The two-nation theory (Urdu: دوقومی نظریہ — Dō-qaumī naẓariyaa, Devanagari: दो-क़ौमी नज़रिया, Hindi: द्वि-राष्ट्र सिद्धान्त - Dvi-rashtra siddhanta, Bengali: দ্বিজাতি তত্ত্ব — Dijati totto) is the ideology that the primary identity and unifying denominator of Muslims in the South Asian subcontinent is their religion, rather than their language or ethnicity, and therefore Indian Hindus and Muslims are two distinct nations, regardless of ethnic or other commonalities. The two-nation theory was a founding principle of the Pakistan Movement (i.e. the ideology of Pakistan as a Muslim nation-state in South Asia), and the partition of India in 1947.
The ideology that religion is the determining factor in defining the nationality of Indian Muslims was undertaken by Muhammad Ali Jinnah, who termed it as the awakening of Muslims for the creation of Pakistan. It is also a source of inspiration to several Hindu nationalist organizations, with causes as varied as the redefinition of Indian Muslims as non-Indian foreigners and second-class citizens in India, the expulsion of all Muslims from India, establishment of a legally Hindu state in India, prohibition of conversions to Islam, and the promotion of conversions or reconversions of Indian Muslims to Hinduism.
There are varying interpretations of the two-nation theory, based on whether the two postulated nationalities can coexist in one territory or not, with radically different implications. One interpretation argued for sovereign autonomy, including the right to secede, for Muslim-majority areas of the Indian subcontinent, but without any transfer of populations (i.e. Hindus and Muslims would continue to live together). A different interpretation contends that Hindus and Muslims constitute "two distinct, and frequently antagonistic ways of life, and that therefore they cannot coexist in one nation." In this version, a transfer of populations (i.e. the total removal of Hindus from Muslim-majority areas and the total removal of Muslims from Hindu-majority areas) is a desirable step towards a complete separation of two incompatible nations that "cannot coexist in a harmonious relationship".
Opposition to the theory has come from two sources. The first is the concept of a single Indian nation, of which Hindus and Muslims are two intertwined communities. This is a founding principle of the modern, officially secular, Republic of India. Even after the formation of Pakistan, debates on whether Muslims and Hindus are distinct nationalities or not continued in that country as well. The second source of opposition is the concept that while Indians are not one nation, neither are the Muslims or Hindus of the subcontinent, and it is instead the relatively homogeneous provincial units of the subcontinent which are true nations and deserving of sovereignty; this view has been presented by the Baloch, Sindhi, and Pashtun sub-nationalities of Pakistan.
In general, the British-run government and British commentators made "it a point of speaking of Indians as the people of India and avoid speaking of an Indian nation." This was cited as a key reason for British control of the country: since Indians were not a nation, they were not capable of national self-government. While some Indian leaders insisted that Indians were one nation, others agreed that Indians were not yet a nation but there was "no reason why in the course of time they should not grow into a nation."
Similar debates on national identity existed within India at the linguistic, provincial and religious levels. While some argued that Indian Muslims were one nation, others argued they were not. Some, such as Liaquat Ali Khan (later prime minister of Pakistan) argued that Indian Muslims were not yet a nation, but could be forged into one.
According to the Pakistan studies curriculum, Muhammad bin Qasim is often referred to as the first Pakistani. While Prakash K. Singh attributes the arrival of Muhammad bin Qasim as the first step towards the creation of Pakistan. Muhammad Ali Jinnah considered the Pakistan movement to have started when the first Muslim put a foot in the Gateway of Islam.
Start of Muslim self-awakening and identity movement (19th century–1940s)
The movement for Muslim self-awakening and identity was started by the Muslim modernist and reformer Syed Ahmad Khan (1817–1898). Many Pakistanis describe him as the architect of the two-nation theory. However, the researcher Ziauddin Lahori, the author of seven books on Sir Syed, believes that it is incorrect to say that Sir Syed propounded the two-nation theory.
The poet philosopher Muhammad Iqbal (1877–1938) provided the philosophical exposition and Barrister Muhammad Ali Jinnah (1871–1948) translated it into the political reality of a nation-state. Allama Iqbal's presidential address to the Muslim League on December 29, 1930 is seen by some as the first exposition of the two-nation theory in support of what would ultimately become Pakistan.
The scholar Al-Biruni (973-1048) had observed, at the beginning of the eleventh century, that Hindus and Muslims differed in all matters and habits. On March 23, 1940, Jinnah made a speech in Lahore which was very similar to Al-Biruni's thesis in theme and tone. Jinnah stated that Hindus and Muslims belonged to two different religious philosophies, with different social customs and literature, with no intermarriage and based on conflicting ideas and concepts. Their outlook on life and of life was different and despite 1000 years of history, the relations between the Hindus and Muslims could not attain the level of cordiality.
