is a charming photo published in the 'Hindu' of last
week "No money on trees"—of course about Nehru!
Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, who refuses to grow old, is
there, beaming with a sunny smile, along with three
ladies who occupy enviable positions.
It is said that Lady Pethick Lawrence, who did so much
for the emancipation of women in her own country, Britain,
was visibly moved on finding 'ladies' here, occupying
places which were once thought of, as reserves for the
We find, from the photo published in the 'Hindu' Pandit
Nehru, not 'moved' in such a way—but there is a beam!
To his right and left, are three distinguished ladies,
about whom any country would be legitimately proud,
Mrs. Tara Cherian, adorning the Mayoral chair of Madras,
Mrs. Lourdhammal Simon, Minister for Local Self-government
of our State and Mrs. Clubwala Jadhav, the Sheriff of
The picture has many a lesson to tell—it gave elation
to Lady Lawrence—it has got something more!
Those three eminent ladies, deserve, amply well the
signal honour done to them—they are well-educated, imbued
with a deep sense of service, and are well accomplished
for the task assigned to them. We are naturally proud
of them. All three of them owe their present position
to the Congress—that none forgets. But what one is apt
to forget is this—that none of the three had had their
'schooling' in the Congress party, as such; they were
not in the Congress, when it was in wilderness, their
talents and services were not harnessed to the Congress,
while that party was waging a relentless war against
imperialism. And yet, they are'chosen' by the Congress,
for such important places.
We do not propose to question the policy of the Congress.
No! Nor are we interested in finding out the reasons
that prompted the Congress, to choose, those who were
not in their camp during the most troublesome period.
We refuse to be peevish! What we would like to point
out is this: the Congress today has changed—marvellously,
charmingly; or is it enticingly! The change is to be
seen, not only here, but all over the land.
We do not propose to analyse the problem, with the intention
of finding out whether, this charge is for the good
or for the bad—no—we refuse again to be petulant. Suffice
to point out that the position—the colour—the mettle—the
tone of the Congress, has changed.
The change that is depicted by the photo to which we
have made a reference, is certainly one about which
we feel happy and elated. But all the 'changes' discernable
in the Congress, cannot and do not come under such a
The original principles enshrined in the Congress camp,
are now sandwiched with a set of new and aromatic principles,
policies and programmes—the latter slowly shadowing
out the former. But for the 'label' many would find
it very hard to recognize the 'old stuff' altogether.
True, the members of the 'old guard' do still control
the the machinery and all new entrants are allowed to
remain there so long as they are assured of their patronage.
Still the controling hand has got strength enough, to
correct or crush, the new entrants. But yet, the fact
remains, the old order changeth—the new elements are
slowly solidifying into an 'order' by itself.
They wear Khadhi—but do not spin! They swear by the
Mahathma—but had not served him! The plead for the down-trodden—but
had had no experience of having served them. They, in
short, express certain principles, about which they
do not feel as intensely as the sponsors. And all this
is but natural.
The are asked to mouth, hand-pound rice, and they do—the
talking part of it!!
Because they have not been intimately connected with
a philosophy from out of which all these principlies,
policies and programmes have been culled out, they do
not get a shock or even a mild surprise, when they find,
these principles not adhered to by the people.
And, since the number of this new element 'One is to
three' as the photo points out is growing, rapidly,
the velocity being shaped by the election, the original
fervor is dying down.
There is nothing wrong in such a change—but the trouble
is, those who are of the 'old guard' still claim, that
their principles remain in all their pristine glory!
It is not so. It cannot possibly be so! The sooner the
top-men, realise this, the better.
The 'photo' published in the 'Hindu', gives the present
composition of the Congress, beautifully well—One is
to Three! But the 'ratio', as we go down and down, to
the 'grass-roots' reveals, the Congress,as having become,
a mere caricature of its old form!
Look at the petty squabbles, the power-mongerings, the
wrangle over profit-sharing, the back-biting, wire-pulling,
that are unearthed from time to time ! Look again at
those who occupy the Congress benches, in the State
Legislative Assemply and other places of vantage, and
enquire into their antecedents—or even their present-day
affliations and affections ! One would be amazed !
Some of these men, endowed with the knack of smelling
out the 'spoil', have entered the camp; others have
been 'roped' in, just because they are in possession
of the sinews of war—on the election front! The result
is a lack of loyalty, sincerity and even warmth for
the principles, which the 'top-men' stil profess !!
Nothing better could be expected from such an ill-assorted
group, and never in history do we find loyalty as the
binding principle, in unholy combinations.
The 'top-men' are today much more interested in the
arithmetic of politics, rather then in its logic! No
wonder then, that careful observers spot out the weakness
that has set in, and point out the danger inherent in
such a situation.
The 'Eastern Economist' representing a group, which
feels honestly, that only through the Congress could
the 'vested interests' get continued lease of life,
is very much worried by the decline that it discerns.
"It is a picture of declining popularity for the
Congress, that emerges from the latest elections, in
Uttar Pradesh—the most populous State in the Indian
Union and erstwhile stronghold of that party. Only in
29 out of 104 municipal boards to which elections were
held, has the Congress won absolute majorities.
What is still worse, the party has annexed only 865
seats out of a total of 2,222 seats in all the boards.
By all accounts this is a pretty bad performance by
a party of the standing of the Congress."
This journal is not out to oust the Congress from power—far
from it—it wants the Congress to mobilise its strength.
It is almost irritated at this decline—and issues friendly
caution—and we are sure, it will but willingly lend
its helping hand to the party in power. The journal
is at pains to prove to the Congress, that the popularity
"The Indian Institute of public opinion" says,
the Eastern Economist, "conducted a poll, and it
revealed that 45% of voters thought they were worse
off economically under the Congress Rule."
An analytical survey if undertaken by an impartial body,
would reveal the startling truth, that even where the
Congress as a party has 'bagged' majorities, as an organisation,
as an institution of noble principles, it has receded
into the back-ground. Be they of any antecedent or accomplishment,
be they interested in fattening themselves or trading
on the ignorance of the masses, be their politics of
any variety, their personal integrity of any low ebb,
if they have the knack of winning an election, well
they are welcome! They might have been responsible for
petty tyrannies—what if? Their 'Bank balance' is attractive—and
that is all what is needed!
Such was the method adopted by the Congress during the
general elections, and no amount of warnings, friendly
or otherwise, is going to tempt them into changing this
"We find that the tree prime factors in Nation-building,
Honesty, Efficiency, Dedication to the cause, seem to
be at heavy discount at New Delhi and the provincial
The 'Modern Review' passes this stricture—and to brush
this aside as wilful vendetta of an opposition party,
is to miss the truth which guided the 'Father of the
Nation.' Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, they say, inherited
all that was good, and noble in the Mahathma—and we
wonder what, he is going to leave to the next generation?
Already it is one is to three !!