Tuesday, February 22, 2011

File photo of Pandi Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi. Did Nehru blunder in many ways?

You may wonder how does an opinion on Nehru fit into truecoloursofpune? Well, at the backdrop of the political turmoil in our country, I gathered the following opinion from old timers and put them together. The issue is relevant to all countrymen no matter where they live, hence this posting. Let  me know your thoughts on this.

Yes, Nehru was the father of Modern India. However, Nehru did commit many blunders and history will mark them against him
First and foremost, the Kashmir fiasco. Nehru unilaterally and needlessly declared cease fire when Indian military was about to cleanse the Pakistanis out of Kashmir.Our military brass pleaded with him to at least let them capture Haji Pir and Poonch passes. But Nehru went ahead with his decision. And he did so without consulting the Cabinet. Not even Dy P.M. Sardar Patel. To compound the folly, he referred it to UN where it became a toy in hands of great powers and a perennial source of embarassment for India. He had great faith in Sheikh Abdullah , who . however, betrayed him and had to be jailed. Nehru granted a special status to J & K and sowed the seeds of separatism in the minds of Kashmiris.
Second, China policy.When China attacked Tibet, Indian military was stronger than Chinesemilitary. Our armed forces had fought valiantly in II world war all over the world and were battle hardened.We had many  airfields in Northeast India whereas China had none in entire Tibet. Instead of resisting Chinese aggression into  Tibet, we simply evacuated our diplomats and military personnel from Lhasa. Chinese came to our doorstep from where they could mount an agression against us in 1962. Chinese incursion started in 1959 but Nehru decided to overlook it. We did not post a competent Lt Gen in charge of NE Command. And we changed  our Commander just 3 weeks before the Chinese attacked.Nehru had no inkling of the size of the forces  Chinese had amassed against us. He made a brave decleration while he was touring Ceylon that he had ordered our forces to "throw the Chinese out". What a bloody nose we got in return !
Third , the foreign policy. Nehru basked in the glory of being a leader of non-entities like Non-aligned nations,  jointly with leaders of  Ghana, Egypt, Indonesia and Yogoslavia. All that we gained was suspicion or dislike of America and allowed Pakistan to steal a March over us.Pakistan became a close ally of America. It was even made a member of SEATO ( South East Asian Treaty Organisation) whereas Pakistan is geographically situated in West Asia. Countries like Japan and Korea gained tremendously by being friendly with America.
Fourth, the Economic Policy. Nehru was enamoured of Russia and copied their central planning system with the resultant License Permit Raj. If Nehru was father of modern India, he was also father of License Permit Raj whose disastrous ill effects we have suffered for decades. Nehru's five year plans progressively reduced resource allocations to Agriculture, Rural uplift, health and education. Nehru's great grandson has now started talking of reversing this neglect
Fifth, Nehru emaciated Congress Party. Sardar Patel died in 1950. Rajaji was sent off to Madras,  Rajendra Prasad was made President, Jayprakash Narayan and Vinoba went off to Bhoodan / Sarvodaya movement, Achyutrao Patwardhan went into an oblivion, B.C. Roy and G.B.Pant were sent to States. Nehru beame the " whole and sole" of Congress Party. He sowed the seeds of "Nehru is Congress and Congress is Nehru " philosophy, later developed further by Indira, Rajiv and Sonia
Sixth, Nehru did not come down heavily on corruption. Jeep scandal of Krishna Menon, Mundhra scandal, Malviya episode were glossed over. Pratap Singh Kairon's and Biju Patnaik's misdeeds were ignored.We would not be in the corruption morass today if Nehru would have been strict about it.
In short all good things of post-independent India are due to Nehru and alas all our failures too


  1. The disturbing question would be why other stalwarts mentioned in the writeup were mere silent spectators when all this was happening?

  2. Nice article!

    -- S.K.Rajendran

  3. I think you missed one more name i.e. TTK in the list.

  4. Dictatorship never helps!!! While the rest of the countries are rejecting their dictators, we continue to regard them as the "Great leaders" of our Nation!!!