I do not feel shy to say that I am an admirer of the Nehru family (“The commanding heights of Nehru,” Nov. 13). It looks like the rest of the world better understood Nehru’s greatness than our countrymen. In 2001, a Pakistani software engineer told me that India was fortunate to have had Nehru as the PM who gave importance to technical education while in his own country, religion and religious education were given preference. That is why India was able to produce more software engineers and medical doctors and Pakistanis have to come to the U.S. to study medicine. It is Nehru who laid the strong foundation of industrialisation and education on which modern India developed.
Varanasi Gopalakrishna, Chennai
As some of our politicians and economists seem to ignore Nehru’s contribution to India’s development, Mr. Ramachandra Guha’s article was timely. The right-wing Tory British Prime Minister at the time of the Suez crisis, Sir Anthony Eden (Lord Avon), writing in his memoirs describes how adversely he was affected by Nehru’s condemnation of the Anglo-French attack on Egypt in a speech in Hyderabad on November 1, 1956. I remember this well because I was in the crowd at Fateh Maidan when Nehru made this speech after inaugurating the newly created State of Andhra Pradesh. Nehru devoted a large part of his speech to the Suez crisis and while condemning Britain and France, he said: “Who has made them the policeman of the world (Inhay dunya ka policewala kisnay banaya hai”)? It is this comment which hurt Eden the most.
M. Riaz Hasan, Hyderabad
I wish that in his excellent article, Mr. Guha had also mentioned that in his inaugural address as President of the U.S. in 1960, John F. Kennedy had made a reference to the “soaring idealism of Nehru” and that when Nehru visited Saudi Arabia in the 1950s, he was hailed by the crowds there as “Rasool-al-Salaam (Messenger of Peace”).
S.S. Kaimal, Thiruvananthapuram
Keywords: Nehruvian legacy