Important documents, valuable images and precious certification
It is with a heart, throbbing with joy and emotion that, we, the students of the University of Dacca, welcome you in our midst as the first Prime Minister of our new, free and sovereign State of Pakistan. Even in the midst of these joyful surroundings our thoughts naturally go back to the day when only a few months back we had the honour and privilege of welcoming the beloved Quaid-e-Azam in our midst. Though he is no more with us his message and his work are our most precious heritage which shall continue to guide and inspire us in future. The most fitting homage that we can pay to his memory is to build up our State in accordance with the Islami ideals of equality, brother-hood and justice.
Sir, with the dawn of independence a great responsibility has devolved on us. We can assure you that, we, who have contributed our mite to the national cause, are quite alive to the fact that the future wellbeing and stability of the state rest on us. Hence the task of building up those, who will build up the state should be given the almost importance. We must revolutionize our outlook and reconstruct our thought to shape ourselves in the new order of life. The present system of education, which was introduced by the Britishers to suit their requirements should be thoroughly reorganized in the light of the altered circumstances. The lamentable failure of our Provincial Government to give any lead in the matter till now and the present pitiable plight of primary, secondary and university education in our province have compelled us to draw attention to the matter. The exodus of Non-Muslim teachers who formed the bulk of the teaching staff in pre-partition period in the secondary and the University stages, coupled with the dirth of efficient substitutes, has been a serious blow. The technical branches of education, viz., the Engineering, the Medical and the Agricultural which should be given the utmost care are also badly suffering for want of efficient teachers and technical equipment. Steps should be taken to secure efficient teachers and technical equipment, if necessary, from abroad, and more students from East Pakistan should be sent overseas for higher education and training. Female education is another subject which is also not receiving its due attention. More facilities and encouragement should be given to our sisters who are now coming forward in increasing number to avail themselves of every opportunity of education and serving the country. We also urge on you sir, to introduce compulsory free military training in all the colle'ges and the universities with facilities for our sisters too. The problem of accommodation is getting more and more acute since the partition. Both students and teachers are greatly suffering on this account and the authorities are also experiencing great difficulties in accommodating the growing number of students in different educational institutions. We therefore appeal to you to "use your good offices to remedy the present deplorable state of affairs affecting the growth and future Wellbeing of the nation.
'Sir, the magnificent efforts that you are making to strengthen the defense of Pakistan has evoked the admiration of all. We however beg to impress upon you with all the emphasis at our command that to encourage our youth to join the armed forces we need Army, Naval and Air Academies in this province. The only cause for this ather slow response from our youth is not lack of enthusiasm or determination on their part but the absence of these facilities in this Province. We pledge our whole-hearted support and can assure you that given proper facilities you shall have from amongst us the best in every branch of the armed forces.
Sir, the food problem is causing us a great concern. The price of essential commodities and cloth has gone beyond the purchasing power of the average citizen and perhaps the cost of living here in East Pakistan is the highest in the world except in China. Steps should be taken to increase our food production to make ourselves self-sufficient. This can only be made possible by abolishing the Permanent Settlement without compensation and thoroughly re-organizing our land tenure system and by the introduction of co-operative farming on a scientific basis.
Let us tell you Sir, that we greatly appreciate your determination to ruthlessly deal with corruption and blackmarketting. Here in East Pakistan the anti-corruption department was doing splendid work. But unfortunately the department has been amalgamated with another department and the work has alarmingly slowed down thought the corruption here is still as rampant as ever. We hope you will kindly see that the work and efficiency of the department is not allowed to be hampered by interested individuals however big they may be.
Sir, there can not be any economic progress in the country unless it is industrialized. We hope, Sir, that, in any industrial planning of the country, East Pakistan would legitimately get a major share.
Sir, though the two parts of our state happen to be separated by nearly two thousand miles we are one with our brethren of West Pakistan in their joys and sorrows, happiness and tribulations. Provincialism is a word unknown to us and quite foreign to our sentiment. We take this opportunity of conveying through you our best wishes and most sincere greetings to our brethren in West Pakistan and the youth in particular.
Sir, the policy of the Britishers to impart education through the medium of a foreign language accounts for the poor percentage of literacy amongst our people. The best way to impart education is through the medium of the mother tongue, and we are glad that our Provincial Government has already accepted this principle. The Introduction of Bengali as the medium of instruction and as the official language has opened before us a great opportunity of educating our people and developing ourselves according to our own genius. We are happy to note that our Central Government, under your wise guidance, has given Bengali an honoured place. This is a step in the right direction which shall go a long way to further strengthen our cultural ties, with our brethren in West Pakistan. Interchange of thoughts and ideas and mutual understanding are essential if we have to develop a homogeneous and healthy national outlook. We have accepted Urdu as our Lingua Franca but we also feel very strongly that Bengali, by virtue of its being the official language of the premier province and also the language of the 62% of the population of the state, should be given its rightful place as one of the state languages together with Urdu. Otherwise we in East Pakistan shall always be under a permanent handicap and disadvantage. Thus alone we shall have full scope of development and forge closer affinity with our brethern of the other part and march forward hand in hand.
Sir, you are aware of the pitiable plight of the people of East Bengal, and Muslims in particular, who were victims of the worst kind of political oppression and economic exploitation. We are confident, Sir, that our legitimate claim in our Armed Forces and the Central Services on the basis of population-percentage shall be given effect to immediately.
Sir, we appreciate the tremendous odds that you had to surmount and we are also alive to the difficulties that face us to-day. We would however take this opportunity of requesting you most earnestly to see that the framing of our, constitution is not delayed any further. The last general elections were in fact a plebiscite on the issue of Pakistan and now that we need more able men and fresh blood to come in and shoulder responsibility, we beg to impress upon you the necessity of having an early general election on a wider basis.
Sir, we have been watching with increasing grief and concern the repressions to which our student friends, most of whom are tried Muslim League workers with admirable record of service and sacrifice, are being subjected. Many of us are being harassed and even put under detention without trial in our attempt to fight out corruption and injustice and bring them to the notice of the Government. The bogey of communism is raised to justify these injustices but we assure you most sincerely that, all other "isms" excepting Islamic message of peace, equality and social justice are quite foreign to our outlook.
We hope, sir, and we are confident that the points we have raised shall receive your earnest attention and sympathetic consideration. Sir, we are afraid that we have taxed you long enough but we could not help expressing our feelings. So, we have been frank to you even at the risk of being misunderstood only out of our sincere and intense love for the future wellbeing of the State. We are happy that the reins of administration of our State are in the able hands of one who enjoys the full confidence and love of all the Pakistan. We have watched with admiration and regard your services and sacrifice to the cause of the nation. We pray to the Almighty for your, sound health and long life to enable you to lead us through the critical times ahead. We thank you most cordially for the honour you have done to us in consenting to come and address us. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD.
DACCA We beg to subscribe ourselves,
The 27th November, 1948 The students of the University of Dacca
A new eight clause chapter-language of the Republic'-was added to the Basic Principles Committee Report by the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan yesterday.
The chapter "Language of the Republic" was brought before the House by Prime Minister Mohammed Ali and accepted without any amendment. It reads as follows:
(1) The official languages of the Republic should be Urdu, Bengali and such other Provincial languages as may be declared to such by the Head of the State on the recommendation of the Provincial Legislatures concerned.
(2) Members of Parliament shall have a right to speak in Urdu and Bengali in addition of English,
(3) Notwithstanding anything in the above article, for a period of 20 years from the commencement of the constitution the English language should continue to be used for all official purposes of the Republic for which it was being used immediately before such commencement.
(4) For examinations for the central services, all provincial languages should be placed on an equal footing. Additional Language -
(5) Provision should be made for the teaching of Arabic, Urdu, and Bengali in Secondary schools to enable students to take either one or two of them in addition to the language used as the medium of instruction.
(6) The state should take all measures for development and growth of common national language.
(7) A commission should be appointed 10 years the commencement of the constitution to make recommendations for the replacement of English.
On a point of information Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan wanted to know if there were any decisions on provincial languages.
The Prime Minister explained that:
(1) All Provinces were free to use the provincial languages of their choice.
(2) The Head of State also had the powers to declare any provincial language as official language of the Republic in the recommendation of the Provincial Legislature concerned.
Source: The Dawn, 8', May 1954.
Mr. Nur Ahmed (East Bengal: Muslim):
Sir, I move: "That the Assembly is of opinion that Bengali language shall be made the State language of Pakistan."
Sir, my resolution is self-evident and clear to every Honourable Member of this House. I would not take the valuable time to the House by inflicting a speech in support of my motion.
Mr. President (10 Mr. Nur Ahmed):
Do you want lo Speak?
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin (East Bengal; Muslim):
He has spoken.
Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan (Punjab: Muslim):
An official is stopping him from speaking.
"That this Assembly is of opinion that Bengali language along with Urdu language shall be made the State language of Pakistan."
The Honorable Pirzada Abdus Sattar Abdur Rahman (Sind: Muslim):
Sir, I move:
"That in view of th9 fact that no dicision has yet been taken in the matter of the Slate language and there being no immediate necessity of taking a decision thereon, be it resolved that the question be decided by this Assembly when it comes up before it in due course."
Sir, the Amendment is very clear and it does not need any further clarification.
: Motion Moved:
"Thai in vigw of the fact that no decision has yet been taken in the matter of the State language and there being no immediate necessity of taking a decision there on, be it resolved that the question be decided by this Assembly when it comes up before it in due course."
Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan
: * Sir, I am both pained and surprised to see that one of the Government party's Members is first allowed to bring the resolution and then Government itself tries to postpone it. We have seen during the past two months that this language issue has taxed the minds of the people or our brethren in East Bengal.
The issue was then raised after the speech of no less a person than the Prime Minister of Pakistan and then after that there were trouble, there agitation, there were shoutings, there were killings and there was lot of agitation, seeing which no less a person, than the Chief Minister of East Bengal got up in his Legislature where he holds a majority to pass a resolution in keeping with the feelings of the people of East Bengal. Unless he was then in harmony with the ideas of the people of East Pakistan, he could not have passed that resolutions or was it only a political way in which he wanted to get out of the difficult situation? I would ask the Honorable Chief Minister from East Bengal, what was the reason that he passed that resolution in the Legislature of East Bengal. If there was no need for it then, there was no need for bringing this resolution here. If there was a need for that resolution to be passed, if there was a public feeling which had led him to pass that resolution in East Bengal Assembly, then, surely, Sir, that need has not been done away with and therefore this Issue should not be put in cold storage.
