Maulana Bhashani remains a much demonised figure amongst a certain section of North East India for leading the movement for immigration of Bengali land hungry peasant into colonial Assam. So who was Maulana Bhashani? A rustic pir? A vulgar peasant leader? Scourge of Colonial India and Post colonial Pakistan & Bangladesh state? Communist? Islamist? Today, socialism and Islam are often viewed as incompatible. Does the career of Maulana Bhashani, “the Red Maulana” of Bangladesh, offer a corrective to this view?
Author: Dr. Layli Uddin
Dr. Layli Uddin is a historian of modern South Asia and is currently working on a book on the making and unmaking of Pakistan and Bangladesh. She is also the curator of the ‘Two Centuries of Indian Print’ project at the British Library.