In 1948, Jinnah said:
Islam has taught us this and I think you will agree with me, for whatever you may be and wherever you are, you are a Muslim. You belong to a nation now. You have carved out a territory, a vast territory, it is all yours; it does not belong to a Punjabi or a Sindhi or a Pathan or a Bengali, it is yours.
The All-India Muslim League, in attempting to represent Indian Muslims, felt that the Muslims of the subcontinent were a distinct and separate nation from the Hindus. At first they demanded separate electorates, but when they came to the conclusion that Muslims would not be safe in a Hindu-dominated India, they began to demand a separate state. The League demanded self-determination for Muslim-majority areas in the form of a sovereign state promising minorities equal rights and safeguards in these Muslim majority areas.
Aspects of the theory
The theory asserted that India was not a nation. It also asserted that Indian Hindus and Indian Muslims were each a nation, despite great variations in language, culture and ethnicity within each of those groups. To counter critics who said that a community of radically varying ethnicities and languages who were territorially intertwined with other communities could not be a nation, the theory said that the concept of nation in the East was different from that in the West. In the East, religion was "a complete social order which affects all the activities in life" and "where the allegiance of people is divided on the basis of religion, the idea of territorial nationalism has never succeeded."
It asserted that "a Muslim of one country has far more sympathies with a Muslim living in another country than with a non-Muslim living in the same country." Therefore, "the conception of Indian Muslims as a nation may not be ethnically correct, but socially it is correct."
Muhammad Iqbal had also championed the notion of pan-Islamic nationhood (see: Ummah) and strongly condemned the concept of a territory-based nation as anti-Islamic: "In tāzah xudā'ōⁿ mēⁿ, baṙā sab sē; waṭan hai: Jō pairahan is kā hai; woh maẕhab kā, kafan hai... (Of all these new [false] gods, the biggest; is the motherland (waṭan): Its garment; is [actually] the death-shroud, of religion...)" He had stated the dissolution of ethnic nationalities into a unified Muslim society (or millat) as the ultimate goal: "Butān-e raⁿŋg ō-xūⁿ kō tōṙ kar millat mēⁿ gum hō jā; Nah Tūrānī rahē bāqī, nah Īrānī, nah Afġānī (Destroy the idols of color and blood ties, and merge into the Muslim society; Let no Turanians remain, neither Iranians, nor Afghans)".
Pakistan, or The Partition of India (1945)
In his 1945 book Pakistan, or The Partition of India, Indian statesman and Buddhist Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar wrote a sub-chapter titled "If Muslims truly and deeply desire Pakistan, their choice ought to be accepted". He asserted that, if the Muslims were bent on the creation of Pakistan, the demand should be conceded in the interest of the safety of India. He asks whether Muslims in the army could be trusted to defend India in the event of Muslims invading India or in the case of a Muslim rebellion. "[W]hom would the Indian Muslims in the army side with?" he questioned. According to him, the assumption that Hindus and Muslims could live under one state if they were distinct nations was but "an empty sermon, a mad project, to which no sane man would agree".
Justifications by Muslim leaders
Muhammad Iqbal's statement explaining the attitude of Muslim delegates to the London round-table conference issued in December 1933 was a rejoinder to Jawahar Lal Nehru's statement. Nehru had said that the attitude of the Muslim delegation was based on “reactionarism". Iqbal concluded his rejoinder with:
In conclusion, I must put a straight question to Pandit Jawaharlal, how is India's problem to be solved if the majority community will neither concede the minimum safeguards necessary for the protection of a minority of 80 million people, nor accept the award of a third party; but continue to talk of a kind of nationalism which works out only to its own benefit? This position can admit of only two alternatives. Either the Indian majority community will have to accept for itself the permanent position of an agent of British imperialism in the East, or the country will have to be redistributed on a basis of religious, historical and cultural affinities so as to do away with the question of electorates and the communal problem in its present form.
In Muhammad Ali Jinnah's All India Muslim League presidential address delivered in Lahore, on March 22, 1940, he explained:
It is extremely difficult to appreciate why our Hindu friends fail to understand the real nature of Islam and Hinduism. They are not religions in the strict sense of the word, but are, in fact, different and distinct social orders, and it is a dream that the Hindus and Muslims can ever evolve a common nationality, and this misconception of one Indian nation has troubles and will lead India to destruction if we fail to revise our notions in time. The Hindus and Muslims belong to two different religious philosophies, social customs, litterateurs. They neither intermarry nor interdine together and, indeed, they belong to two different civilizations which are based mainly on conflicting ideas and conceptions. Their aspect on life and of life are different. It is quite clear that Hindus and Mussalmans derive their inspiration from different sources of history. They have different epics, different heroes, and different episodes. Very often the hero of one is a foe of the other and, likewise, their victories and defeats overlap. To yoke together two such nations under a single state, one as a numerical minority and the other as a majority, must lead to growing discontent and final destruction of any fabric that may be so built for the government of such a state.
