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G.A. Naqvi: from Indian Police (UP), 1926 to Pakistani Citizen (Sindh), 1947



This is the story of how G. A. Naqvi (Indian Police, 1926) of the United Province (UP) was affected by the events of 1947–1948 in British and independent India and Pakistan and had to become what he did not wish to be: a private citizen in Pakistan. It shows how he, like so many others, had to become reconciled to the idea of British India breaking-up into independent India and Pakistan. This process changed forever the relationship between institutions of the Indian State and individual lives of Indian Muslims; the ‘long’ Partition of British India prompted new questions of legitimacy, citizenship and sovereignty, while producing “displacement, disruption and disappointment”. This was especially so in the so-called ‘Muslim-minority provinces’, among which the UP held the pre-eminent position and to which Naqvi belonged. After 21 ½ years of service, Naqvi found himself unwanted in both India and Pakistan, in a time of deepening communal divide, suspicion and hostility. A much sought-after officer during the Second World War, how was he to know that over 1947–1948, not one of the four governments to which he was and/or could be affiliated with would want to have anything to do with him.



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