Modi Is Wrong. Sardar Patel Offered Kashmir to Pakistan: Saifuddin Soz

“Patel consistently offered Kashmir to Pakistan, but Liaquat Ali Khan was stubbornly obsessed with an imaginary idea of getting Hyderabad-Deccan.”

Saifuddin Soz. Credit: Twitter ANI

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s assertion in Lok Sabha on February 7, that if Sardar Patel’s line of thinking were allowed, there would be no issue on Kashmir as it would have got fully integrated with India, is “contrary to the facts of history” said professor and former Union minister Saifuddin Soz on February 9.

In a statement, Soz, who is from Jammu and Kashmir, says his forthcoming book Kashmir: The Complete Story has details of this, “Patel consistently offered Kashmir to Pakistan, but Liaquat Ali Khan remained stubbornly obsessed with an imaginary idea of getting Hyderabad-Deccan which was neither connected by rail nor road with Pakistan.”

In the statement, Soz said in their books, Chaudhre Mohammad Ali, former Pakistan prime minister, and former minister and senior Muslim leader Sirdar Shaukat Hayat Khan lamented Liaquat Ali Khan’s attitude.

History is based on facts and it can hardly help politicians who present their own perceptions as facts of history, Soz said.

“I propose Prime Minister Modi to start a serious study on the history of India’s Freedom Struggle for his better understanding on Nehru and his relationship with Sardar Patel and Mahatma Gandhi,” he said.

On Wednesday, Modi tore into the Congress while replying to the Motion of Thanks on President’s Address, blaming the party for “dividing India.”

“Out of 15 Congress committees, 12 chose Vallabhbhai Patel, three chose not to take any sides, and still, Vallabhbhai Patel was not allowed to lead the country. What sort of democracy was that? If Sardar Patel had become the prime minister, today a part of our beloved Kashmir would not have been under Pakistani occupation,” he said.

However, many experts pointed out that the Prime Minister  was wrong  on facts. Historian S Irfan Habib  quoted Patel as saying in 1949: “It is good that we have agreed to partition in spite of all its evils; I have never repented my agreeing to partition.”

In an article in the magazine, Frontline, well-known political commentator A.G.  Noorani also mentions that on November 27, 1972, the then President of Pakistan, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, told a tribal jirga at Landikotal about Sardar Patel’s offer to swap Kashmir for Junagadh and Hyderabad.

“A quarter century later, on November 27, 1972, the President of Pakistan, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, told a tribal jirga at Landikotal that India’s first Home Minister and Minister for the States, Sardar Patel, had, at one stage, offered Kashmir to Pakistan in exchange for Junagadh and Hyderabad. But, he added, Pakistan “unfortunately” did not accept this offer with the result that it not only lost all the three native states but East Pakistan as well.”

Noorani goes on to add that “This is fully corroborated by the memoirs of Chaudhary Mohammed Ali, The Emergence of Pakistan (page 299). Patel asked Liaquat Ali Khan: “Why do you compare Junagadh with Kashmir? Talk of Hyderabad and Kashmir and we could reach an agreement.” Patel repeated this offer publicly at a meeting in Junagadh on November 11, 1947. “Our reply was that one could agree to (sic.) Kashmir if they agreed to Hyderabad.”

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  • ashok759

    Beyond a point, it matters little how differently Sardar Patel and Pandit Nehru viewed Kashmir. That was then, this is now. Whatever got baked into the cake is being served to us, one piece at a time. India and Pakistan have fought wars, a low intensity conflict continues, the economic development of the subcontinent, the effectiveness of Saarc have been affected. 2. Reading Sardar Patel’s views now, it becomes clear how perspicacious the man who integrated half a thousand princely states was. He knew this was a fishbone that would lodge itself in the throat, remain stuck there. For what it is worth, Sardar Patel’s current admirers could attempt to fashion a more accomodative narrative in Kashmir, one he would have approved of.

    • Ek Aur India

      Thank you for a balanced view. This is why i have hope despite bhakts ruining this country but quashing any meaningful debate in the country over the last 3 years. All we have seen is empty promises and when we ask for accountability what we get is last 70 years, comments on Gandhi dynasty, Nehru bashing and what not. And, not Sardar Patel. If Patel were alive today he would have given Modi a dose of his own medicine, Patel was iron man of India for nothing.

      I trust politicians of that time more than i do these jokers like Modis and Rahuls.

  • Ek Aur India

    Whats even sadder is that he’s lying in parliament and some people think its okay because of their hate for congress. If you can lie in parliament then who are you really accountable to? Parliament is where facts are presented and what you say go into record unlike election rallies where you can get away by saying you will deposit 15 lakhs and then say that was to make a point.