Economic Determinants of Indi as Foreign Policy The Nehru Years (1947-64)

Jaimini Bhagwati: 1947-64: An age of short-sightedness?
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Gandhi's abrupt nationalization of the 14 biggest banks in India, which resulted in the resignation of the finance minister, Morarji Desai. Later in the year, the Congress party president, S. Nijalingappa , expelled her from the party for indiscipline. Gandhi as a counter-move launched her own faction of the INC. Gandhi's faction, called Congress R , was supported by most of the Congress MPs while the original party had the support of only 65 MPs. The "I" in the name of congress stood for Indira. It soon came to be known as the New Congress.

After the separation of the two parties, there was also a dispute about the party logo. The "Old Congress" retained the party symbol of a pair of bullocks carrying a yoke while Indira's breakaway faction were given a new symbol of a cow with suckling calf by the Election Commission as the party election symbol. The split occurred when, in , a united opposition under the banner of Samyukt Vidhayak Dal , won control over several states in the Hindi Belt.

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The New Congress Party's popular support began to wane in the mids. From , Gandhi's government grew increasingly more authoritarian and unrest among the opposition grew. On 12 June , the High Court of Allahabad declared Indira Gandhi's election to the Lok Sabha , the lower house of India's parliament, void on the grounds of electoral malpractice. She moved to restore order by ordering the arrest of most of the opposition participating in the unrest. In response to increasing disorder and lawlessness, Gandhi's cabinet and government recommended that President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed declare a State of Emergency , which he did on 25 June based on the provisions of Article of the Constitution.

During the nineteen-month emergency, widespread oppression and abuse of power by Gandhi's unelected younger son and political heir Sanjay Gandhi and his close associates occurred. Gandhi lost her seat to her Janata opponent Raj Narain. During the next year, her new party attracted enough members of the legislature to become the official opposition. In November , Gandhi regained a parliamentary seat. However, the designation I was only dropped in During Gandhi's new term as prime minister, her youngest son Sanjay died in an aeroplane crash in June Gradually, Indira Gandhi's politics and outlook grew more authoritarian and autocratic, and she became the central figure within the Congress Party.

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As prime minister, she became known for her political ruthlessness and unprecedented centralization of power. Gandhi's term as prime minister also saw increasing turmoil in Punjab , with demands for Sikh autonomy by Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale and his militant followers. This event is known as Operation Blue Star. On 31 October , two of Gandhi's bodyguards, Satwant Singh and Beant Singh , shot her with their service weapons in the garden of the prime minister's residence in response to her authorisation of Operation Blue Star. In , Indira Gandhi's son Rajiv Gandhi became nominal head of Congress, and went on to become prime minister upon her assassination.

After his government became embroiled in several financial scandals, his leadership became increasingly ineffectual. In , an Indian court convicted 26 people in the conspiracy to assassinate Gandhi. Rajiv Gandhi was succeeded as party leader by P. Narasimha Rao , who was elected prime minister in June His administration oversaw major economic change and experienced several home incidents that affected India's national security. Future prime ministers Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Manmohan Singh continued the economic reform policies begun by Rao's government.

Rao accelerated the dismantling of the Licence Raj, reversing the socialist policies of previous governments. By , the party's image was suffering from allegations of corruption, and in elections that year, Congress was reduced to seats, its lowest number in the Lok Sabha to that point. Rao later resigned as prime minister and, in September, as party president. The general election saw Congress win seats in the Lok Sabha, its lowest tally until then. She had previously declined offers to become actively involved in party affairs, and had stayed away from politics.

After her election as party leader, a section of the party that objected to the choice because of her Italian ethnicity broke away and formed the Nationalist Congress Party NCP , led by Sharad Pawar. The breakaway faction commanded strong support in the state of Maharashtra and limited support elsewhere. The remainder continued to be known as the Indian National Congress. Sonia Gandhi struggled to revive the party in her early years as its president; she was under continuous scrutiny for her foreign birth and lack of political acumen.

In the snap elections called by the National Democratic Alliance NDA government in , Congress' tally further plummeted to just seats. In the intervening years, the party was successful at various legislative assembly elections; at one point, Congress ruled 15 states. With the subsequent support of the communist front, Congress won a majority and formed a new government.

Despite massive support from within the party, Gandhi declined the post of prime minister, choosing to appoint Manmohan Singh instead. During its first term in office, the UPA government passed several social reform bills. These included an employment guarantee bill, the Right to Information Act , and a right to education act.

The NAC, as well as the Left Front that supported the government from the outside, were widely seen as being the driving force behind such legislation. The Left Front withdrew its support of the government over disagreements about the U. Despite the effective loss of 62 seats in parliament, the government survived the trust vote that followed.

The UPA as a whole won , enabling it to form a government for the second time. The social welfare policies of the first UPA government, and the perceived divisiveness of the BJP, are broadly credited with the victory. By the Lok Sabha elections, the party had lost much of its popular support, mainly because of several years of poor economic conditions in the country, and growing discontent over a series of corruption allegations involving government officials, including the 2G spectrum case and the Indian coal allocation scam. She was succeeded by her son Rahul Gandhi.

