Iqbal’s clarification about his Allahabab Address
Following is the letter, Allama Iqbal wrote to Prof. Edward John Thompson of Oxford University:
Dr. Sir Mohd Iqbal, M.A., Ph.D. Barrister-at-Law
Lahore 4 March 1934
My dear Mr. Thompson,
I have received your review of my book. It is excellent and I am grateful to you for the very kind things you have said of me. But you have made one mistake which I hasten to point as I consider it rather serious. You call me a protagonist of the scheme “Pakistan”. Now Pakistan is not my scheme. The one that I suggested in my address is the creation of a Muslim province i.e a province having an overwhelming population of Muslims in the North West of India. This new province will be according to my scheme, a part of the proposed Indian federation. Pakistan scheme proposes a separate federation of Muslim provinces directly related to England as a separate dominion. This scene originated in Cambridge. The authors of this scheme believe that we Muslim Round Tablers have sacrificed the Muslim nation on the altar of the Hindu or the so called Indian Nationalism.
Mohammed Iqbal. Importance
Iqbal’s address is the forceful and logical presentation of the Muslim case in India. Why should they be treated as a political entity rather than a minority? The answer is as follows;
Territorial adjustments will enable the Muslims to develop themselves in accordance with their ideals and serve the cause of Ummah.
Redistribution of territory developed later on the concept of Muslim homeland.
He further expressed these ideas in letters to JINNAH from May 1936 to November 1937. He talked of a separate federation of Muslim provinces. The North Western India and Bengal can be considered as entitled to self-determination like other nations in India and outside. Shariah’s development is impossible without a free Muslim state or states. He advised the Muslims to be above the self-interest and devote themselves to Islam.
In difficult times, Islam has saved the Muslims.
Faith, culture and historical traditions are more important than patriotism.
Features of Federation
A Federation is a union of government. It has the following features; 1) Sets of governments:
Federation comprises two sets of governments, federal and federating governments. 2) Division of supreme powers:
The supreme powers are divided on the principle that matters of common interest or of national importance are entrusted to the central government, while local matters and interests are entrusted to the unit governments. 3) Dual government:
Federation envisages a union rather than unity. It creates a dual government and not s Unitary one. The federating units preserve their separate, autonomous, distinct entity and exercise supreme and original authority within their spheres of powers. They are not reduced to non-entity as are the administrative units of a Unitary State. They are no mere agents of the central government, and do not exist on its discretion. They have their own separate and autonomous existence, guaranteed by the constitution,on which also depends the existence of the central government. 4) Sovereignty:
The State which federate into a union lose their former sovereignty because their union creates a new State which now becomes sovereign. 5) Federation is made:
A federation is made, it does not grow. 6) Written constitution:
It has a written constitution so as to prevent any doubt or dispute on the distribution of powers between the federal and federating governments. Neither the federal nor the unit government can amend the constitution with a view to redistributing the supreme powers. 7) Amendment:
The constitution clearly prescribes the process of amending it. The constitution is supreme. Sovereignty lies with the body or bodies which have the power to amend the constitution. Permanent union:
Federation is a permanent union. This feature distinguishes it
a) from a confederation which is a loose and limited union of State, and
b) from alliances of sovereign State such as N.A.T.O or the U.N.O