Wavell Plan and Simla Conference 1945 Study Materials

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Wavell Plan and Simla Conference 1945 Study Materials

WAVELL PLAN AND SIMLA CONFERENCE (1945)

            In May 1445, Lord Wavell. the Viceroy of India, went to London to discuss with the British administration about the future of India. The talks resulted in the formulation of a plan of action that was made public in June 1945. The plan was known as the Wavell Plan.

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            The plan suggested the reconstitution of the Viceroy’s Executive Council in which the Viceroy was to select people nominated by the political parties. Different communities were also to get their due share in the Council and parity was to be reserved by having equal representation for both the Hindus and the Muslims. While declaring the plan, the Secretary of State for Indian Affairs made it clear that the British government wanted to listen to the ideas of all major Indian communities. Yet, he said, that was only possible if the leadership of the main Indian political parties agreed to the suggestions of the British government.

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            To discuss these proposals with the Indian leaders, Wavell called for a conference at Simla on 25 June 1945. Leaders of both the Congress and the Muslim League attended the Simla Conference. However, differences arose between the leadership of the two parties on the issue of representation of the Muslim community. The Muslim League claimed that it was the only representative party of the Muslims in India and thus, all the Muslim representatives in the Viceroy’s Executive Council should be the nominees of the party. The Congress, which had sent Maulana Azad as the leader of their delegation, tried to prove that their party represented all the communities living in India and thus should be allowed to nominate Muslim representatives as well. The Congress also opposed the idea of parity. This resulted in a deadlock. Finally, on 14 July Wavell announced the failure of his efforts.

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