Kashmir Accedes to INDIA

On this day 72 years ago, Jammu & Kashmir agreed to become a part of India
Maharaja Hari Singh of Jammu & Kashmir signed the Instrument of Accession on 26 October 1947, in the midst of a tribal invasion supported by Pakistan.

In June 1947, about 60,000 ex-army men (mostly from Poonch) had started a no-tax campaign against the Maharaja. The campaign later turned into a secessionist movement following 14 and 15 August, when Poonch Muslims hoisted Pakistani flags. The Maharaja imposed martial law in Poonch, which further angered the Muslims there. With ammunition and personal support provided by the tribals of Pakistan’s NWFP, the situation got more complex, according to Victoria Schofield’s book Kashmir in Conflict: India, Pakistan and the Unending War.

Weary of all this, Maharaja Hari Singh released Sheikh Abdullah, who, in his first very first public meeting, reiterated that “the demand of the Kashmiri is freedom”. He also took a jibe at Jinnah, saying: “How can Mr Jinnah or the Muslim League tell us to accede to Pakistan? They have always opposed us in every struggle. Even in our present struggle (Quit Kashmir), he (Jinnah) carried on propaganda against us and went on saying that there is no struggle of any kind in the state. He even called us goondas.”

However, according to Jyoti Bhusan Das Gupta’s book Jammu and Kashmir, Mountbatten warned that “it would be dangerous to send in any troops unless Kashmir had first offered to accede”, arguing that it would result in an India-Pakistan war. He suggested the accession should be considered as provisional, and “when law and order had been re-established in Kashmir, a plebiscite should be held as regards Kashmir’s future”.

The Defence Committee sent V.P. Menon, secretary of the Ministry of the States, to Srinagar to “make an on-the-spot study” the same day. He returned to New Delhi the next day with his impressions, and suggested sending troops to Kashmir, pointing out the “supreme necessity to save Kashmir from raiders”.

In the meantime, the new prime minister of J&K, Mehr Chand Mahajan, warned: “We have decided by 25th evening to go to India if we get a plane or else to Pakistan to surrender.”

Menon was then flown to Jammu to advise the Maharaja about the government’s view, and that’s when the Maharaja finally signed the Instrument of Accession on 26 October, and Menon returned to Delhi with Mahajan.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: It’s NationFirst Content, Don’t copy