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Pakistan a legacy of British Empire: Analysts

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“After its defeats in Anglo-Afghan wars in 1842, 1880 and 1919, Britain wanted to avenge the defeats in form of carving Pakistan out from the land of Afghanistan and India. Pakistani leadership was aware of the fact that Pashtuns would never accept Pakistan as their homeland, therefore, it ordered the massacre of Babrra in Charsadda district on August 12, 1948 and suppressed the voice of Pashtuns’ freedom and rights.”

AT-KABUL: Discussing the dramatic and mysterious creation of Pakistan in 1947, analysts opined in a monthly gathering of the Rana Think Tank that Pakistan has been created by the exhausted Great Britain for continuation of its policies in the South Asia region.

Abdur Rasheed Waziri, a political affairs analyst and member of the Academy of Sciences, said the British Empire was not interested in bringing positive social changes or to promote Christianity or establish a political structure for benefits of the Indians, but wanted to expand the empire.

The British Empire was a product of the industrial revolution that wanted to pursue its expansionist policy—from Asia to America, he said, adding that the British had advanced armed forces and was industrial power. Thus, having he ground to expand the boundaries.

Criticizing the Afghan government for the absence of a modern regional studies center in the past, he said that since 1893 the leaders have not established any specific organization to study Pakistan and Indian affairs or understand policies of other neighboring and regional countries.

Throwing light upon the factors helped in creation of Pakistan, he said that failed revolution of 1857 in India had brought the Moghal Empire in Delhi to an end and the power from East India Company went directly into the hands of the queen of England.

“Creation of Pakistan is dramatic in a sense that neither it had geographical structure nor proper ideological base. It is said that Pakistan and Israel came into being on the basis of religious ideology. However, the two are protecting interests of the West. Israel is protecting the West’s interest in Middle East while Pakistan is protecting their interest in South Asia. There is no difference between the two countries, except nature of the ideologies,” he opined.

Congress in India wanted to unite all groups and fight for an independent and secular state where all minority groups have equal rights. However, the British Empire was against it. The British Empire supported Muslim League since 1930. She had divided Muslims and Hindus in India and even paved ground for communal riots, said Waziri.

He pointed out that the Great Britain given rights to all provinces and princely states to decide about their fate—either join Pakistan or India. However, the then North West Frontier Province (NWFP) was deprived of this right. A referendum was held in NWFP (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa).

Khudai Khidmatgar Movement, led by Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan or Bacha Khan, boycotted the referendum and has sent a letter to Lord Mountbatten, saying that NWFP is part of Afghanistan. Bacha Khan was told that England could not give NWFP in a “golden plate” to Afghanistan as Afghan leaders are sleeping and not claiming the lost territory back, he underlined.

Dr. Amanullah Hameedzai, head of the Rabbani education university, said that Pashtuns living on the other side of the Durand Line are also in favor of Greater Afghanistan which was a dream of Bacha Khan. He said that Baloch and Pashtuns were against Pakistan since day first.

Naveed Ahmad, member of the Afghanistan Sciences Academy, said that situation on the ground was not allowing Afghanistan to claim its lost territories. He said that Afghanistan should focus on infrastructure rebuilding and economic growth in order to take back from the occupiers what was of it once.

  1. Nadeem Alizai, an Afghan-Pak affairs analyst, said that after its defeats in Anglo-Afghan wars in 1842, 1880 and 1919, Britain wanted revenge.

“From where this two-nation theory come that Hindus and Muslims are two separate nations. Why it did not come at a time when Muslims were ruling India? For me it is a baseless theory carved out by those who wanted to have a base for Pakistan, a country that is not Islamic from any point. Even Muslim scholars were against creation of Pakistan,” Alizai said, adding that Moghal Empire met its end in 1857 but the British started interference into Afghanistan since long.

“They supported Shah Shuja of Afghanistan in 1809. They were against Dost Mohammad Khan when he took power in 1823. Khan was governing Peshawar, Ghazni, Kandahar and Kabul in 1826. When Ranjit Singh taken Peshawar, the British governor general Lord Auckland declared war in 1837 against Kabul instead of helping Dost Mohammad Khan. Kabul was taken by British in 1839 and lost it in 1841. Around 4,000 British troops and 12,000 camp followers were killed by the Afghan freedom fighters. Thus, we can say that since long the British Empire wanted direct influence in Afghanistan,” he quipped.

He said that Pashtuns marked the August 14 (Independence Day of Pakistan) this year as Black Day. Alizai said that Pakistani leadership was aware of the fact that Pashtuns would never accept Pakistan; therefore, ordered the massacre of Babrra in Charsadda district on August 12, 1948.

He urged the National Unity Government to take up the issue of the Durand Line in the United Nations as the agreement has expired long ago.

“Those rulers who have not taken the issue seriously, they will be called traitors by the coming generations. Therefore, the current leadership shall fight for the lost territories in the UN and other international platforms,” he suggested.

He said that Afghans should launch campaigns in this regard to pressurize the government and prod the international community to recognize the rights of Afghans living on the other side of the Durand Line.