iraq instead of pushing on against the frontier of India. Caliph Uthman b. Affan sanctioned an attack against Makran in 652 AD, and sent a recon mission to Sindh in 653 AD. The mission described Makran as inhospitable, and Caliph Uthman, probably assuming the country beyond was much worse, forbade any further incursions into India.
This was the beginning of a prolonged struggle between the rulers of Kabul and Zabul against successive Arab governors of Sistan, Khurasan and Makran in modern-day Afghanistan and Pakistan. The Kabul Shahi kings and their Zunbil kinsmen blocked access to the Khyber Pass and Gomal Pass routes into India from 653 to 870 AD, while modern Balochistan, Pakistan, comprising the areas of Kikan or Qiqanan, Nukan, Turan, Buqan, Qufs, Mashkey and Makran, would face several Arab expeditions between 661 – 711 AD. The Arabs launched several raids against these frontier lands, but repeated rebellions in Sistan and Khurasan between 653 – 691 AD diverted much of their military resources in order to subdue these provinces and away from expansion into Al Hind. Muslim control of these areas ebbed and flowed repeatedly as a result until 870 AD. Arabs troops disliked being stationed in Makran, and were reluctant to campaign in the Kabul area and Zabulistan due to the difficult terrain and underestimation of Zunbil’s power. Arab strategy was tribute extraction instead of systematic conquest. The fierce resistance of Zunbil and Turki Shah stalled Arab progress repeatedly in the “Frontier Zone”.
Muawiyah established Umayyad rule over the Arabs after the first First Fitna in 661 AD, and resumed expansion of the Muslim Empire. After 663/665 AD, the Arabs launched an invasion against Kapisa, Zabul and what is now Pakistani Balochistan. Abdur Rahman b. Samurra besieged Kabul in 663 AD, while Haris b Marrah advanced against Kalat after marching through Fannazabur and Quandabil and moving through the Bolan Pass. King Chach of Sindh sent an army against the Arabs, the enemy blocked the mountain passes, Haris was killed and his army was annihilated. Al-Muhallab ibn Abi Sufra took a detachment through the Khyber pass towards Multan in Southern Punjab in modern-day Pakistan in 664 AD, then pushed south into Kikan, and may have also raided Quandabil. Turki Shah and Zunbil expelled Arabs from their respective kingdoms by 670 AD, and Zunbil began assisting in organizing resistance in Makran.
Muhammad bin Qasim departed from Shiraz in 710 CE, the army marched along the coast to Tiaz in Makran, then to the Kech valley. Muhammad re-subdued the restive towns of Fannazbur and Armabil, (Lasbela) finally completing the conquest of Makran then the army met up with the reinforcements and catapults sent by sea near Debal and took Debal through assault. From Debal the Arabs moved north along the Indus, clearing the region up to Budha, some towns like Nerun and Sadusan (Sehwan) surrendered peacefully while tribes inhabiting Sisam were defeated in battle. Muhammad bin Qasim moved back to Nerun to resupply and receive reinforcements sent by Hajjaj. The Arabs crossed the Indus further South and defeated the army of Dahir, who was killed. The Arabs then marched north along the east bank of the Indus after the siege and capture of Rawer. Brahmanabad, then Alor (Aror) and finally Multan, were captured alongside other in-between towns with only light Muslim casualties. Arabs marched up to the foothills of Kashmir along the Jhelum in 713 AD, and the stormed on Al-Kiraj (probably the Kangra valley) Muhammad was deposed after the death of Caliph Walid in 715 AD. Jai Singh, son of Dahir captured Brahmanabad and Arab rule was restricted to the Western shore of Indus. Sindh was briefly lost to the caliph when the rebel Yazid b. Muhallab took over Sindh briefly in 720 AD.[failed verification]
Junaid b. Abd Al Rahman Al Marri became the governor of Sindh in 723 AD. Secured Debal, then defeat and killed Jai Singh[failed verification] secured Sindh and Southern Punjaband stormed Al Kiraj (Kangra valley) in 724 AD. Junaid next attacked a number of Hindu kingdoms in what is now Rajasthan, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh aiming at permanent conquest, but the chronology and area of operation of the campaigns during 725 – 743 AD is difficult to follow because accurate, complete information is lacking. The Arabs moved east from Sindh in several detachments and probably from attacked from both the land and the sea, occupying Mirmad (Marumada, in Jaisalmer), Al-Mandal (perhaps Okhamandal in Gujarat) or Marwar, and Dahnaj, not identified, al-Baylaman (Bhilmal) and Jurz (Gurjara country—north Gujarat and southern Rajasthan). and attacking Barwas (Broach), sacking Vallabhi. Gurjara king Siluka repelled Arabs from “Stravani and Valla”, probably the area North of Jaisalmer and Jodhpur, and the invasion of Malwa but were ultimately defeated by Bappa Rawal and Nagabhata I in 725 AD near Ujjain. Arabs lost control over the newly conquered territories and Sindh due to Arab tribal infighting and Arab soldiers deserting the newly conquered territory in 731 AD.
