Royal Holloway University of London Department of History
and The University of Leeds School of History
Event Date: 9 and 10 September 2010
Royal Asiatic Society 14 Stephenson Way, London NW1
Christophe Jaffrelot – The End of an Era: the Banal Marginalization of Muslims in Bhopal after 1947
Bhopal state used to be known as the second Muslim princely state in India till 1947, second only to Hyderabad in terms of size and population. More than Partition – which affected the city rather moderately – the merger of this princely state in the Indian Union, the transformation of the city in the new capital of Madhya Pradesh in 1956 and the development of Bhopal out of the walled city penalised the formerly dominant community in many ways : demographically, because of a huge inflow of Hindus, economically, because of the rise of the newcomers (including thousands of Sindhis) and the abolition of the zamindari/jagirdari system, professionally because of the abandonment of Urdu as the court language, and politically because of the implementation of new democratic procedures. Muslims have lost ground in such a way that the 1950s have been a more significant turning point than 1947, preparing the ground for a marginalization process of a different quality than in non-princely state areas and riot-prone cities.