In this address, Allama Iqbal gave the lucid explanation of the inner feeling of the Muslims of India. He narrated the basic principles of the Islam and loyalties of the Muslims to their faith. He gave the idea and concept about a separate homeland in this address because the Muslim were a nation and had a right that they got the identification and passed their lives in order to the Islamic principles. Due to these reasons, he expressed his thoughts in this address.
There were many reasons which caused Muslims to think about the separate homeland and compelled to protect the rights of the Muslim. There was a two branched attack on the Muslim interests. On the one side, Hindus were creating the restrictions in the way of the Muslim and hurting the feeling of the Muslim to propose the Nehru report as the ultimate constitution for India. On the other side, the British government totally ignored the Muslim’s rights and other facilities were not being provided to them. They were ignored in every field of life, especially in education and government.
In that critical condition, Allama Muhammad Iqbal realized that these eccentric problems of the Muslims in North West India needed to be addressed. In order to solve these problems, Allama Iqbal pointed a line of action.
In his address, Allama Iqbal explained that Islam was the major and determining factor in the life of Indian Muslims. He defined the Muslims of India as a nation and recommended there could be no possibility of peace in India without recognizing them as one. Unless the Muslims are considered as a nation and their rights are protected, it is impossible to establish peace and order in the land. Because there are many nations in the land, every nation is distinguished from the other in their customs, traditions and religion. The difference in the mind, difference in thoughts and religion furthermore, difference in the customs and tradition make them unable to live together. So in these condition, it is essential that Muslim have a separate homeland as without a separate homeland they might face many difficulties for the rest of their life in united India.
As the permanent solution to the Muslim Hindus problem, Iqbal proposed that Punjab, North West Frontier province, Baluchistan, and Sindh should be converted into one state. He expressed that the northwestern part of the country should be established to unite as a self-governed unit, within or without the British Empire.
Islam and Nationalism
In his address, Allama Iqbal explained that Islam was the major formative factor in the life history of Indian Muslims. It furnished those basic emotions and loyalties, which gradually unify scattered individuals and groups and finally transform them into a well-defined people, possessing a moral consciousness of their own.
He defined the Muslims of India as a nation and suggested that there could be no possibility of peace in the country unless and until they were recognized as a nation. He claimed that the only way for the Muslims and Hindus to prosper in accordance with their respective cultural values was under a federal system where Muslim majority units were given the same privileges that were to be given to the Hindu majority units. In this section, Iqbal addressed the idea the Islam and nationalism. Islam is a way of life in which the Muslims spend their lives with peace and harmony, it gives the principles to regulate and organize life and also form the identification of a separate nation within the Muslim psyche. Islam provides the Muslims with a separate identification and distinguishes them from others because its customs and traditions are different from other religions and this faith stresses upon monotheism and acceptance of the Holy Prophet’s principles.
As far as nationalism is concerned, it can be said that nationalism comes through Islam in Muslims, Islam provides a different way of life. Although Islam is a religion yet it declares the rules and regulations about the different aspects of life. On the other hand, Europeans considered Islam as a private affair and thought that Islam should not guide political conditions. Whereas Iqbal explained that Islam was not a private matter, the demand of separate homeland was based on Islam as it did not neglect the common life. “Man,” says Renan “is enslaved neither by his race nor by his religion, nor by the course of rivers, nor by the direction of mountain ranges. A great aggregation of men, sane of mind and warm of heart, creates a moral consciousness which is called a nation.”
The question of unity
In this section of his speech, Iqbal narrated the principle of unity and whether unity in different nations was possible or not. According to Iqbal’s point of view, there are many nations in this sub-continent and every nation has its own social, political, and religious structure. Without partition, establishment of peace and order in this land is impossible; nevertheless they can pass their lives with peace. One reason is that one nation does not accept the customs and traditions of other nations and consider them lower. This thing expressed that peace and harmony can be established but only after the division of the Indian sub-continent to facilitate the Muslims to implement their religion.
Muslim Indians within India
The unity of nations is not only territorial as is believed by European countries. India is a continent of human groups belonging to the different races, speaking different languages, and professing different religions. Their behavior is not at all determined by a common race consciousness.
As a permanent solution of the problems was that division of continent was essential in the sight of Iqbal that is why Allama Iqbal presented his ideas in this speech.