a gathering organised by the ginger group of the Congress,
otherwise known as Congress Socialist Forum, on the
20th of April at New Delhi, Pandit Nehru is reported
to have offered certain remarks about his attitude towards
While accepting the need for clearly defining the social
and economic goals of society, Pandit Nehru said, that
it was easy for a professor to have this clarity, but
the politician was conditioned by diverse pulls exercised
by the electorate whose level of consciousness was not
so well developed.
We do not know what compelled Pandit Nehru to make such
a statement—which seems to be an admission and an apologia,
rather than an explanation or enunciation of any theory.
That he is conscious of the fact, that there is a lack
of clarity as regards the goal of Socialism, is to be
welcomed. Perhaps lesser men would deny even this; and
there are any number of leaders of the Congress party
to say, that their goal is definite, their methods determined
and their path wholesome. Nay, they even claim the monopoly
of these qualities. We are glad, Pandit Nehru refuses
to be in the company of such small minds, and speaks
out the truth. He says, that while professors can afford
to have clarity on such issues, politicians could not,
as they are being influenced by 'diverse pulls'. It
would have been of immense help, if he had given us,
a description of these pulls—but perhaps, Pandit Nehru
was under some kind of 'pull' and hence could not be
That there are 'diverse pulls' and that the politician
is conditioned by these pulls? comes as a sort of revelation,
for all along, the people were assured that no force
or influence, pull or pressure, could make the Congress
deviate from the path and the goal. Now comes Pandit
Nehru to inform us, that that is not so; and that there
is no clarity because of these pulls.
But, we would like to point out, that for Pandit Nehru
to point at these 'pulls' is something staggering. Are
we to be told, that even Pandit Nehru is powerless to
withstand these pulls! And what possibly could be the
source of these pulls? The princely order has been liquidated
practically, so we are told. Zamindars have been divested
of their feudal powers, announces the Congress spokesman.
Industrial magnates are not allowed to escape the stern
look of the Congress government—we are asked to believe.
And if such quarters, capable of exerting powerful influence,
are actually humbled down, from where are these diverse
pulls coming? We are given no explanation.
Ominous words emanate from eminent persons, but explanations
are not forthcoming. Pandit Nehru talks about 'pulls'
in much the same manner as Mr.T.T.K. talked about, 'Man-esters'.
So, are we to conclude that the people are not yet out
of the woods, that the powerful Pandit too is not endowed
with ability and agility enough to annihilate such quarters
from where 'pulls' come?
And having stated that there are 'diverse pulls', Pandit
Nehru, leaves his hearers and his countrymen in dismay,
for he is not assuring them, that he would overcome
Never before in the annals of any country, did any leader
get such colossal power and influence over the masses.
Pandit Nehru is the Caesar, even though his battalions
do not add Gaul. He is the idol, the darling of the
nation. No other leader inside or outside the camp,
has got the magic wand as is the case with Pandit Nehru.
And yet, for him to bemoan the existence of these 'pulls',
is something shocking.
Pandit Nehru seems to throw the blame on the people—or
to be more appropriate—on the electorate. He seems to
argue that because the level of consciousness in the
electorate is not well-developed, these pulls do exert
But, pray, what is the answer that the great Pandit
could offer, if one puts the simple question—"who
is responsible for this 'level' and why is it that it
has not been raised?"
Did not Pandit Nehru throw himself enthusiastically
in the orbit of spectacular scientific achievements,
on finding the Western countries highly advanced in
that branch of human intellect? Are we not having an
atomic research centre here? If Pandit Nehru, could
become so very enthusiastic in these spheres, why is
it that he is not showing an appreciable amount of enthusiasm
in raising the level of consciousness in the electorate?
No! The explanation offered, simply doesn't work. There
are 'pulls,' but they are not to be explained away in
such a crude fashion.
The Congress party, not the electorate, is today a camp
of contradictions; and it is because of the fact that
there are men and women there, who have differing, diverging
and even diametrically opposite views, that Pandit Nehru
is not able to get 'clarity'. None would be impudent
enough to say that the mind is clouded. The camp is
crowded, and it is a motley crowd. There are Capitalists
and Socialists, those who swear by radicalism and those
who are chained to rank conservatism!
