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Nightmare of Nehruism – a ‘tribute’ to Jawahar Lal Nehru by Sita Ram Goel

This chapter was added as a postscript to the third reprint to complete his story as a convinced and conscious Hindu.

Author Sita Ram Goel, in his autobiographical book “How I became a Hindu” has dedicated a chapter to first Prime Minister of independent India, Jawaharlal Nehru. In the chapter titled “Nightmare of Nehruism”, he talks about how he feels about Jawaharlal Nehru. This chapter was added as a postscript to the third reprint to complete his story as a convinced and conscious Hindu. Excerpts of chapter no. 9 are republished below.

It may be remembered that Pandit Nehru was by no means a unique character. Nor is Nehruism a unique phenomenon for that matter. Such weak minded persons and such subservient thought processes have been seen in all societies that have suffered the misfortune of being conquered and subjected to alien rule for some time.

There are always people in all societies who confuse superiority of armed might with superiority of culture, who start despising themselves as belonging to an inferior breed and end by taking to the ways of the conqueror in order to regain self confidence, who begin finding faults with everything they have inherited from their forefathers, and who finally join hands with every force and factor which is out to subvert their ancestral society. Viewed in this perspective, Pandit Nehru was no more than a self alienated Hindu, and Nehruism is not much more than Hindubaiting born out of and sustained by a deep seated sense of inferiority vis a vis Islam, Christianity, and the modern West.

Muslim rule in medieval India had produced a whole class of such self alienated Hindus. They had interpreted the superiority of Muslim arms as symbolic of the superiority of Muslim culture. Over a period of time, they had come to think and behave like the conquerors and to look down upon their own people. They were most happy when employed in some Muslim establishment so that they might pass as members of the ruling elite. The only thing that could be said in their favour was that, for one reason or the other, they did not convert to Islam and merge themselves completely in Muslim society. But for the same reason, they had become Trojan horses of Islamic imperialism, and worked for pulling down the cultural defences of their own people.

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The same class walked over to the British side when British arms became triumphant. They retained most of those and Hindu prejudices which they had borrowed from their Muslim masters, and cultivated some more which were contributed by the British establishment and the Christian missions. That is how the British rule became a divine dispensation for them. The most typical product of this double process was Raja Ram Mohun Roy.

****

The power and prestige which Pandit Nehru acquired within a few years after the death of Sardar Patel had nothing to do with his own merits, either as a person, or as a political leader, or as a thinker. They were the outcome of a long historical process which had brought to the fore a whole class of self alienated Hindus. Pandit Nehru would have never come to the top if this class had not been there. And this class would not have become dominant or remained so, had it not been sustained by establishments in the West, particularly that in the Soviet Union.

It is not an accident that the Nehruvian regime has behaved like the British Raj in most respects. The Nehruvians have looked at India not as a Hindu country but as a multi racial, multi religious and multi cultural cockpit. They have tried their best, like the British, to suppress the mainstream society and culture with the help of minorities, that is, the colonies crystallized by imperialism. They have also tried to fragment Hindu society, and create more minorities in the process. In fact, it has been their whole time occupation to eliminate every expression of Hindu culture, to subvert every symbol of Hindu pride, and persecute every Hindu organization, in the name of protecting the minorities. Hindus have been presented as monsters who will commit cultural genocide if allowed to come to power.

The partition of the country was brought about by Islamic imperialism. But the Nehruvians blamed it shamelessly on what they stigmatized as Hindu communalism. A war on the newly born republic of India was waged by the Communists in the interests of Soviet imperialism. But the Nehruvians were busy apologizing for these traitors, and running hammer and tongs after the RSS. There are many more parallels between the British Raj on the one hand and the Nehruvian regime on the other. I am not going into details because I am sure that the parallels will become obvious to anyone who applies his mind to the subject. The Nehruvian formula is that Hindus should stand accused in every situation, no matter who is the real culprit.

It was my great good fortune that Pandit Nehru never became my hero. Heroes have a way of inhibiting cold reasoning and calm reflection among those who admire them. My reason and reflection have suffered an eclipse, every now and then. But not for long. And not for a moment under the spell of Pandit Nehru.

****

The only other leader of whom I became increasingly aware was Pandit Nehru. There was quite a folklore afloat about him. He was reputed to be the only son of a fabulously rich man who lived in a palace at Allahabad, who got his clothes stitched in London and laundered in Paris, who had used high denomination currency notes as fuel for preparing tea when the viceroy paid him a visit, and who had blisters all over his tender skin when he put on khadi clothes for the first time. The son was known to have received his school and college education in England, spurned the friendship of the Prince of Wales who was his classmate, turned down with contempt many honours which the British were only too keen to bestow upon him in order to win him over to their ride, and chosen to be the betaj badshah (uncrowned king) of his own people.