I being to a province where we have nurtured and brought up Urdu in the last 30 years or 40 years or more and Punjab is really proud for nurturing that language which was not its own. Then, Sir, after all these years we have been speaking that language and improving that language, in spite of the fact, I am today with the fullest responsibility standing here to support the issue of Bengali and I say that let us have Bengali as one of the State Languages because it is the language of 4 crore and 9 lakhs ol our people living in East Bengal. If we, from West Pakistan, are going to oppose that urge of the people of East Pakistan, we will be responsible for starting trouble in East Pakistan, which may damage the very fabric of my country and my nation. Sir, I am one of those, therefore, who, though loving Urdu Laguage, though speaking Urdu language, are today on their legs to support this issue with all sincerity and all seriousness because we do not want that by opposing the cause of the people of East Pakistan, we are going to do no good. Instead, by postponing the issue, by postponing the evil day once again, we will be starting trouble which may result in the complete disruption Of Pakistan Therefore, Sir, in the interests of Pakistan, in the interests of our people, in the interests of our solidarity, in the Interests of our future ties, in the interests of our future children and in the interests of our posterity, I am going to support the issue of Bengali. Let us not waste any time; let us support the resolution of Chief Minister of Bengal; let us have the Bengali language as one of our State languages. If we can have English, if English could be spoken here, if English could be treated as a language in which we can communicate with each other why cannot the Bengali language, the spoken language of 4 crores of people, be the Slate language. I am sure, Sir, that Urdu is not so weak, nor Bengali language so weak, that by having, them both as State languages, we are going to kill one or the other language. It is just trying to put oil on fire and this fire would spread, I assure you, Sir, if we do not take up this issue seriously and if we do not get over this petty Provincialism, if we keep on going on Provincial lines of sentiments on which we have lived for past so many years, we, we are going to destroy this country. Sir, sentimentalism should be apart. We have been sentimental too long. We have been emotional too long. Let us be rational, let us ask ourselves, ask searching questions to yourselves; I ask the Prime Minister here, let him ask a searching question to himself: Is it really the desire of East Pakistan people that they should have Bengali language as one of the State languages? If it is not, then for God's sake get up and tell us that it is fraud. It is not the voice of the people, it is only the call of a few people and 1 will take back all my words which I have spoken in favour of Bengali. But if on the other hand, he is certain that this is the urge of people, this is the desire of the majority of the people of Pakistan, then I do not see any reason why you are putting back the issue and why you are adding to the troubles of the Government and the people of Pakistan. Sir we know and all of us know that here are countries in within there are three languages spoken. Take Switzerland, there is German, there is French and there is Italian spoken. Take the question of Canada. There is French and English both. Take the question of our country; why cannot we have two language' Why should we oppose it? We, who have been speaking English for the last 200 years, we are going to oppose that language, the language of the majority of the people of this country? I have got no hesitation, Sir, if saying that we, fn the Punjab, and we people who think sensibly about the future of Pakistan, we have got no desire to gloat the language issue and other aspirations of the people of East Pakistan.
Sir, I am sure, if we have Bengali as one of the State languages, it will lead to stronger ties and stronger friendship between the two wings of Pakistan. There will be people here in West Pakistan who will be learning Bengali and there will be people in Bengal who will be learning Urdu so that by this interchange of languages, by this compulsory learning of the languages of both wings of Pakistan, we are going to forge ties which it will be impossible to break by an artificial manner. Therefore, Sir, if we are going to have stronger ties and friendship and brotherhood between the two wings of Pakistan, we should give up this motionalism and come forward with open hands and say that we are accepting your language, not that you are in a majority but because we want to make Pakistan—stronger and our brotherhood stronger and a real and effective thing. We are coming forward to accept the language of your country as at par with Urdu which is the spoken language of certain people in West Pakistan. Sir, if we do not do that, if we do not come to rationalism, if we keep on being emotional, if we keep on putting it away for political reasons, then, Sir, I assure my friends opposite that they are not today shelving, the issue Bengali language, but they are shelving the very foundation of Pakistan being laid on a proper basis. By trying to put off this issue they are going to create trouble in the mind of the East Bengal people who might think—and think wrongly—that we, in West Pakistan, are trying to dominate them. We have got no desire whatever to dominate any one part or any Province or any people of this country. We want all the people and all the Province to get up together and with proper co-operation and friendship with each other, we should grow into a mighty nation which is our right to be.
Therefore, Sir, in the interest of Pakistan's solidarity, in the interest of.
our people, in the interest of Bengal, Punjab, Sind, Frontier and Baluchistan,
I am going to ask my friends in the Government, do not keep on shelving
these issues, do not keep on putting off the real issues of the country, do
not keep on putting off the need of the day. By brave, be the worthy
followers of Qjaid-i-Azam, the worthy successors of Quaid-i-Azam, behave
like true successors of Ouaid-i-Azam and get up and do as he would have
done in a different situation like this and accept this language issue. Do not
do a thing which is going to disrupt the very strength of our nation.
Sir, it is very well saying that when the Constitution is made, then we will-, take up this issue. Even, Sir, only yesterday a resolution was brought in '• about Islamic research. Many resolutions every day are brought in some are about elections, some about amending the Government of India Act. When these small things can be discussed in this House and passed, why cannot these major issues, when they arise, be discussed and passed to that there is no trouble in the country, so that we can live happily, so that there is no inferiority complex anywhere that people here are conspiring against them or people there are trying to dominate the people in West Pakistan. Sir, with these few words, these inadequate words, I am going to once again appeal to the people to be sensible, do not try to be emotional and do not try to put off these issues. Let us go and help the Bengali culture lo grow and if necessary, if you think and I am sure the people in East Bengal and people in West Pakistan may agree that we may try to have a common script so that Urdu and Bengali languages can be understood and read easily by the people of West Pakistan and East Pakistan, Therefore, Sir, with this prayer that you should coolly and calmly consider this issue and settle at once as all and take up the issue of the script and let us see if we can have a common script. Let us have this Quranic script which is understood by both the people in East Bengal and people in West Pakistan, This may be the common script of the two languages. Therefore, Sir, with these words and with these suggestions, I appeal to the House for God's sake give up your ideas of Provincialism of which you are accusing your opposition and rise above the present level and sec that you are the real Statesmen of Pakistan and that you are going to preside over its funeral.
Mr. A.K. Fazlul Huque (East Bengal: Muslim): * .."Sir, while 1 had been listening to this debate, I felt it my duty to put forward my views before the House. I do not claim to be an orator. Nor can I claim to possess the vehemence of language with which my friend Mr, Shaukat Hyat Khan, can carry a motion before the House, but, Sir, I claim, through God's grace, to have had something of parliamentary experience. I have outlined three parliamentary generations in the whole of India and I know, Sir, what it is. When a question of the utmost importance to the State is being discussed, how people can play to the gallery and not look to the essential importance of the question itself. I do not for a moment impute to any of my friends here the charge that they do not realise the importance of the question itself. I do not for a moment impute to any of my friends, here the charge that they do not realise the importance of the motion, but I do say that they are not in a possession of all facts. Not only have I derived experience, Sir, of my thirty years either as a politician or as a member of the Bar. I am in close touch with the people from the mofussil who come to me on professional work. After my work is done, I just indulge in conversation with them lo find out the real feelings of the people in connection with my burning question of the day. Now, Sir, I say it without any fear of contradiction that whatever the reasons may be, the feelings of the people of East Pakistan at the present moment are that Bengali should be at the least be given a place in the recognised State languages of Pakistan. Sir, I do not think there is any inhabitant of Eastern Pakistan at present who can be expected to vote for Urdu only as the State language of Pakistan. It is not for me to say whether that feeling is well-founded or not. I am not saying that. Now, Sir, at present the question that has come up before the House has not been the unseating of Government. Government did nothing, but some of our Members have tabled resolutions to the effect that Bengali should be recognised as one of the State languages of Pakistan. My friend, Mr. Nur Ahmed, who will pardon me if I say that he is a machine for turning out resolutions at the rate of 100 per hour and amendments at a similar rate. He could not have left this occasion to go without tabling a resolution. Moreover, being an inhabitant of Chittagong, for the feelings of the most violent character he has only done his duty in bringing this motion before the House. So let us now understand the position. What is that the Government have decided? Government have fully realised that there is behind this demand of Bengali being one of the State languages, the voice of 90 million of the people of Pakistan. At the same lime, the question can be looked at from various points of view. It takes lime to consider and come to a definite decision. All that the Government proposes is that the question should not be decided here and now by the mere majority of voles, but that time should be taken into consideration lo see that question is gone Into in all its aspects and decided finally as to what should be the language or the languages of Pakistan. I do not very much like the phrase 'in due course'. As things at present stand, I feel that 'due course' may not come in the near future. It may be that the English language may continue to be the Stale language for five or eight years. We do not know what will happen, but whatever the reasons, if the Government motion is held today, we will not allow Government to sleep over this question. We will face an issue the next time when the Assembly meets. All this time we will have ample opportunities of mobilizing the public opinion in East Pakistan and if we succeed in showing to the world that the people o| East Pakistan have not only got a very good case, but also they have got public opinion behind their demand, I am sure the Government will have to look Into it, whatever may be any personal views in this matter.
I may remove a misconception. Here the Government is not represented. All members represent themselves.
Mr. A.K. Fazlul Haque:
Sir, that is theory." So whatever it may be, the remarks I make here apply to Honourable Pirzada. Whatever may be case, I am placing certain facts. I am saying that after coming to Karachi I looked at this question from various points of view. At present my estimate is that Government has got a majority in the House. If we force a decision we are likely to lose, and if we lose we lose this cause for ever, because it is not only the members of the Constituent Assembly, but a member of that section of the Constituent Assembly who dealt with the situation. But if we allow this question to remain open, get an opportunity of considering this question along Members of Government and have not a decision to the question we desire. I submit, Sir, then we will have great apprehensions. I do not wish to got a definite decision today, but I wish to have an opportunity of mobilizing public opinion there and inducing Government to accept our point of view. There is a beautiful couple that says; 'He who fights and runs away lives to fight another day1. If that may be the position then that is to our advantage. Instead of taking a defeat just now, whatever may be the reasons, it is much better that the question should remain open and Government may have an opportunity of considering the questions from all its aspects and then coming to a decision.
Now, Sir, I will be very frank. The discussions that have taken place and the discussion that will take place will show that the Members of this Assembly from Eastern Pakistan—and it we will have the Members who come from Eastern Pakistan—will be put is a very awakward position, because their own feelings are that Bengali should be declared straight away here and now as one of the State languages of Pakistan.
Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan :
Why do not you say so?
Mr. A.K. Fazlul Haque:
* Well, I want it. But I want to have proper initiative. Sir, I want to be frank. As I have said, I do not want to break it. I feel that if a division is taken in the present circumstances, we will loose, whatever reasons may be. I do not want to lose but I want to get an opportunity and as a matter of fact I do not want to shelve the question but I want to put off the defeat and see if I can get successfully out of unfortunate circumstances.
Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan:
Who can defeat you?
