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Monday, July 18, 2016

Instrument of Accession with India: and its acceptance by governor general

By on Monday, July 18, 2016
Sir Hari Singh Bahadur, Maharaja of J & K who signed "Instrument of Accession" with India in 1947
India got Independence in 1947 under India (Independence) Act passed by British Parliament. Under this Act, India was divided into 2 separate countries of India and Pakistan, and some 584 princely States were given the choice of either merging with India or Pakistan.
 J&K was one such princely State ruled by Maharaja Hari Singh. He was dithering over the merger issue in October 1947 when Pakistan invaded J&K and tried to annex it by force, Maharaja asked for India’s help. Sardar Ballabh Bhai Patel, then Home Minister of India, agreed to provide help on 26 October 1947.

Hari Singh Ji signed Instrument of Accession with India on 27 October 1947 Lord Mount Battens as Governor General Of India and representative of British Crown, accepted the accession with a remark that
"As soon as the law and order in Kashmir restored the question of states accession should be decided by reference to the people."
Lord Mount Battens did to contradictory things. On the one hand he accepted the merger; on the other hand he put the conditions for merger. The remark of Lord Mount Batten was superfluous and in violation of provision of ‘India (Independence) Act’ passed by British Parliament. The act did not provide for plebiscite in any of the princely states for deciding the issue of merger. It only called upon the rulers of princely States to decide whether to merge with India or Pakistan.
 It was a grave Constitutional error on the part of Lord Mount Battens. India has paid heavy Political price for that error in the term of 5 decades old frictional relation with Pakistan.   


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