Building a New Kashmir: Bakshi Ghulam Muhammad and the Politics of State-Formation in a Disputed Territory (1953-1963)

Show simple item record Kanjwal, Hafsa 2017-10-05T20:30:00Z NO_RESTRICTION 2017-10-05T20:30:00Z 2017 2017
dc.description.abstract This dissertation is a historical study of the early postcolonial period in the Indian-administered state of Jammu and Kashmir (1953-63). It traces the trajectory of “Naya [New] Kashmir,” a leftist manifesto of the National Conference (NC). The NC was a secular nationalist Kashmiri political party that came to power in the state in 1947, in the aftermath of Partition and the accession of Kashmir to India. This dissertation recuperates the relevance of Naya Kashmir during the rule of Bakshi Ghulam Mohammed (1953-63), the second Prime Minister of the state. Naya Kashmir originated as a progressive project of state and socio-cultural reform, emanating from the particular context of the Jammu and Kashmir princely state in the late colonial period. However, this dissertation argues that it was still utilized by Bakshi in his project of state building and reform nearly a decade later. In moving the manifesto out of the context of its own production, and into the period of Bakshi’s government, we are able to see the durability of the ideas that undergird the project, and the ways in which the local leadership attempted to fulfill its aims of economic, educational, and cultural transformation, even after the state was divided and became part of a new political reality. Naya Kashmir’s trajectory also reveals the tensions within the state building project. While the government was attempting to produce a secular modernizing Kashmir, it was also dealing with the realities of Kashmir’s unresolved political context, as the region remained a disputed territory between India and Pakistan in the international arena. This dissertation argues that while Naya Kashmir had the potential to revolutionize Kashmiri society, its actual impact was constrained by Kashmir’s unresolved political context. As a result, these policies cultivated an opposition from the very class they meant to integrate into the Indian Union, evidenced by the mass movement for self-determination that erupted against the state during the Holy Relic Incident, just a few months after Bakshi’s rule had ended in 1963. This dissertation allows us to see developments in Kashmir outside the framework of India-Pakistan relations or India-Kashmir (center-state) relations. Under Bakshi, Naya Kashmir’s trajectory constituted a local logic, borne out of local concerns and needs. It also foregrounds the perspectives of a diverse set of Kashmiri political and social actors, as they sought to resolve the problems of their diverse and marginalized society. In doing so, it contributes to a growing body of South Asian historiography that examines governance and state-building in the immediate aftermath of decolonization, as well as the everyday postcolonial state and state-society relations.
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.subject Kashmir
dc.subject State formation
dc.subject India
dc.title Building a New Kashmir: Bakshi Ghulam Muhammad and the Politics of State-Formation in a Disputed Territory (1953-1963)
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.description.thesisdegreename PHD
dc.description.thesisdegreediscipline History & Women's Studies
dc.description.thesisdegreegrantor University of Michigan, Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies
dc.contributor.committeemember Mir, Farina
dc.contributor.committeemember Sinha, Mrinalini
dc.contributor.committeemember Babayan, Kathryn
dc.contributor.committeemember Gocek, Fatma Muge
dc.subject.hlbsecondlevel History (General)
dc.subject.hlbtoplevel Social Sciences
dc.identifier.orcid 0000-0002-5879-9906 Kanjwal, Hafsa; 0000-0002-5879-9906 en_US
dc.owningcollname Dissertations and Theses (Ph.D. and Master's)
 Show simple item record

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Search Deep Blue

Advanced Search

Browse by

My Account


Available Now

MLibrary logo