Mr. A.K. Fazlul Haque:
* I cannot for a moment answer my friend's questions in the way he desires because it is not for me to change facts. I am not saying these things from the point of views of any particular section of the House. I am not holding any brief for anybody but I am only putting before the House the question from practical point of view. Does the amendment of Honourable Abdus Sattar go to this length that this question can never come before this House to consideration? It may be postponed for six months or eight months. These are all matters of procedure. So, Sir, I submit that it is not fair politics because some of the Members here have been placed in a very awkward- position because there is a conflict between their duty towards their constituencies and the circumstances with which we are faced in this House today. I am only appealing to the House not to make provocative speeches but allow the Government to consider this question coolly and calmly and I feel sure that the time will come when we will be able to convince that the importance of Bengali must be properly weighed.......
Before f sit down I convey my grateful thanks to my friend Sardar Shaukat Hyat for the manner in which he has espoused the cause of Bengali I wish I Had delivered that speech and not he. (Applause)
Shri Dhlrendra Nath Dutta :
Mr. President, Sir,...,.... today, it is rather difficult for me to speak as it has been enhanced by the fact that I am to speak after the Honourable and most learned friend, Mr. A.K. Fazlul Huq. I have the honour of being his colleague for a long period and I know the difficulty of speaking after him. He can place any case with abounding arguments. He has got that capacity. I shall confine myself to one fort only and that is this: Whether there is a necessity for postponing the consideration of this issue. It is now agreed, Sir, and It has been agreed bymy Honourable and most esteemed friend. Mr. A.K. Fazlul Huq, that the claim of the Bengali language is genuine and it has got the opinion and (he backing of all the population of East Bengal. If we look, Sir. to the resolution that have been tabled in this House, we shall find it. Not only Mr. Nur Ahmed, who has got a knack of mowing resolution, and who comes from Chittagong. has moved this resolution but the resolutions have been moved by Mr. Shahoodul Haq coming from my place in the district of Tipperah and if you look to the resolution itself, it says that 'in view of the general opinion prevailing in East Bengal over the question of State language and also in view of the unanimous resolution of the East Bengal Assembly passed at its last session recommending adoption of Bengali as one of the State languages of Pakistan, the Constituent Assembly resolves to adopt Bengali as one of the State languages of Pakistan.'
So, it has been said in the resolution itself that there is the general opinion prevailing on the question of State language and there is unanimous resolution of the East Bengal Assembly. Sir I happen to be a Member of the East Bengal Assembly. I know, Sir, the leader of the East Bengal Assembly, I mean the Honourable the Chief Minister of East Bengal, himself moved that resolution. He himself got up and got it passed that the East Bengal Assembly recommends that the Bengali language shall be one of the State languages of Pakistan. Then, Sir, we get the resolution of Mr. Abdullah-al Mahmood who comes from Pabna who also says that Bengali be declared as one of the State languages. Then Mr Abul Kasem Khan who also comes from Chittagong also says that. Then Moulvi Ebrahlm Khan who is the President of the Secondary Education Board of East Bengal, and who was the Principal of a College in the District of Mymensingh also says in his resolution that Bengali should be one of the State languages. So, Sir, it is agreed and it cannot be denied that there is the backing ot the whole population of Eastern Bengal that Bengali shall be one of the State languages. I have got the opportunity of mixing with children in the Districts. The children who can barely speak, they utter the slogan: "Bengali shall be a State language."..............
Sir, it is most regrettable that silence has been imposed upon my friends who come from East Bengal. Mr, Nur Ahmed has only moved the resolution and has not spoken a few words in favour of the resolution. Other members. Sir, are also keeping mum. So. Sir, it is clear that the silence has been imposed upon them by the persons in authority and by the present ruling group. Then, Sir, Mr. A.K. Faziul Huq says that it should be postponed and a better day shall come. In these matters, Sir, which have been agitating for the last day shall come. In these matters, Sir, which have-been agitating for the last 4 years and in which they have been silenced, no further mobilisation is necessary. It is well known, Sir, and I do not understand how the present ruling group do not attach any importance to it. Let us decide it once for all, It is useless to ignore facts. I have paid due attention to the arguments that have been advanced by Mr. A.K. Fazlui Huq that the matter shall improve if the consideration is postponed. He has declared that he wants that Bengali shall be one of the Stale languages of Pakistan. But he has not given any argument in favour of the postponement of the consideration. But, I know, Sir, the reason for postponement. The reason is to shelve the matter today. It is clear. Sir, that a silence has been imposed upon members of East Bengal Legislative Assembly who rule East Bengal, I mean my Muslim brethren. Silence has been imposed upon them and silence will be imposed upon the people and, therefore, it is not prudent today to postpone the consideration. The matter is of such importance that it cannot be shelved. Is it not a fact that the feelings of the Bengalis are not known to our Prime Minister who happen to be a Bengali? My Chief Minister is present today, sitting up quite silent and mum. He knows the real situation. But he does not venture and the members of the Eastern Bengal, my Muslim brethren, do not venture today to utter an expression in favour of the Bengali languages. I Know their feelings and I know the feelings of the people of Eastern Bengal. Whatever may be said, but they have been compelled to be silent today. Face the question bravely and courageously. The demand that Bengali should be one of the State languages of Pakistan is in the interest of Pakistan. For the interest of Pakistan and for the integrity of Pakistan, the Eastern wing and the Western wing should be connected and they can be connected, if my friends from Western Pakistan start to learn Bengali and we learn Urdu.......
Shrl Srls Chandra Chattopadhyaya (East Bengal: General) :
Mr. President, I rise to support the, resolution moved by Mr. Nur Ahmed and •oppose the amendment which has been moved by Mr. Pirzada with trepidation.
The first cause of my trepidation in this debate is that when Mr. Nur Ahmed brought this resolution before this House the words uttered by him looked to me like some Msnlras on a Sradh ceremony. I know that Mr. Nur Ahmed, even when he gels up without moving any Resolution, talks much and it is always difficult (or the President to stop him within time, but what did he do today? He got up and read the resolution like Mantras on a Shradh ceremony without a word in support. I think really, he was gagged......
My second point is this that when there was an agitation in East Bengal—personally I do not know anything about that because I was absent from East Bengal at that time—the Chief Minisler of East Bengal hurriedly went to the East Bengal Assembly and himself moved a Resolution supporting the Bengali Language and promising that he would see that it is accepted as one of the State languages or something like that.
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin (East Bengal: Muslim):
Where did you get it from?
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya:
Did you not support it?
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin:
Why do you put in a Sentence which was not uttered by me?
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya ;
Did you move the resolution or not?
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin:
I said something else.
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya:
What is the Resolution which you moved?
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amln:
you can read yourself.
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya
: I was not there; I was .not a member of your Assembly. I did not get a copy but I saw it in newspaper.
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin:
Then why do you quote me; why do you tread on Ihe subject if you have not read the Resolution?
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya:
You moved that Resolution and it is reported that you said that you would come here and have that Resolution supported by this Assembly.
Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan:
You are treading on his pet corn.
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya: I know that. However, I had accepted that being the leader of the House in the East Bengal Assembly and having moved that Resolution, it would have been proper on his part himself to bring that Resolution before the House. I find, as he did not move the Resolution, nor has he said anything in support of the Resolution, that ho may be against the Bengali language being made a State language. That is the second reason for my trepidation; so that it may not be said here after that there was a talk over the language question in the Assembly but it came more from the Hindu side and therefore it was only a Hindu agitation—and it may be circulated thereafter that it was merely a Hindu agitation—as I find, there is already the allegation that the language agitation in East Bengal was engineered by the Hindus—the dhotiwalas and others—and not by the Muslims and handy Safety Act was used against some of them. That is my difficulty.
Then, Sir, my old friend, who was my colleague once—Mr. A.K. Fazlul Haq—in his old age is a very different man........
Mr. A. K. Fazlul Haq:
You are senior to me.
Shri Sris Chandra Chattopadhyaya: Mr. Fazlul Haq has asked for time. Sir, he who once wanted the Britishers to leave the shores of India, not giving them even 24 hours to do that, today comes forward to say that, though he knows this is an urgent matter, still be silent now and some lime may come—it may be after the doomsday—when Bengali will become a State language.
Now, who has nurtured this agitation; who was responsible for this agitation? There was an agitation in 1948. There was no agitation afterwards in Bengal, until there was speech—somebody may say are misquoting—but there was a speech by some big man in which he said Urdu was to be the Stale fanguage and no other language. I was not there, but that set the ball rolling and that brought together all Muslim Students—Students of Fazlul Haq Hall and Salimullah Hall—who came forward and started that agitation, It is slated that they were going on with this agitation months before the 21st February. If it was in their knowledge that they were agitating about the language issue, why did Mr. Nurul Amin rush to the House on the 22nd at nightfall to move his Resolution? If had moved that Resolution on the 20th the whole agitation would have fizzled out. There would have been no provocation for agitation.,.,.....,,.......
Mr. Chattopadhyaya, that is not the issue before us. You can speak in respect of the resolution and the amendment.
Sir Sris Chandra Chattopadhayaya: I am on the amendment. I do not agree with these words of the amendment, these words, "that there being no immediate necessity of taking a decision here and now." I do not agree with that. I say it is a very urgent matter. Already people are in temper in East Bengal. Therefore the sooner it is decided, one way or the other, it is better at least for the people of East Bengal. Because in that case they will not be back into the agitation and they will not give opportunity to the Government of East Bengal to use their Safety Act and other laws for terrorizing the people and it will no! be necessary for them to use firing squads against the youth and boys, that would be very wrong for them to do. But if it is postponed in this way without a final decision that will give cause for fresh agitation and will not stop the people of East Bengal from pressing their claims for recognition of Bengali as a State language. I am afraid of this. Again they will say it is being engineered by Hindus. I think, in that case our only course would be to leave the town of Dacca for sometime so that nobody can say Hindu are doing all this. Hindus had not taken part in agitation and will also remain aloof from any future movement on language question. We do not want to take part in this agitation. We do not agitate for Bengali language outside this House. This House is our only forum. We have tabled motions and we support this issue here and who had agitated for Bengali in this House before; and there it ended. We do not go outside to agitate. Many things have been stated and said in support of Bengali language. In this connection 12 Muslim Editors of East Bengal issued a statement, one of them is the Editor of the Azad of which my friend, Maulana Akram Khan, is the proprietor, strongly supporting the demand for Bengali as a State language............. I expected the mover to have spoken some words in support of his resolutions. I expected some of our Muslim members of this House from East Bengal would have spoken either way—either supporting or rejecting it. By keeping mum people there will understand they are not supporting the Bengali language. The people of East Bengal will be misled thereby.
The Honourable Mr. Nurul Amin:
I rise to speak a few words more for giving a personal explanation on account of certain mis-statements made by no less a person then Mr, Chattopadhayaya who is the leader of the Opposition in the Legislature.......