In 1944, Jinnah said:
We maintain and hold that Muslims and Hindus are two major nations by any definition or test of a nation. We are a nation of hundred million and what is more, we are a nation with our own distinctive culture and civilization, language and literature, art and architecture, names and nomenclature, sense of values and proportions, legal laws and moral codes, customs and calendar, history and tradition, and aptitude and ambitions. In short, we have our own outlook on life and of life.
In an interview with the British journalist Beverley Nichols, he said in 1943:
Islam is not only a religious doctrine but also a realistic code of conduct in terms of every day and everything important in life: our history, our laws and our jurisprudence. In all these things, our outlook is not only fundamentally different but also opposed to Hindus. There is nothing in life that links us together. Our names, clothes, food, festivals, and rituals, all are different. Our economic life, our educational ideas, treatment of women, attitude towards animals, and humanitarian considerations, all are very different.
In May 1947, he had an entirely different emphasis when he told Mountbatten, who was in charge of British India's transition to independence:
Your Excellency doesn't understand that the Punjab is a nation. Bengal is a nation. A man is a Punjabi or a Bengali first before he is a Hindu or a Muslim. If you give us those provinces you must, under no condition, partition them. You will destroy their viability and cause endless bloodshed and trouble.
Yes, of course. A man is not only a Punjabi or a Bengali before he is a Muslim or Hindu, but he is an Indian before all else. What you're saying is the perfect, absolute answer I've been looking for. You've presented me the arguments to keep India united.
Savarkar's opposition to the formation of Pakistan
The Hindu Maha Sabha under the presidency of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, presented a stance of complete opposition to the formation of Pakistan. Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar summarises Savarkar's position, in his Pakistan or The Partition of India as follows,
Mr. Savarkar... insists that, although there are two nations in India, India shall not be divided into two parts, one for Muslims and the other for the Hindus; that the two nations shall dwell in one country and shall live under the mantle of one single constitution;... In the struggle for political power between the two nations the rule of the game which Mr. Savarkar prescribes is to be one man one vote, be the man Hindu or Muslim. In his scheme a Muslim is to have no advantage which a Hindu does not have. Minority is to be no justification for privilege and majority is to be no ground for penalty. The State will guarantee the Muslims any defined measure of political power in the form of Muslim religion and Muslim culture. But the State will not guarantee secured seats in the Legislature or in the Administration and, if such guarantee is insisted upon by the Muslims, such guaranteed quota is not to exceed their proportion to the general population.
Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan's opposition to the partition of India
Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, also known as "Frontier Gandhi" or "Sarhadi Gandhi", was not convinced by the two-nation theory and wanted a single united India as home for both Hindus and Muslims. He was from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, in present-day Pakistan. He believed that the partition would be harmful to the Muslims of the subcontinent. Post partition, Ghaffar Khan was a strong advocate of the Pashtunistan movement.
Gandhi was against the division of India on the basis of religion. He once wrote:
I find no parallel in history for a body of converts and their descendants claiming to be a nation apart from the parent stock.
Since the partition, the theory has been subjected to animated debates and different interpretations on several grounds. In his memoirs entitled Pathway to Pakistan (1961), Chaudhry Khaliquzzaman, the first president of the Pakistan Muslim League, has written: "The two-nation theory, which we had used in the fight for Pakistan, had created not only bad blood against the Muslims of the minority provinces, but also an ideological wedge, between them and the Hindus of India.". He further wrote: "He (Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy) doubted the utility of the two-nation theory, which to my mind also had never paid any dividends to us, but after the partition, it proved positively injurious to the Muslims of India, and on a long-view basis for Muslims everywhere."
According to Khaliquzzaman, on August 1, 1947, Jinnah invited the Muslim League members of India's constituent assembly to a farewell meeting at his Delhi house.
Mr. Rizwanullah put some awkward questions concerning the position of Muslims, who would be left over in India, their status and their future. I had never before found Mr. Jinnah so disconcerted as on that occasion, probably because he was realizing then quite vividly what was immediately in store for the Muslims. Finding the situation awkward, I asked my friends and colleagues to the end the discussion. I believe as a result of our farewell meeting, Mr. Jinnah took the earliest opportunity to bid goodbye to his two-nation theory in his speech on 11 August 1947 as the governor general-designate and President of the constituent assembly of Pakistan.
In his August 11, 1947 speech, Jinnah had spoken of composite Pakistani nationalism, effectively negating the faith-based nationalism that he had advocated in his speech of March 22, 1940. In his August 11 speech, he said that non-Muslims would be equal citizens of Pakistan and that there would be no discrimination against them. "You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state."
