(This is a reproduction of a letter to Dr. Rajendra Prasad from Shah Omair, a Muslim Congress leader of Arwal in Bihar, on the worsening situation in Arwal Thana and Jehanabad subdivision on account of Kisan Sabha activities.)

 

Arwal

December 1937

My dear Sir (Rajendra Prasad),

I regret to mention some of the facts which have been prevailing in the Arwal Thana and the Jehanabad sub-division (Gaya) as a result of the Kisan Sabha activities. I stand to bring to your notice the ways of the workers who are nonetheless Congress workers and some of them responsible executives of the District, Subdivisional & Thana Congress Committees. We, as Congressmen, find ourselves in a strange fix where the names and actions of the Congress organisation and our revered Congress leaders are openly denounced and disrespected by the Congress workers who are out for Kisan Sabha work. 

In the open meeting at Village Khaira, Thana Arwal, in November last, Swami Sahajanand asked the kisans to be fully equipped and armed with instruments to meet the Zamindars and pay the Zamindars in terms of blows instead of anything else. Mr. Chandardip Singh, President, Thana Congress Committee, went round the Bambhai Village and there he gave an open challenge to the Zamindars that he will come next morning with 1,200 volunteers and get every brick of their walls and… of their roof shattered by force. The same Chandardip Singh, President, Arwal Thana Congress Committee, openly roused the tenants of village Ladipur Koil and Saranti etc. to violence and took forceful possession of the bakhast and sold lands, in the month of December. As a result, open rioting broke out and several persons are still lying in the Arwal dispensary as injured patients, and lots of cases are still pending.

I am simply ashamed to add that the Congress flag is being humiliated, so much so that spears and guptis are used by the Kisan workers as sticks to carry flags on.

The other day Pt. Jadunandan Sharma, President, District Congress Committee, openly and most violently exhorted the kisan audience to attend meetings armed with spears, swords and lathis thenceforward and consider it their creed that the kisans have to teach lessons to the Zamindars through their Danda force.

Congress organisation is openly represented by them as a “prostitute organisation” which is meant for everybody and not only for kisans.

On the 12th December, Swami Sahajanand held a meeting at Gaya and came in procession from Gaya station to the town in a way obviously disrespecting the Congress flag, having red flags on big high posts and few Congress flags too low under the red ones in his front. Although people felt awfully disgusted at this attitude and only 50 or 60 persons joined this so-called procession, yet that left a mark of disrespect to the Congress flag and love for the red one by him. 

In the park meeting, he openly criticised the Ministry for their prohibition programme and encouraged the kisans to disregard prohibition programme inasmuch as tea is more injurious.

In short, I am unable to enumerate the hundreds and thousands of facts of violence, disrespect and bad names to Congress organisation given by the so called Congressmen or Kisan workers in our district without any check to their growing outburst against all the respected leaders of the Congress.

If I may be pardoned and may not be misunderstood, I beg to assure you that the rapid progress of the Muslim League activities at least in one district is more due to the Kisan working than anything else. At least I am able to say in all confidence that my subdivision and my own thana would have been the last victim of Muslim League had there been a little restraint in the preaching and practising of disharmony created in the way of Musalman petty Zamindars. I know, for instance, that at village Bhadasi the Kisan workers stopped the necessary marketing on  tehwar (festival) day of Shobrat against all the Musalman Zamindars by throwing challenge to Musalmans of Bhadasi village as to how they would get their required articles from Bazar and how they would celebrate their festival.

This and many more instances of total recklessness caused immense agitation among the Musalmans of the locality and I can say with certainty, though not without the highest degree of pain, that such things made easy sailing for the Muslim Leaguers in the district. Had the workers of Kisan Sabha not been the workers and members of the Congress, things would have been very safely defended. But, unfortunately Congress had to be misunderstood among the Musalman and Hindu masses, being misrepresented by the Kisan activities.

These few words I am going to state in utter disappointment and haste and I hope to substantiate more than what is stated here if matters are dealt with. I approach you with all respects to take these things into your serious consideration.

 

Otherwise the Congress workers will be, with lost respects, nowhere. 

I am

Yours affectionately

Shah Omair