I understand he is leader in the Constituent Assembly, as well, that puts him to a position of much higher responsibility than being a leader in the Legislature. When I heard certain provocative statements coming down from his lips—mis-statements, incorrect facts—I thought that it was not the Bengali language which has created a loss of balance In him but It was something else which was in his mind and which was coming up before the House. This is a bill which is going to be moved with regard to the arrangements that will be made in East Bengal for the coming general election on the basis of separate electorates. As for myself, I did not speak because I thought the amendment which has made by the Honourable member Mr. Abdus Sattar was not inconsistent with the resolution moved by me in the Bengal Provincial Legislative Assembly or with any of the motions tabled my esteemed friends from East Bengali. But there was another reason lor which I did not speak. I wanted to see how far the Honourable members sitting on my right can go to create a cleavage between us; what are the arguments, what are the provocations, what are the appeals to our sentiments, in which they are part-masters, by which they want to create a cleavage. In that 1 hope I have been successful in exposing them to the best. This was not such a motion on which such lengthy and emphatic speeches would have been made. It was not the denial of the desire of the people of East Bengal it was not the shaving of-the question, but it is was a very simple proposition by which it is expected that better results may emerge. There has been a demand from East Bengal for Bengali language, no doubt. The people of Bengal also want that people on this side — their brethren on this side— should be educated and acquainted with their feelings, logic and justification. So, Sir, this postponement, to my mind, seems (or the better and not for the worse as has been interpreted by my honourable friends on the opposition. Each one of them has spoken in the strain that they are the only advocates, fathers and forefathers-of Bengali language; and the Muslims coming from East Bengal have no claim on Bengali language and have no love for that language. This is not their monopoly. They arrogate to themselves in certain matters to show to the world that they are the monopolists in these matters — in the .matter of preservation of right in a democratic country; in giving rights to the people; in giving rights to the people for the freedom of speech and all that. But they ''Should understand that we who are sitting here, who have got the responsibility to run the administration of the country, have got to be more "responsible then those......................
....Sir what was the resolution that I moved in the East Bengal Assembly to which several honourable members on this side, including the Leader of the Opposition, have referred. This is a simple resolution:
"The reason for moving this resolution is that there has been a good deal of confusion among a section of the members of the public that the action (hat was taken by the Government yesterday was on account of the demand by the students for Bengali to be one of the State languages. The issue have been confused because so far as that demand is concerned, the students brought out two peaceful processions on two occasions and the Government did not interfere,"
That was the occasion on which this resolution was moved. Then there was an amendment by member of that Assembly—-Begum Anwara Khatoon—to the effect.
"That it should be finally decided in the next session of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan."
Thai was the amendment and my reply was:
"Coming to the amendment of Begum Anwara Khatoon there also I find that it is not acceptable because we are not the persons, we are not the authority to decide whether this matter will be taken up in the next session of the Constituent Assembly or not."
So this amendment was also voted down. It was not accepted. So what I meant by this resolution— and I still stand by that— was that this resolution should be forwarded to the proper authority, the President of the Constituent Assembly, who will deal with this matter according to the rules governing such matters in the Constituent Assembly, and this has been sent to the President. I do not know what will happen to that, but when this matter comes up before this House in due lime, certainly I will mention the, resolution passed by the Legislative Assembly of East Bengal. This is not the proper time. This matter has come up before this House because certain motions have been moved by some members of this House and there has been an amendment to that motion, and I do not see how the amendment is contradictory to any of the resolutions which has asked Bengali to be one of the State languages in Pakistan, So long as the question of Bengali language remains pending, so long as the demand of East Bengal is no( decided adversely, I do see any fear in that. Rather I am hopeful that better results may come out of it. But there are members in this House who want to fish in troubled waters when they get a certain opportunity, and this is one of them.....
......Sir, I have confined myself to the issue. Sir, the resolution is of the East Bengal Assembly there, I have read out the wording of the resolution of the East Bengal Legislative Assembly, as also its intention. So it is not the question why I do not move that resolution here. A motive has been imputed by the Honourable the Leader of the Opposition. So there should not be a confusion which has been sought to be created amongst our people by the gentleman speaking from that side. I do not touch the points raised by Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan who has spoken from the Bench over there, because I know that his party being so small, he has got to be in the lap of my friend Mr. Chattopadhyaya....
: I am first putting the amendment to vote.
The question is:
That for the original motions the following to be substituted:
"That in view, of the fact that no decision has yet been taken in the matter of the State language and there being no immediate necessity of taking a decision thereon be it resolved that the question be decided by this Assembly when it comes up before it in due course."
(The House then divided)
1. Mr. Abduila-al Mahmood.
2. Maulana Md. Abdullah-el Baqui.
3. Maulana Md. Akram Khan.
4. The Hon'ble Mr, Azizuddin Ahmad.
5. Moulavi Ebrahim Khan.
6. The Hon'ble Mr, Fazlur Rahman.
7. Mr. Ghayasuddin Pathan.
8. Mr. Shahoodul Huque
9. The Hon'ble Dr. Fshtiaq Husain Qureshi
10. The Hon'ble Mr. Mafizuddin Ahmad
11. The Hon'ble Dr. Mahmud Husain.
12. The Hon'ble Dr. A. M. Mallk.
13. The Hon'ble Mr. Md Habibullah Bahar.
14. Mr. NurAhmed.
15. The Hon'ble Mr. Nurul Amin.
16. The Hon'ble Khwaja Nazimuddin.
17. Mr. Asadullah.
18. H. E Khwaja Shahabuddin.
19. The Hon'ble Mr. Abdul Hamid.
20. Sayd A.B.M. Husain.
21. Shri Dhanajoy Roy,
22. Mr. Akshay Kumar Das.
23. Mr. Abdul Monem Khan.
24. Mr. Choudhury Zahiruddin Moazzajn Hossain (Lalmian).
25. H. E. Ma'lik Md. Firoz Khan Noon.
26. The Hon'ble Mr. Moharnad AN.
27. The Hon'ble Sir Muhammad Zafrulla Khan.
28. The Hon'ble Sardar Abdur Rab Khan Nishtar.
29. Khan Iftlkhar Husain Khan of Mamdot.
30. Syad Khalilur Rahman.
31. Sardar Amir Azam Khan.
32. Shaikh Sadiq Hasan.
33. Sayed Ghulam Bhik Nairang.
34. Maiik Shaukat Ali
35. The Hon'ble Pirzada Abdus Sattar Abdur Rahman.
36. Mr M.H. Gazder.
1. Mr. Perm Hari Barma
2. Shri Dhirendra Nath Dutta
3. Shri Kamini Kumar Dutta.
4. Prof. Rajkumar Chakraverty
5. Shri Sris Chandra Chattapadhyaya.
6. Mr. Bhupendra Kumar Datta.
7. Mr. Jnanendra Chandra Majumdar
8. G. Mr. Birat Chandra Mondol
9. Mr. Bhabesh Chandra Nandy. •'(*1'1
10. Sardar Shaukat Hyat Khan.
11. Sardar Asadullah Jan Khan
12. Seth Sukhdev
The motion was adopted.
So all the other motions on the language issue fall through.
No. 2148PL, Dated the 3rd June, 1952.
READ—Government Notification No. 943-PL, dated the 13th March, 1952, stating that with regard to the firing that took place at Dacca on the 21st February 1952, an enquiry should be held by a judge of the Dacca High Court, to be nominated by the Hon'ble the Chief Justice, to ascertain whether—
(i) the firing by the police was necessary ; and
(ii) the force used by the police was justified in the circumstances of the case.
READ—The Report, dated the 27th May, 1952, submitted by the Hon'ble Mr. Justice T. H. Ellis, who was nominated by the Hon'ble the Chief Justice and appointed by Government to hold the enquiry.
The Government of East Bengal are pleased to accept the findings of the
Enquiring Judge that—
(i) the firing by the police was necessary ;
(ii) the force used by the police was justified in the circumstances of the case.
Ordered that a copy of the Resolution be forwarded to the Enquiring Judge, the Hon'ble Mr. Justice T. H. Ellis, for information.
Ordered also that copy of the Resolution together with a copy of the Report be forwarded to the Commissioner of the Dacca Division and the Inspector-General of Police, East Bengal, for information and necessary action.
Ordered further that the Resolution together with a copy of the Report be published in an extraordinary issue of the "Dacca Gazette".
The Hon'ble Mr. Justice Ellis,
High Court of Judicature,
The Chief Secretary
To The Government of East Bengal,
Dated Dacca, the 27th may, 1952,
I have the honour to submit herewith my report on the Firing by the Police at Dacca on the 21st of February, 1952, in pursuance of Notification No. 943PL, dated the 13th March, 1952, published in the Dacca Gazette, Extraordinary, dated the 13th March, 1952.
I have the honour to be,
Your most obedient servant,
T. H. Elliss.
Report of the Enquiry into the FIRING BY THE POLICE AT DACCA on the 21st February, 1952, in pursuance of Notification No. 943)L, dated the 13th March, 1952, published in the Dacca Gazette, Extraordinary, dated the 13th March, 1952, by the Hon'ble Mr. Justice Ellis of the High Court of Judicature at DACCA.
1. On the 31st of January, 1952, a Committee styled the "All-Party Committee of Action" was formed in order to direct the agitation which was being carried on in East Bengal for the inclusion of Bengali as State Language. This Committee claimed to guide and controls the agitation and announced through the medium of the Press that a mammoth demonstration would be staged in Dacca on the 21st of February, 1952 and called for a complete hartal on that date. The East Bengal Legislative Assembly would be in session on the 21st of February, 1952, and the Provincial Muslim League Council had also arranged to hold a meeting on that date. In these circumstances the District Magistrate of Dacca apprehended that the might be a breach of the peace and disturbance of public tranquility in the city; accordingly at about 5 o'clock in the afternoon of the previous day the 20th of February, 1952, he duly promulgated an order under sections 144 the Code of Criminal Procedure prohibiting processions, demonstrations a the assembly of 5 or more persons in any public place or thoroughfare in the city except with the prior permission of the District Magistrate. The order was promulgated by beat of drum throughout the city; a publicity van broadcast it through the microphones and copies were given to the various newspapers. Police arrangements were made to meet the expect emergency and by 7:30 a.m. on the 21st of February, 1952, the Control Room was manned and dispositions were, made of the Police forces accordance with these arrangements. Reports were received at the Cont Room and at the various police stations from an early hour in the morning that attempts were being made to enforce the hartal by closing down shops interfering with vehicular traffic and compelling passengers to dismount from buses, taxis, rickshaws and hackney carriages. Throughout the day the situation deteriorated and ultimately the Police opened fire at 3-20 p.m. the Medical College gate with the result that one person was killed on 1 spot and three others subsequently succumbed to the injuries they received. One of the persons killed was a student named Abul Barkat.
