Jawaharlal Nehru was the first Prime Minister of India. This biography profiles his childhood, life history, political career, role in freedom movement. Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru was a freedom fighter, the first Prime Minister of India and a central figure . Early life and career (–). Birth and family background. Jawaharlal Nehru was born on 14 November in Allahabad in British India. ineVitable, for Jawaharlal Nehru mirrors in himself the deepest urges of the .. two years have been added to India's long history which began thousands of.
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In one of his last letters he did me the honor to suggest that I write a preface for this first American edition of his autobiography. This. I am glad to do, not only to. Jawaharlal Nehru was born on 14 November, Regarding the Jawaharlal's mother Swarup Rani, schooled in Indian ethos and values, extended to him. Born in Allahabad, India on November 14, , Jawaharlal Nehru was eventually elected as independent India's first prime minister, following.
Nehru welcomed and encouraged the rapprochement between the two Indian communities. Archived from the original on 2 August Nehru's improved relations with the US under John F. New Delhi: A Comparative Analysis. Aide, Dies". Indian National Army.
Nehru emerged from the war years as a leader whose political views were considered radical. Although the political discourse had been dominated at this time by Gopal Krishna Gokhale ,  a moderate who said that it was "madness to think of independence",  Nehru had spoken "openly of the politics of non-cooperation, of the need of resigning from honorary positions under the government and of not continuing the futile politics of representation".
He noted that someone had once defined the Indian Civil Service, "with which we are unfortunately still afflicted in this country, as neither Indian, nor civil, nor a service". Nehru, however, was not satisfied with the pace of the national movement. He became involved with aggressive nationalists leaders who were demanding Home Rule for Indians.
The influence of the moderates on Congress politics began to wane after Gokhale died in But, in , the proposal was rejected because of the reluctance of the moderates to commit to such a radical course of action.
Besant nevertheless formed a league for advocating Home Rule in ; and Tilak, on his release from a prison term, had in April formed his own league. The pact had been initiated earlier in the year at Allahabad at a meeting of the All India Congress Committee which was held at the Nehru residence at Anand Bhawan. Nehru welcomed and encouraged the rapprochement between the two Indian communities.
Several nationalist leaders banded together in under the leadership of Annie Besant to voice a demand for self-governance , and to obtain the status of a Dominion within the British Empire as enjoyed by Australia, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand and Newfoundland at the time. Nehru joined the movement and rose to become secretary of Besant's Home Rule League. The Congress and various other Indian organisations threatened to launch protests if she were not set free.
The British government was subsequently forced to release Besant and make significant concessions after a period of intense protest. The first big national involvement of Nehru came at the onset of the Non-Cooperation movement in He led the movement in the United Provinces now Uttar Pradesh. Nehru was arrested on charges of anti-governmental activities in , and was released a few months later. Nehru played a leading role in the development of the internationalist outlook of the Indian independence struggle.
He sought foreign allies for India and forged links with movements for independence and democracy all over the world. In , his efforts paid off and the Congress was invited to attend the congress of oppressed nationalities in Brussels in Belgium. The meeting was called to co-ordinate and plan a common struggle against imperialism. Nehru represented India and was elected to the Executive Council of the League against Imperialism that was born at this meeting.
Increasingly, Nehru saw the struggle for independence from British imperialism as a multi-national effort by the various colonies and dominions of the Empire; some of his statements on this matter, however, were interpreted as complicity with the rise of Hitler and his espoused intentions.
In the face of these allegations, Nehru responded, "We have sympathy for the national movement of Arabs in Palestine because it is directed against British Imperialism. Our sympathies cannot be weakened by the fact that the national movement coincides with Hitler's interests. During the mids, Nehru was much concerned with developments in Europe, which seemed to be drifting toward another world war.
He was in Europe in early , visiting his ailing wife, shortly before she died in a sanitarium in Switzerland. Nehru worked closely with Subhas Chandra Bose in developing good relations with governments of free countries all over the world. However, the two split in the late s, when Bose agreed to seek the help of fascists in driving the British out of India. Krishna Menon visited Spain and declared support for the Republicans.
He refused to meet Benito Mussolini , the dictator of Italy when the latter expressed his desire to meet him. Nehru was one of the first nationalist leaders to realise the sufferings of the people in the states ruled by Indian princes.
He helped to make the struggle of the people in the princely states a part of the nationalist movement for independence.
Nehru who had been supporting the cause of the people of the princely states for many years was made the President of the organization in The body would play an important role during the political integration of India, helping Indian leaders Vallabhbhai Patel and V.
Menon to whom Nehru had delegated the task of integrating the princely states into India negotiate with hundreds of princes. In July , Nehru pointedly observed that no princely state could prevail militarily against the army of independent India. Menon were more conciliatory towards the princes, and as the men charged with integrating the states, were successful in the task.
Nehru's daughter, Indira Gandhi , as prime minister de-recognised all the rulers by a presidential order in But this was struck down by the Supreme Court of India. Eventually,her government by the 26th amendment to the constitution was successful in derecognizing these former rulers and ending the privy purse paid to them in Nehru was one of the first leaders to demand that the Congress Party should resolve to make a complete and explicit break from all ties with the British Empire.
