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Modern History / Independence and Partition

Integration of Princely States in India


    Home Minister Vallabhbhai Patel created a States Department, with V.P.Menon as its Secretary, to bring about the required political consolidation by integration of Princely States in India. Most of the 566 Princely States merged with India and Pakistan unconditionally except a few. In India, opposition for merger came from 3 States, namely Junagadh, Hyderabad and Jammu and Kashmir.

    Integration of Junagadh

    The king of Junagadh wanted to join Pakistan. People revolted against the decision of the king. A plebiscite was conducted and people voted for India.

    Integration of Hyderabad

    Nizam Osman Ali Khan was under complete control of MIM (a religious organization), which was founded in 1927 by Nawab Mahmood Nawaz Khan. This organization has got well trained activists, called Razakars. They used to create chaos in Hyderabad state. During September 13-17, 1948, Operation Polo was launched and Nizam rule came to end.

    Integration of Jammu and Kashmir

    The king Maharaja Hari Singh refused to integrate either with India or Pakistan. In 1947, Pakistan forces started occupying Kashmir. Almost 50% of the State was occupied. Maharaja Hari Singh requested Jawaharlal Nehru to fight against Pakistan. But Nehru rejected the request. The king then signed Instrument of Accession. Indian Army stopped Pakistan army.

    On the advice of LOrd Mountbatten (first Governor General of Independent India up to 1948), Nehru declared ceasefire and the matter was referred to United Nations. Nehru promised to conduct a plebiscite when the State is in peaceful condition.