2. On Thursday, March 13, 1952, a notification, being Notification No. 943-PL, dated the 13th March, 1952, was published in the Dacca Gazet Extraordinary of that date. The notification is in the following terms :
"With regard to the firing by police that took place in Dacca on the 2' February, 1952, the Government of East Bengal has decided that enquiry should be held by a Judge of the Dacca High Court to be nominal by the Hon'ble the Chief Justice. The terms of reference of the enquiry are as follows: The enquire and report—
(i) whether the firing by the police was necessary, and (ii) whether the force thus used by the police was justified in t circumstances of the case or whether it was in excess of that necessary restore order.
The enquiry shall be held in camera. The Enquiring Judge may at discretion permit advocates to assist him in the conduct of the enquiry.
The enquiry shall start on a date to be fixed by the Enquiring Judge and shall be completed as soon as possible.
3. The notification recited that the Government of East Bengal had decided that the enquiry should be held by a Judge of the Dacca High Court nominated by the Hon'ble Chief Justice. Thereafter, I received a copy of an order dated the 17th of March, 1952, from His Excellency the Governor of East Bengal, directing that I should hold the enquiry. The order runs as follows:
"His Excellency the Governor of East Bengal is pleased to direct the Hon'ble Mr Justice T H. Ellis, a Judge of the High Court of Judicature at Dacca to hold an enquiry into the firing by the police at Dacca on the 21st February, 1952 as required under Notification No. 943-PI., dated the 13th March, 1952, published in the Dacca Gazette, Extraordinary, dated the 13th March,1952.
A. O. RAZIUR RAHMAN,
Secretary to the Governor of East Bengal."
4. On receipt of the order I issued the following notice:
"Statements in writing, preferably typewritten, of facts relevant to the firing
by the Police at Dacca on the 21st of February, 1952, are invited from
members of the public, members of the University student group of
organisations from the Provincial Government and any other part.es
The statements should be accompanied by a list of the full names and
addresses of the witnesses cited in their support.
The statements should be addressed to the Hon'ble Mr. Justice Ellis at the
High Court, Dacca, and should reach him on or before the 31st March,1952.
t. H. ELLISi
Judge, High Court, Dacca
The notice was given wide publicity by publication in the Provincial newspapers and by broadcast announcement over Road Pakistan.
5. The notice invited statements in writing from persons in a position speak to facts relevant to the firing by the Police on the 21st of February, 1952. In all I received 28 communications and of those 28 communications one related to the events of the 22nd of February, 1952, which did not fall within the scope of my enquiry and therefore did not call for consideration. Eleven of the communications were received from persons who thought that the firing by the Police was not warranted by the circumstances of the case. Two of the communications came from the convenor of the All-Party State Language Committee and from the acting General Secretary, East Pakistan Youth League respectively. They forwarded resolutions of those associations announcing that they did not propose to take part in the enquiry in a smuch as they objected to its scope and limitation. An anonymous petition purporting to come from the students and public complained that the students' leaders and the leaders of the public who were aware of the material facts had been kept in jail and thus were not in a position to make any statements relevant to the Police firing. One communication was a letter signed by one Syedule Huq of Mymenshingh who asked me to send his letter to the press for publication. It appeared that he was labouring under a personal grievance, had a private axe to grind and was anxious for a little free and safe publicity. One statement in Bengali, dated the 28th March, 1952, was received from a student of the Dacca College by name Mohd. Abdul Matin, but he subsequently withdrew in a letter of the 9th April, 1952 that statement on behalf of himself and the witnesses he had cited. A statement was sent by one Aktaruddin, President of the All East Pakistan Muslim Students' League, 24, S. M. Hall, Dacca, on the 27th of March, 1952. It did not reach me till the 1st of April 1952, one day after the date been dispatched on the 27th of March, 1952. It contained the surprising statement that a written order to fire was handed over to the Police officials from a private car from Burdwan House. It was accompanied by a letter expressing the students' mortification at the limited scope of the enquiry and then apprehension that it would prove impossible—or had been made impossible for me to gather the true facts of the occurrence. 6. The principal statement of the communicants who objected to the Police firing was received from one Dewan Harun Md. Maniruddin, a student of the Jagannath College, Dacca, He was the only person who claimed to have personally witnessed the Police firing. He submitted one statement on the 21st March, 1952, in which he gave the names of 5 witnesses but followed it up two days later by another statement, dated the 23rd of March, 1952, shorter but substantially on the same lines—in which he added the names of 17 more witnesses.
7. Sixteen statements were received from persons who complained that they had been the victims of lawlessness on the part of the student body on the 21st February, 1952. Some of them were bus conductors, drivers and rickshawalas, who had apparently gathered the impression that one of the functions of the enquiry was to assess damages and award compensation to persons whose vehicles had been damaged. The principal statement in justification of the firing was that submitted by the Government of East Bengal to which a list of 21 persons was attached as witnesses in a position to give evidence material to the enquiry.
8. I considered it desirable to secure the statements of all the persons whose names had been given in the various statements submitted and accordingly had notices issued or requiring requesting them to attend the enquiry for the purpose. The address proved insufficient to reach 8 of the persons whose names had been given and so no notice could be served upon them. Seven of those who actually did receive notice did not put in an appearance. They replied either declining to give evidence or explaining that they were not in a position to give any evidence material to the scope of the enquiry.
9. The Government notification of the the 13th March, allowed me at my discretion to permit Advocates to assist me in the conduct of the enquiry. Mr. Hamoodur Rahman appeared with my permission on behalf of certain of the Government officers concered in the enquiry. No other Advocate applied for permission to appear nor did any other party ask to be represented by an Advocate. Though the Government of East Bengal had submitted a statement it did not consider itself a party to the enquiry and was not legally represented. At my request however, Mr. Syed Abdul Ghani appeared as appointed by Government to assist me in the enquiry.
10. The hearing in a camera should have commenced on the 7th April, 1952, but on that date it proved impossible to examine any witness as certain preliminary arrangements were not completed in time. The examination of witnesses actually commenced on the 8th of April.
Witnesses whose statements were in support of the police claim that the firing was justified and was not in excess were examined on the 8th, 9th, 10th, 15th, 16th, 17th, and 18th of April, i.e., for 7 days. Witnesses whose
names figured in the statements disapproving of the firing were examined on the 21st, 22nd, 24th, 25th, 26th, 28th and 30th of April, i.e., for a similar period of 7 days. After the statements of the witnesses had been recorded two days were taken up in argument. Mr. Hamoodur Rahman presented the case for his silents on May 2nd, and Mr. Abdul Ghani argued his case on May 3rd. After the enquiry was concluded, although familiar with the topography of the scene of the firing I visited the locality to refresh my memory as to the position and lie of the buildings and landmarks figuring in the enquiry and to see for myself the bullet marks on the Medical College hostels. 12. Witnesses' statements recorded in the enquiry may conveniently be divided into 5 classes. The first class consists of official witnesses—1 to 21 and witness No. 36. Ashraf All Wahidi, a photographer attached to the firm of Messrs. Zaidi & Co., who took photographs at the instance of the police after the occurrence was over.
Mr. Md. Idris, P.S.P., S.P., Dacca 1
Mr. S.H. Quraishi, C.S.P., District Mangistrate, Dacca 2
Mr. A.Z. Obaidullah, D.I.G., Dacca Range 3
Mr. Md. Siddique Dewan, D.S.P., City, Dacca 4
Mr. Nuruddin Ahmed, S.D.O., Sadar South, Dacca 5
Mr. Masood Mahmood, P.S.P., Additional S.P., City, Dacca 6
Mr. Nabi Sher Khan, then R.I. 2nd, Dacca, Now R.I., Faridpur. 7
Mr. Md. Yosuf, Special Superintendent of Police, I.B., East Bengal, Dacca 8
Mr. Abdul Gofran, then O.C., Lalbagh, Dacca, Now Inspector of Police, Barisal 9
Mr. Md. Ashraful Huq, Inspector of Police, D.D., Dacca 10
Mr. J.D' Mellow, Inspector of Police, Dacca 11
The Hon'ble Mr. Hasan Ali Minister-in-charge of C.B.I. Department,
Government of East Bengal, Dacca. 12
Mr. Syed Abdul Majid, Director of Land Records and Surveys, East
Bengal, Dacca. 13
Mr. Aulad Hossain Khan, Parliamentary Secretary to Hon'bel Minister,
Civil Supplies, Government of East Bengal, Dacca. 14
Dr. Altafuddin Ahmed, Civil Surgeon, Dacca 15
Mr. Abdur Rahman, Sub-Deputy Magistrate, Dacca 16
Mr. A. Jabbar, Inspector of Police, Lalbagh Circle, Dacca 17
Dr. Habibuddin Ahmed, Professor of Midwifery and Gynaecology,
Medical College, Dacca. 18
Dr. Ahmed Hossain, Electro-Therapist attached to Medical College
Hospital, Dacca. 19
Dr. Hammadur Rahman, Medical Practitioner, Dacca 20
Dr. Shaikh Abdus Shakoor, Medical Practitioner, Dacca 21
Mr. Ashraf Ali Wahidi, Photographer attached to Messrs. Zaidi & Co. 36
13. The second class of witnesses consists of the 3 University officials:
Dr. I.H. Zuberi, Dean of the Faculty of Arts, and Head of the Department
of English, Dacca University. 37
Dr. M.O. Ghani, Provost, Salimullah Muslim Hall, Dacca 38
14. The third class of witnesses consists of 10 students, 7 of them being, students residing in the Medical College Hostel and 3 of them being outsiders
The students are—
Abdul Malik 42
Safiuddin Choudhury 47
Hurmat Ali 50
Md.Gholam Zulfiquar 52
Aminur Rahman 53
Rafiqur Raza Choudhury 54
Syed Abdul Malik 60
and the 3 outsiders are—
Ahsanullah, Resident of Salimullah Muslim Orphafiage, Dacca 58
Shaikh Md. Abdul Hye 62
Dewan Haroon Md. Maniruddin 64
15. The 4th class of witnesses may be described as witnesses hailing
from the Medical College. Of their number, four are doctors-
Dr. Zinnur Ahmed Chaudhury 39
Dr. Abdul Masood Khanmajlis 40
Dr. Nawab Ali 41, and
Dr. Abdus Samad Khan Chaudhury 55
Three of the witnesses are nurses, viz-
Sister Miss Eliza Kuruala 43
Miss Nur Jehan Begum 44, and
Miss Pulu Costa 48
Five of the witnesses are Ward boys and Ambulance attendants, viz.—
Deedar Bux 45
Mohammed Mian 46
Muslim Khan 59, and
Ramzan Khondkar 61
Witness No. 51, Mr. Abdus Sattar Dewan is connected with the Medical
College Hospital being its Accountant and witness No. 63, Mr. Ekhlas
Uddin Ahmed is a representative of the firm of Khondkar & Co.,
Contractors to the Medical College Hospital.
