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Sri Aurobindo

Bande Mataram

Early Political Writings. 1890 — May 1908

Bande Mataram. March 11, 1908

What Committee?

There are signs that the compromise arrived at at Pabna will be ignored by the Moderates at Allahabad. We have received a communication from two leading gentlemen of Barisal enclosing a draft constitution for the Congress which seems to be a reply to another draft forwarded in the name of some Calcutta Committee. This is described in the forwarding letter as a committee of “our leaders”. If it is the Calcutta Committee of the Surat Convention, it should have made its origin and nature clear while forwarding its views to the Mofussil. We are entirely unaware of any general Committee having been formed of the leaders in Calcutta which can speak authoritatively to Bengal, or of any draft constitution prepared by the common consent of Bengal's foremost men. The Convention Calcutta Committee met in secret and seem to have issued their draft in secret to a select few in the Mofussil. The Mofussil gentlemen who sent their draft appear to be under the impression that the leaders of the Nationalist Party are in the know. We must remind them that there are two Committees, one appointed by the Moderate Convention at Surat, the other by a meeting of the delegates pledged to the four Calcutta resolutions. No attempt to arrogate to the Convention Committee the sole inheritance of the Congress can succeed; and if the people of Bengal desire union on the lines of the Pabna resolution they must insist either on the All-India Congress Committee being entrusted with the work of reviving the Congress or on both the Surat Committees uniting to arrange the lines on which the Congress shall be reconstructed. A section has no right to lay down a law by which the whole will be bound and if they persist in the attempt they will be only inviting a permanent secession.

 

Later edition of this work: The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo.- Set in 37 volumes.- Volumes 6-7.- Bande Mataram: Political Writings and Speeches. 18901908 .- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2002.- 1182 p.