His resolution for independence was approved at the Madras session of Congress in despite Gandhi's criticism. At that time he also formed Independence for India league, a pressure group within the Congress. In , Gandhi agreed to Nehru's demands and proposed a resolution that called for the British to grant dominion status to India within two years.
Nehru was one of the leaders who objected to the time given to the British — he pressed Gandhi to demand immediate actions from the British. Gandhi brokered a further compromise by reducing the time given from two years to one. Demands for dominion status were rejected by the British in We believe that it is the inalienable right of the Indian people, as of any other people, to have freedom and to enjoy the fruits of their toil and have the necessities of life, so that they may have full opportunities of growth.
We believe also that if any government deprives a people of these rights and oppresses them the people have a further right to alter it or abolish it. The British government in India has not only deprived the Indian people of their freedom but has based itself on the exploitation of the masses, and has ruined India economically, politically, culturally and spiritually.
We believe therefore, that India must sever the British connection and attain Purna Swaraj or complete independence.
The massive gathering of public attending the ceremony was asked if they agreed with it, and the vast majority of people were witnessed to raise their hands in approval. The flag of India was hoisted publicly across India by Congress volunteers, nationalists and the public.
Plans for a mass civil disobedience were also underway. After the Lahore session of the Congress in , Nehru gradually emerged as the paramount leader of the Indian independence movement. Gandhi stepped back into a more spiritual role. Although Gandhi did not officially designate Nehru his political heir until , the country as early as the mids saw in Nehru the natural successor to Gandhi. Nehru and most of the Congress leaders were initially ambivalent about Gandhi's plan to begin civil disobedience with a satyagraha aimed at the British salt tax.
After the protest gathered steam, they realised the power of salt as a symbol. Nehru remarked about the unprecedented popular response, "it seemed as though a spring had been suddenly released". He had earlier, after addressing a huge meeting and leading a vast procession, ceremoniously manufactured some contraband salt. He was charged with breach of the salt law, tried summarily behind prison walls and sentenced to six months of imprisonment.
He nominated Gandhi to succeed him as Congress President during his absence in jail, but Gandhi declined, and Nehru then nominated his father as his successor.
The salt satyagraha succeeded in drawing the attention of the world. Indian, British, and world opinion increasingly began to recognise the legitimacy of the claims by the Congress party for independence.
Nehru considered the salt satyagraha the high-water mark of his association with Gandhi,  and felt that its lasting importance was in changing the attitudes of Indians:. Of course these movements exercised tremendous pressure on the British Government and shook the government machinery.
But the real importance, to my mind, lay in the effect they had on our own people, and especially the village masses. Non-cooperation dragged them out of the mire and gave them self-respect and self-reliance. They acted courageously and did not submit so easily to unjust oppression; their outlook widened and they began to think a little in terms of India as a whole. It was a remarkable transformation and the Congress, under Gandhi's leadership, must have the credit for it.
Nehru elaborated the policies of the Congress and a future Indian nation in Nehru,however, never joined the group but did act as bridge between them and Gandhi. Prasad as Congress President in Nehru was elected in his place and held the presidency for two years — After the fall of Bose from the mainstream of Indian politics because of his support of violence in driving the British out of India,  the power struggle between the socialists and conservatives balanced out.
However, Sardar Patel died in , leaving Nehru as the sole remaining iconic national leader, and soon the situation became such that Nehru was able to implement many of his basic policies without hindrance.
Nehru's daughter, Indira Gandhi , during the state of Emergency she imposed, was able to fulfill her father's dream by the 42nd amendment of the Indian constitution by which India officially became "socialist" and "secular". During Nehru's second term as general secretary of the Congress, he proposed certain resolutions concerning the foreign policy of India. He firmly placed India on the side of democracy and freedom during a time when the world was under the threat of fascism.
He appointed the National Planning Commission in to help in framing such policies. Nehru's visit to Europe in proved to be the watershed in his political and economic thinking. His real interest in Marxism and his socialist pattern of thought stem from that tour. His subsequent sojourns in prison enabled him to study Marxism in more depth. Interested in its ideas but repelled by some of its methods, he could never bring himself to accept Karl Marx's writings as revealed scripture. Yet from then on, the yardstick of his economic thinking remained Marxist, adjusted, where necessary, to Indian conditions.
At the Lucknow session of , the Congress party ,despite opposition from the newly elected Nehru as the party president, agreed to contest the provincial elections to be held in under the Government of India Act Since the Muslim League under Muhammad Ali Jinnah who was to become the creator of Pakistan had fared badly at the polls, Nehru declared that the only two parties that mattered in India were the British colonial authorities and the Congress.
Jinnah's statements that the Muslim League was the third and "equal partner" within Indian politics was widely rejected. Nehru had hoped to elevate Maulana Azad as the pre-eminent leader of Indian Muslims, but in this, he was undermined by Gandhi, who continued to treat Jinnah as the voice of Indian Muslims. When World War II started, Viceroy Linlithgow had unilaterally declared India a belligerent on the side of the Britain, without consulting the elected Indian representatives.