16. The 5th and the last class of witnesses consists of those persons who may be conveniently grouped together as witnesses belonging to the public.
They are— Witness No.
Mir Muslim, Bus driver 22
Mansur, Bus conductor 23
Sona Mian, Rickshaw-puller 25
Pear Bux, Rickshaw-puller 27
Faku Mian, Rickshaw-puller 29
Kala Chan, Rickshaw-puller 30
Nawab Mian, Rickshaw-puller 31
Ashrafuddin, Rickshaw-puller 32
Abdul Hamid, Rickshaw-puller 33
Witness, No. 26, Khairllah, is a Rickshaw passenger. In this class also
Dr. A. Musa A. Huq, a medical practitioner 24
Mr. Md. Kamal, M.A., At present unemployed 28
Mr. Abdus Sattar, A technician of the A.P.P. 34
Matil Islam, an Assistant in the C.L. and I. Department, Government of
East Bengal, Dacca. 56, and
Mr. Noor Mohammed, an Assistant in the Air Custom Office, Tejgaon,
17. The witnesses who were represented by Mr. Hamoodur Rahman had
already had their statements recorded and these were produced as each of
the witnesses presented himself at the enquiry. As it was thought advisable
to do so, each of the witnesses was examined by Mr. Hamoodur Rahman and
was then cross-examined Mr. Ghani. When the witnesses who had been
cited in disapproval of the firing presented themselves they were questioned
by the presiding officer first of all and were then questioned by Mr. A. Ghani
and Mr. Hamoodur Rahman in turn. It may be added that none of the
witnesses deposed on oath as the enquiring officer had no power to
administer an oath to any person appearing as a witness in the enquiry.
It may be here observed that the witnesses whose evidence is really
immaterial in this enquiry are the 8 official witnesses, 6 police officers-
Mr. Md. Idris, P.S.P., S.P., Dacca 1
Mr. A.Z. Obaidullah, D.I.G., Dacca-Range 3
Mr. Md. Siddique Dewan, D.S.P., City Dacca 4
Mr Mohammed Yusuf, Special Superintendent of Police, I.B., East
Bengal, Dacca 8
Mr. Abdul Gofran; then Officer in Charge, Lalbagh P.S. Dacca, now
Inspector of Police, Barisal 9
Mr. Mir Ashraful Huq, Inspector of Police, Detective Department, Dacca;
and two Magistrates 10
Mr. S.H. Quraishi, C.S.P., District Magistrate, Dacca 2
Mr. Nooruddin Ahmed, S.D.O., Sadar, South, Dacca and non-official
Mr. Md. Kamal, M.A. 28
Dewan Haroon Md. Maniruddin 64
These are the only witnesses who claim actually to have seen police the
firing. The evidence of the other witnesses is important only in so far as it is
of assistance in assessing the situation as it developed from the early
morning of the 21st of February up to the time when the police actually
opened fire at 3-20 p.m.
19. With regard to the incidents in the morning the police witnesses claimed that the day opened with interference with vehicular traffic in the University area from 7-30 a.m. The Police had anticipated that the hartal declared for the 21st February would soon lead to trouble in the University are and had made arrangements to face the emergency. Accordingly the police forces took up their position according to the arrangements previously made by 7-30 in the morning. Md. Siddique Dewan, City D.S.P., Dacca, being detailed for duty in the University ground. Mr. Masood Mahamood, the Additional Superintendent of Police, City, went out on his rounds and visited the Police Outposts from the early morning. In the University area he saw that students were stopping vehicular traffic, forcing passengers to alight from buses, taxis, rickshaws and cars and the tyres of those conveyances were deflated in order to prevent them from being used subsequently. The Police officers intervened in order to keep traffic moving and were abused in filthy language and in particular the Additional S.P., City, was made the target of the students' attack. The Superintendent of Police, Mr. Idris, at 7-45 a.m. received information that a large number of students had collected inside and outside the University premises and the Medical .College Hostel compound and they were compelling drivers of vehicles to stop and passengers to alight in order to enforce the declared hartal. The Superintendent of Police hurried to this troublous spot at 8-15 in the morning and found that the students were actually using violence in order to stop vehicular traffic as had been reported to him. The S.P. tried his best to dissuade the students from carrying on these activities but he found that his protests were not having any effect and as he anticipated trouble he stationed police in that particular area. At 9 a.m. at the University gate he had in position the D.S.P., City, one Inspector, two head constables and 20 constable of the S.A.F., one Inspector, one Sub-Inspector, one Sergeant, two head constables and 14 constables armed with lathis. At the Medical College gate he had one head constable, and 10 constables of the S.A.F., and near the Salimullah Muslim Hall he had one head constable, and 10 constables and the constables were armed.
20. At about this time people began to collect in the University compound in driblets, small groups of students and outsiders filtering into the compound until by 10 a.m. a large number of persons had assembled in the University compound and preparations were being made for a meeting. The situation by 10 a.m. had become so tense that a message was sent to Mr. Quraishi, the District Magistrate, and he immediately proceeded to the University, gate. When he reached the spot, Mr. Quraishi found that a very large crowd had gathered at the gate and inside the University compound which was indulging in abuse of the police and preparing for a mass defiance of the orders under section 144 of the Code. Mr. Quraishi got the Registrar of the University to telephone to the Vice-Chancellor, asking for the University authorities to persuade the students not to violate the order under section 144, Cr, P.C. Shortly after the arrival of the District magistrate the Vice-Chancellor, together with Dr. Zuberi and Dr. Ghani had arrived on the scene. The District Magistrate Mr. Quraishi, requested them to prevail upon the students to stop their unlawful activities, to refrain from interference with traffic on the public highway and to refrain from violating section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. When the Vice-Chancellor approached the students whose number he estimated at 1,000 or so, at first they asked him to lead their procession in violation of the order. He proposed that they might hold a meeting, pass a resolution and then disperse. The students met this proposal with a request for him to give them a lead in the matter and preside over the meeting. He did not agree. But he said he was prepared to associate with them if they gave him a guarantee that they would behave peacefully and disperse peacefully after the meeting. The guarantee was never given though some of the leading students tried without success to prevail upon the general body of students. The Vice-Chancellor refused to accept the students' suggestion that he should act according to the decision of the meeting. It was abundantly clear that the students were in no mood to listen to any reasonable suggestions and had obviously made up their minds to violate the orders under section 144 of the Code. 21. The meeting which was held inside the University compound broke up at about 11 a.m. The students then "terribly excited" according to Dr. Zuberi, took possession of the University gate and according to the statements o the Vice-Chancellor and his two colleagues they began to emerge from the gate in small batches of 5, 7 or 10 at a time in order to court arrest by the Police. The police witnesses stated that they came out in batches of 25 or 30. The University authorities stated that the students went out of the gate as their names were called from a roster-list in a note-book—a circumstance which establishes beyond doubt that the "meeting" was merely a specious pretence, the students had made all preparations beforehand for their defiance of section 144 and had selected the names of the students who were to defy the order and had arranged the order in which particular students were to leave the University premises for that purpose. As the students emerged through the University gate the Police arrested them— ignoring the girl students—and indeed some of the students of their own accord climbed into the vehicles which were to convey them to the police-stations. In all 91 persons were arrested and by that time all available accommodation in the police vehicles had been filled up and the Police were in the embarrassing position of not being able to remove any more persons under arrest. Sensing this embarrassment the crowd became more truculent and began to throw brickbats at the Police. The Police had to make further arrangement in the disposition of their forces. Some constables had to be sent in order to escort the students who had been arrested. The Additional S.P., City, was sent to the Assembly House in order to guard the same as it was reported that the students intended to stage a march on the Assembly House and a gas squad was brought to the University gate. At this time the disposition of the police force was as follows:
At the University gate one Inspector, one Sub-Inspector, one head constable, 6 constables of the S.A.F., one head constable and 4 constables armed with lathis and 14 constables of the gas squad. At the Madical College gate there was the D.S.P., City, one head constable and the 10 constables of the S.A.F. At the Assembly House corner there was the Additional S.P., City, 3 Sergeants, one Sub-Inspector and 2 head constables and 18 constables armed, one head constable and 4 constables with lathis and one head constable and 6 constables of the gas squad. 22. After the arrest of the 91 offenders who violated section 144 of the Code there was a general rush from the University compound. The mob began to run in the direction of the Assembly buildings shouting slogans such as, "Rastra; Bhasa Bangala Chai", "Police Zulum Chalbe Na". Its members were informed by the S.P. and the District Magistrate that they constituted an unlawful assembly and unless they dispersed force would be used to disperse them. They did not disperse and so the police fired gas shells and threw gas grenades in order to disperse them. The result of the gas attack was that the students scattered only to reassemble in the Medical College area and on the other side of the Secretariat Road in the University playground. The students could pass from the University compound area into the Medical College compound area because the wall which separates the two at that time was breached and it was physically possible to pass from one compound to the other within the University area without coming ou
21 March 1948
Assalam-o-Alaikum! Assalam-o-Aalikum!! Assalam-o-Aalikum!!!
I am grateful to the people of this province and, throught you, Mr. Chairman of the Reception Committee to the people of Dacca for the great welcome that they have accorded to me. I need hardly say that it gives me greatest pleasure to visit East Bengal. East Bengal is the most important component of Pakistan, inhabited as.it is by the largest single bloc of Muslims in the world. I have been anxious to pay this province an early visit, but unfortunately other matters of greater importance had so far prevented me from doing so.
About some of these important matters you doubtless know. You know, for instance, of the cataclysm that shook the Punjab immediately after partition, and of the millions of Muslims who in consequence were uprooted from their homes in East Punjab, Delhi and neighbouring districts and had to be protected, sheltered and fed pending rehabilitation in Western Pakistan. Never throughout history was a new state called upon to face such tremendous problems. Never throughout history has a new state handled them with such competence and courage. Our enemies had hoped to kill Pakistan at its inception. Pakistan has, on the contrary, arisen triumphant and stronger than ever. It has come to stay, and play its great role for which it is destined.
In your address of welcome you have stressed the importance of developing the great agricultural and industrial resources of this province, of providing facilities for the training of the young men and women of this province for entering the Armed Forces of Pakistan, of the development of the port of Chittagong and of communications between this province and other parts of Pakistan, of development of educational facilities and finally you have stressed the importance of ensuring that the citizens of Eastern Pakistan get the due and legitimates share in all spheres of Government activity. Let me at once assure you that my Government attaches the greatest importance to these matters and is anxiously and constantly engaged in ensuring that Eastern Pakistan attains its full stature with the maximum of speed. Of the martial progress of the people of this province, history provides ample evidence and, as you are aware, Government ha already taken energetic steps to provide facilities for the training of the youth of this province both in the regular Armed Forces and as volunteers i the Pakistan National Guards. You may rest assured that the fullest provision shall be made for enabling the youth of this province to play its part in the defense of this State.
