Wavell Plan and Shimla Conference
Lord Wavell who had succeeded Lord Linlithgow as Governor-General in October, 1943, made a way out from the existing stalemate the deadlock in India. He went to England for consultations in March 1945. He broadcast to the people of India the proposals of the British Government to resolve the deadlock in India on 14th June which is called Wavell Plan. It is also known as Breakdown Plan.
Provision of Wavell Plan
• Formation of a new Executive Council at the centre in which all the members except the Viceroy and the Commander in Chief would be Indian.
• All portfolios except Defence were to be under the control of Indian members.
• In the Proposed Executive Council which was to have 14 members, the Muslims who constituted only about 25 % of the total population were given the right to be over represented by selecting 6 representatives.
The Congress while objecting the demand asserted its rights to select the representative of any community, including Muslims, as the Congress nominees to the Council.
• Lord Wavell invited a conference of 21 Indian Political leaders at the Summer Capital British India to discuss the provision of Wavell Plan.
• The Wavell Plan convened to agree for Indian self-government which incorporated separate representation to Muslims and reduced majority powers for both communities in their majority regions.
• Discussion was stuck at a point of selection of Muslim representatives. Jinnah said that no non-league Muslim should be represented to the Executive Council because only Muslim League has right to represent the Muslims of India whereas Congress said that they had no right to nominate any Muslim in the Executive council.
• Wavell had given place to 6 Muslims in the Executive Council of 14, and British had given it the power of Veto to any constitutional proposal which was not in its interest. But Muslims represented only 25% of Indian Population. Thus, these unreasonable demands were rejected by Congress. The Muslim league did not relent and Wavell dropped the plan.
Wavell Plan was constituted to resolve the political deadlock of existing India but he abandon the proposals due to disagreement between leaders of Muslim League and Congress, and finally the proposals were dissolved at the Shimla Conference.