separatism since the Act reaffirmed the
but also virtual perpetual majorities in the new full provinces of Sind and the
NWFP, the Punjab and 48.6 per cent of seats in Bengal. But fears of Hindu
domination would continue since the proposed federation would be strong
rather than loose and residuary powers would rest with the center and not
with the provinces. Though the movement towards a Muslim state had been
advanced by a constitutional discussion, it had still not been taken to its
COINING OF THE TERM PAKISTAN
In 1933 Rahmat AIi, a Muslim student at Cambridge, published a
pamphlet in which he advocated a separate Muslim State in the north-west
of India. He named it Pakistan which meant ‘the land of the pure’ and was
coined from the first letters of Punjab, Afghania (i.e. NWFP), Kashmir,
Sind and the final part of Baluchistan. Again, the territorial area was
delimited and did not include Bengal, where Muslims were concentrated.
The idea of a separate nation, of Pakistan, had thus achieved definite shape
and was mooted but, in 1935-6, it had little support and was not at all an
important issue of the day. Muslim opinion accepted the reality of the
community’s separate interests and identity but was not prepared to go
further and consider the Muslims as a separate national entity. Within five
years the opinion changed.
Growth of the Movement
Even in 1934 Muslim politics were in the doldrums. The League was
disunited, its organisation was minimal and its membership sparse and elitist
in nature. It had little influence upon Muslim politics which in the NWFP
were dominated by the Congress-oriented ‘Red Shirts’, the Khudai
Khidmatgar, under Abdul Ghaffar Khan; in the Punjab by the Unionist Party
(which also had non-Muslim members) led by Sir Fazil-i-Husain; in the Sind
there were three different Muslim organisations and in Bengal too the most
important and intransigent was the Krishak Praja Samiti, led by Fazlul Haq.
In Muslim minority provinces like the UP and Bombay its position was
slightly better but only marginally so.