As of [update] , the election symbol of Congress, as approved by the Election Commission of India , is an image of a right hand with its palm facing front and its fingers pressed together; [] this is usually shown in the centre of a tricolor flag. The hand symbol was first used by Indira Gandhi when she split from the Congress R faction following the elections and created the New Congress I. The symbol of the original Congress during elections held between and was an image of two bullocks with a plough.

Congress was structured in a hierarchical manner by Mahatma Gandhi when he took charge as the president of the party in Those elected as members of the states' legislative assemblies form the Congress Legislature Parties in the various state assemblies; their chairperson is usually the party's nominee for Chief Ministership. The party is also organised into various committees, and sections; it publishes a daily newspaper, the National Herald. The AICC takes all important executive and political decisions.

Constitutionally, the president is elected by the PCCs and members of the AICC; however, this procedure has often been by-passed by the Working Committee, which has elected its own candidate. Dynasticism is fairly common in many political parties in India, including the Congress party. The party started turning into a family firm controlled by Indira Gandhi's family during the emergency. This was characterized by servility and sycophancy towards the family which later turned into hereditary succession of Gandhi family members to power.

Congress is a civic nationalist party that follows a form of nationalism that supports the values of freedom , tolerance , equality , and individual rights. Throughout much of the Cold War period, Congress supported a foreign policy of nonalignment that called for India to form ties with both the Western and Eastern Blocs, but to avoid formal alliances with either.

The history of economic policy of Congress-led governments can be divided into two periods. The first period lasted from independence, in , to and put great emphasis on the public sector. The second period began with economic liberalization in At the beginning of the first period, the Congress prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru implemented policies based on import substitution industrialization and advocated a mixed economy where the government-controlled public sector would co-exist with the private sector.

The government, therefore, directed investment primarily into key public-sector industries—steel, iron, coal, and power—promoting their development with subsidies and protectionist policies. Up to 80 government agencies had to be satisfied before private companies could produce something; and, if the licence were granted, the government would regulate production. In addition, many key sectors such as banking, steel coal, and oil were nationalized. In , the new Congress-party government, led by P. Narasimha Rao, initiated reforms to avert the impending economic crisis. The goals of Rao's government were to reduce the fiscal deficit , privatize the public sector, and increase investment in infrastructure.

Trade reforms and changes in the regulation of foreign direct investment were introduced in order to open India to foreign trade while stabilising external loans. Rao chose Manmohan Singh for the job. Singh, an acclaimed economist and former chairman of the Resrve Bank, played a central role in implementing these reforms. Singh remained prime minister after the UPA won the general elections. The UPA government introduced policies aimed at reforming the banking and financial sectors, as well as public sector companies.

India was able to resist the worst effects of the global Economic crisis of At present, Congress endorses a mixed economy in which the private sector and the state both direct the economy, which has characteristics of both market and planned economies. Congress advocates import substitution industrialisation—the replacement of foreign imports with domestic products. Congress believes the Indian economy should be liberalised to increase the pace of development.

In , the Congress-led government started the National Rural Health Mission, which employed about , community health workers. It was praised by economist Jeffrey Sachs. Congress has continued the foreign policy started by P. Narasimha Rao. This includes the peace process with Pakistan , and the exchange of high-level visits by leaders from both countries.

When in power between and , Congress worked on India's relationship with the United States. US president George W. Bush visited India in March ; during this visit, a nuclear agreement that would give India access to nuclear fuel and technology in exchange for the IAEA inspection of its civil nuclear reactors was proposed. Congress' policy has been to cultivate friendly relations with Japan as well as European Union countries including the United Kingdom, France, and Germany.

The party during the post-independence era has governed most of the States and union territories of India. A majority of non-Congress prime ministers of India had been members of the Congress party earlier in their careers. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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Not to be confused with Indian National Congress Organisation. Major political party in India. Indian National Congress. Narasimha Rao Manmohan Singh. Progressive Alliance [10] Socialist International [11]. Politics of India Political parties Elections. Presidents History Election history. Mahila Minority Students Youth Trade. Main article: History of the Indian National Congress. See also: Indian independence movement. History of liberalism Contributions to liberal theory. Regional variants. Related topics.

Democratic capitalism Liberal bias in academia. Social justice Democracy economic industrial representative Labor rights Mixed economy Welfare Trade unionism Fair trade Environmental protection Negative and positive rights Secularism Social corporatism Social market economy. BJP Coalition with BJP 6. INC 5. Coalition with INC 1.

President's rule 1. See also: List of chief ministers from the Indian National Congress. Liberalism portal India portal Politics portal. The Hindu. Retrieved 17 December Times Now. Retrieved 18 June Retrieved 16 August Retrieved 17 November Indian Mapped. Retrieved 18 April Daily News and Analysis. British Journal of Political Science. Progressive Alliance. Archived from the original on 2 March Retrieved 20 March Socialist International.

Archived from the original on 20 April India: Election Commission of India. Retrieved 9 May Rajya Sabha. Retrieved 14 July Retrieved 26 February Retrieved 29 July Retrieved 3 May The Quint. Times of India. Retrieved 27 July Retrieved 29 May Encyclopaedia Britannica. It subsequently formed most of India's governments from the time of independence and often had a strong presence in many state governments. The History of the Indian National Congress.