I should like India to play its full part and throw all her resources into the struggle for a new order. After much deliberation, the Congress under Nehru informed the government that it would co-operate with the British but on certain conditions. First, Britain must give an assurance of full independence for India after the war and allow the election of a constituent assembly to frame a new constitution; second, although the Indian armed forces would remain under the British Commander-in-Chief, Indians must be included immediately in the central government and given a chance to share power and responsibility.
A deadlock was reached. On 23 October , the Congress condemned the Viceroy's attitude and called upon the Congress ministries in the various provinces to resign in protest. Before this crucial announcement, Nehru urged Jinnah and the Muslim League to join the protest but the latter declined.
In March Jinnah passed what would come to be known as the "Pakistan Resolution", declaring "Muslims are a nation according to any definition of a nation, and they must have their homelands, their territory and their State.
Nehru angrily declared that "all the old problems Linlithgow made Nehru an offer on 8 October It stated that Dominion status for India was the objective of the British government. Only Jinnah got something more precise. In October , Gandhi and Nehru, abandoning their original stand of supporting Britain, decided to launch a limited civil disobedience campaign in which leading advocates of Indian independence were selected to participate one by one.
After spending a little more than a year in jail, he was released, along with other Congress prisoners, three days before the bombing of Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
When the Japanese carried their attack through Burma now Myanmar to the borders of India in the spring of , the British government, faced by this new military threat, decided to make some overtures to India, as Nehru had originally desired. Nehru, eager for a compromise, was hopeful. Gandhi was not. Jinnah had continued opposing the Congress.
Cripps's mission failed as Gandhi would accept nothing less than independence. Relations between Nehru and Gandhi cooled over the latter's refusal to co-operate with Cripps, but the two later reconciled.
Some say Jawaharlal and I were estranged. It will require much more than difference of opinion to estrange us. We had differences from the time we became co-workers and yet I have said for some years and say so now that not Rajaji but Jawaharlal will be my successor.
In , Gandhi called on the British to leave India; Nehru, though reluctant to embarrass the allied war effort, had no alternative but to join Gandhi. Following the Quit India resolution passed by the Congress party in Bombay now Mumbai on 8 August , the entire Congress working committee, including Gandhi and Nehru, was arrested and imprisoned.
During the period where all of the Congress leadership were in jail, the Muslim League under Jinnah grew in power. In none of these provinces had the League previously had a majority — only the arrest of Congress members made it possible. With all the Muslim dominated provinces except the Punjab under Jinnah's control, the artificial concept of a separate Muslim State was turning into a reality. However, by , Jinnah's power and prestige were on the wane. A general sympathy towards the jailed Congress leaders was developing among Muslims, and much of the blame for the disastrous Bengal famine of —44 during which two million died, had been laid on the shoulders of the province's Muslim League government.
The numbers at Jinnah's meetings, once counted in thousands soon numbered only a few hundreds. In despair, Jinnah left the political scene for a stay in Kashmir.
His prestige was restored unwittingly by Gandhi, who had been released from prison on medical grounds in May and had met Jinnah in Bombay in September. Essentially, it was an acceptance of the principle of Pakistan — but not in so many words. Jinnah demanded that the exact words be said; Gandhi refused and the talks broke down. Jinnah, however, had greatly strengthened his own position and that of the League.
The most influential member of Congress had been seen to negotiate with him on equal terms. Nehru served as prime minister for a 18 years, first as the interim prime minister and from as the prime minister of the republic of India. Nehru and his colleagues were released prior to the arrival of the British Cabinet Mission to India to propose plans for transfer of power. Congress won majority of seats in the assembly and headed the interim government with Nehru as the prime minister.
The period before independence in early was impaired by outbreaks of communal violence and political disorder, and the opposition of the Muslim League led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah , who were demanding a separate Muslim state of Pakistan.
He took office as the Prime Minister of India on 15 August, and delivered his inaugural address titled " Tryst with Destiny ". Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially.
At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom. A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends, and when the soul of a nation, long suppressed, finds utterance.
It is fitting that at this solemn moment we take the pledge of dedication to the service of India and her people and to the still larger cause of humanity. On 30 January , Gandhi was shot while he was walking to a platform from which he was to address a prayer meeting.
The assassin, Nathuram Godse , was a Hindu nationalist with links to the extremist Hindu Mahasabha party, who held Gandhi responsible for weakening India by insisting upon a payment to Pakistan. Friends and comrades, the light has gone out of our lives , and there is darkness everywhere, and I do not quite know what to tell you or how to say it.
Our beloved leader, Bapu as we called him, the father of the nation, is no more. Perhaps I am wrong to say that; nevertheless, we will not see him again, as we have seen him for these many years, we will not run to him for advice or seek solace from him, and that is a terrible blow, not only for me, but for millions and millions in this country.
Yasmin Khan argued that Gandhi's death and funeral helped consolidate the authority of the new Indian state under Nehru and Patel. The Congress tightly controlled the epic public displays of grief over a two-week period—the funeral, mortuary rituals and distribution of the martyr's ashes—as millions participated and hundreds of millions watched. The goal was to assert the power of the government, legitimise the Congress party 's control and suppress all religious para-military groups.
