Celebrate Sep 17 as National Integration Day, not Telangana Liberation Day: Owaisi
Hyderabad: AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi has suggested to Union Home Minister Amit Shah that September 17 be celebrated as National Integration Day and not as Telangana Liberation Day.
Reacting to reports that the Centre has decided to celebrate 75 years of integration of the erstwhile state of Hyderabad into the Union of India, the Hyderabad MP sent a letter to Shah.
Owaisi stated that the accession and merger of various princely states were not only about liberating the territories from autocratic rulers. “More importantly, the nationalist movement rightly saw the people of these territories as an integral part of independent India. Therefore, the phrase ‘National Integration Day’ may be more apposite, rather than mere liberation,” he wrote.
The President of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) pointed out that with the merger of erstwhile Hyderabad state and various other princely states, the people of these territories were finally recognised as equal citizens of India, as a Union of States.
“The integration of these territories is also a recognition that the people of these lands had long struggled against (indirect) British rule. Examples include Maulvi Alauddin and Turrebaz Khan in the war of Independence of 1857 and the martyred journalist Shoebullah Khan (d.1948). While the former had waged a war against the British as the Nizam’s soldiers, the latter was assassinated for advocating Hyderabad’s integration into the Union of India,” he stated.
Owaisi also wrote that the common Hindus and Muslims of erstwhile Hyderabad state were advocates of a united India under a democratic, secular and republican government. This is also reflected in the Sunderlal Committee report. The Committee was appointed by the Government of India to report on the situation after the merger of Hyderabad. The Committee also found that mass violence was committed against common Muslims living in these territories. He attached a report of the committee with his letter.
The struggles of the people of the erstwhile Hyderabad state against colonialism, feudalism and autocracy are a symbol of national integration rather than merely a case of liberation of a piece of land, he added.
Owaisi also wrote a letter to Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, suggesting that September 17 be celebrated as National Integration Day. This day must be a celebration of the struggles of people of erstwhile Hyderabad against both British colonialism as well as the feudal autocratic rule of Nizams.
Addressing a news conference, he announced that on September 16, all MLAs of AIMIM and others would embark on Tiranga rally on motorcycle and will organise a public meeting for national integration.
On ‘Razakars’ or the volunteers who had supported Nizam’s Army, Owaisi said that they left for Pakistan. “Those who wanted to go have gone. Those who love the country choose to remain here,” he said.
The MP suggested to Telangana Chief Minister that a befitting celebration may be organised at University Women’s College, Koti. The building was once the British Residency and was subject to a daring attack by Maulvi Alauddin and Turrebaz Khan on July 17, 1857. Maulvi Alauddin was the first prisoner of Kaala Pani (Andaman Cellular Jail) and Turrebaz Khan was perhaps one of the first martyrs of India’s war of Independence.