The Muslim leaders argued that such measures reflected the importance of the Muslim community in Indian society. Many Muslims were major land owners and the percentage of Muslim soldiers in the British army was very high. Equally important was the fact that without Muslim's separate representatives, there was a chance of communal violence in every election.
The British acceptance showed that the attempts by Sir Syed and others to restore the relations between Muslims and the British had been successful. The British were now prepared to work with the Muslims, and even to make concessions to them.
It also showed that the Muslim community had decided to ensure that it established a secure place in the constitution by its own methods. The Hindu Muslim rivalry which existed in day-to-day life now existed in the constitution as well.
The deputation showed that many Muslims had now come up with the idea that they were a separate community which should be treated in a different way from Hindus. From this it was a short step to breaking away from the Congress to establish a Muslim one which would represent and protect Muslim interests.
The Simla deputation was perhaps the first step down the long road to the formation of Pakistan.
It holds immense importance because as,if muslims would be given separate representation they would be able to vote on their representatives so, that to protect their rights and also to gain separate recognition in constitution. Moreover, this conference helped to generate political awareness among muslims because when they would be in parliament they could came to know how to run government affairs which further lead muslims to get local and provincial autonomy. In addition to this, when muslims become politically aware they could realized to have a separate state where muslims would represent their views which they do by making muslim league that further marked the beginning of pakistan movement.
The Simla Deputation occupies a very important place in the history of modern Muslim India. For the first time, Hindu-Muslim conflict was lifted to the constitutional plane. The rift in society was now to be translated into legal and political institutions. The Muslims had made it clear that they had no confidence in the Hindu majority, that they were not prepared to put their future in the hands of assemblies elected on the assumption of a homogeneous Indian nation. By implication they rejected the idea of a single Indian nation on the ground that the minority could not trust the majority. From this it was but a short step to demanding a separate state for the Muslims of India It is in this sense that in the beginnings of separate electorates may be seen the glimmerings of the two-nation theory. The significance of the Simla demand lay in the reservations which the Muslims had about their Indian nationality.Soon after the War of Independence of 1857, the British government realized that it was not safe to legislate for millions of people with few means of knowing--except by a rebellion--whether the laws suit them or not. Undoubtedly, Syed Ahmad Khan's pamphlet Causes of the Indian Revolt contributed to this realization on part of the British. It asserted that the absence of Indians from the councils of the country was mainly responsible for the troubles of 1857.In 1861, the governor general's council was enlarged to include 50% non-officials nominated by the governor general. Their appointment indicated a desire on the part of the government to obtain unofficial cooperation and advice in making laws. On January 15, 1883, when the bill for local self-government was moved, Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, a member of the Lord Ripon's legislative council, argued that in India, a homeland of different peoples believing in different modes of life, western democracy would not work, because the Hindu majority would dominate the minorities. As a result of his constant efforts for the nomination system, the Indian Councils Act of 1892 indirectly introduced the principle of election. The use of the word “election” was avoided; some unofficial members were still nominated, and others were appointed on the recommendation of important communities and interests represented by such bodies as landlord associations, municipal and district boards, universities, or chambers of commerce. The government of India issued directions to provincial government that representation should be provided for certain classes and interests, including Muslims. Thus, the new act introduced a semi-electorate system and the principles of representation and election in India. But this system proved totally futile, as from 1892 to 1906, not even a single Muslim representative could secure a seat in the legislative councils as the local bodies were also dominated by Hindus, who always voted on religious grounds.The turning point in the early phase of the Muslim political movement came in the summer of 1906. The elections in England in 1905 changed the whole sphere of politics. The new Liberal government in England announced that it intended to introduce constitutional changes in India. The viceroy, Lord Minto, had already appointed a committee of his executive council to inquire into the working of the Indian Councils Act of 1892 and to examine the question of further constitutional reforms. The committee expressed the opinion that the Muslims had not been sufficiently represented on the existing councils, that the few elected members had not been really represented and that nomination had failed to secure the appointment of Muslims of the class desired by the community.Therefore, to safeguard their interests, Muslim leaders drew up a plan for separate electorates for their community and presented it to Lord Minto in Simla on 1 October, 1906. The lead was taken by Nawab Mohsin-ul-Mulk, secretary of the Board of Trustees of Aligarh College. He had written and addressed leading Muslims about such a deputation. Consisting of representatives of all shades of Muslim opinion, the Simla Deputation, led by Sir Agha Khan, demanded two points of policy. First in all local and provincial elections Muslims must be separately elected by purely Muslim electors. Second, Muslims must be given weightage in all elected bodies, i.e., they should have more seats than warranted by their their ratio in the population.The first demand was made on two grounds: That in the prevailing state of communal tension no Muslim elected through a joint electorate would genuinely reflect the will of the community, and that in the absence of separate electorates every contested election would lead to communal riots. The demand of weightage was supported by two arguments: Muslims still owned much of the landed property in India, and they formed a very large proportion of the Indian army. The address presented by the deputation was a model of mature thinking and sober expression. The viceroy accepted both demands.Though the demand for separate representation of Muslims had been acceded to by the Viceroy, sustained efforts had to be made over the next three years in order to secure the separate electorate in the Morley-Minto reforms of 1909.
Hey, no offense but would it kill you to give credit to the author that has written the text that you've posted above?
I believe the credit goes to Nigel Kelly, author of "The History and Culture of Pakistan".
But, nevertheless it was very helpful of you *oneperson2*
Even before the Morley Minto reforms were introduced, Morley had decided that the British should take advantage of their improved relations with the Muslims to win their support for British rule. It was not long before the Simla Deputation provided an ideal opportunity.
The Muslims had seen the reaction of the Hindus to the partition of Bengal with dismay. They saw a massive wave of protests which they feared would lead to partition being reversed. They knew that they, the Muslims, were not able to provide such a level of protest to maintain the partition.
Moreover, the Indian National Congress was dominated by the Hindus and Muslims feared that the Hindu Agitation would lead to Hindi becoming the official language- or even the Muslims being forcibly converted to Hinduism. When the new Liberal Government was elected in Britain in 1905, Muslim fears grew. The Liberals had stated that they would increase the local participation in the Indian Government by elections. As the Hindus were in the majority, the Muslims feared that they would soon be dominated by Hindu rule. It was time to act.
So on 8th October, 1906, a deputation of prominent Muslim members led by Sir Agha Khan visited Viceroy Minto in Simla. There they demanded that the Muslims: "should be estimated not merely of their numerical strength but in respect to their political importance and the services they had rendered to the Empire."