****

There was a thunderous applause as Pandit Nehru came up on the rostrum, greeted the people with folded hands, and was formally introduce,d by a local Congress leader. But the next thing I saw made me rub my eyes. The great man had become red in the face, turned to his left, and planted a slap smack on the face of the same leader who was standing near the mike. The mike had failed. Pandit Nehru was gesticulating and shouting at the top of his voice as if something terrible had happened.

Meanwhile the mike started functioning again so that he could be heard all over the place. He was saying: “Dilli ki Congress ke karkun kamine hain, razil hain, namaqul hain. Maine kyatti bar inse kaha hai ke intizam nahin kar sakte to mujhe mat bulaya karo, par ye sunte hi nahin (the leaders of the Congress in Delhi are lowbred, mean, and mindless people. I have told them time and again not to invite me if they cannot make proper arrangements. But they pay no heed).” There was pin drop silence for a moment The next moment there was another thunderous applause. The Gandhi capped man sitting next to me offered comment “Panditji is famous for his temper. And people like him all the more that way.” I turned towards the rostrum. The face of Congress leader who had been slapped was bathed in smiles as if he had won some coveted prize.

****

The speech which followed was far more disappointing. I do not remember the subject. It must have been about the current political scene. I understood no politics at that time beyond the call that the British must go. All I can recall now is the language which Pandit Nehru was speaking. It was neither Hindi, nor Urdu. Most of his sentences were far from being straight in terms of grammar or syntax. Occasionally, he was fumbling for words. I thought he was a very poor speaker. I had heard many others who, though not so well known, were far better and more coherent. I would not have noticed his language if I had not known that he belonged to a province which was famous for both Hindi and Urdu in proper form.

****

But as I turned towards the rostrum again, what I saw was far more unseemly. Pandit Nehru was trying to get free of the grip in which he was being held by several Congress leaders who had thrown their hands round his arms and waist. He was being prevented from jumping down, and running towards the far corner in which the commotion had arisen. He seemed to be unaware of the crowd sitting inbetween. One moment he was moving forward, and the next moment he was being pulled back. And all the time, he was shouting at the top of his voice. The mike reported him as saying, “Dekhna chahta hun in kaminon ko main. Bata dena chahta hun inko ke main kon hun. Inki ye gandi harkaten main qatai bardasht nahin kar sakta (I want to have a look at these lowbred people. I want to tell them who I am. I cannot tolerate this dirty behaviour on their part).” The commotion died down. The Congress leaders released their hold on him. Suddenly, he straightened up as if he was going to get out of his boots. He stretched his right hand, full and upwards, and shouted, “Main ek shandar admi hun (I am a man of some stature).” The crowd was clapping wildly, and continuously.

****

I happened to be in Delhi towards the end of 1947 or in early 1948, and went to see my journalist friend from America. As I have mentioned, he had left Calcutta for Delhi soon after India became free. As I sat down with him in the Coffee House, he said, ” Sita, who does this man think.he is? Almighty God?” I asked him, ” Who? What has happened?” He told me the story of some Sadhus who had sat down on an indefinite fast near Pandit Nehru’s residence in New Delhi, and were seeking an assurance from him that cow slaughter would be stopped now that the beef eating British had departed.

My friend said, “I had gone there to take some pictures, and gather a report. American readers love such stories from India. But what I saw was a horror for me. As I was talking to one of the Sadus who knew some English, this man rushed out of his house accompanied by his sister, Mrs. Pandit. Both of them were shouting something in Hindi. The poor Sadus were taken by surprise, and stood up. This man slapped the Sadu who had moved forward with folded hands. His sister did the same. They were saying something which sounded pretty harsh. Then both of them turned back, and disappeared as fast as they had come. The Sadus did not utter so much as a word in protest, not even after the duo had left. They had taken it all as if it was the normal thing.” I observed, “But in the case of Pandit Nehru, it is the normal thing. He has been slapping and kicking people all his life.” He concluded, “I do not know the norm in your country. In my country, if the President so much as shouts on a citizen, he will have to go. We take it from no bastard, no matter how big he happens to be.” I kept quiet.

****

Pandit Nehru had been in the habit of threatening to resign, every now and then. It was his patent method of making the people protest that he was indispensable, and that the country would face ruin without him at the helm. He had succeeded every time in raising a storm in his favour, and discrediting whomsoever he chose to hound out of public life. This time he kept sticking to the throne like a limpet. In the words of Brigadier Dalvi, he did not have the decency even to go through the motions of resigning.

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