In later years, there emerged a revisionist school of history which sought to blame Nehru for the partition of India, mostly referring to his highly centralised policies for an independent India in , which Jinnah opposed in favour of a more decentralised India.
The British Indian Empire, which included present-day India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, was divided into two types of territories: Most were merged into existing provinces; others were organised into new provinces, such as Rajputana, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Bharat, and Vindhya Pradesh, made up of multiple princely states; a few, including Mysore, Hyderabad, Bhopal, and Bilaspur, became separate provinces.
The new Constitution of India, which came into force on 26 January , made India a sovereign democratic republic. The new republic was declared to be a "Union of States". Part A states, which were the former governors' provinces of British India, were ruled by an elected governor and state legislature.
The Part B states were former princely states or groups of princely states, governed by a rajpramukh, who was usually the ruler of a constituent state, and an elected legislature. The rajpramukh was appointed by the President of India. The Part C states included both the former chief commissioners' provinces and some princely states, and each was governed by a chief commissioner appointed by the President of India.
The sole Part D state was the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, which were administered by a lieutenant governor appointed by the central government. After the adoption of the constitution on 26 November , the Constituent Assembly continued to act as the interim parliament until new elections.
Nehru's interim cabinet consisted of 15 members from diverse communities and parties. The first elections to Indian legislative bodies National parliament and State assemblies under the new constitution of India were held in Various members of the cabinet resigned from their posts and formed their own parties to contest the elections. During that period, the then Congress party president, Purushottam Das Tandon also resigned his post because of differences with Nehru and since Nehru's popularity was needed for winning elections.
Nehru, while being the PM, also was elected the president of Congress for and In December , Nehru appointed the States Reorganisation Commission to prepare for the creation of states on linguistic lines. The commission created a report in recommending the reorganisation of India's states.
The distinction between Part A and Part B states was removed, becoming known simply as "states". A new type of entity, the union territory, replaced the classification as a Part C or Part D state.
Nehru stressed commonality among Indians and promoted pan-Indianism. He refused to reorganise states on either religious or ethnic lines. Nehru also led the Congress party to victory with In the elections, Nehru led the Congress to victory yet with a diminished majority.
Communist and socialist parties were the main beneficiaries although some right wing groups like Bharatiya Jana Sangh also did well. According to Bhikhu Parekh , Nehru can be regarded as the founder of the modern Indian state. Parekh attributes this to the national philosophy for India that Nehru formulated.
For Nehru, modernization was the national philosophy, with seven goals: In Parekh's opinion, the philosophy and the policies that resulted from that benefited a large section of society such as the public sector workers, industrial houses, middle and upper peasantry. It failed, however, to benefit the urban and rural poor, the unemployed and the Hindu fundamentalists.
Nehru implemented policies based on import substitution industrialization and advocated a mixed economy where the government controlled public sector would co-exist with the private sector. The government, therefore, directed investment primarily into key public sector industries — steel, iron, coal, and power — promoting their development with subsidies and protectionist policies.
The policy of non-alignment during the Cold War meant that Nehru received financial and technical support from both power blocs in building India's industrial base from scratch. There was substantial industrial development. The volume of exports went up at an annual rate of 2. Nehru's preference for big state controlled enterprises created a complex system of quantitative regulations, quotas and tariffs, industrial licenses and a host of other controls.
This system, known in India as Permit Raj , was responsible for economic inefficiencies that stifled entrepreneurship and checked economic growth for decades until the liberalization policies initiated by Congress government in under P. Narasimha Rao.
Under Nehru's leadership, the government attempted to develop India quickly by embarking on agrarian reform and rapid industrialisation. Attempts to introduce large-scale cooperative farming were frustrated by landowning rural elites, who formed the core of the powerful right-wing of the Congress and had considerable political support in opposing the efforts of Nehru.
The establishment of agricultural universities, modelled after land-grant colleges in the United States, contributed to the development of the economy.
At the same time a series of failed monsoons would cause serious food shortages despite the steady progress and increase in agricultural production. Jawaharlal Nehru was a passionate advocate of education for India's children and youth, believing it essential for India's future progress. His government oversaw the establishment of many institutions of higher learning, including the All India Institute of Medical Sciences , the Indian Institutes of Technology , the Indian Institutes of Management and the National Institutes of Technology.
For this purpose, Nehru oversaw the creation of mass village enrollment programs and the construction of thousands of schools. Nehru also launched initiatives such as the provision of free milk and meals to children to fight malnutrition. Adult education centers, vocational and technical schools were also organised for adults, especially in the rural areas. Under Nehru, the Indian Parliament enacted many changes to Hindu law to criminalize caste discrimination and increase the legal rights and social freedoms of women.
Nehru specifically wrote Article 44 of the Indian constitution under the Directive Principles of State Policy which states: Most notably, Nehru allowed Muslims to keep their personal law in matters relating to marriage and inheritance.
Also in the small state of Goa, a civil code based on the old Portuguese Family Laws was allowed to continue, and Muslim Personal law was prohibited by Nehru.
This was the result of the annexation of Goa in by India, when Nehru promised the people that their laws would be left intact. This has led to accusations of selective secularism.
