Article: Gandhi opted Nehru for PM, not Sardar Patel-Maulana Azad, why?

By Premendra:

26 August 2020

In the Mahabharata currently going on in the Congress, on the one hand there are 23 senior Congress leaders, Gulmanabi Azad, Sibal, Anand Sharma etc. on the other hand, there are sycophants of the Nehru-Gandhi family.

This article concludes that Gandhi was made the Prime Minister by making Nehru the President because Pandit Nehru had given his veto to Gandhi that if he was not made the President, he would revolt.

To neutralize this veto of Nehru, Mahatma Gandhi used his veto to cut the roots of democracy. Due to which Maulana Azad’s intentions were left to become Prime Minister. And Vallabh bhai Patel used to pay such high respect to Gandhi ji that he withdrew his name by obeying Gandhi ji.

And Vallabh bhai Patel used to pay such high respect to Gandhi ji that he withdrew his name by obeying Gandhi ji. This Lohpurush’s blind devotion to Gandhi proved very harmful not only for him but also for the country. Similarly, Gandhi’s blind faith towards Nehru, which I would call blind devotee, was disastrous for the country.

Just like Nehru, by showing the power of his veto, he has shown that the way his grandmother Indira Gandhi revolted against the senior leaders of the Congress and divided the Congress into a separate party, they will do the same. In the same way, Rahul Gandhi has given the same threat Rahul Gandhi is giving right now. That is why Nehru’s spirit has dominated the Congress from the very beginning to Nehru.

By 1946, it had become quite clear that India’s independence was only a matter of time now. The Second World War had come to an end and the British rulers had started thinking in terms of transferring  power to Indians.

An interim government was to be formed which was to be headed by the Congress president as Congress had won the maximum number of seats in the 1946 elections. All of a sudden, the post of Congress president became very crucial as it was this very person  who was going to become the first Prime Minister of Independent India.

At that time, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was the president of Congress party. In fact, he was the president for the last six years as elections could not be held for the Congress presient’s post since 1940 due to Quit India movement, the Second World War and the fact that most of the leaders were behind bars.

Azad was also interested in fighting and winning election for  the Congress president’s post  as he, too, had ambitions to become the PM,  but he was told in no uncertain terms by Mahatma Gandhi that he does not approve of a second term for a sitting Congress president and Azad had to fall in line ,albeit reluctantly. Not only this, Gandhi made it very clear to everybody that Nehru was his preferred choice for the Congress president’s position.

The last date for the nominations for the post of the President of Congress, and thereby the first Prime Minister of India, was April 29, 1946.

And the nominations were to be made by 15 state/regional Congress committees. Despite Gandhi’s well-known preference for Nehru as Congress president, not a single Congress committee nominated Nehru’s name.

On the contrary, 12 out of 15 Congress committees nominated Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel. The remaining three Congress committees did not nominate any body’s name. Obviously, the overwhelming majority was in favour of Sardar Patel.

It was a challenge to Mahatma Gandhi as well. He instructed Acharya J B kriplani to get some proposers for Nehru from the Congress Working Committee (CWC) members despite knowing fully well that only Pradesh Congress Committees were authorized to nominate the president.

In deference to Gandhi’s wish, Kripalani convinced a few CWC members to propose Nehru’s name for party president.

It’s not that Gandhi was not aware of the immorality  of this exercise. He had fully realized  that what he was trying to bring about was wrong and totally unfair.

In fact, he tried to make Nehru understand the reality. He conveyed to Nehru that no PCC has nominated his name and that only a few CWC members have nominated him. A shell-shocked Nehru was defiant and made it clear that he will not play second fiddle to any body.

A disappointed Gandhi gave into Nehru’s obduracy  and asked Sardar Patel to withdraw his name. Sardar Patel had immense respect for Gandhi and he withdrew his candidature without wasting any time. And it paved the way for the  coronation of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru as India’s first Prime Minister.

But why did Gandhi overlook the overwhelming support for Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel? Why was he so enamoured with Nehru?

When Dr Rajendra Prasad heard of Sardar Patel’s withdrawal of nomination, he was disappointed and remarked that Gandhi had once again sacrificed his trusted lieutenant in favour of the ‘glamorous Nehru’.