Al Hakam b. Awana Al Kalbi recovered Sindh, and in c733 AD, founded the garrison city of Al Mahfuza (“The Well Guarded”) similar to Kufa, Basra and Wasit, on the eastern side of a lake near Brahmanabad. Hakam next attempted to reclaim the conquests of Junaid in Al Hind. Arab records merely state that he was successful, Indian records at Navasari details that Arab forces defeated “Kacchella, Saindhava, Saurashtra, Cavotaka, Maurya and Gurjara” kings. The city of Al Mansura (“The Victorious”) was founded near Al Mahfuza to commemorate pacification of Sindh by Amr b. Muhammad in c738 AD. Al Hakam next invaded the Deccan in 739 AD with the intention of permanent conquest, but was decisively defeated at Navsari by the viceroy Avanijanashraya Pulakeshin of the Chalukya Empire serving Vikramaditya II. Arab rule was restricted to the west of Thar desert.
Writing c. 1030, Al Biruni reported on the devastation caused during the conquest of Gandhara and much of northwest India by Mahmud of Ghazni following his defeat of Jayapala in the Battle of Peshawar at Peshawar in 1001:
Now in the following times no Muslim conqueror passed beyond the frontier of Kabul and the river Sindh until the days of the Turks, when they seized the power in Ghazna under the Sâmânî dynasty, and the supreme power fell to the lot of Nasir-addaula Sabuktagin. This prince chose the holy war as his calling, and therefore called himself al-Ghazi (“the warrior/invader”). In the interest of his successors he constructed, in order to weaken the Indian frontier, those roads on which afterwards his son Yamin-addaula Mahmud marched into India during a period of thirty years and more. God be merciful to both father and son! Mahmud utterly ruined the prosperity of the country, and performed there wonderful exploits, by which the Hindus became like atoms of dust scattered in all directions, and like a tale of old in the mouth of the people. Their scattered remains cherish, of course, the most inveterate aversion towards all Muslims. This is the reason, too, why Hindu sciences have retired far away from those parts of the country conquered by us, and have fled to places which our hand cannot yet reach, to Kashmir, Benares, and other places. And there the antagonism between them and all foreigners receives more and more nourishment both from political and religious sources.
During the closing years of the tenth and the early years of the succeeding century of our era, Mahmud the first Sultan and Musalman of the Turk dynasty of kings who ruled at Ghazni, made a succession of inroads twelve or fourteen in number, into Gandhar – the present Peshwar valley – in the course of his proselytizing invasions of Hindustan.
Fire and sword, havoc and destruction, marked his course everywhere. Gandhar which was styled the Garden of the North was left at his death a weird and desolate waste. Its rich fields and fruitful gardens, together with the canal which watered them (the course of which is still partially traceable in the western part of the plain), had all disappeared. Its numerous stone built cities, monasteries, and topes with their valuable and revered monuments and sculptures, were sacked, fired, razed to the ground, and utterly destroyed as habitations.
The Ghaznavid conquests were initially directed against the Ismaili Fatimids of Multan, who were engaged in an ongoing struggle with the provinces of the Abbasid Caliphate in conjunction with their compatriots of the Fatimid Caliphate in North Africa and the Middle East; Mahmud apparently hoped to curry the favor of the Abbasids in this fashion. However, once this aim was accomplished, he moved onto the richness of the loot of Indian temples and monasteries. By 1027, Mahmud had captured parts of North India and obtained formal recognition of Ghazni’s sovereignty from the Abbassid Caliph, al-Qadir Billah.
Ghaznavid rule in Northwestern India (modern Afghanistan and Pakistan) lasted over 175 years, from 1010 to 1187. It was during this period that Lahore assumed considerable importance apart from being the second capital, and later the only capital, of the Ghaznavid Empire.
At the end of his reign, Mahmud’s empire extended from Kurdistan in the west to Samarkand in the Northeast, and from the Caspian Sea to the Punjab in the west. Although his raids carried his forces across Northern and Western India, only Punjab came under his permanent rule; Kashmir, the Doab, Rajasthan, and Gujarat remained nominal under the control of the local Indian dynasties. In 1030, Mahmud fell gravely ill and died at age 59. As with the invaders of three centuries ago, Mahmud’s armies reached temples in Varanasi, Mathura, Ujjain, Maheshwar, Jwalamukhi, Somnath and Dwarka.
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