Monday, April 17, 2017

The Legacy of Jawaharlal Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru, one of the greatest Leader India has seen so far, was the first Prime Minister of India. He was at the forefront of Indian politics and Independence movement along with Mahatma Gandhi. The people of India loved him a lot, and he remained as the Prime Minister for a long duration of 17 years! He is considered to be the architect of the modern India. Jawaharlal Nehru was born on 14th November 1889 as the son of Motilal Nehru and Swaroop Rani. He was a graduate of Trinity College, Cambridge, and the Inner Temple, where he trained to be a barrister. He became a rising figure in Indian politics by the year 1910. The Non-Cooperation Movement was a significant phase of the Indian independence movement from British rule. Mahatma Gandhi led it after the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre. It led to thousands of common citizens to participate in Indian Independence movement. Nehru was an active leader of this movement, and he got arrested for the first time for activities against the British rule.

In 1929, Nehru became the president of the Indian National Congress. It was his first leadership role in politics. On 8th August 1942, the members of Congress passed the Quit India resolution demanding complete political freedom from Britain in exchange for support in the World War II. The following day, the British government arrested all Congress leaders, including Nehru and Gandhi. He spent a total of nine years of his life in jail. Pandit Nehru wrote ‘The Discovery of India’ in 1942–46 at Ahmednagar fort in Maharashtra, where he was in imprisonment. The book is considered one of the finest modern works on Indian history. He wrote several other books later.

Once elected, Nehru headed an interim government, weakened by outbreaks of communal violence and political disorder. After failed attempt to form coalitions, Nehru reluctantly supported the partition of India. He took office as the Prime Minister of India on 15 August 1947. He was a visionary leader and started to lead India to accomplish his vision of India. The Constitution of India was enacted in 1950, after which he started working on an ambitious program of economic, social and political reforms. He led India's transition from a colony to a republic, while nurturing a multi-party democracy. He took a keen interest in developing Indian foreign policy.

Under Nehru's leadership, the Congress emerged as the largest party all over India and won consecutive elections 1951, 1957, and 1962. He remained popular with the people of India in spite of some political troubles and the 1962 Sino-Indian War. Throughout his 17-year leadership, he advocated democratic socialism and secularism. In 1951, he published the first five-year development plan and encouraged India’s Industrialization movement & improvement in the agricultural production.

Nehru had the vision of investing in Space Science & Nuclear technology and also had the skills to convince his colleagues about it. He brought exceptionally great intellects like Dr. Bhabha & Dr. Sarabhai to lead these programs & also managed to get help from other countries like the US, Canada, France and Germany in the early stages of these programs. He instituted various social reforms such as free public education and meals for Indian children. He approved the legal rights for women including the ability to inherit property and divorce their husbands. He appealed the conventionally opposed categories of low caste and high caste, Hindu and Muslim and North Indian and South Indian.

The Indian democracy is in the steady state today because of the foundations laid by Nehru. If India has become a large economy in the World, it is because of the multi-purpose projects, the public sector undertakings and institutions established by Nehru as well as the systematic planning process initiated by him.

India will always remember Jawaharlal Nehru as a great leader of Congress, the single largest political party in India that time & the first Prime Minister of India. During his leadership, India became independent, the Constitution of India was signed, and India made considerable progress as an Independent Nation. He developed a great relationship with multiple nations and led India on a progressive path. He was the greatest political leader India had seen so far.