Was it the ‘glamour’ and ‘sophistication’ of Nehru that floored Gandhi so much that he did not hesitate in doing grave injustice to Patel?

There is no denying the fact that Gandhi had a ‘soft corner’ for Nehru from the very beginning and he preferred Nehru over Sardar Patel twice before 1946 as well as in 1937 for the post of Congress President. .

Gandhi was always influenced by Nehru’s modern outlook. In comparison to Nehru, Sardar Patel was a bit conservative and Gandhi thought that India needed a person who was modern in his outlook.

But nothing, Gandhi always knew that Sardar Patel would never avoid him. He was not so confident about Nehru. Gandhi’s apprehension was fulfilled when Nehru made it clear to him that he was not ready to play another role for anyone.

<< Perhaps, Gandhi wanted both Nehru and Patel to provide leadership to the country. He used his veto power in favor of Nehru as he feared that Nehru might face problems in the way of India’s independence if he was not given the chance to become Prime Minister.

<< Some analysts have also claimed that Nehru threatened to split the Congress in the event of not being made Prime Minister.

Gandhi would have thought that it would be safe to ask Sardar Patel to abdicate with Nehru, who was away from power. In fact, he remarked that Nehru had gone mad to gain power.

Therefore, we can conclude that Gandhi chose Nehru over Patel for two main reasons:

Gandhi believed that there was an edge over an educated educated Patel about modern-day Nehru, who, according to him, was conservative in his views.

Gandhi feared that Nehru would be denied the post of PM and this would give the British an excuse to delay the transfer of power. On the other hand, he was fully confident of Sardar Patel’s loyalty. He knew that Sardar Patel was a true patriot and could never play.

But Gandhi’s decision proved too costly for the nation.

First, Gandhi introduced the concept of forced decisions by so-called ‘higher-orders’, which usually meant dominating state units. This practice is now being followed across the political spectrum, which has rejected the concept of internal party democracy. Nehru’s fiasco over Kashmir and China proved to be beyond the fact that Gandhi made a mistake in supporting Nehru for Sardar Patel by ignoring the overwhelming support of the PCC by a majority.

Even two known critics of Sardar Patel admitted that Gandhi’s decision to choose Nehru over Patel was wrong.

Maulana Abul Kalam Azad admitted in his autobiography to be published posthumously in 1959, “It was a mistake on my part that I did not support Sardar Patel.” We varied on many issues, but I believe that if he had succeeded me as Congress President, he would have seen that the Cabinet Mission Plan was successfully implemented. He would never have made the mistake of Jawaharlal who gave Mr. Jinnah a chance to sabotage the plan. I can never forgive myself when I feel that if I had not made these mistakes, perhaps the history of the last ten years would have been something else. “

Ghulam Nabi Azad is thinking the same to this day that the loyalty he played towards Gandhi family and especially Rahul Gandhi was the same mistake as Maulana Azad had done.

Similarly, C Rajgopalachary who blamed Sardar Patel for depriving

him of the first presidentship of independent India, wrote, “Undoubtedly it would have

been better if Nehru had been asked to be the Foreign Minister and

Patel made the Prime Minister. I too fell into the error of believing that Jawaharlal was the more enlightened person of the two… A myth had grown about Patel that he would be harsh towards

Muslims. This was a wrong notion but it was the prevailing prejudice.”

<< But the surrender of Sardar Patel can also be questioned.

To whom was he more loyal? An individual, an organization or your motherland? When he came to believe that Nehru was not fit to give the necessary guidance that a newly-born country so desired, why did he not object to Nehru even once as India’s first Prime Minister?

History has proved it beyond doubt that had Patel been PM in place of Nehru, the country would not have suffered humiliation in the 1962 war.

A few days before his death, Patel wrote a letter to Nehru warning him about China’s nefarious designs, but Nehru paid no heed to that letter. Even Kashmir could not be a meat for India, Patel was not and Nehru was not the first Prime Minister of India.

The 23 leaders who wrote letters to Sonia Gandhi, be they Ghulam Nabi or Kyle Sibal, or Tharoor or Anand Sharma, all should think that the Olympics took place in Beijing in 2008 when they were in the presence of Sonia from the Congress and Chana’s CPC there. If we signed the communist husband and what he did, and if he opposes it, then today the Congress is not strong in favor of China.

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