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Territorial disputes, unequal citizens and the rise of majoritarian nationalism in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh
Amit Ranjan

This chapter argues that the partition of British India in 1947 remains an ‘unfinished’ process. The debates and issues that led to the partition continue to create tensions between the communities. The chapter opens by examining the territorial disputes that emerged due to the partition of British India. While some of the territorial issues have been resolved, Jammu and Kashmir remain a bone of contention between India and Pakistan. The chapter also addresses the citizenship debates that surfaced in India following partition. Finally, the chapter analyses the political positions and social status of the minorities in India, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

in The breakup of India and Palestine
The causes and legacies of partition
Editors: and

This book is the first study of political and legal thinking about the partitions of India and Palestine in 1947. It explains how these two formative moments collectively contributed to the disintegration of the European colonial empires and unleashed political forces whose legacies continue to shape the modern politics of the Middle East and South Asia. The chapters in the volume, authored by leading scholars of partition, draw attention to the pathways of peoples, geographic spaces, colonial policies, laws and institutions that connect them from the vantage point of those most engaged in the process: political actors, party activists, jurists, diplomats, writers and international representatives from the Middle East, South Asia and beyond. Additionally, the volume investigates some of the underlying causes of partition in both places, such as the hardening of religious fault lines, majoritarian politics and the failure to construct viable forms of government in deeply divided societies. Finally, this book analyses why, even seventy-five years after partition, the two regions have not been able to address some of the pertinent historical, political and social debates of the colonial years. It moves the debate about partition away from the imperial centre, by focusing on ground level arguments about the future of postcolonial India and Palestine and the still unfolding repercussions of those debates.

Institutions, policies, laws and people
Victor Kattan
Amit Ranjan

The introduction compares and contrasts the decisions taken by the British Government and the United Nations to partition India and Palestine in 1947 by drawing attention to their timing, which occurred within months of each other. The chapter then traces the etymology of partition to earlier imperial divisions in the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, portraying partition as an imperial continuum. The similarities in British administrative policies in India and Palestine are then considered – identifying colonial subjects by their socially constructed religious identities – and attention is drawn to the provenance of both places as holy lands. The role of institutions, such as the League of Nations and the United Nations, in partition, are then considered, as well as the influence of external powers such as the USA and the Soviet Union. Finally, the introduction summarises the contributions in the chapters that follow.

in The breakup of India and Palestine