While Nehru exempted Muslim law from legislation and they remained unreformed, he did pass the Special Marriage Act in As usual the law applied to all of India, except Jammu and Kashmir again leading to accusations of selective secularism. In many respects, the act was almost identical to the Hindu Marriage Act of , which gives some idea as to how secularised the law regarding Hindus had become. The Special Marriage Act allowed Muslims to marry under it and thereby retain the protections, generally beneficial to Muslim women, that could not be found in the personal law.
Under the act polygamy was illegal, and inheritance and succession would be governed by the Indian Succession Act, rather than the respective Muslim Personal Law. Divorce also would be governed by the secular law, and maintenance of a divorced wife would be along the lines set down in the civil law.
A system of reservations in government services and educational institutions was created to eradicate the social inequalities and disadvantages faced by peoples of the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. Nehru also championed secularism and religious harmony, increasing the representation of minorities in government. Nehru led the faction of the Congress party which promoted Hindi as the lingua-franca of the Indian nation.
Efforts by the Indian Government to make Hindi the sole official language after were not acceptable to many non-Hindi Indian states, who wanted the continued use of English. The text of the Act did not satisfy the DMK and increased their scepticism that his assurances might not be honoured by future administrations. The Official Languages Act was eventually amended in by the Congress Government headed by Indira Gandhi to guarantee the indefinite use of Hindi and English as official languages.
This effectively ensured the current "virtual indefinite policy of bilingualism" of the Indian Republic. Throughout his long tenure as the prime minister,Nehru also held the portfolio of External Affairs. As such, he has been credited as the sole architect of Indian foreign policy by many including Rajendra prasad Dubey.
He sought to build support among the newly independent nations of Asia and Africa in opposition to the two hostile superpowers contesting the Cold War.
The war with China in caused a radical shift. After that he became more realistic and defense-minded. After independence, Nehru wanted to maintain good relations with Britain and other British commonwealth countries and signed the London Declaration , under which India agreed that, when it becomes a republic in January , it would join the Commonwealth of Nations and accept the British monarch as a "symbol of the free association of its independent member nations and as such the Head of the Commonwealth.
The reaction back home was favourable; only the far-left and the far-right criticised Nehru's decision. On the international scene, Nehru was an opponent of military action and of military alliances. He was a strong supporter of the United Nations, except when it tried to resolve the Kashmir question. He pioneered the policy of non-alignment and co-founded the Non-Aligned Movement of nations professing neutrality between the rival blocs of nations led by the US and the USSR.
Recognising the People's Republic of China soon after its founding while most of the Western bloc continued relations with Taiwan , Nehru argued for its inclusion in the United Nations and refused to brand the Chinese as the aggressors in their conflict with Korea. Nehru was a key organizer of the Bandung Conference of April , which brought 29 newly independent nations together from Asia and Africa, and was designed to galvanize the nonalignment movement under Nehru's leadership.
He envisioned it as his key leadership opportunity on the world stage, where he would bring together the emerging nations. Nehru and his top foreign-policy aide V. Krishna Menon by contrast gained an international reputation as rude and undiplomatic. Zhou said, "I've never met a more arrogant man than Mr. Nehru, while adverse to war, led the preparations and actual campaigns against Pakistan with regard to Kashmir.
He used overwhelming military force to seize Hyderabad In and Goa In He was keenly sensitive regarding the geostrategic and military strengths and weaknesses of India in While laying the foundation stone of the National Defence Academy in , he stated: It means a lot.
Though it is odd, yet it simply reflects the oddness of life. Though life is logical, we have to face all contingencies, and unless we are prepared to face them, we will go under. There was no greater prince of peace and apostle of non-violence than Mahatma Gandhi We cannot live carefree assuming that we are safe. Human nature is such. We cannot take the risks and risk our hard-won freedom.
We have to be prepared with all modern defense methods and a well-equipped army, navy and air force.
Nehru envisioned the development of nuclear weapons and established the Atomic Energy Commission of India in Homi J. Bhabha , a nuclear physicist, who was entrusted with complete authority over all nuclear-related affairs and programs and answered only to Nehru himself. We should first prove ourselves and then talk of Gandhi, non-violence and a world without nuclear weapons.
Nehru was hailed by many for working to defuse global tensions and the threat of nuclear weapons after the Korean War — He also had pragmatic reasons for promoting de-nuclearisation, fearing that a nuclear arms race would lead to over-militarisation that would be unaffordable for developing countries such as his own.
However, as Pakistan failed to pull back troops in accordance with the UN resolution, and as Nehru grew increasingly wary of the UN, he declined to hold a plebiscite in His policies on Kashmir and the integration of the state into India were frequently defended in front of the United Nations by his aide, V. Krishna Menon , who earned a reputation in India for his passionate speeches. Nehru orchestrated the ouster and arrest of Sheikh Abdullah , the then prime minister of Kashmir in , whom he had previously supported but now suspected of harbouring separatist ambitions; Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad replaced him.
In , Menon was instructed to deliver an unprecedented eight-hour speech defending India's stand on Kashmir; to date, the speech is the longest ever delivered in the United Nations Security Council , covering five hours of the nd meeting on 23 January, and two hours and forty-eight minutes on the 24th, reportedly concluding with Menon's collapse on the Security Council floor.