The theory has faced skepticism because Muslims did not entirely separate from Hindus and about one-third of all Muslims continued to live in post-partition India as Indian citizens alongside a much larger Hindu majority. The subsequent partition of Pakistan itself into the present-day nations of Pakistan and Bangladesh was cited as proof both that Muslims did not constitute one nation and that religion was not a defining factor for nationhood.
Some historians have claimed that the theory was a creation of a few Muslim intellectuals. Prominent Pakistani politician Altaf Hussain of Muttahida Qaumi Movement believes history has proved the two-nation theory wrong. He contended, "The idea of Pakistan was dead at its inception, when the majority of Muslims (in Muslim-minority areas of India) chose to stay back after partition, a truism reiterated in the creation of Bangladesh in 1971". Canadian writer Tarek Fatah termed the two-nation theory as "absurd".
Ethnic and provincial groups in Pakistan
Several ethnic and provincial leaders in Pakistan also began to use the term "nation" to describe their provinces and argued that their very existence was threatened by the concept of amalgamation into a Pakistani nation on the basis that Muslims were one nation. It has also been alleged that the idea that Islam is the basis of nationhood embroils Pakistan too deeply in the affairs of other predominantly Muslim states and regions, prevents the emergence of a unique sense of Pakistani nationhood that is independent of reference to India, and encourages the growth of a fundamentalist culture in the country.
Also, because partition divided Indian Muslims into three groups (of roughly 150 million people each in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh) instead of forming a single community inside a united India that would have numbered about 450 million people in 2010 and potentially exercised great influence over the entire subcontinent, the two-nation theory is sometimes alleged to have ultimately weakened the position of Muslims on the subcontinent and resulted in large-scale territorial shrinkage or skewing for cultural aspects that became associated with Muslims (e.g., the decline of Urdu language in India).
This criticism has received a mixed response in Pakistan. A poll conducted by Gallup Pakistan in 2011 shows that an overwhelming majority of Pakistanis held the view that separation from India was justified in 1947. Pakistani commentators have contended that two nations did not necessarily imply two states, and the fact that Bangladesh did not merge into India after separating from Pakistan supports the two nation theory.
Others have stated that the theory is still valid despite the still-extant Muslim minority in India, and asserted variously that Indian Muslims have been "Hinduized" (i.e., lost much of their Muslim identity due to assimilation into Hindu culture), or that they are treated as an excluded or alien group by an allegedly Hindu-dominated India. Factors such as lower literacy and education levels among Indian Muslims as compared to Indian Hindus, longstanding cultural differences, and outbreaks of religious violence such as those occurring during the 2002 Gujarat riots in India are cited.
The emergence of a sense of identity that is pan-Islamic rather than Pakistani has been defended as consistent with the founding ideology of Pakistan and the concept that "Islam itself is a nationality," while the commonly-held notion of "nationality, to Muslims, is like idol worship." While some have emphasized that promoting the primacy of a pan-Islamic identity (over all other identities) is essential to maintaining a distinctiveness from India and preventing national "collapse", others have argued that the Two Nation Theory has served its purpose in "midwifing" Pakistan into existence and should now be discarded to allow Pakistan to emerge as a normal nation-state.
Prominent political commentator Irfan Husain, in his column in Dawn, observed that it has now become an “impossible and exceedingly boring task of defending a defunct theory". However some Pakistanis, including a retired Pakistani brigadier, Shaukat Qadir, believe that the theory could only be disproved with the reunification of independent Bangladesh, and Republic of India.
According to Sharif al Mujahid, arguably the preeminent authority on Jinnah in Pakistan, the two-nation theory was relevant only in the pre-1947 subcontinental context. He is of the opinion that the creation of Pakistan rendered it obsolete because the two nations had transformed themselves into Indian and Pakistani nations. The columnist Muqtida Mansoor has quoted Farooq Sattar, a prominent leader of the MQM, as saying that his party did not accept the two-nation theory. "Even if there was such a theory, it has sunk in the Bay of Bengal."
Post-partition perspectives in India
In post-independence India, the two-nation theory has helped advance the cause of groups seeking to identify a "Hindu national culture" as the core identification of an Indian. This allows the acknowledgement of the common ethnicity of Hindus and Muslims while requiring that all adopt a Hindu identity in order to be truly Indian. From the Hindu nationalist perspective, this concedes the ethnic reality that Indian Muslims are "flesh of our flesh and blood of our blood" but still presses for an officially-recognized equation of national and religious identity, i.e., that "an Indian is a Hindu."
The theory has provided evidence to the allegation that Indian Muslims "cannot be loyal citizens of India" or any other non-Muslim nation, and are "always capable and ready to perform traitorous acts". Constitutionally, India rejects the two-nation theory and regards Indian Muslims as equal citizens. From the official Indian perspective, the partition is regarded as a tactical necessity to rid the subcontinent of British rule rather than denoting acceptance of the theory.
