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May 27 was Nehru's 45th death anniversary. Inder Malhotra remembers the day in 1964 in the Indian Express:
Hafeez Jullundari — the nearest thing Pakistan had to the poet laureate as well as a sort of minister-in-waiting during the Sheikh’s stay — stalked up to our table and sat down. Wagging his finger, he told me: “Inder Malhotra, you people have had a long ride feeling superior to us because you were lucky to have Nehru. Our misfortune was that after the early deaths of Jinnah and Liaquat, all our leaders were useless. Now Nehru is about to go. You will be down to our level, and then we will see”....
...[Nehru] died at the precise moment when the Sheikh [Abdullah] set foot in Muzaffarabad. The thought uppermost in my mind was that the capital of Pakistan-held Kashmir was not the best place to to be in at the time of Nehru’s passing. But what followed stunned me.
The huge crowd that had assembled to welcome Sheikh Abdullah instantly turned into a mourning mass. Every man, woman and child, hands raised skywards, was praying for Nehru. Some of them were crying. No one touched the elaborate wazwan laid out. Suddenly, there was commotion at a short distance. A tall man was shouting my name, beating his head with both his hands and cursing his “black tongue”. It was Hafeez Jullundari. As he apologised to me profusely, Sheikh Sahib arrived to calm him. Instead, the two embraced each other and sobbed.
Read the full piece at the Indian Express
Inder Malhotra looks back on the first general election in the Indian Express:
Nehru got greatly depressed. What “filled him with dismay” was the selection of Congress candidates that he described as “disgusting”. What got his goat were the “cliques”, “bossism”, the “scramble” and “lack of organisation”... To Edwina Mountbatten he wrote: “More and more I hate this election business, more especially the choosing of candidates... ” ... that the Congress could hardly talk of principles when so many of its members were “snarling” for selection and “third-rate individuals were being chosen on grounds of caste and sub-caste. I have felt recently as if I was in a den of wild animals”.
...Looking back at newspaper headlines of January 1952, I am startled to discover that some of them are still with us, albeit with greater frequency and intensity. A few samples in point are “Congress Banks on Muslim Support”; “Caste Rivalries Weaken Bihar Congress”; “List of Nominees Causes Wider Split”. “Autonomy Demand in Manipur”. “Ministers Face Stiff Opposition” and so on. Sadly, one headline, ubiquitous then, we are unlikely to see all too often is “Polling Was Peaceful”. +
Read the full piece: The First Vote Cast