Menon's passionate defence of Indian sovereignty in Kashmir enlarged his base of support in India, and led to the Indian press temporarily dubbing him the "Hero of Kashmir". Nehru was then at the peak of his popularity in India; the only minor criticism came from the far-right.
Their first formal codification in treaty form was in an agreement between China and India in which recognized Chinese sovereignty over Tibet. Negotiations took place in Delhi from December to April between the Delegation of the PRC Government and the Delegation of the Indian Government on the relations between the two countries with respect to the disputed territories of Aksai Chin and South Tibet.
By , Chinese premier Zhou Enlai had also succeeded in persuading Nehru to accept the Chinese position on Tibet, thus depriving Tibet of a possible ally, and of the possibility of receiving military aid from India.
They became widely recognised and accepted throughout the region during the premiership of Indira Gandhi and the 3-year rule of the Janata Party — The role of Nehru, both as Indian Prime Minister and a leader of the Non-Aligned Movement was significant; he tried to be even-handed between the two sides, while denouncing Eden and co-sponsors of the invasion vigorously. Nehru had a powerful ally in the US president Dwight Eisenhower who, if relatively silent publicly, went to the extent of using America's clout in the International Monetary Fund to make Britain and France back down.
During the Suez crisis , Nehru's right-hand man, Menon attempted to persuade a recalcitrant Gamal Nasser to compromise with the West, and was instrumental in moving Western powers towards an awareness that Nasser might prove willing to compromise. Nehru maintained good relations with Britain even after the Suez Crisis. Nehru accepted the arbitration of the UK and World Bank, signing the Indus Waters Treaty in with Pakistani ruler Ayub Khan to resolve long-standing disputes about sharing the resources of the major rivers of the Punjab region.
After years of failed negotiations, Nehru authorised the Indian Army to invade Portuguese-controlled Goa in , and then he formally annexed it to India. It increased his popularity in India, but he was criticised by the communist opposition in India for the use of military force. From , in a process that accelerated in , Nehru adopted the "Forward Policy" of setting up military outposts in disputed areas of the Sino-Indian border, including in 43 outposts in territory not previously controlled by India.
Later, Pakistan handed over some portion of Kashmir near Siachen controlled by Pakistan since to China. The war exposed the unpreparedness of India's military which could send only 14, troops to the war zone in opposition to the many times larger Chinese army, and Nehru was widely criticised for his government's insufficient attention to defence.
In response, Nehru sacked the defence minister V. Krishna Menon and sought US military aid. Nehru's improved relations with the US under John F. Kennedy proved useful during the war, as in , President of Pakistan then closely aligned with the Americans Ayub Khan was made to guarantee his neutrality in regards to India, who was threatened by "communist aggression from Red China".
Nehru would continue to maintain his commitment to the non-aligned movement despite calls from some to settle down on one permanent ally. The aftermath of the war saw sweeping changes in the Indian military to prepare it for similar conflicts in the future, and placed pressure on Nehru, who was seen as responsible for failing to anticipate the Chinese attack on India. Under American advice by American envoy John Kenneth Galbraith who made and ran American policy on the war as all other top policy makers in the US were absorbed in coincident Cuban Missile Crisis Nehru refrained, not according to the best choices available, from using the Indian air force to beat back the Chinese advances.
The CIA later revealed that at that time the Chinese had neither the fuel nor runways long enough for using their air force effectively in Tibet. Indians, in general, became highly sceptical of China and its military. Many Indians view the war as a betrayal of India's attempts at establishing a long-standing peace with China and started to question Nehru's usage of the term "Hindi-Chini bhai-bhai" meaning "Indians and Chinese are brothers".
The war also put an end to Nehru's earlier hopes that India and China would form a strong Asian Axis to counteract the increasing influence of the Cold War bloc superpowers. The unpreparedness of the army was blamed on Defence Minister Menon, who "resigned" his government post to allow for someone who might modernise India's military further. India's policy of weaponisation via indigenous sources and self-sufficiency began in earnest under Nehru, completed by his daughter Indira Gandhi, who later led India to a crushing military victory over rival Pakistan in Toward the end of the war India had increased her support for Tibetan refugees and revolutionaries, some of them having settled in India, as they were fighting the same common enemy in the region.
Nehru ordered the raising of an elite Indian-trained "Tibetan Armed Force" composed of Tibetan refugees, which served with distinction in future wars against Pakistan in and Kennedy, requesting 12 squadrons of fighter jets and a modern radar system.
These jets were seen as necessary to beef up Indian air strength so that air-to-air combat could be initiated safely from the Indian perspective bombing troops was seen as unwise for fear of Chinese retaliatory action. Nehru also asked that these aircraft be manned by American pilots until Indian airmen were trained to replace them.
According to former Indian diplomat G Parthasarathy, "only after we got nothing from the US did arms supplies from the Soviet Union to India commence". Twelve huge C Hercules transports, complete with US crews and maintenance teams, took off for New Delhi to fly Indian troops and equipment to the battle zone. Britain weighed in with Bren and Sten guns, and airlifted tons of arms to India.