Let me now turn to some general matters concerning this province. In doing so let me first congratulate you, the people of this province and your Government, over the manner in which you have conducted yourselves during these seven months of trials and tribulations. Your Government and loyal, hardworking officials deserve to be congratulated on the speed and efficiency with which it succeeded in building up an ordered administration out of the chaos and confusion which prevailed immediately after partition. On the 15th August, the Provincial Government in Dacca was a fugitive in its own home. It was faced with the immediate problem of finding accommodation for thousands of Government personnel in what was, after all before partition only a small mofussil town. Hardly had Government got to grips with administrative problems thus created when some seventy thousand Railways and other personnel and their families suddenly arrived in this province driven out of India partly by panic owing to the disturbances immediately following the partition. There were further, owing to the wholesale departure of Hindu personnel, great gaps left in the administrative machinery and entire transport and communication system had been disorganized. The immediate task that faced the Government, therefore was hurriedly to regroup its forces and reorganize its administrative machine in order to avert an imminent administrative collapse.
This the Government did with extraordinary speed and efficiency. The administration continued to function unhampered, and the life of the community continued undisturbed. Not only was the administration speedily reorganized but the great administrative shortages were quickly made go° • so that an impending famine was averted, and what is equally important, peace was maintained throughout the province. In this latter respect, much credit is due also to the people of this province in particular to the members of the majority community, who showed exemplary calm and determination to maintain peace despite the great provocation afforded by the massacre and oppression of the Muslims in the Indian Dominion in the months immediately after partition. Despite those horrible happenings, some forty thousand processions were taken out by the Hindu community during the last puja in this province without a single instance of the breach of peace, and without any molestation from the Muslims of this province.
Any impartial observer will agree with me that throughout these troubles the minorities were looked after and protected in Pakistan better than anywhere else in India. You will agree that Pakistan was able to keep peace and maintain law and order; and let me tell you that the minorities not only here in Dacca but throughout Pakistan are more secure, more safe than anywhere else. We have made it clear that the Pakistan Government will not allow peace to be disturbed; Pakistan will maintain law and order at any cost: it will not allow any kind of mob rule. It is necessary to draw attention to these facts, namely, the building up of an orderly administration, the averting of an imminent famine and the maintenance of the supply of food to some forty million people in this province at a time of overall food shortage and serious administrative difficulties, and the maintenance of peace, because there is a tendency to ignore these achievements of the Government and to take these things for granted.
It is always easy to criticise ; it is always easy to go on fault-finding, but people forget the things that are being done and are going to be done for them, and generally they take those for granted without even realizing as to what trails, tribulations, difficulties and dangers we had to face at the birth of Pakistan. I do not think that your administration is perfect, far from it; I do not say that there is no room for improvement; I do not say that honest criticism from true Pakistani's is unwelcome. It is always welcome. But when I find in some quarters nothing but complaint, faultfinding and not a word of recognition as to the work that has been done either by your Government or by those loyal officials and officers who have been working for you day and night, it naturally pains me. Therefore at least say some good word for the good that is done, and then complain and criticize. In a large administration, it is obvious that mistakes must be made not expect that it should be faultless; no country in the world can be so. But our ambition and our desire is that it should be as little defective as possible. Our desire is to make it more efficient, more beneficial, more smooth working. For what? What has the Government got for its aim? The Government can only have for its aim one objective - how to serve the people, how to devise ways and means their welfare, for their betterment. What other object can the Government have and remember, now it is your hands to put the Government in power o remove the Government from power; but you must not do it by mob methods You have the power; You must learn the art to use it; you must try and understand the machinery. Constitutionally, it is your hands to upset one Government and put another Government in power if you are dissatisfied to such an extent.
Therefore, the whole thing is in your hands, but I advise you strongly to have patience and to support the men who are at the helm of your Government, sympathize with them, try and understand their troubles and their difficulties just as they should try and understand your grievances and complaints and sufferings. It is by that co-operation and that good spirit and goodwill that you will be able not only to preserve Pakistan which we have achieved but also make it a great State in the world. Are you now, after having achieved Pakistan, going to destroy it by you own folly? Do you want to build it up? Well then for than purpose there is one essential condition, and it is this- complete unity and solidarity amongst ourselves.
But I want to tell you that in our midst there are people financed by foreign agencies who are intent on creating disruption. Their object is to disrupt and sabotage Pakistan. I want you to be on your guard; I want you to be vigilant and not to be taken in by attractive slogans and catchwords. They say that the Pakistan Government and the East Bengal Government are out to destroy you language. A bigger falsehood was never uttered by a man. Quite frankly and openly I must tell you that you have got amongst you a few communists and other agents financed by foreign help and if you are not careful, you will be disrupted. The idea that East Bengal should be brought back into the Indian Union is not given up, and it is their aim yet, and I am confident- I am not afraid, but it is better to be vigilant— that those people who still dream of getting back East Bengal into the Indian are living in a dream- land.
I am told that there has been some exodus of the Hindu community from this province. I have been the magnitude of this exodus put at the fantastic figure of ten lakhs in the India Press. Official estimates would not put the figure beyond two lakhs at the utmost. In any case, I am satisfied that such exodus as has taken place has been the result not of any ill-treatment of the minority communities. On the other hand, the minority communities have enjoyed, and rightly so, greater freedom, and have been shown greater solicitude for their welfare than the minorities in any part of the Indian Dominion.
The causes of this exodus are to be found rather in the loose talk by some war-mongering leaders in the Indian Dominion of the inevitability of war between Pakistan and India in the ill-treatment of the minorities in some of the Indian provinces and the fear among the minorities of the likely repercussions of that ill-treatment here, and in the open encouragement to Hindus to leave this province being sedulously given by a section of the Indian press, producting imaginary accounts of what it calls the plight of the minorities in Pakistan, and by the Hindu Mahasabha. All this propaganda and accusations about the ill-treatment of the minorities stand belied by the fact that over twelve million non-Muslims continue to live in this province in peace and have refused to migrate from here.
Let me take this opportunity of repeating what I have already said: we shall treat the minorities in Pakistan fairly and justly. Their lives and property .in Pakistan are far more secured and protected than in India and we shall maintain peace, law and order and protect and safeguard fully every citizen of Pakistan without distinction of caste, creed or community.
So far so good. Let me now turn to some of the less satisfactory features of the conditions in this province. There is a certain feeling, I am told, in some parts of this province, against non-Bengali Muslims. There has also lately been certain amount of excitement over the question whether Bengali or Urdu shall be the State language of this province and of Pakistan. In this latter connection, I hear that some discreditable attempts have been made by political opportunists to make a tool of the student community in Dacca to embarrass the administration.
My young friends, students who are present here, let me tell you as one who has always had love and affection for you, who has served you ten years faithfully and loyally, let me give you this word of warning: you will be taking the greatest mistake if you allow yourself to be exploited by one Political party or other. Remember there has been a revolutionary change. It is our own Government. We are a free independent and sovereign state. Let us behave and regulate our affairs as free men: we are not suppressed and oppressed under the regime of a foreign domination; we have broken those — is, chains, we have thrown off those shackles. My young friends I look forward d to you as the real makers of Pakistan, do not be exploited and do not be misled. Create amongst yourselves complete unity and solidarity. Set an example of what youth can do. Your main occupation should be -, in fairness to yourself, in fairness to your parents, in fairness to the state, -to devote your attention to your studies. If you fritter away your energies now you will always regret. After you leave the portals of your universities and colleges then you can play your part freely and help yourself and the state. Let me warn you in the clearest terms of the dangers that still face Pakistan and your province in particular as I have done already. Having failed to prevent the establishment of Pakistan thwarted and frustrated by their failure, the enemies of Pakistan have now turned their attention to disrupt the state by creation a split amongst the Muslims of Pakistan. These attempts have taken the shape principally of encouraging provincialism.
As long as you do not throw off this poison in our body politic, you will never be able to weld yourself, mould yourself, galvanise yourself into a real true nation. What we want is not to talk about Bengali, Punjabi, Sindhi, Baluch, Pathan and so on. They are of course units. But I ask you: have you forgotten the lesson that was taught to us thirteen hundred years ago? If I may point out you are all outsiders here. Who were the original inhabitants of Bengalis or Sindhis or Pathans, or Punjabis". Now we are Muslims.
Islam has taught us this, and I think you will agree with me that whatever else you may be and whatever you are, you are a Muslim. You belong to a nation now; you have now carved out a territory, vast territory, it is all yours; it does not belong to a Punjabi or a Sindhi, or a Pathan, or a Bengali; it is yours. You have got your Central Government where several units are represented. Therefore if you want to build up yourself into a Nation, for God's sake give up this provincialism. Provincialism has been one of the curses; and so is sectionalism-Shia, Sunni, etc.
It was no concern of our predecessor Government; it was no concern of theirs to worry about it; they were to carry on the administration, maintain law and order and to carry on their trade and exploit India as much as they could. But now we are in a different position altogether. Now I give you an example. Take America. When it threw off British rule and declared itself independent, how many nations were there? It had many races : Spaniards, French, Germans, Italians, English, Dutch and many more. Well, there the were. They had many difficulties. But mind you their nations were actually in existence and they were great nations ; whereas you had nothing. You have got Pakistan only now. But there a Frenchman could say 'I am a Franchman and belong to a great nation', and so and so on. But what happend? They understood and they reaised difficulties because they had sense, and within a very short time they solved their problems and destroyed all this sectionalism, and they were able to speak not as a German or Frenchman or an Englishman or a Spaniard, but as American. They spoke in the spirit: ' I am an American' and 'we are Americans'. And so you should thing, live and act in terms that your country is Pakistan and you are a Pakistani.
Now I ask you to get rid of this Provincialism, because as long as you allow this poison to remain in the body politic of Pakistan, believe me, you will never be a strong nation, and you will never be able achieve what I wish we could achieve. Please do not think that. I do not appreciate the position. Very often it becomes a vicious circle. When you speak to a Bengali, he says : 'Yes you are right but the Punjabi is so arrogant': when you speak to the Punjabi or non-Bengali, he says 'Yes but these people do not want us here, they want to>get us out'. Now this is a vicious circle, and I do not think anybody can solve this Chinese puzzie. The question is, who is going to be more sensible, more practical, more statesman-like and will be rendering the greatest service to Pakistan? So make up your mind and from today put an end this sectionalism.
About language, as I have already said, this in order to create disruption amongst the Mussalmans. Your Prime Minister has rightly pointed this out in a recent statement and I am glad that his Government has decided to put down firmly any attempt to disturb the peace of this province by political saboteurs or their agents. Whether Bengali shall be the official language of this province is a matter for the elected representatives of the people of this province to decide. I have no doubt that this question shall be decided solely in accordance with the wishes of the inhabitants of this province at the appropriate time.
