V. Kalyanam, Gandhi’s last PS, says they never acted against corrupt colleagues

V. Kalyanam (92), the last personal secretary to Mahatma Gandhi, was in the news recently after he joined the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

He was in the city to attend the Centenary celebrations of Andhra Pradesh Library Association. Dressed in white kurta and pyjama, the frail man walks with the help of a stick. But, he does not mince his words when it comes to putting across his views.

Speaking to The Hindu, Mr. Kalyanam said: “I hold Jawaharlal Nehru responsible for the monumental corruption in the country. Same is the case with Manmohan Singh.” Both of them are honest and did not make any money.

Neither Nehru nor Manmohan Singh acted against the corrupt practices of their Cabinet colleagues.

“Manmohan Singh might not have made a penny from 2G or coal scam, but he silently witnessed corruption. It is pertinent to mention here that Nehru made corrupt colleagues like Krishna Menon, who was involved in the infamous ‘jeep scam’ while he was the Defence Minister,” he said.

“Lakhs of crores of rupees were stashed in Swiss Banks. The successive governments did nothing to bring back that money. People haven’t developed well, barring a few politicians and business tycoons. The country got freedom, but people don’t enjoy self-governance. The country will not progress unless people put an end to dynastic rule,” he felt.

In fact, Gandhiji wanted dissolution of the Congress party after Independence and formation of a new party. But, nobody listened to the Father of the Nation, he said, quoting Gandhiji’s words: “Today, mine is a lone voice. I now say things which do not go home. I know that I am a back number. Yet, I go on saying what I believe to be true.” When asked as to why he joined the AAP, Mr. Kalyanam said: “I want corrupt people to go. I will be in the party as long as it works against corruption.” The name itself suggests that it is a party of the commoner. “I am not interested in squabbling in the party or fighting for a ticket. I will be with it as long as it sticks to the ideology of fighting corruption and self-governance,” he adds.

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