“Madhya Pradesh is a faceless state, without a personality of its own. When we mention MP, it does not create an image that one may recognise easily, an image that is ingrained in our collective memory. But when we mention Punjab or Gujarat or Bengal, it immediately conjures up visions of those states, images that symbolise those states.”
— Rajendra Mathur, 31 October 1965
Eminent journalist Rajendra Mathur wrote these lines nine years after the state of MP was formed in 1956. The new born state initially suffered from an identity crisis.
The problem was accentuated by squabbles among rival politicians and warring pressure groups from different regions amalgamated into the newly-formed state. They were all jockeying for more shares in the power structure.
MP was a geographical oddity when it came into existence. Its boundaries have undergone changes thrice, enough to bewilder both its inhabitants and administrators. Before Independence, it was a fragmented entity. Continue reading “A Passage to Madhya Pradesh”