Prelude of Haryana’s Statehood Demand
Haryana’s statehood demand has deep historical underpinnings. During the first war of independence, the people of Haryana’s emotional involvement established a simmering desire for reprisal against British colonial rule. This sentiment persisted, even though British authorities politically aligned the region with Punjab in 1858.
They aimed to segregate the region politically, but the cultural and social ties with Delhi and Western Uttar Pradesh remained robust. These ties were retained, even as political boundaries blurred. British oppressive policies impeded the region’s progress in education, trade, industry, communication, and irrigation, causing Haryana to lag in societal, educational, economic, and political aspects throughout the 19th century.
Emergence Amid Political Changes In Haryana
With the shift of the capital from Calcutta to Delhi in 1911, Haryana gained separate recognition. In 1920, suggestions for altering the Delhi district configuration emerged. The Muslim League proposed the inclusion of Agra, Meerut, and Ambala divisions in Delhi’s boundaries. Similarly, Sir J.P. Thomson, the Commissioner of Delhi, encountered similar requests from the populace.
Continued Pursuit of Separation
In 1928, during a comprehensive conference involving all political parties in Delhi, the call for expanding Delhi’s boundaries resurfaced. Key Haryana leaders, including Pandit Neki Ram Sharma, Lala Deshbandhu Gupta, and Shri Ram Sharma, held meetings with Mahatma Gandhi, urging the merger of Haryana’s districts with Delhi.
The Second Round Table Conference in 1931 saw Sir Jeffrey Corbett, the Financial Commissioner of Punjab, suggesting the restructuring of Punjab’s boundaries and the separation of the Ambala division from Punjab. He contended that “historically, the Ambala division was intrinsically part of India, and its immediate amalgamation into Punjab was an event enforced by British rule.”
Unveiling the Origins of the Haryana State’s Name
The name “Haryana” has diverse interpretations. In ancient times, the region was known as “Brahmavarta,” “Aryavarta,” and “Brahamopdesha,” all rooted in the emergence of the Brahma deity and teachings of Vedic cultures. Another name, “Bahudhanyakaka,” hints at abundant food and vegetation. Inscriptions near Bohar village suggest “Hariyanka” as an ancient name. “Haryana” emerged during Tomar’s rule and endured after Gauri’s capture of Lahore in 1186 AD.
Haryana’s Journey as an Administrative Entity
Haryana’s identity as a geographical entity emerged later, yet its antiquity remains unquestioned. The Tomar Rajputs governed after Ghazni’s capture of Lahore in 1020. Lahore’s rule was taken by Gauri in 1186 AD, resulting in the emergence of Muslim rule in Northern India. The resistance against foreign conquerors and their ideologies grew, and connections expanded while maintaining distinctiveness.
In conclusion, Haryana’s journey toward statehood reflects a rich tapestry woven with cultural, political, and social threads. Its historical roots date back to ancient times, and its role in shaping Indian culture is undeniable. The region’s evolution from being part of various empires to its modern identity as Haryana is a testament to its resilience and historical significance.