September 25, 2022
Hyderabad Liberation: 75 years of the merger of the princely state of Hyderabad with the Indian Union, now the shadow of electoral politics

Hyderabad Liberation: The Nizam’s state of Hyderabad has completed 75 years of its merger with the Indian Union and the central and state governments are holding separate programs in Telangana to commemorate the occasion. While the Center is celebrating it as ‘Hyderabad State Liberation Day’, Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao is celebrating “National Unity Day”.

Maharashtra and Karnataka already observe this day as Marathwada Liberation Day and Hyderabad Karnataka Liberation Day (some areas of both the states come under the princely state of Hyderabad), so the Center aims to celebrate the day in three states.

historical context

When India became independent on August 15, 1947, it was struggling to bring some 500 princely states of the country into the union. Among the states that did not accept to join the Union was Hyderabad. This led Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to say that an independent Hyderabad would be like a “cancer in India’s stomach”.

In the 1940s, a strong peasant movement led by the communists had begun against the Nizam. When discussions began about accession to India, the Nizam and the elite of his princely state were in favor of an independent Hyderabad, but the majority of the population, including peasant protesters, wanted to join the Union of India.

The Nizam used a paramilitary force called the “Razakar” to terrorize and suppress the peasants and to lead an armed resistance against joining the union. On August 27, 1948, the Razakars looted the villages and killed many people indiscriminately to crush the demand for accession to India at Bhairanapalli. On September 17, 1948, the Indian Army entered the princely state, which included modern Telangana and some areas of Maharashtra and Karnataka, as part of Operation Polo. In less than a week, the Nizam and Razakar squads surrendered.

electoral politics

Assembly elections are to be held in Telangana state next year. All the parties are busy preparing for it. The BJP is trying to convert the anniversary of the historic occasion into an opportunity to gain a political edge against the TRS and its ally, the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM).

relationship with razakars

Owaisi-led party Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen or MIM is alleged to be an organization born out of Razakar and opponents of merger with the Union of India. The MIMIM maintains that the original Majlis came to an end after September 17, 1948. According to historian Mohammad Nooruddin Khan, MIM President Qasim Razvi and other senior leaders of the organization had gone to Pakistan after handing over the reins to Abdul Waheed Owaisi, grandfather of Asaduddin Owaisi. Nooruddin Khan says that before this Abdul Waheed Owaisi was not associated with this organization. However, this issue will remain in the elections again, that is for sure. BJP has made all preparations to surround TRS and AIMIM. TRS supremo KCR has a big challenge to retain power this time. KCR also faces a challenge to show his mettle in national opposition politics.

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