The representatives of the Muslim League from the Muslim-majority provinces boycotted the Constituent Assembly formed to frame a new Constitution for India. Communal riots broke out in different parts of the country. The Congress, though, in power at the Centre could not control the situation, as law and order was the responsibility of the provinces. To solve the political and communal deadlock the Mountbatten Plan of June 3, 1947 laid down detailed measures for the partition of India, and the speedy transfer of political power in the form of Dominion Status to the newly-born Dominions of India and Pakistan. The Mountbatten Plan contained the following points : –
Mountbatten Plan – 3 June Plan
- The Constitution framed by the Indian Constituent Assembly will not apply to Muslim-majority provinces.
- The Muslim-majority provinces will decide for themselves the question of a separate Constituent Assembly.
- The question of the division of the Punjab and Bengal and also the Constituent Assembly they wanted to join will be decided by their respective Legislature Assemblies.
- The Sind Legislative Assembly will decide whether it wanted to join the present Constituent Assembly or the new one.
- Referendum was to be held in Sylhet District (Assam) and North West Frontier Province.
- A Boundary Communism in each province shall decide the final lines of demarcation.
- If the Legislative Assemblies of Bengal and Punjab took their decisions in favour of the division of the provinces, fresh elections would be held for the Pakistan Constituent Assembly.
- Power was to be transferred to India by 15th of August, 1947. Paramountcy was to be lapse. The Princely States would be free to join India or Pakistan or to proclaim their independence, and establish their new relationship with Britain.
Partition of the Country
A Bill was prepared by the British Government containing the main provisions of the Mountbatten Plan of June 3, 1947 and it was introduced in British Parliament on July 3, 1947. This Bill was passed as the Indian Independence Act of 1947. On 15th August, 1947 India attained independence, and Pakistan was created as a new Dominion on 14th August, 1947.