Note on terminology
in Borders and conflict in South Asia


Throughout this book, I refer to pre-partition India as ‘British India’, in order to avoid confusion with independent India. The use of this term should not be interpreted as negating South Asian agency. When referring to the leaders of the Indian National Congress and the Muslim League during the pre-partition period, I avoid the potentially confusing term ‘Indian leaders’, often used by contemporary British officials. I prefer the term ‘nationalist leaders’ or ‘South Asian leaders’. For the post-independence period, it is of course proper to refer to these groups as ‘Indian’ or ‘Pakistani’. Following convention, I also use the terms ‘British Government’ and ‘Britain’ as a useful shorthand for decision-makers within the British Government. References to ‘Britain’ should not be taken as a reference to the British people as a whole, who of course held a wide range of views on imperial policy and the appropriate course of British action in South Asia. For the sake of consistency I use the spelling Muhammad throughout, although this name can be transliterated in a variety of ways.

Borders and conflict in South Asia

The Radcliffe boundary commission and the partition of Punjab


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