Constituent Assembly Debates

Sadiq is elected President of Constituent Assembly; Sheikh, others speak.

A group photograph of the Members of the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir

G.M. Sadiq, a member of the National Conference and longstanding colleague of Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah was elected as permanent President of the Jammu and Kashmir Constituent Assembly on November 1, 1951, at Srinagar.

The temporary President Maulana Mohammad Saeed Masoodi presided over the proceedings.

Opening the proceedings for election of the permanent President of the Constituent Assembly, Maulana Masoodi said, “Now, the next item on the agenda relates to the election of the Permanent President of the House. Yesterday, after the adoption of the rules, it was announced that the nominations for the office of the President should reach by 4 p. m. I have two proposals with me by now and both of them are in order. One has been proposed by Mr. Beg and seconded by Mr. Bakshi and the other has bee proposed by Mr. Ram Chand Khajuria and seconded by Mr. Mahant Ram Sharma. Both these proposals relate to one and the same candidate, i.e., Mr. G. M. Sadiq. As no other name has been proposed. I declare Mr. G. M. Sadiq as duly elected to the office of the permanent President of the House.

Below is full transcript of Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah’s speech on election of G.M. Sadiq as President of the Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir:

Sir, I congratulate you from the depth of my heart, upon the confidence reposed in you by the House and the honour which it has bestowed in unanimously electing you as its President (Cheers).

The part you played in the freedom Movement needs no comment. In the year 1931, when the freedom Movement was launched here, you were studying at Aligarh. When I started this movement, I remember fully well, I counted upon you support were also studying in various colleges. When as a result of our first struggle we succeeded in securing for the people the first installment of constitutional reforms granting the right to send representatives to the State Assembly by election that choice of the people even at that early stage fell on you and you were elected as a member of our first Assembly, The mastery that you possess over political affairs is a natural instinct and a divine gift with you.

Not only were you in touch with the changing phases of the politics of you own land but you were also fully acquainted with the different trends of the world politics. That is why the people have placed confidence in you at this time. The honesty and ability with which you discharged your duties, is known to us all. (Cheers). These facts speak for themselves. Thereafter our Movement passed through a transitional period. We had frequently to face severe storms but the ability with which you steered the ship of the nation through each such storm is fresh in every one’s mind. It is a strange coincidence that whenever our boat took a definite direction; whenever we left our old ruts to step into a new order; and whenever such a situation arose during these past twenty years, the people, quite in keeping with divine will, bestowed upon you the honour of giving them a right lead at each turning point (Cheers). From 1931 to 1938 the people’s Movement passed through an important stage. The people and their leaders after deep consideration came to the conclusion that they had reached a stage when the Movement should be broad based and must have a common platform in place of different forces in which the Movement was running till then. To take such a decision the nation called a conference of 200 representatives at Srinagar. I regard this occasion as another turning point of our history, i.e., we had to take a path different from the one we were traversing from 1931 to 1938.

After eight year’s deliberations the people were faced with the problem as to whether or not it was necessary to chalk out a common programme for leading the country towards freedom. Here too the people conferred upon you the honour and the memory of efficient and courageous lead given by you on that occasion is still green.

With the Division of India, the Indian States were confronted with a new situation, i.e., whether they should accede to India or Pakistan or maintain relations with both the Dominions. This was such a complicated problem that any wrong step taken would have endangered the whole nation. The situation had become complex. Soon after the partition of India, we were deeply perturbed by terri8ble blood-shed which was going on our borders. We had hardly come out of prisons and were considering upon the ways and means to resolve the evoked problem; it is strange that even at that critical juncture the eyes of the people fell on you. You were entrusted with the mission of proceeding to Lahore and placing the view point of the Kashmir people before the leaders of Pakistan. You went there accordingly and represented our country. The ability and tact with which you advocated our view point before the Pakistan Authorities is fresh in our minds.

New God has entrusted you with another important task. The complications which arose in our country after 1947 are known to everyone. Now again the people have taken a definite decision and convened a Constituent Assembly. In 1931, we had raised the voice that the destiny of the country should lie in the hands of the people and they should frame their constitution in accordance with their wishes. Now when after a protracted struggle our hopes have been fulfilled, the elected representatives of the country after placing their implicit confidence in you have entrusted you with the Presidentship of this

Assembly so as to derive full benefit from your leadership. My object in placing all these facts before you was that in reality a hidden power works in the back ground in this word which we call as God. Ram or Waheguru and we are merely puppet in the hands of Nature. Nature assigns a specific task to each individual in this world and gets it done. At every critical stage that arose since the year 1931, the hand of Nature was always at work for the solution of each such tangle and the choice of the people fell on you.

I realize that Nature had always been guiding us in all our undertakings and shall continue to do so. It is in fact God who has entrusted you with this important task. I am confident that no one can spoil the work of God. Just as in the past the helping hand of the Almighty has crowned your efforts with success in guiding the people on the right path, I am sure, you will meet with similar success in the present enterprise. Believe me, Sir, that I was thrilled by this decision of the House and I realize that Nature

persistently works and uses the human beings as mere instruments. I believe that the future of our country will be glorious and the dark clouds overhanging our political firmament will soon vanish into thin air. My prayers shall always be with you. I assure you that this House will always extend complete obedience to your orders. With these few words I once again congratulate on your election.

Girdhari Lal Dogra, Sardar Harbans Singh Azad, Moti Ram Baigra, Sardar Kulbir Singh,  Abdul Gani Goni, Kushak Bakula, Maulana Mohammad Saeed Masoodi and Mirza Mohammad Afzal Beg also spoke on the occasion.


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