Working Committee of the Congress. The Indian Express. Pattabhi The history of the Indian National Congress — A Brief History of India. Infobase Publishing. Wolpert University of California Press. Without any funds or any secretariat, however other than Hume Congress remained, during its first decade at least, more of a sounding board for elite Indian aspirations than a political party. Grove Press. Freedom fighters of India. Gyan Publishing House.

Main Bharat Hun. Archived from the original on 21 July Ikram Indian Muslims and Partition of India. Atlantic Publishers. History Modern India. New Age International. Explaining Indian Democracy: The realm of institutions: state formation and institutional change. Political ideas and movements in India. The Times of India. Retrieved 6 June The Economist.

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Jawaharlal Nehru: Civilizing a Savage World. Penguin Books India. The Guardian. The Guardian archive. The Guardian News Portal. Kamaraj -Life History". The Perun Thalaivar organization. Press Information Bureau: Government of India. Abhinav Publications.

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Foreign Relations

For Nehru, politics again acquired a sense of purpose, urgency, and adventure. The conclusion was reached by Sir F. Congress-Moslem League negotiations were marked by communal killings in Calcutta, followed by sympathetic outbreaks throughout India. Gandhi knew that young Nehru was not a blind disciple; he wanted to harness Nehru's talents and dynamism for the national cause, and was confident of containing his impetuous and rebellious spirit. McMahon, Robert J. He inaugurated a diluted version of socialist planning: concentration of public investment in areas of the economy that were free from private interests. War is about life and death; trade is about bread and butter.

New Delhi: Kalpaz Publications. Pradhan; Madhav Godbole 1 January Debacle to Revival: Y. Chavan as Defence Minister, — Orient Blackswan. Oxford University Press. Prime Minister's Office. Archived from the original on 28 August Lal Bahadur Shastri, Churn of Conscience. Eternal Gandhi. Pacific Affairs.

Digital library of academic journals. Indian Navy. Business Standard. Ananda Publishers. Wikileaks Forum. Archived from the original on 1 May Abhinav Publications, pp. Asian Survey , 10 3 , pp. The Economic Times. The Times Group. Nijalingappa expelled Indira Gandhi from the Party".

India Today. Aroon Purie. Retrieved 25 June Barkley; Rosser, Marina V. Comparative Economics in Transforming the World Economy. MIT Press. Election Commission of India. Archived from the original PDF on 18 July Forbes India. Retrieved 17 September Retrieved 30 January But do we need yet another life of Nehru? Michael Brecher's political biography, written while Nehru was still alive, and Sarvepalli Gopal's three-volume work, completed in , remain indispensable.

Stanley Wolpert published a sensationalist biography in , and both Nigel Hamilton and Sunil Khilnani have Nehru biographies forthcoming. Brown makes much of Sonia Gandhi allowing her to see previously classified, post papers "almost in their entirety". But the qualifying "almost" suggests that, like many before her, Brown was probably denied access to unpublished letters to family and close friends, including the crucial correspondence between Nehru and Edwina Mountbatten.

Brown believes that following the declassification of these papers, we need to look at Nehru's life "afresh", but there is little in her book that is new. The first three parts rehearse the well-known narrative of Nehru's years in the lead-up to independence in But most interesting and original are the last two sections, which provide a convincing assessment of Nehru's often neglected premiership from While Brown's sobering conclusion that Nehru's "new India" miscarried is not news, her careful and detailed exploration of the reasons why it did so are valuable.

Nehru's inability to delegate, his deteriorating health and his reliance on dubious characters such as Krishna Menon, his confidant and cabinet minister, all contributed to this failure. There were also external factors - for example, the opposition to him among state governments frustrated federal initiatives, and rapid population growth which Nehru long refused to recognise as a major problem hampered economic development. But perhaps Nehru's greatest enemy was his misguided, Soviet-style model of industrialisation and economic transformation.

A series of five-year plans simply did not yield the results he had envisioned, and India became increasingly dependent on foreign aid. Nor did the country's brand of socialist democracy work effectively. Government-run industries proved inefficient: tight control constrained rather than encouraged economic development.

Early Political Moves

Among the many aspects of Nehru's "new India" project that backfired were the federal policies designed to reduce social inequities; ceilings on landholding, intended to benefit the rural poor; and legislation that aimed at improving the plight of Indian women and other oppressed groups. Abolishing "untouchability" in the new Indian constitution did not change entrenched prejudices, beliefs and traditions.

And then there was the debacle of China's invasion of India in A lack of adequate intelligence and foresight caught India totally off guard. It was saved only by China's unilateral ceasefire and withdrawal - a development that was as inexpli-cable to Nehru as the invasion itself. Menon, then defence minister, took the blame and resigned, but Nehru's reputation was gravely damaged. Although the day of the Carlylean view of history as "the biography of great men" is long past, Brown concedes that "at particular historical junctures individuals can be of considerable importance", and this is her justification for a new biography of Nehru.