845.00/11–347: Telegram

The Ambassador in India (Grady) to the Secretary of State


1009. Bajpai1 yesterday advised me as follows regarding Kashmir: some things he said were later covered in Nehru’s radio address reported mytel 1004, November 3.2

In attempting arrange conference between two Governors General and Prime Ministers3 at Lahore Mountbatten found Jinnah very difficult. Jinnah said he had no confidence in Government of India. Perhaps Mountbatten should not have communicated this to GOI but he stated it to GOI Defense Commission. Despite this Nehru was prepared to go to Lahore until he read Jinnah’s statement accusing GOI of “fraud” in connection with accession of Kashmir.4 Mountbatten is [Page 181] continuing negotiations with Jinnah. Jinnah first proposed that if Indian troops withdrawn from Kashmir, invaders would withdraw. This in opinion of GOI indicated control by Pakistan over invaders who Bajpai said have looted and destroyed at least 100 villages on border. GOI countered this proposal by promising to withdraw troops if invaders first withdrew and proposed plebiscite or referendum under UN auspices.5 They had in mind observation similar to that which British, French and Americans conducted last year in Greece.6 They are awaiting Jinnah’s reply to this proposal.

Bajpai stated military situation as far as GOI forces are concerned seemed “under control”.

He mentioned deep concern GOI naturally has for Kashmir and referred to three neighbors on north—China, Afghanistan and USSR. GOI not concerned about first two but definitely concerned about last if Kashmir becomes center of real conflict and chaos gets deeper. He observed specifically that Prime Minister concerned with regard to USSR.

When invasion first began Nehru wired Attlee urging him request Pakistan exert its influence on tribesmen to withdraw. Attlee’s reply in form of general admonition that two Dominions should preserve peace. GOI felt his message patronizing and failed to appreciate position of GOI and necessity it was under to respond to appeal of a friendly neighbor for assistance when it was under attack. Nehru replied to Attlee at great length outlining whole situation as GOI sees it. GOI does not like what it regards as lecturing from London and feels HMG is taking its friendliness and good will for granted while it woos Pakistan. Bajpai promised keep me fully informed particularly with respect Jinnah’s response to GOI’s latest proposal.

Sent Department 1009, repeated Karachi 84.

Please repeat London.

  1. Sir Girja Shankar Bajpai, Secretary-General, Ministry of External Affairs and Commonwealth Relations.
  2. Not printed. Reference is to a broadcast on the night of November 2. For text, see Government of India, White Paper on Jammu and Kashmir, pp. 52–55
  3. Governors-General Lord Mountbatten and Mohammed Ali Jinnah, Prime Ministers Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru and Liaquat Ali Khan.
  4. Reference here is presumably to the meeting of the Governors-General and Prime Ministers originally scheduled for October 29, and to a Pakistan Government press release of October 30 stating that the accession of Kashmir to India was based on fraud and violence and as such could not be recognized. For text, see S. L. Poplai, Select Documents on Asian Affairs: India 1947–50, Bombay, (Oxford University Press, 1959), pp. 374–377.
  5. See telegram dated November 8, 1947, from Pandit Nehru to Liaquat Ali Khan, Government of India, White Paper on Jammu and Kashmir, pp. 61–62.
  6. For documentation on this subject, see Foreign Relations, 1946, vol. vii, pp. 88 ff.