Canada prepared to ship six transport planes. There were four known assassination attempts on Nehru. The first attempt on his life was during partition in while he was visiting North-West Frontier Province now in Pakistan in a car.
Nehru's health began declining steadily after , and he spent months recuperating in Kashmir through Some historians attribute this dramatic decline to his surprise and chagrin over the Sino-Indian War, which he perceived as a betrayal of trust.
He spoke to the doctors who attended on him for a brief while and almost immediately Nehru collapsed. He remained unconscious until he died. His death was announced to Lok Sabha at On 28 May, Nehru was cremated in accordance with Hindu rites at the Shantivan on the banks of the Yamuna , witnessed by 1. Nehru, the man and politician made such a powerful imprint on India that his death on 27 May , left India with no clear political heir to his leadership [ citation needed ] later Lal Bahadur Shastri succeeded him as the Prime Minister.
The death was announced to the Indian parliament in words similar to Nehru's own at the time of Gandhi's assassination: Nehru served as the prime minister for eighteen years. During his tenure he had many ministers in his cabinet who were heavy weights in their own right.
Key members from his first cabinet include Vallabhbhai Patel who oversaw the integration of princely states in the Indian union but was also his greatest rival in the Congress party, and B.
Ambedkar, the law minister in the interim cabinet who also chaired the Constitution Drafting Committee. Vallabhbhai Patel served as home minister in the interim government. He was instrumental in getting the Congress party working committee to vote for partition. He is also credited with integrating peacefully most of the princely states of India.
Patel was a strong rival to Nehru but died in , leaving Nehru as the unchallenged leader of India until his own death in Jagjivan Ram became the youngest minister in Nehru's Interim government of India a Labour Minister and also a member of the Constituent Assembly of India , where,as a member from the dalit caste, he ensured that social justice was enshrined in the Constitution. He went on to serve as a minister with various portfolios during Nehru's tenure and in Shastri and Indira Gandhi governments.
Govind Ballabh Pant — was a key figure in the Indian independence movement and later a pivotal figure in the politics of UP and later in the Indian Government. He was also responsible for the establishment of Hindi as an official language of the central government and a few states. Deshmukh was one of 5 members of the Planning Commission when it was constituted in by a cabinet resolution. During Deshmukh's tenure the State Bank of India was formed in through the nationalisation and amalgamation of the Imperial Bank with several smaller banks.
Vengalil Krishnan Krishna Menon — was a close associate of Nehru, and had been described by some as the second most powerful man in India during Nehru's tenure as prime minister. He was forced to resign after the debacle of China war. In the years following independence, Nehru frequently turned to his daughter Indira to look after him and manage his personal affairs. Indira moved into Nehru's official residence to attend to him and became his constant companion in his travels across India and the world.
She would virtually become Nehru's chief of staff. Nehru married Kamala Kaul in Their only daughter Indira was born a year later in Kamala gave birth to a boy in November , but he lived for only a week. They had two sons — Rajiv b. After Kamala's death in , Nehru, as a widower, was alleged to have had relationships with many women.
During most of Nehru's tenure as the prime minister, Indira served her father unofficially as a personal assistant. In that capacity, she was instrumental in getting the Communist led Kerala State Government dismissed in Described as Hindu Agnostic ,  and styling himself as a " scientific humanist ",  Nehru thought that religious taboos were preventing India from going forward and adapting to modern conditions: The spectacle of what is called religion, or at any rate organised religion, in India and elsewhere, has filled me with horror and I have frequently condemned it and wished to make a clean sweep of it.
Almost always it seemed to stand for blind belief and reaction, dogma and bigotry, superstition, exploitation and the preservation of vested interests. In his autobiography, he analysed Christianity  and Islam ,  and their impact on India. He wanted to model India as a secular country ; his secularist policies remain a subject of debate.
As India's first Prime minister and external affairs minister, Jawaharlal Nehru played a major role in shaping modern India's government and political culture along with sound foreign policy. Nehru's education policy is also credited for the development of world-class educational institutions such as the All India Institute of Medical Sciences ,  Indian Institutes of Technology ,  and the Indian Institutes of Management. In addition, Nehru's stance as an unfailing nationalist led him to also implement policies which stressed commonality among Indians while still appreciating regional diversities.
This proved particularly important as post-Independence differences surfaced since British withdrawal from the subcontinent prompted regional leaders to no longer relate to one another as allies against a common adversary. While differences of culture and, especially, language threatened the unity of the new nation, Nehru established programs such as the National Book Trust and the National Literary Academy which promoted the translation of regional literatures between languages and also organised the transfer of materials between regions.
In pursuit of a single, unified India, Nehru warned, "Integrate or perish. Historian Ramachandra Guha writes, "[had] Nehru retired in he would be remembered as not just India's best prime minister, but as one of the great statesmen of the modern world. In his lifetime, Jawaharlal Nehru enjoyed an iconic status in India and was widely admired across the world for his idealism and statesmanship. Congress leaders and activists often emulate his style of clothing, especially the Gandhi cap and the " Nehru jacket ", and his mannerisms.
