LETTERS for a NATION From JAWAHARLAL NEHRU to HIS CHIEF MINISTERS 1947 – 63

Letters for a Nation: From Jawaharlal Nehru to His Chief Ministers 1947-1963

Insight into our first  Prime Minister’s vision of a free India. His view for a secular country. Great read. Reading this book one realises that what a great man he was! His vision for free India and to maintain peace and harmony. His strong believe in bringing India forward as a nation where there is no discrimination on the basis of caste, colour, creed, religion or sex. His deep concern to bring India out of the shackles of narrow domestic walls. Such a great man who laid foundations of FREE INDIA with his mentor Mahatma Gandhi.


Here are some paragraphs from the book which give an insight to Panditji’s thinking:

‘I was not much of a politician,’ Jawaharlal Nehru wrote in The Discovery of India, ‘although politics had seized me and made me its victim.’1 A key figure in the freedom struggle and nationalist movement, a man who spent nearly a decade in prison before becoming independent India’s first prime minister from 1947 to 1964, Nehru’s life was in many ways defined in terms of his political career. Yet politics—a domain of pressing, ceaseless demands—offered an uneasy career for those like him who strove for self-reflection and sought careful scrutiny of their own actions. It was perhaps this feeling of never quite being at home in politics which repeatedly drove Nehru to better understand political action: its predicaments, its potential and its call for constant reinvention. It was in this vein that Nehru chose to write to heads of India’s provincial governments on 15October 1947, a mere two months after Independence.

 

 

It is hard to deny that his vision sometimes led to an untidy application of non-alignment, to unwarranted trust in international actors, and to underestimating the stubbornness of the balance-of-power paradigm. But it did attempt to challenge the premises of global politics in radical ways, and the idea that self-interest and mutual benefit can coexist has, since Nehru’s time and the rise of international political economy, found fresh importance.

 

Loyalty is not produced to order or by fear. It comes as a natural growth from circumstances which make loyalty not only a sentiment which appeals to one but also profitable in the long run. We have to produce conditions which lead to this sentiment being produced. In any event, criticism and cavilling at minorities does not help. It is difficult to think of long-term policies when the situation is an ever-changing one. The only real long-term policy we can have is to consolidate India by making all the minorities inproduced. In any event, criticism and cavilling at minorities does not help. It is difficult to think of long-term policies when the situation is an ever-changing one. The only real long-term policy we can have is to consolidate India by making all the minorities in the country feel completely at home in the State, and indeed by removing all sense of difference from the political point of view between the so-called majorities and minorities. That will, no doubt, take some time.