- Robin W. Winks; Alaine M. Low (2001), The Oxford history of the British Empire: Historiography, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-924680-9,
... At the heart of the two-nation theory was the belief that the Indian Muslims' identity was defined by religion rather than language or ethnicity ...
- Liaquat Ali Khan (1940), Pakistan: The Heart of Asia, Thacker & Co. Ltd.,
... There is much in the Musalmans which, if they wish, can roll them into a nation. But isn't there enough that is common to both Hindus and Muslims, which if developed, is capable of molding them into one people? Nobody can deny that there are many modes, manners, rites and customs which are common to both. Nobody can deny that there are rites, customs and usages based on religion which do divide Hindus and Muslmans. The question is, which of these should be emphasized ...
- "Two-Nation Theory Exists". Pakistan Times. Archived from the original on November 11, 2007.
- Jinnah: "Islam and Hinduism are not religions in the strict sense of the word, but in fact different and distinct social orders, and it is only a dream that the Hindus and Muslims can ever evolve a common nationality.... To yoke together two such nations under a single state ... must lead to a growing discontent and final destruction of any fabric that may be so built up for the government of such a state.https://www.theatlantic.com/past/docs/issues/88aug/obrien.htm
- Economic and political weekly, Volume 14, Part 3, Sameeksha Trust, 1979,
... the Muslims are not Indians but foreigners or temporary guests - without any loyalty to the country or its cultural heritage - and should be driven out of the country ...
- M. M. Sankhdher; K. K. Wadhwa (1991), National unity and religious minorities, Gitanjali Publishing House, ISBN 978-81-85060-36-1,
... In their heart of hearts, the Indian Muslims are not Indian citizens, are not Indians: they are citizens of the universal Islamic ummah, of Islamdom ...
- Vinayak Damodar Savarkar; Sudhakar Raje (1989), Savarkar commemoration volume, Savarkar Darshan Pratishthan,
... His historic warning against conversion and call for Shuddhi was condensed in the dictum 'Dharmantar is Rashtrantar' (to change one's religion is to change one's nationality) ...
- N. Chakravarty (1990), "Mainstream", Mainstream, 28 (32-52),
... 'Dharmantar is Rashtrantar' is one of the old slogans of the VHP ...
- Carlo Caldarola (1982), Religions and societies, Asia and the Middle East, Walter de Gruyter, ISBN 978-90-279-3259-4,
... Hindu and Muslim cultures constitute two distinct, and frequently antagonistic, ways of life, and that therefore they cannot coexist in one nation ...
- S. Harman (1977), Plight of Muslims in India, DL Publications, ISBN 978-0-9502818-2-7,
... strongly and repeatedly pressed for the transfer of population between India and Pakistan. At the time of partition some of the two-nation theory protagonists proposed that the entire Hindu population should migrate to India and all Muslims should move over to Pakistan, leaving no Hindus in Pakistan and no Muslims in India ...
- M. M. Sankhdher (1992), Secularism in India, dilemmas and challenges, Deep & Deep Publication,
... The partition of the country did not take the two-nation theory to its logical conclusion, i.e., complete transfer of populations ...
- Rafiq Zakaria (2004), Indian Muslims: where have they gone wrong?, Popular Prakashan, ISBN 978-81-7991-201-0,
... As a Muslim ... Hindus and Muslims are one nation and not two ... two nations has no basis in history ... they shall continue to live together for another thousand years in united India ...
- Pakistan Constituent Assembly (1953), Debates: Official report, Volume 1; Volume 16, Government of Pakistan Press,
... say that Hindus and Muslims are one, single nation. It is a very peculiar attitude on the part of the leader of the ppposition. In fact if his point of view was accepted, then the very justification for the existence of Pakistan would disappear ...
- Janmahmad (1989), Essays on Baloch national struggle in Pakistan: emergence, dimensions, repercussions, Gosha-e-Adab,
... would be completely extinct as a people without any identity. This proposition is the crux of the matter, shaping the Baloch attitude towards Pakistani politics. For Baloch to accept the British-conceived two-nation theory for the Indian Muslims ... would mean losing their Baloch identity in the process ...
- Stephen P. Cohen (2004), The idea of Pakistan, Brookings Institution Press, ISBN 978-0-8157-1502-3,
... and the two-nation theory became a trap for Sindhis — instead of liberating Sindh, it fell under Punjabi-Mohajir domination, and until his death in 1995 he called for a separate Sindhi "nation," implying a separate Sindhi country ...
- Ahmad Salim (1991), Pashtun and Baloch history: Punjabi view, Fiction House,
... Attacking the 'two nation theory' in Lower House on December 14, 1947, Ghaus Bux Bizenjo said: "We have a distinct culture like Afghanistan and Iran, and if the mere fact that we are Muslim requires us to amalgamate with Pakistan, then Afghanistan and Iran should also be amalgamated with Pakistan ...
