The 19th Century
|1818 — British begin colonial rule over all of India.|
|1857 — First Indian War of Independence, also known as Indian Mutiny or the Sepoy Rebellion.|
|1858— India comes under direct British rule after losing the rebellion.|
|1885 — Burma becomes part of Indian province.|
|1885 — Indian National Congress formed.|
The 20th Century
|1905 — The British government divides Bengal into separate Hindu and Muslim states.|
|1919 — Amritsar Massacre occurs on April 13. British soldiers fired into crowd of Punjabis as they gathered in Jallianwalla Bagh.|
|1920 — Mahatma Gandhi begins Indian Independence Movement through civil disobedience and his power in the Indian National Congress. He was assassinated in 1948.|
|1935 — A new constitution is drafted for India. Five years later, the idea for a different country for Muslims, named Pakistan, is brought into political play.|
|1946 — British government agree to a free India. Muslims hold national demonstrations for the creation of Pakistan.|
|1947 — India is officially independent and Partition occurs.|
|1948 — First India/Pakistan war over disputed Kashmir territory.|
|1965 — Second India/Pakistan war over Kashmir.|
|1990-92 — Violent Muslim separatists groups rise in Pakistan and Hindu extremists react by demolishing a mosque, heightening Hindu/Muslim religious tensions.|
The 21st Century
|2000 — Indian population increases to over 1 billion people and war in the mountains of Kashmir territory reaches a conclusion.|
|2002 — Tensions begin increasing again between Pakistan and India over the Kashmir territory.|
|2005 — The first bus services begin operations through Indian-administered Kashmir and Pakistani-administered Kashmir.|
|2009 — Hindu/Muslim religious violence increases rapidly, thousands are killed. Pakistan and India pledge to fight against terror together and improve border ties.|
|2019 — Security forces face clashes against Pakistan jihadist group in Indian-administered Kashmir territory.|
"At least 14 million people were forced into migration as they fled the ethnic cleansings and retributive genocides that consumed South Asia during the India/Pakistan Partition, which lead to India's and East and West Pakistan's independence from colonial Britain. An estimated 1 to 2 million people died during the months encompassing Partition. An estimated 75,000 to 100,000 women were abducted and raped. Partition remains one of the largest forced migrations in human history; its effects and divisions echo to this day."
- Partition began in 1947, when Great Britain agreed to allow India to become an independent power. Hundreds of thousands of Muslims were forced to migrate into the newly created Pakistan, while the same amount of Hindus and Sikhs were forced to come into India. A mutual genocide occurred, and was expected.
- Massacres, arsons, forced conversions, mass abductions, and extreme sexual violence occurred. Many women were raped, dismembered, and/or disfigured.
- Fifteen million people were uprooted, with the death toll possibly as high as two million. The forced migration has been branded into the culture and society of South Asian people, and is considered to be one of the most central historical events.
More information on Partition:
"you're kashmiri until they burn your home. take your orchards. stake a different flag. until no one remembers the road that brings you back."
-Fatimah Asghar, "Partition" pg. 9
- When Partition occurred, 650 independent states remained who could, in theory, choose which country they wanted to belong to. However, cultural and social divides created a struggle, and many decided that they wanted to remain independent.
- In 1947, the Prince of Kashmir had both Muslim and Hindu subjects, while he himself was Hindu. Because of the religious divide, he chose to remain neutral. This decision has lead to years of political turmoil.
- Two wars have been fought between Pakistan and India over control of the Kashmir territory, but the cultural significance of the area extends over centuries, leading to each side fighting for the right to intellectual property and religious creativity.
- Another pertinent quote from If They Come for Us: "'Nobody in India will love me' -Cyril Radcliffe, who made the borders of Partition in less than 40 days without ever previously visiting South Asia". -pg. 66 from "They Asked for a Map"
More information on Kashmir:
Grace McKenna ’19