Cabinet Mission, 1946

On 19th February 1946, British prime minister Attlee declared settling up of Cabinet Mission for resolving constitutional deadlock and contemporary problems. The purpose of Cabinet Mission was to further the process of self governance in India with the cooperation of Indian leaders. Latter Attlee declared that the British government  recognizes the right to independence of India and it would be the right of India whether or not to remain part of British empire. 

On 24th March 1946, cabinet mission reached Delhi, it included three British cabinet ministers: Pethick Lawrence, Cripps and A.B. Alexander.

to be continued ...

Royal Indian Navy (RIN) Revolt (1946)

On 18th February 1946, the ratings of Royal Indian Navy revolted. The cause of the mutiny was unhygienic food, racial discrimination and salary. The arrest of V.C. Dutta, a sailor, who wrote 'Quit India', on INS Talwar, also taken as the reason of mutiny.

The mutineers organized Navy Central Strike committee under the leadership of MS. Khan. The mutiny that began in Bombay soon reached Karachi and Madras. The ratings replaced Union Jack flag with flag of Indian National Congress, Muslim League and Communist party.

The Indian army that was called to suppress the mutiny also refused to raise arm, then British soldiers were called. About 20 Lakh workers of Bombay went on strike in favor of these ratings. When the news of mutiny of ratings of Bombay reached Karachi, INS Hindustan and INS Narmada along with employees of Ship Coastal organization went on strike. On 23rd February 1946, the signal corps of airforce in Jabalpur went on strike.

Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel intervened in this violated situation and advised mutineers to surrender. Patel was aware of the repressive measures that was about to be followed. Patel's view was supported by V.C. Dutta, prominent leader of mutineers.

Elections in India in 1946

Attlee became Prime Minister of Britain and appointed Pethick Lawrence as the secretary of India. Attlee declared general elections in India and the results were announced in December 1945 and January 1946. Congress secured 57 out of 102 seats in Central Legislative Assembly. Congress formed government in United Province and Central Province, Orissa, Bihar, Bombay and Madras, In North West Frontier Province , congress formed a coalition government with Khudai Khidmatgar. In Punjab Congress formed coalition government with Akali Dal and Unionist Party. Muslim League formed government in Bengal and Sindh.

Wavell Plan / Shimla Conference

Lord Wavell became viceroy of India in October 1943, the situation in India was very tense at that time. Wavell came out with a plan on 14th June 1945 which had following proposals : 
a) The executive council creation at centre comprising all Indian members other than viceroy and commander in chief.
b) The executive council was an interim arrangement for the period till the concensus over the permanent constitution.
c) All the congress leader were to be released, imprisoned in Quit India Movement.

Nehru released from Almorah Jail, Abul Kalam Azad from Bakuda Jail and G.B. Pant from Naini Jail.

Abul Kalam Azad was in jail from 1942-1946 and before that he was the president of congress and no session was held during this period.

The Shimla conference was organized on 25th June 1945 to discuss the Wavell plan. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad participated as the representative of Congress and Mohd Ali Jinnah represented Muslim League. Other members were J.L. Nehru, Sardar Patel, Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan, Master Tara Singh and Ismail Khan. Jinnah demanded that all Muslim members of the executive council should be from Muslim League only. This demand of Jinnah resulted in the failure of the proposal and on 14 July 1945, Wavel plan was declared failed. At a conference, Wavell provided such a veto power to Mulsim League,  it could be used by them against any constitutional proposal. Maulana Abul Kalam referred failure of Shimla conference as the water shed in the political history of India.