- Abbott Lawrence Lowell (1918), Greater European governments, Harvard University Press,
... The people of India are not a nation, but a conglomerate of many different races and religions ... enabled the British to conquer and hold the country. If the inhabitants should act together, and were agreed in wanting independence, they could get it. In short, if they were capable of national self-government, the English would live on a volcano ...
- "History books contain major distortions". Daily Times. Archived from the original on June 6, 2011.
- Prakash K. Singh (2008). Encyclopaedia on Jinnah. 5. Anmol Publications. p. 331. ISBN 978-8126137794.
- "Pakistan Movement". cybercity-online.net.
- Daily Express, Lahore, December 15, 2010
- Stanley Wolpert, Jinnah of Pakistan
- Rubina Saigol (1995), Knowledge and identity: articulation of gender in educational discourse in Pakistan, ASR Publications, ISBN 978-969-8217-30-3,
... the idea that all Muslims are one single nation vis-a-vis the Hindus, who were also described in monolithic terms, erased the vast regional differences between and among Muslims themselves. These difference, of course, came into sharp focus when the province of East Pakistan became a separate country in 1971 ... stresses that Jinnah hated the idea of provincial diversity ... deep desire to create one Pakistan and quotes Jinnah as having said that We are Muslims. We believe in one God, one prophet and one book. It is essential that we should be one nation ...
- Mahomed Ali Jinnah (1992) [1st pub. 1940], Problem of India's future constitution, and allied articles, Minerva Book Shop, Anarkali, Lahore, ISBN 978-969-0-10122-8,
... understood in the West, by a Hindu or a Muslim, but a complete social order which affects all the activities in life. In Islam, religion is the motive spring of all actions in life. A Muslim of one country has far more sympathies with a Muslim living in another country than with a non-Muslim living in the same country ...
- Shaukatullah Ansari (1944), Pakistan - The Problem of India, Minerva Book Shop, Anarkali, Lahore,
... In the East, religion is considered not merely religion ... a complete social order which affects all the activities in life ... In countries where the allegiance of people is divided on the basis of religion, the idea of territorial nationalism has never succeeded ... the conception of Indian Muslims as a nation may not be ethnically correct, but socially it is correct ...
- Nasim A. Jawed (1999), Islam's political culture: religion and politics in predivided Pakistan, University of Texas Press, ISBN 978-0-292-74080-8,
... his consciousness of these conflicts that made Muhammad Iqbal, the eminent poet-philosopher (d. 1938) declare: 'In tāzah xudā'ōⁿ mēⁿ, baṙā sab sē; waṭan hai: Jō pairahan is kā hai; woh maẕhab kā, kafan hai" ... For the great bulk of the Muslims of the Indian subcontinent who, before 1947, supported the creation of Pakistan, the demand for Pakistan resulted from their awareness of the differences between the two types of communities - based on faith and country - and from their preference of the former over the latter ...
- Sajid Khakwani (2010-05-29), امہ یا ریاست؟ (Ummah or Statehood?), News Urdu, retrieved 2010-07-09,
... یہی مقصود فطرت ہے یہی رمز مسلمانی اخوت کی جہانگیری محبت کی فراوانی , بتان رنگ وخوں کو توڑ کر ملت میں گم ہو جا نہ تورانی رہے باقی نہ ایرانی نہ افغانی (Yehi maqsūd-e fiṭrat hai, yehi ramz-e Musalmānī, Uxuwwat kī jahāⁿŋgīrī, muḥabbat kī farāwānī; Butān-e raⁿŋg ō-xūⁿ kō tōṙ kar millat mēⁿ gum hō jā; Nah Tūrānī rahē bāqī, nah Īrānī, nah Afġānī ...
- Ambedkar, Bhimrao Ramji (1945). Pakistan or the Partition of India. Mumbai: Thackers.
- Official website, Iqbal Academy, Lahore. "Iqbal and the Pakistan Movement". Retrieved 2006-04-22.
- Official website, Nazaria-e-Pakistan Foundation. "Excerpt from the presidential address delivered Muhammad Ali Jinnah in Lahore on March 22, 1940". Archived from the original on 2006-06-28. Retrieved 2006-04-22.
- Prof. Prasoon (1 January 2010). My Letters.... M.K.Gandhi. Pustak Mahal. p. 120. ISBN 978-81-223-1109-9.
- David Arnold (17 June 2014). Gandhi. Taylor & Francis. p. 170. ISBN 978-1-317-88234-3.
- Mridula Nath Chakraborty (26 March 2014). Being Bengali: At Home and in the World. Routledge. p. 203. ISBN 978-1-317-81890-8.
- Anil Chandra Banerjee (1981). Two Nations: The Philosophy of Muslim Nationalism. Concept Publishing Company. p. 236. GGKEY:HJDP3TYZJLW.
