Happy 125th Birthday Mr. Nehru
But can the Nehru-Gandhi Dynasty please leave us alone now…
“Today is the birth anniversary of Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India post independence from British colonial rule in 1947. Popularly known as Chacha Nehru (Uncle of the nation), his birthday is celebrated as the Children’s Day across India.”
This is how we used to spend 14th of November during our school days, writing essays on Jawahar Lal Nehru, giving speech in the school assembly, participating in painting competition depicting Chacha Nehru among the children.
I am finding it really hard to celebrate this day as children’s day – I have not been able to find any logical linkage between the life that Jawahar Lal Nehru lived and his contribution to the Children which should be the base for celebrating his birth anniversary as Children’s day.
Agree, he was a freedom fighter – but there were millions of others too who gave up their whole life for the cause of India’s Independence – many didn’t even survived the journey.
Agree, he was a strong leader of Congress party – but there w many other tall leaders in the Congress party who contributed through their sweat and blood, never vying for any reward or recognition.
Agree, he was the first Prime Minister of India, but that’s because his father Motilal Nehru, pushed his name as President of Congress party at crucial time of India’s Freedom struggle and both father-son duo enjoyed a extremely good rapport with Mahatma Gandhi, the tallest leader of India’s freedom struggle, who enjoyed sort of veto power over the Congress Party.
Agree, Nehru continued to be in the position of Prime Minister of India for the crucial first 15 years of India's Independence, but then the mess that he left behind include two of the biggest security problems we are facing even today on our borders - Pakistan on Kashmir border and China on Tibet border; the inefficient bureaucratic setup which provides high motivations for corruption and nepotism; the inefficient bureaucratic setup which provides high motivations for corruption and nepotism; Utopian economic policies which brought India on the brink of financial bankruptcy by 1990's.
I just fail to get even a one good reason to celebrate his birthday as Children’s day.
This is not all, lets look at his political legacy – the Congress Party. Very much like the Communist Party in many countries around the world, India remained in the grip of Congress party for a very long time. Unlike Communist Party, where the dictators, strong central leadership remained in control only till the time the person was alive, here in India the baton was passed on within the family from father to the son, to the daughter, to the sons, to the daughter-in-law, to the son and so on and so forth.
Congress is supposed to be the grand old political party of India, a party which was considered their own by most of the freedom fighters who fought against the British Colonial Rule. Its is a political party not a personal property anyone.
Founded in 28 December 1885 is now in existence for 128+ years. A cursory look at their own website http://inc.in/PastPartyPresidents.aspx will leave you with a bit of a surprise. In the first 15 years of its existence (1885 – 1900 : The Founding years) they had as many as 14 president, a new president every year.
During 1900 – 1947 : The Pre-Independence Era, there were 27 Presidents of Congress including some big names like Dadabhai Naoroji, Gopal Krishna Gokhale, Madan Mohan Malviya, Annie Besant, Motilal Nehru, Abdul Kalam Azad, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Subhash Chandra Bose as well as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.
India got freedom in 1947 and Jawahar Lal Nehru was selected as the leader of the Congress Party to become the first Prime Minister of India. In the period 1947-1990 : Post Independent Era of 43 years Congress saw only 9 presidents including Indira Gandhi, and Rajiv Gandhi.
In the last 24 year period of Post Liberalization 1990-2014 there has been only 3 President including Sonia Gandhi, and there has been no change in the President of the Congress party for last 15 years.
One thing which looks quite clear from the above data is the declining Democratic traditional in Congress Party, specially post 1947. A political party which swears by Democratic traditions doesn’t seems to be living by the same virtues.
Another astounding thing one may notice is that apart from the 5 names that have been highlighted in above namely, Motilal Nehru -> Jawaharlal Nehru (son) -> Indira Gandhi (grand-daughter) -> Rajiv Gandhi (great-grandson) -> Sonia Gandhi (great-grand-daughter-in-law) none of the other Presidents of Congress party were related to each other.
In the archives of Congress Party, there is a letter written by Motilal Nehru to Mahatma Gandhi, proposing Jawaharlal Nehru’s name as Congress President (http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Motilal-pushed-for-son-Jawahar-as-Congress-chief-in-letter-to-Bapu/articleshow/45141519.cms?)
In the 67 years of post Independent India, there has been a strong grip of few members of one family over the Congress Party. Only the family members themselves or someone nominated by them has been able to become the President of Congress party. And the Congress party had been in power, have a strong political & administrative control over India. So, directly or indirectly, one family has been ruling India for majority of last 67 years. India has decline in these 67 years drastically, the Congress party has decline to such a rotting level (unbelievable as it may sound, today they have only 44 members in the 545 member lower Parliament of India – Lok Sabha). But the Numero Uno family has flourished beyond anybody’s dream – the current President of Congress Party – Sonia Gandhi – the Italian born, sparsely educated lady, was listed as the 4th richest Politician in the World http://www.deeshaa.org/2013/12/02/sonia-gandhi-is-the-4th-richest-politician-in-the-world/ by a renowned magazine, having estimated wealth between $2 – $19 billion.
Consider this, Motilal Nehru donated all his property to Congress Party. Jawaharlal Nehru did not receive anything as inheritance, as Prime Minister of India he received a fixed income lived in government owned, official residence for Prime Minister of India till he died. Something happened after that, for starters, his daughter Indira Gandhi converted the Teen Murti Bhavan, the official residence/ office for Prime Minister of India, into a personal property owned by a trust floated in the name of Jawaharlal Nehru, controlled by Indira Gandhi and her family members. The net worth of the family started growing, no one knows how…
There were concern raised about the life-style of her sons Sanjay Gandhi & Rajiv Gandhi, but the Congress Party and India itself was in the iron grip of the family so nothing is out in the public domain except for rumors. 1984-90 the years when Rajiv Gandhi was Prime Minister of India and the controller of Congress Party, the country saw some huge corruption scandals. It was said by the people who are in the know-of-things that New Delhi was ruled by Commission Agents and Fixers of all sorts during those days. A multi-crore Bofors Scandal broke out and for the first time the India’s Prime Ministers Office came into direct shadow of this bribe scandal and it costed Rajiv the Prime Ministership as Congress party lost the next general election.
Due to the mind-less Utopian economic policies followed by successive Congress party led Governments in India during the period 1947 – 1990, known as the Nehruvian Era, Indian economy was in shambles. Post 1990’s, the subsequent governments of India had to take drastic economic reforms in the next 14 years, to get the country back on track. This process was once again scuttled when Congress party came back to the center-stage in 2004, officially Man Mohan Singh became the Prime Minister, but the power remained in the hands of Sonia Gandhi, the president of Congress party while grooming of great-great-grandson of Motilal Nehru, Rahul Gandhi was started as the next controller of the Congress party.
Okay now I am kind of getting it, the Children’s day is actually a cruel joke on us the children’s of India born after Independence – to suffer at the hand of the children’s of Nehru-Gandhi Dynasty.