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Koshur Music

An Introduction to Spoken Kashmiri



Broadcast of Sir Stafford Cripps, Delhi,
March 30, 1942

Legal Document No 70


First of all you will want to know what object we had in view. Well, weSir S. Cripps wanted to make it quite clear and beyond any possibility of doubt or question that the British Government and the British people desire the Indian peoples to have full self-government, with a Constitution as free in every respect as our own in Great Britain or as of any of the great Dominion members of the British Commonwealth of Nations in the words of the Draft Declaration, India would be associated with the United Kingdom and other Dominions by a common allegiance to the Crown but equal to them in every respect, in no way subordinate in any aspect of its domestic or external affairs.

The principle on which these proposals are based is that the new Constitution should be framed by the elected representatives of the Indian people themselves. So we propose that immediately hostilities are ended, a constitution-making body should be set up consisting of elected representative from British India and if the Indian States wish, as we hope they will to become part of the new Indian Union, they too will be invited to send their representatives to this constitution-making body, though, if they do, that will not, of itself, bind them to become members of the Union. That is the broad outline of the future.

There are those who claim that India should form a sidle united country: there are others who say it should be divided up into two, three or more separate countries. There are those who claim that provincial autonomy should be very wide with but few centrally controlled federal services; other stress the need for centralization in view of the growing complexity of economic development.

These and many other and various ideas are worthy to be explored and debated, but it is for the Indian peoples, and not for any outside authority, to decide under which of these forms India will in future govern herself.

So we provide the means and the lead by which you can attain that form of the absolute and united self-government that you desire at the earliest possible moment. In the past we have waited for the different Indian communities to come: to a common decision as to how a new Constitution for a self-governing India should be framed and, because there has been no agreement amongst the Indian leaders, the British Government has been accused by some of using this fact to delay the granting of freedom to India. We are now giving the lead that has been asked for and it is in the hands of Indians and Indians only, whether they will accept that lead and so attain their own freedom. If they fail to accept this opportunity the responsibility for the failure must rest faith them.

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World Kashmiri Pandit Conference 1993 Panun Kashmir
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