Let me tell you in the clearest language that is no truth that your normal life going to be touched or disturbed so far as your Bengali language is concerned. But ultimately it is for you, the people of this province, to decide what shall be the language of your province. But let me make it very clear to you that the State Language of Pakistan is going to be Urdu and no other language. Any one who tries to mislead you is really the enemy of Pakistan Without one State Language, No nation can remain tied up solidly together and function. Look at the history of other countries. Therefore, so far as the State Language is concerned, Pakistan's language shall be Urdu. But as I have said It will come in time.
I tell you once again do not fall into the trap of those who are the enemies of Pakistan. Unfortunately, you have fifth-columnists- and I am sorry to say they are Muslims-who are financed by outsides. But they are making a great mistake. We are not going to tolerate sabotage any more; we are not going to tolerate the enemies of Pakistan; we are not going to tolerate quislings and fifth-columnists in our state, and if this is not stopped, I am confident that your Government and the Pakistan Government will take the strongest measures and deal with them ruthlessly, because they are a poison. I can quite understand differences of view. Very often it is said, why cannot we have this party or that party"? Now let me tell you, and I hope you will agree with me; that we have as a result of unceasing effort and struggle ultimately achieved Pakistan after ten years. It is the Muslim League which has done it. There were of course many Mussalmans who were indifferent; some were afraid because they had vested interests and they thought they might lose; some sold themselves to the enemy and worked against us, but we struggled and we fought and by the grace of God and with His help we have established Pakistan which has stunned the world.
Now this is a sacred trust in your hands, i.e. the Muslim League. Is this sacred trust be guarded by us as the real custodians of the welfare of our country and our people, or not? Are Mushroom parties led by men of doubtful past to be started to destroy what we have achieved or capture what we have secured? I ask you one question. Do you believe in Pakistan? (Cries of yes, yes). Are you happy that you have achieved Pakistan? (Cries of yes, yes). Do you want East Bengal or any part of Pakistan to go into the Indian Union? (No, no). Well, if you are going to serve Pakistan, if you are going to build up Pakistan, if you are going to reconstruct Pakistan, then I say that the honest course open to every Mussalman is to join the Muslim League party and serve Pakistan to the best of his ability. Any other mushroom parties that are started at present will be looked upon with suspicion because of their past, not that we have any feeling of malice, ill-will or reveange. Honest change is welcome, but the present emergency requires that every Mussalman should come under the banner of the Muslim League, which is the true custodian of Pakistan and build it up and make it a great State before we think of parties amongst ourselves which may be formed later on sound and healthy lines.
Just one thing more. Do not feel isolated. Many people have spoken to me that East Bengal feels isolated from the rest of Pakistan. No doubt there is a great distance separating the East from the West Pakistan; no doubt there are difficulties, but I tell you that we fully know and realize the importance of Dacca and East Bengal. I have only come here for a week or ten days this time, but in order to discharge my duty as the Head of the State I may have to come here and stay for days, for weeks, and similarly the Pakistan Ministers must establish closer contact. They should come here and leaders and members of your Government should go to Karachi is the capital of Pakistan. But you must have patience, with your help and support we will make Pakistan a mighty State.
Finally, let appeal to you-keep together, put up inconveniences, sufferings and sacrifices, for the collective good of our people. No amount of trouble, no amount of hard work or sacrifice is too much or to be shiked if you individually and collectively make a contribution for the collective good of your Nation and your State. It is in that way that you will build up Pakistan as the fifth largest State in the world not only in population as it is but also in strength, so that it will command the respect of all the other nations of the world. With these words I wish you God-speed.
Pakistan Zindabad. Pakistan Zindabad. Pakistan Zindabad.
Source: Quaid-l-Azam Mohammad AH Jinaah speeches as Governor-General of Pakistan 1947-1948 (Islamabad : Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, N.d.) pp. 82-91
Mr. Chancellor, Ladies and Gentlemen,
When I was approached by your Vice-Chancellor with a request to deliver the Convocation Address, I made it clear to him that there were so many calls on me that I could not possibly prepare a formal convocation address on an academic level with regard to the great subjects with which this University deals, such as arts, history, philosophy, science, law and so on. I did however, precise to say a few words to the students on this occasion, and it is fulfillment of that promise that I will address you now.
First of all, let me thank the Vice-Chancellor for the flattering terms in which he referred to me. Mr. Vice-Chancellor, whatever I am, and whatever I have been able to do, I have done it merely as a measure of duty which is incumbent upon every Mussalman to serve his people honestly and selflessly.
In addressing you I "am not here speaking to you as Head of the State, but as a friend, and as one who has always held you in effecting. Many of you have today got your diplomas and degrees and I congratulate you. Just as you have won the laurels in your University and qualified yourselves, so I wish you have success in the wider and larger world that you will enter. Many of you have come to the end of your scholastic career and stand at the threshold of life. Unlike your predecessors, you fortunately leave this University to enter life under a sovereign Independent State of your own. It is necessary that you and your other fellow students fully understand the implications" of the revolutionary change that took place on the birth of Pakistan. We have broken the shackles of slavery; we are now a free people. Our State is our own State. Our Government is our own Government of the people, responsible to the people of the State and working for the good of the State. Freedom, however, does not mean licence. It does not means that you can now behave just as you please and do what you like, irrespective of the interests of other people or the State. A great responsibility rests on you and, on the contrary, now more than ever, it is necessary for us to work as a united and disciplined nation. What is now required of us all is constructive spirit and not the militant spirit of the days when we were fighting for our freedom. It is far more difficult to construct than to have a militant spirit for the attainment of freedom. It is easier to go jail or fight for freedom than to run a Government. Let me tell you something of the difficulties that we have overcome and of the in exploiting this controversy is to create a split among the Muslims of this State as indeed they have made no secret of their efforts to incite hatred against non-Bengali Mussalmans. Realising, however, that the statement that your prime minister made on the language controversy, on return from Karachi, left no room for agitation, in so far as it conceded the right of the people of this province to choose Bengali as their official language if they so wished, these persons changed their tactics. They started demanding that Bengali should be the State language of the Pakistan Centre and since they could not overlook the obvious claims of Urdu as the official language of a Muslim State they proceeded to demand that both Bengali and Urdu should be the State language of Pakistan. Make no mistake about it. There can be only one State language, if the component parts of this State are to march forward in unison, and that language, in my opinion, can only be Urdu. I have spoken at some length on this subject so as to warn you of the kind of tacties adopted by the enemies of Pakistan and certain opportunist politicians to try to disrupt this State or to discredit the Government. Those of you are about to enter life, be on you guard against these people. Those of you, who still to continue your studies for sometime, do not allow yourselves to be exploted by any political party or self-seeking politician. As I said the other day, your main occupation should be in fairness to yourselves, in fariness to your parents and indeed, in fairness to the State to devote your attention solely to your studies. It is only thus that you can equip yourselves for the battle of life that lies ahead of you. Only thus will you be an asset and a source of strength and of pride to your State. Only thus, can you assist it in solving the great social and economic problems that confront it and enable it to reach its destined goal among the most progressive and strongest nations of the world.
My young friends, I would therefore, like to tell you a few points about which you should be vigilant and beware. Firstly, beware of the fifth-columnists among ourselves. Secondly, guard againest and weed out selfish people who only with to exploit you so that they may swim. Thirdly, learn to judge who are really true and really honest and unselfish servants of the State who wish to serve the people with heart and soul and support them. Fourthly, consolidate the Muslim League party which will serve and build up a really and truly great and glorious Pakistan. Fifthly, the Muslim League has won and established Pakistan and it is the Muslim League whose duty it is now, as custodian of the sacred trust, to construct Pakistan. Sixthly, there may be many who did not lift their little fingers to help us in our struggle, may even opposed us and put every obstacle in our great struggle openly and not a few worked in our enemy's camp against us, who may now come forward and put their own attractive slogans catch-words, ideals and programmes before you. But they have yet to prove their bonafides or that there has really been an honest change of heart in them, by supporting and joining the League and working and pressing their views within the League party organisation and not by starting mushroom parties, at this juncture of very great and grave emergency when you know that we are facing external dangers and are called upon to deal with internal complex problems of a far-reaching character affecting the future of seventy millions of people. All this demands complete solidarity, unity and discipline. I assure you, "Divided you fall. United you stand".
There is another matter that I would like to refer to. My young friends hitherto, you have been following the rut. You get your degrees and when you are thrown out of this University in thousands, all that you think and hanker for is Government service. As your vice-Chancellor has rightly stated the main object of the old system of education and the system of Government existing hitherto, was really to have well-trained, well-equipped clerks. Of course, some of them went higher and found their level, but the whole idea was to get well-qualified clerks. Civil Service was mainly staffed by "the Britons and the Indian element was introduced later on and it went up progressively. Well, the whole principle was to create a mentality, a psychology, a state of mind that an average man, when he passed his B. A. or M. A. was to look for some job in Government. If he had it he thought he had reached his height. I know and you all know what has been really the result of this. Our experience has shown that an M. A. earns less than a taxi driver and most of the so-called Government servants are living in a more miserable manner than many menial servants who are employed by well-to-do people. Now I want you to get out of that rut and that mentality and specially now that we are in free Pakistan. Government cannot absorb thousands. Impossible. But in the competition to get Government service most of you get demoralized. Government can take only a certain number and the rest cannot settle down to anything else and being disgruntled are always ready to be exploited by persons who have their own axes to grind. Now I want that you must divert your mind, your attention, your aims and ambition to other channels and other avenues and fields that are open to you and will increasingly become so. There is no shame in doing manual work and labour. There is an immense scope in technical education for we want technically qualified people very badly. You can learn banking, commerce, trade, law, etc. which provide so many opportunities now. Already you find that new industries are being started, new banks, new insurance companies, new commercial firms are opening and they will grow as you go on. Now these are avenues and fields open to you. Think of them and divert your attention to them, and believe me. You will thereby benefit yourselves more than by merely going in for Government service and remaining there, in what I should say, circle of clerkship, working there from morning till evening, in most dingy and uncomfortable conditions. You will be far more happy and far more prosperous with far more opportunities to rise if you take to commerce and industry and will thus be helping not only yourselves but also your State. I can give you one instance. I know a young man who was in Government service. Four years ago he went into a banking corporation on two hundred rupees, because he had studied the subject of banking and today he is Manager in one of their firms and drawing fifteen hundred ruppes a month—in just four years. These are the opportunities to have and I do impress upon you now to think in these terms.
Finally, I thank you again Mr. Chancellor and particularly you, Mr. Vice-Chancellor, for the warm welcome you have given me and the very flattering references made by you. I hope, may I am confident that the East Bengal youth will not fail us.
Source : Quaid-l-Azam Mohamanad AH Jinnah speeches as Governor-General of Pakistan 1947-1948, pp. 92-98.