- Bhikhu Parekh (November 25, 1991). Gandhi’s Political Philosophy: A Critical Examination. Palgrave Macmillan UK. p. 178. ISBN 978-1-349-12242-4.
- Choudhry Khaliquzzaman (1961), Pathway to Pakistan, Brothers' Publisher, Lahore, reprinted in 1993, p. 390
- Ibid., p. 400
- Ibid., p. 321
- Husain Haqqani (2005), Pakistan: Between Mosque and Military, Carnegie Endowment, ISBN 978-0-87003-214-1,
... Although Pakistan was intended to save South Asia's Muslims from being a permanent minority, it never became the homeland of all South Asia's Muslims. One-third ... remained behind as a minority in Hindu-dominated India ... the other two-thirds now live in two separate countries, confirming the doubts expressed before independence about the practicality of the two-nation theory ...
- "کالم نگار جہالت اور جذبات فروشی کا کام کرتے ہیں ('Columnists are peddling ignorance and raw emotionalism')", Urdu Point, retrieved 2010-10-22,
... 'جب ہنوستان میں اتنے مسلمان ہیں تو کہاں گیا دو قومی نظریہ؟ بنگلہ دیش علیحده ہو گیا، کہاں گیا دو قومی نظریہ؟' ('When so many Muslims are in India, what is the validity of the two-nation theory? When Bangladesh seceded, what is the validity of the two-nation theory?') ...
- Craig Baxter (1994), Islam, continuity and change in the modern world, Syracuse University Press, ISBN 978-0-8156-2639-8,
...Ultimately, the repudiation of the two-nation theory, with its corollary that Pakistan is a single nation, became the basis for Bengali rather than Pakistani or Islamic nationalism ... Bangladesh meant that Islam had been the basis for the creation of Pakistan, but it could not provide a sufficient basis for long-term national unity ...
- Craig Baxter (1998), Bangladesh: From a Nation to a State, Carnegie Endowment, ISBN 978-0-8133-3632-9,
...India was divided on the basis of the two-nation theory ... the theory was violated. The first time was at independence, when so many Muslims remained in India ... the subcontinent underwent the outcome of what could be described as a second two nation theory, a division based on culture, language and social organization rather than religion ... into residual Pakistan and Bangladesh ...
- Two Nation Theory Archived August 31, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
- India and Pakistan in the Shadow of Afghanistan, Amaury de Riencourt, Foreign Affairs, Winter 1982/83
- The slogan of two-nation theory was raised to deceive the one hundred million Muslims of the suboncontinent
- Faruqui, Ahmad (2005-03-19). "Jinnah's unfulfilled vision: The Idea of Pakistan by Stephen Cohen". Asia Times. Pakistan. Retrieved 2009-10-06.
- Aarti Tikoo Singh (19 April 2013). "Tarek Fatah: India is the only country where Muslims exert influence without fear". The Times of India. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
- Institute of Policy Studies, Islamabad, Pakistan (2005), Pakistan political perspective, Volume 14,
... Pakistan Oppressed Nations Movement (PONM, a grouping of nationalist parties from Balochistan, NWFP and Sindh) ...
- Sayid Ghulam Mustafa; Ali Ahmed Qureshi (2003), Sayyed: as we knew him, Manchhar Publications,
... Sindhi nation, its culture, language and literature cannot coexist with the above colouring or mode of teachings. If Pakistani Muslims are to be taken as one nation, then their cultures, language and literature have to be leveled ...
- Paul R. Brass; Achin Vanaik; Asgharali Engineer (2002), Competing nationalisms in South Asia: essays for Asghar Ali Engineer, Orient Blackswan, ISBN 978-81-250-2221-3,
... Mubarak Ali's assessment remains valid ... It has to establish a positive foundation for Pakistani nationalism capable of coping with the trauma of its bifurcation in 1971. Neither the two-nation theory nor an Islamicized version of a 'Pakistan ideology' holds the answer. Instead, Ali would place his hopes in a territorially- rather than religiously-founded version of Pakistani nationalism ...
- Shahid Javed Burki (1999), Pakistan: fifty years of nationhood, Westview Press, ISBN 978-0-8133-3621-3,
... If Pakistan was be created for Islam, it must fully follow its dictates ... General Zia ul-Haq ... 'Pakistan is like Israel, an ideological state,' the general said ... 'Take Islam out of Pakistan and make it a secular state; it would collapse. For the past four years we have been trying to bring in Islamic values to the country' ... a system of Islamic courts ... new set of Shariat laws ... an amir (ruler) and a shura (an assembly not necessarily chosen by the people) ...
- Moonis Ahmar (2001), The CTBT debate in Pakistan, Har-Anand Publications, ISBN 978-81-241-0818-5,
... The offshoot of these fundamentalist groups can be seen in Pakistan, placing emphasis on one point that Pakistan was created in the name of Islam and Islamic ideology must be implemented in social, economic and political sphere of the state ...
