How did the Muslim League play a role in the partition of India and Pakistan?

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The Muslim League was founded in 1906 to protect the rights of Muslims living in India. As India was poised for independence in 1947, the Muslim League lobbied the British to create a separate Muslim nation. They were worried that a unified India would be dominated by the Hindu majority...

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The Muslim League was founded in 1906 to protect the rights of Muslims living in India. As India was poised for independence in 1947, the Muslim League lobbied the British to create a separate Muslim nation. They were worried that a unified India would be dominated by the Hindu majority and the Muslim needs and priorities would be sidelined. The leader of the Muslim League, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, was able to convince the British that this two-state solution would be a favorable one. He pointed to the Hindu–Muslim riots in Calcutta in 1946 to help illustrate that a unified India would only be prone to unrest and violence. Separate nations would be more sustainable and peaceful. It was not an elegant solution though. The partition left a significant Muslim minority in India and many Hindus in Pakistan. A massive migration marked by violence followed. East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) was separated from the rest of the country by 1700 kilometers. However, the Muslim League succeeded in creating a homeland for Muslims of the former colony of India.

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The Muslim League, formed in 1906, was founded in the context of an emerging Indian nationalist movement that was dominated by Hindu intellectuals. The purpose of the league was to promote Muslim interests and civil rights in the movement. As it became evident that limited self-government would eventually lead to Indian independence, the Muslim League represented the interests of Muslims in the Indian National Congress. The leader of the Muslim League, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, endeavored to create a two-state proposal for the subcontinent, and persuaded the British authorities that such a solution was viable after negotiations for a single-state solution broke down. When the British finally left the subcontinent, they did so under the understanding that Jinnah would govern a separate Pakistan, which he did beginning in 1947. The Muslim League thus helped to provide a foundation for protecting Muslim interests once independence was achieved. It should be noted, however, that neither Muslim nor Hindu leaders were able to control the actions of radicals who slaughtered opposing groups in disputed areas throughout the subcontinent, and hundreds of thousands of Muslim and Hindu Indians lost their lives in the process.

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