All for one and one for all, exclaimed the Three Musketeers,
but here, the meaning is different—all are in the Congress
for the one thing, power! And there is one thing that
makes all of them stay in the Congress and that happens
to be power!
Instead of admitting the truth, that the Congress today
has become he rendezvous of political racketeers and
exploiters in the economic field, it is most uncharitable
to throw the entire blame on the people.
The Egyptians followed Nasser, enthusiastically though
they were yoked to the rule of Farouk till the other
day. Pandit Nehru is having the country under his thumb
practically for the past ten years, and if in that period,
he has not been able to overcome these 'pulls,' what
hope is there, for the future?
Even Pandit Nehru will have to admit, that in their
craze for electoral victory, the Congress took into
its fold, suckers and speculators, both in the political
and economic field. They have allowed the 'old guard'
to preach Socialism to their heart's content, but do
not allow Socialism to become a practical reality. Pious
resolutions are also passed, but when the stage of implementation
is faced, there are these 'pulls'.
We have had the dismal picture of what harm could be
done to the prestige that be, by these 'pulls' — we
refer to the ugly instance, the Mundhra affair.
We were informed about another awkward instance — the
donations granted by the Big Concerns for the election
fund of the Congress.
None is unaware of these 'pulls' and they also know
the reason why, these 'pulls' are suffered to exist;
for, the problem is but the old, old one: Democracy
becomes a mockery almost, if we are content with having
it in the political sphere alone.
Democracy cannot coexist with the privileged class —
and privilege which means the power, is got not by Royalties
alone, nor by the aristocrasy but by the new oligarchs.
Perhaps, the 'pulls' exerted by the oligarchs, are more
powerful today than the powers vested in Royalties.
To allow oligarchy to exist alongside a political democracy,
is a contradiction in political philosophy, and no amount
of cajolery or cudgelling could floor the influence
that quarter is capable of generating. Pandit Nehru
refuses to accept this — for, to accept this would not
merely land him in difficulties, but would also 'goad'
him to take a path, beset with perils. Pandit Nehru,
perhaps, is thinking that the quarters from where these
'pulls' are begotten, would in course of time wither
out. That is wishful thinking.
"The holders of riches always appropriate to themselves
political authority" says Achille Loria, the eminent
Italian economist and Frederic Hawe who quotes Loria,
in his masterly work, 'Privilege and Democracy,' points
"It is the privileged class that predominates economically,
that holds the political power in each historical period.
Thus in the Gracho-Italian world, it was the slave-owning
class, in the Middle ages it was the feudal lords, and
at the present epoch it is the bourgeois proprietors
who are politically supreme."
Pandit Nehru, would not, we are sure, deny the existence
of the privileged section in society today! That section
is not only allowed to exist and flourish, and grow
in dimension, but we find Pandit Nehru himself championing
their cause from time to time. Whenever he speaks enthusiastically
about his theory of Co-existence, is he aware, we wonder,
of the fact, that he is becoming an unconscious advocate
of the privileged class?
"The division and society into rich and poor makes
the legal imperatives of the State work to the advantage
of the rich."
—says Laski, and explains, "wealth breeds arrogance
as poverty breeds inferiority." A wealthy class
strives inevitably, to protect its advantages to the
maximum; and the poor are driven to attempt their invasion
as the only way of enjoying their results—Laski concludes,
"No social order therefore will ever satisfy the
demands of its citizens equally, or ever seriously attempt
the equal recognition of their rights, so long as there
are serious inequalities in the distribution of economic
These are dictums, not for class-rooms alone, but for
cabinets, if they are serious and sincere about Socialism.
'Pulls' lose their strength, when once, those placed
in power, feel that they are called upon to perform
a noble duty—that of pulling down the engine of exploitation,
and building up a society based on economic justice.
Instead of tackling the problem in that way, we find
Pandit Nehru, indulging in easy explanations, which
any political fatalist is capable of giving. We have
a right to expect, something bolder and stronger from
Pandit Nehru, than this talk about 'pulls'.