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Assignment on:
Bengali Nationalism and Emergence of Bangladesh: The social and
political stages
Bangladesh liberation movement passes through six stages and these stages are the
Stage 1: Awareness
In 1947, Bengal was partitioned for the second time. The partition left a significant
impact on the people of Bengal as well as the political scenario. After the
annulment of the partition, the people of East Bengal were immersed into
disappointment and anger. This event created a sense of political awareness among
the Muslims of East Bengal. To mollify the people of East Bengal, Lord Curzon
declared that a university would be established in Dacca and formed a committee
in this regard consisting Khwaja Salimullah, A. K. Fazlul Huq and others. The
decision was severely criticized by some Hindu leaders in West Bengal. The most
significant impact of this event was the inception of communal dissonance between
the Hindus and Muslims of Bengal.

Stage 2: Evaluation
Bengalis awareness over the language issue was in the centre of second stage of
political manifestation .The ruling elite tried to impose Urdu, a language of a
miniscule minority, as the state language over a 54 percent non-Urdu speaking
majority. The language issue catalyzed the renewal of the traditional non-
communal. By the 1956 constitution bangle was given the status of one of the state
languages, exactly as the demand had been. Thus the Language Movement also
helped the Bengalis evaluate their position against Pakistan and their evaluation
was at the root of identity consciousness and autonomy assertion the characteristics
of increasing politicization.

Stage 3: Demand for equality

The demand of political equality between East and West Pakistan was the
foundation on which constitution of 1956 and 1962 had been erected. The Muslim
League had been overwhelmingly defeated in the 1954 provincial assembly
elections by the United Front coalition of Bengali regional parties anchored by
Fazlul Haq's Krishak Sramik Samajbadi Dal and the Awami League led by
Hussain Shaheed Suhrawardy. Rejection of West Pakistan's dominance over East
Pakistan and the desire for Bengali provincial autonomy were the main ingredients
of the coalition's twenty-one-point platform. Prime Minister Choudhry induced the
politicians to agree on a constitution in 1956. In order to establish a better balance
between the west and east wings, the four provinces of West Pakistan were
amalgamated into one administrative unit. The national parliament was to comprise
one house of 300 members with equal representation from both the west and east

Stage 4: Demand for a separate province

This was the stage during which the Bengali political scenario witnessed
implosions out of which Awami League emerged as the spokesman for the rising
Bengali bourgeoisie, representing moderate views as against some other political
forces whose stance was more strident and militant. It is being recognized that the
1966s Six Point Demand by Awami League was for guarantee a separate
province. It was generally not well received by the military dictators, the feudal
politicians, or the population of West Pakistan, because fairness was not a
prevailing mindset there. Instead of accepting the spirit of six point programs, they
respond with increasing repression and so Mujib and several other Awami League
leaders were arrested in May 1966.

Stage 5: Road to autonomy

At this stage it is worth nothing that a constant factor in the political evolution of
Bengali nationalism has always been ideas and activities of students. It is because
when Awami League leaders of the nationalist movement were arrested, instead of
losing any of its momentum, turned out more dynamic under the younger
leadership of the students. When the elder politician were hesitant and had so many
stakes to take into consideration the determination of the students decided the final
outcome of the language. The Student League exercised a crucial influence in
shaping the course of events between 1969 and 1971.In this way ,through
nationalism of the Bengalis they could not remain tied to this Pakistani
nationalism that was denominational and The Mass Upsurge of 1969 secured
withdral of the Agartala Conspiracy Case along with the release of Sheikh
Mujibur Rahman .
Stage 6: Actual succession
He 1969 political change in Pakistan witnessed a transition from a civilianized
military rule to military rule. Ayub Khan went and Yahya Khan came in. The
Awami League went ahead preparing for the coming election which they declared
to be a referendum on the partys program for autonomy. The result of election was
complete victory over Awami League. The of election result was significant in
considering the location of the two streams of nationalism that Hamza Alavi has
identified. But the actual succession was foreshadowed in the election result and
that is the declaration of independence on 26 March which initiated the beginning
of Bangladesh and the end of united Pakistan.