Sunday, 19 March 2017

Sardar Patel: A New, Comprehensive Book

New Book

The Iron Man
who should have been
India's First PM

A Comprehensive Narrative  &
A Biography of the Best PM India never had


This book is unlike any biography on Sardar Patel, and unlike any narrative on Freedom Struggle, Partition & Pakistan, and the Integration of the Indian States.

Its USP is that it is not just a biography or an interesting story of the life of Sardar Patel, or just a piece of history. Rather, its USP is that, leaving no vital aspect uncovered, and interspersed with interesting episodes and no-holds-barred analysis, comments and observations, it is an engaging, gripping and  comprehensive story with a wide sweep, unlike anything written so far, on the following, with Sardar Patel in the background or in the foreground, and bringing out why Sardar Patel should have been India's first PM!

- Interesting, and non-so-well-known biographical details of Sardar Patel's life.
- Select compilation of what other stalwarts said about Sardar Patel.
- Select compilation of what Sardar said and wrote.
- Comprehensive and chronological coverage of India's Gandhian Freedom Struggle, and the role of Sardar and others in it.
- Dispassionate evaluation of the Gandhian Freedom Movement.
- Comprehensive coverage on "What constitutes a nation?", Partition, and the Creation of Pakistan.
- Sardar's stellar and decisive role during 1945-47 leading to India's freedom.
- The shocking story of Nehru’s unjust and illegal anointment as the Congress President in 1946, and the first PM of India, by Gandhi, sidelining Sardar.
- The fascinating story of the Integration of the 562 Princely States into India, expanding its geographical area by 40%--all thanks to Sardar Patel.
- Sardar’s decisive role in the forcible merger of Junagadh and Hyderabad.
- Kashmir, Sardar Patel, and botch-up by Nehru.
- Sardar vs. Nehru on China and Tibet.
- Sardar vs. Nehru’s Foreign Policy Blunders.
- Sardar vs. Nehru’s Socialistic Nightmare.
- Sardar vs. Nehru–Gandhi’s “Secularism”.
- Sardar’s functioning and his unmatched administrative abilities.

Quotes from the Book:
...[then] it seemed to me that Jawaharlal should be the new President [of Congress in 1946—and hence Prime Minister] ...I acted according to my best judgement but the way things have shaped since then has made me to realise that this was perhaps the greatest blunder of my political life... My second mistake was that when I decided not to stand myself, I did not support Sardar Patel.
— Abul Kalam Azad, ‘India Wins Freedom’

The Sardar, as Congress’s strongman was called, was determined to stay and solve whatever problems remained, rather than running away from them. He had long viewed Nehru as a weak sister and often wondered why Gandhi thought so highly of him.
—Stanley Wolpert, ‘Nehru: A Tryst with Destiny’

Patel possessed the organising ability of Bismarck, the astute statesmanship of Chanakya, and the single-minded devotion to the cause of national unity of Abraham Lincoln.
—VV Giri, ex-President of India

You saw his [Sardar’s] face;
it grew year by year in power and determination…
— Acharya Kriplani

…Here was a man with a crystal-clear mind who could see to the core of the problem within the shortest possible time…
—Frank Anthony

You know, I never go to Nehru to seek advice or guidance. I take a decision and just present it to him as a fait accompli. Nehru’s mind is too complex to wrestle with the intricacies of a problem. Those who go to him for advice rarely get a lead—and that only serves to delay matters... Nehru does not understand economics, and is lead by the nose by ‘professors’ and ‘experts’ who pander to his whims and fancies... We should have absorbed Kashmir for good and all... I do not know where we are going. The country needs a man like Patel.”
—Rafi Ahmed Kidwai, Nehru’s close friend and confidant

…Nationalist India was fortunate to have Sardar Patel to guide her destiny for a generation. But her misfortune is that there will be none to take his place when he is no more… On that issue Sardar Patel proved to be greater than the Mahatma, who had declared that India could be partitioned only over his dead body… Could Sardar Patel have had his way on the Kashmir issue, India would not be today spending fifty percent of her revenue on military budget… His [Patel] death is in fact a greater loss than that of the Mahatma… What India is today, however, is rather a creation of Patel than of his master.
—MN Roy, Communist Leader and Theoretician, in “Men I Met”

Sir Stafford Cripps had estimated it would take India 10 to 15 years, if not more, to liquidate the Indian Princely States and merge them with India. It was a surprise to all, and a tribute to the Sardar’s abilities, that he took, not 10 to 15 years, but less than 10 to 15 months to merge all the 548 Princely States with India, extending India’s geographical area by a whopping 40%.

* * * * *
Rajnikant Puranik
January 31, 2018
(March 2017)

1 comment:

  1. Just now, I got to know. I will read and then write. All said and done, it is a great job that has to be appreciated as Sardar is the model administrator who cobbled the princely states and annexed to India, in a novel way.