- Ghulam Kibria (2009), A shattered dream: understanding Pakistan's underdevelopment, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0-19-577947-9,
... It will be clear to the future generations that the Indian Muslim League leadership lacked vision and the competence ... will realize that while the Muslims were fragmented into three nations, the Hindus remained one single nation ...
- Gurpreet Mahajan (2002), The multicultural path: issues of diversity and discrimination in democracy, Sage, ISBN 978-0-7619-9579-1,
... the presence of minority educational institutions established for Urdu-speaking population in areas where Urdu is a spoken language, has not helped to check the decreasing interest in Urdu (Shahabuddin, 2000:2). Indeed, the decline of Urdu language users has been a matter of some concern among members of the Muslim community. Many of them feel that the loss of language users will adversely affect the survival of the culture and literature ...
- "Majority Pakistanis think separation from India was justified: Gallup poll". Express Tribune. 12 September 2011. Retrieved 28 December 2011.
- Raja Afsar Khan (2005), The concept, Volume 25,
... The important point is that Bangladesh did not merge with Indian Bengal even though both shared the same language and several other cultural traits ... Did not Bangladesh reconfirm that way the two nation theory ...
- "India and Partition". Daily Times.
- Yvonne Yazbeck Haddad; John L. Esposito (2000), Muslims on the Americanization path?, Oxford University Press US, ISBN 978-0-19-513526-8,
... Pakistani Muslims are suspicious of Indian Muslims because they disagree with their agenda on Kashmir. To them, Pakistani nationalism is Islamic, but Indian nationalism is definitely not. Pakistanis assume that Indian Muslims have been assimilated into Hindu culture ...
- Tarik Jan (1993), Foreign policy debate, the years ahead, Institute of Policy Studies,
... Today, if we have this intense longing for pan-Islamism, if we entertain those notions of establishing a universal Islamic State, it is only because the essence of our nation is Islam, because it is committed historically and constitutionally to the Islamic aspirations of ...
- S. M. Burke (1974), Mainsprings of Indian and Pakistani foreign policies, University of Minnesota Pres, ISBN 978-0-8166-0720-4,
... Iqbal, therefore, perceived ... Nationalism, as generally practiced, was nothing short of 'a subtle form of idolotry' ... Pakistanis have continued enthusiastically to follow the trail ... 'nationality to Muslims is like idol worship' ... Islam itself is a nationality ...
- Anwar Hussain Syed (1974), China & Pakistan: diplomacy of an entente cordiale, University of Massachusetts Press, ISBN 978-0-87023-160-5,
... In some ways, the two-nation theory has become a millstone around the Pakistani nation's neck. ... after the separation was achieved and Pakistan established, its work done, this ideological midwife should have been discharged ... it lacked the capacity to lead the infant nation toward adulthood and maturity ...
- A discourse of the deaf, by Irfan Husain, Dawn, November 4, 2000
- Dawn, December 25, 2004
- The News, March 23, 2011
- Daily Express, Lahore, March 24, 2011
- Sridharan, Kripa (2000), "Grasping the Nettle: Indian Nationalism and Globalization", in Leo Suryadinata, Nationalism and globalization: east and west, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, pp. 294–318, ISBN 978-981-230-078-2,
... The term Hindutva equates religious and national identity: an Indian is a Hindu ... 'the Indian Muslims are not aliens ethnically. They are flesh of our flesh and blood of our blood' ...
- Yogindar Sikand, Muslims in India: contemporary social and political discourses, Hope India Publications, 2006, ISBN 9788178711157,
... the claim that Muslims are necessarily disloyal to India ... often articulated in the context of discussions about the Partition of India ... the Hindutva argument that Muslims cannot be loyal citizens of India because of their adherence to Islam ...
- Clarence Maloney, Peoples of South Asia, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1974, ISBN 9780030849695,
... the Muslim can never be a real citizen of India because he is loyal first to his religion and only secondarily to his country. The Muslim, they feel, is always capable and ready to perform traitorous acts if they will ...
- Jasjit Singh, Kargil 1999: Pakistan's fourth war for Kashmir, Knowledge World, 1999, ISBN 9788186019221,
... India accepted the establishment of Pakistan as a sovereign state, but rejects the two-nation ideology that drives it ...
- Lawrence Kaelter Rosinger, The state of Asia: a contemporary survey, Ayer Publishing, 1971, ISBN 9780836920697,
... The Congress welcomed the creation of a politically independent India, and accepted partition as a necessary evil in achieving this main goal ...
- Story of Pakistan website, Jin Technologies (Pvt) Limited. "The Ideology of Pakistan: Two-Nation Theory". Retrieved 2006-04-22.
- A critique of the Two Nation Theory: Sharpening the saw; by Varsha Bhosle; July 26, 1999; Rediff India