(M S Shanker)
Why KCR is afraid of organizing theHyderabad Liberation Day on a grand scale? The answer is simple. It is to gain the vote banks of minority community!
Let me recount in broad outline some of the details of Hyderabad Liberation.
Following atrocities by the Razakars, Operation Polo, Hyderabad “Police Action” was launched between 13 to 17 September 1948 by the Indian Armed Forces which overthrew the Nizam of Hyderabad and his forces were swiftly defeated and to integrate the state into the Indian Union to avoid Balkanization of South Asia.
Indian forces suffered 32 killed and 97 wounded; Hyderabad forces suffered 807 killed and 1647 as POWs; and Razakars suffered 1373 killed and 1911 captured.
No wonder, as September 17 is drawing closer, the right-wing Bharateeya Janata Party’s criticism against the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) is growing louder and stronger.
Fearing a Hindu civil uprising in his own kingdom, the Nizam allowed Razvi to set up a voluntary militia of Muslims called the ‘Razakars’. The Razakars – who numbered up to 200,000 – swore to uphold Islamic domination in Hyderabad and the Deccan plateau.
From the beginning of 1948 the Razakars extended their activities from Hyderabad city into the towns and rural areas, murdering Hindus, abducting women, pillaging houses and fields, and looting non-Muslim property in a widespread reign of terror. Some women became victims of rape and kidnapping by Razakars. Thousands went to jail and braved the cruelties perpetuated by the oppressive administration. Nearly 40,000 refugees moved into the Central Provinces.
As per Sunder Lal Committee report released in 2013, 27000 to 40000 civilians lost their lives before, during and after the operation as per conservative estimates.”Other scholars have put the figure at 200,000, or even higher.
So, BJP demands that the celebrations of the Hyderabad Liberation Day be done in a befitting and grand manner. The rightist party argues had the struggle was not launched to fight against erstwhile Nizam, Hyderabad would have become another thorn in independent Indias ‘flesh’ as Jammu and Kashmir is now.
It was at the behest of Sardar Patel that the “Operation Polo” was launched to liberate Hyderabad from the clutches of Nizam and force him to accept to join Indian states.
Interestingly, the Telangana armed struggle against Nizam was spearheaded by the left parties as well what with their member-turned-Sanyasi Swami Ramananda Teertha.
And, the rightist BJP never existed then, though it may claim of having an allegiance to Hindu Mahasabha, which was part of that struggle against Nizam.
Political analysts feel, the reason behind TRS reluctance to observe September 17 as Hyderabad Liberation Day is obvious as it would not like to antagonize predominant minorities, especially the Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen headed byAsaduddin Owaisi. Moreover, KCR himself had acknowledged and praised the erstwhile Nizam to the hilt on several occasions in the past.
In that backdrop, call it political compulsion or cowardice, KCR and his party had taken a stand not to celebrate the Liberation Day, instead calling it as ‘formation day’.
Contrary to this, the BJP which determined to observe Hyderabad Liberation Day on September 17, by organizing a massive rally in Warangal, instead of Hyderabad, which is likely to be addressed by none other than the party chief Amit Shah.
Meanwhile, the Swami RamanandhaTeertha Memorial Society, founded by late former prime minister P V Narasimha Rao, who happens to be a true disciple of Swamiji, chose to observe the day, though low profile, will be felicitating as many as 30 surviving strugglers of that movement, as usual this year.