The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.
The Non-Aligned Group of Nehru And China and Liberation of Goa
The Non-Aligned Group
After the Second World War, since the ideologies of the United States of America and Russia were different, there was a struggle for power between the two. This was called the ‘Cold War. Neutral nations wished to make rapid holistic progress by staying away from both superpowers.
In 1955, there was a conference of the neutral nations at Bandung in Indonesia. Indian Prime Minister Nehru, President of Indonesia Sukarno, President of Egypt Gamal Abdel Nassar, and the Yugoslavian President Marshal Tito played an important role during the Bandung conference and formed the ‘Non-aligned Group’. Nehru’s reputation and prestige kept on increasing in the international field.
In 1956, when Britain, France and Egypt attacked Israel, Nehru strongly criticized the act.
During the Russian revolution against Hungary, only India out of the non-aligned group of nations had voted in favour of Russia at the Gnited Nations. This had caused a lot of difficulties for Nehru and the policy of non-alignment was heavily criticized.
Nehru And China
Due to China’s large size and immense population, Nehru always respected China. During the Second World War, when Japan attacked China, Nehru was quite compassionate about China. He dispatched a voluntary group for health services from Congress to China. He had also visited China in 1939.
On 1st October, 1949, Mao-Tse-Tung declared the communist nation of China as a Republic. Nehru accepted China’s revolt and tried to establish friendly relations with the Chinese.
In 1950, the relations between India and China had soured due to the Tibet issue. In June 1954, Nehru signed a friendship treaty between India and China with regards to the Tibet issue. This is known in the annals of history as the ‘Principles of Panchsheel’ which are as follows :
- Mutual respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty
- Mutual non-aggression
- Mutual noninterference in each other’s internal affairs
- Equality and mutual benefit
- Peaceful co-existence.
These five principles of peaceful co-existence were accepted during the Conference of the non-aligned countries of Asia and Africa which was held at Bandung in Indonesia in 1955. Thereafter in 1956, all the 82 member-states of the United Nations accepted these principles. In this manner, Nehru’s ‘Principles of Panchsheel’ got a place of pride in the world.
Nehru visited China. Slogans proclaiming ‘Hindi-Chini bhai-bhai’ were heard all over. Nehru made a lot of efforts to get China onto the United Nation’s member list.
China published the maps of their boundaries. Here they claimed about 80 thousand square kilometres of Indian land to be theirs. As Prime Minister of India, Nehru opposed this strongly. China did not respond favourably. China infiltrated into the bordering regions and disregarded the ‘MacMahon Line’ which separated China and India. The differences between India and China increased and became more aggressive.
China destroyed Tibet’s self-governance and proclaimed absolute ownership of this land. In 1959, when there was a revolt in Tibet, Dalai Lama came to India as a refugee. This made China even more aggressive. Thereafter, the debate regarding the border issue continued to worsen between the two countries. Nehru’s decision to give refuge to Dalai Lama was highly criticized.
In October 1962, China attacked India. They captured the regions they had claimed as theirs on the map which had been presented earlier. India sent out her army to protect the borders. There was a fierce war between China and India. The Indian army had to fight the Chinese army tooth and nail. Nehru accepted the futility of the non-aligned movement and finally took America’s aid to stop China from progressing any further. China declared a single-sided ‘cease fire’ and brought an end to the war. Nehru was extremely upset by this war. His government was heavily criticized for not being able to protect the boundaries of the nation.
Liberation of Goa
As soon as India was declared independent, the British government and the French government had handed over their colonies peacefully to India. However, the Portuguese were not ready to surrender Diu, Daman and Goa. In August 1955, the Portuguese shot dead 30 weaponless, non-violent Satyagrahis. After this, in 1961, Nehru gave permission to the Indian army to attack Diu, Daman and Goa in order to get them back from the Portuguese.
The Indian army did so and in a matter of just 12 hours, the Indian Tricolour was hoisted in Diu, Daman and Goa. Nehru had to face a lot of criticism for his decision to take military steps for the liberation of Goa.