Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy

Bengali barrister and politician (1892–1963)

Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy (Bengali: হোসেন শহীদ সোহ্‌রাওয়ার্দী; Urdu: حسین شہید سہروردی‎; 8 September 1892 – 5 December 1963) was a Bengali politician and a lawyer who was the fifth Prime Minister of Pakistan, serving from his appointment on 12 September 1956 until his resignation on 17 October 1957.

Prime Minister Suhrawardy meeting with the U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower in Washington D.C. 1957

Quotes about Suhrawardy edit

  • Mr. H. S. Suhrawardy, Premier of Bengal at that time, spoke words still more ominous and pregnant with a sinister significance the full force of which was not realized by the country perhaps at the time. “We await the clarion call of the Qaid-i-Azam (Muhammad Ali Jinnah).”
  • The statements publicly made by the top-ranking Muslim League leaders reveal the temper and intentions of these leaders and the organization whose policy and programme they had framed. On September 9, 1946 only two weeks after the Calcutta Carnage, after the attack on Sir Shafaat Ahmed Khan, and the situation akin to Civil War which was developing inside the country, Mr. H. S. Sahrawardy, Premier of Bengal, said: “Muslim India means business.”
  • On CM Suhrawardy’s Direct Action speech, writes Yasmin Khan, ‘if he did not explicitly incite violence, certainly gave the crowds the impression that they could act with impunity, that neither the police nor the military would be called out and that the ministry would turn a blind eye to any action that they unleashed in the city.’
    • Khan Y (2007) The Great Partition: The Making of India and Pakistan, Yale University Press, p. 64 as quoted in M.A. Khan Islamic Jihad: A legacy of forced conversion, imperialism and slavery (2011)
  • Mr Suhrawardy at its head, and in bum the Qaid i Azam saw a most efficient instrument for executing his design. Suave of appearance and urbane in his manners he was a clever politician. He accepted Mr Jinnah as his leader because in this course he saw a splendid opportunity for furthering his own interests. Ho possessed the necessary skill for provoking a controversy and then turning the situation to his own advantage He was capable of starting a large scale and gruesome massacre im Calcutta and then afterwards associating himself with Mahatma Gandhis peace mission He was seen to interfere m the working of tho police m the Control Room but, when charged with procrastination and criminal neglect, he pleaded that the Commussioner of Police had declined to carry out Ins orders for restoring peace and sought shelter behind the wording of section 9 of the Police Act which entrusted “the exclusive direction and control” of the Police Force to the Commissioner of Police As head of the Government m Bengal he refused to issue petrol coupons to the Muslim League lorries but as a Muslim Leaguer he issued supplementary petrol coupons for hundreds of gallons to the Ministers individually and to himself. This petrol was later used to transport Muslim rioters on Direct Action Day. He was capable of issuing a statement to the Associated Press of India on the evening of August 16 that conditions were unproving when things had been going from bad to worse throughout the city When questioned on this point later he denied that he had issued such a statement. On August 23 speaking on the radio be urged the people of Bengal to live in peace and brotherly affection and within half an hour sent out a special message to the correspondents of the foreign Press which wholly contradicted his radio broadcast. It was probably on Ins advice that Calcutta was selected for starting a large-scale assault upon the non Muslims.
    • Khosla G. D. (1989). Stern reckoning : a survey of the events leading up to and following the partition of india. Oxford University Press. 46
  • To add to the embarrassment of the Police Chiefs, Mr. Suhrawardy arrived in the Control Room and established himself there for the space of several hours. He received messages, gave verbal directions, issued written instructions or orders, scribbled on scraps of paper, talked to the Police Heads, overrode the decisions made by them, received visitors, discussed the political events with them and generally interrupted the vital business of those in charge of the Control Room. He ordered that special protection should be given to all mosques and that police pickets should be posted at each one of them; but nothing was to be done to safeguard the inmates, sanctity or property of any Hindu shrine.
    • Khosla G. D. (1989). Stern reckoning : a survey of the events leading up to and following the partition of india. Oxford University Press.59

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