Nehru's personal preference for the sherwani ensured that it continues to be considered formal wear in North India today; aside from lending his name to a kind of cap, the Nehru jacket is named in his honour because of his preference for that style.
Numerous public institutions and memorials across India are dedicated to Nehru's memory. The Jawaharlal Nehru Port near the city of Mumbai is a modern port and dock designed to handle a huge cargo and traffic load. The complex also houses the offices of the 'Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fund', established in under the Chairmanship of Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan , then President of India. The foundation also gives away the prestigious 'Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Fellowship', established in Many documentaries about Nehru's life have been produced.
He has also been portrayed in fictionalised films. The canonical performance is probably that of Roshan Seth , who played him three times: Girish Karnad 's historical play, Tughlaq is an allegory about the Nehruvian era. He had written 30 letters to his daughter Indira Gandhi , when she was 10 years old and in a boarding school in Mussoorie , teaching about natural history and the story of civilisations. The collection of these letters was later published as a book Letters from a Father to His Daughter.
In , Nehru was awarded Bharat Ratna , India's highest civilian honour. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Kamala Nehru m. See also: States Reorganisation Act, Further information: List of state visits made by Jawaharlal Nehru. India and the Non-Aligned Movement. Sino-Indian War. The Autobiography of Jawaharlal Nehru ; pp. Biography portal Politics portal India portal Jawaharlal Nehru portal. Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary. CRC Studio. Archived from the original on 5 March Archived from the original on 1 July Retrieved 18 May Oxford University Press.
A Comparative Analysis. Encyclopaedia of eminent thinkers. Jawaharlal Nehru. Civilisations, pp. Archived from the original on 4 June Retrieved 23 June Upkar Prakashan. Retrieved 2 October June 2, The Jewish Communities of India: Identity in a Colonial Era Second ed. Students' Britannica India. Popular Prakashan. Indians and the Spanish Civil War". Jammu and Kashmir: Politics of identity and separatism. From Plassey to Partition: A History of Modern India. Orient Blackswan. Political Ideas and Policies.
George Allen and Unwin p. SAGE Publications. Dissolution of princely states in ". Socialism of Jawaharlal Nehru. New Delhi: Shakti Malik, Abhinav Publications. Retrieved 8 September A Life , p. Living Dangerously. Jawaharlal Nehru travelled to European nations like Germany, France and the Soviet Union in with his family and sought meetings with several Communists, Socialists, and radical leaders from Asia and Africa.
Nehru was also impressed with the economic system of the communist Soviet Union and wished to apply the same in his own country. In , he became a member of the League against Imperialism created in Brussels, the capital city of Belgium. During the Guwahati Session of the Congress in , Mahatma Gandhi announced that the Congress would launch a massive movement if the British did not grant dominion status to India within the next two years. It was believed that under the pressure of Nehru and Subhash Chandra Bose, the deadline was reduced to one year.
Jawaharlal Nehru criticized the famous "Nehru Report" prepared by his father Motilal Nehru in that favored the concept of a "dominion status for India within the British rule". In Mahatma Gandhi supported the name of Nehru as the next president of the Congress. The decision was also an attempt to abate the intensity of "communism" in the Congress. The same year, Nehru was arrested for the violation of the Salt Law. In , Nehru was re-elected as the president of the Indian National Congress.
Sources suggest that a heated argument between the old and young leaders took place in the Lucknow Session of the party. The young and "new-gen" leaders of the party had advocated for an ideology, based on the concepts of Socialism.
He was arrested on August 8 of the same year and was imprisoned till June 15, Post his release, he threw himself into a series of rigorous discussions and negotiations with the British Government that ultimately led to attainment of freedom in Nehru fought hard against the proposed partitioning of the country by the last Viceroy Lord Mountbatten. He failed to obtain enough support from Mohammed Jinnah, the leader of Muslim League and reluctantly gave in to it.
On August 15, , a free India was born. Nehru was elected as the first Prime Minister of independent India. The time had come to implement his ideas and build a healthy nation. He carried out his vision to carry the young India towards the road of technological and scientific excellence with great zeal.
He implemented a number of socio-economic reforms and paved the way for rapid industrialization. In the year , Jawaharlal Nehru made his first visit to the United States, seeking a solution to India's urgent food shortage. In , Jawaharlal Nehru launched the country's "First Five-Year Plan" emphasizing on the increase in the agricultural output.
Jawaharlal Nehru was supporter of the anti-imperialist policy. He extended his support for the independence of small and colonized nations of the world. Nehru's predominant role in substantiating India's role in the foundation of institutions like NAM had surprised the then stalwarts of international politics. He advocated the policy of Non-Alignment during the cold war and India, subsequently, kept itself aloof from being in the process of "global bifurcation". The roots of the Sino-Indian conflict in lie in several facts of history.
The Indian Government had granted asylum to Dalai Lama after his banishment following the Tibet uprising in and it irked China. Nehru and his Chinese counterpart, Premiere Zhou Enlai were unable to reach a political accord on the 3,kilometre-long disputed border issue. A month into the armed confrontation, the Chinese declared a ceasefire on November 20, but the deep sense of mistrust strained the political relations between the two country ever since.