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I was going for a holiday to Srinagar and Mr. Sadiq, who was Chief Minister of Kashmir, was on the same plane. I had heard something about infiltrations from Pakistan but when I had enquired about it I was told that these were mere rumours which should not be taken seriously. Otherwise, I would never have thought of going on holiday at that time.
On the plane Sadiq Saheb said: "l can't convince your people in Delhi, but I think the threat of invasion is more serious than these people are thinking. I don't know how much time we have before the whole thing explodes."
Then he said: "Will you come to dinner tonight and we will discuss it?"
I said: "Look, I am very tired. I am not going to any meal. I am going straight to bed. "
Sanjay was with me. At that time, he was very keen on fishing. I said: "He is going out fishing and I am going to bed. From the airport I will go straight to the
It is interesting to recall how the press in India and abroad reported this most eventful day:
Mrs. Gandhi is the second woman in history to hold the office of Prime Minister. The first was Mrs. Sirimavo Bandarnaike of Ceylon.
"As Mrs. Gandhi left the hall of Parliament building where the election had taken place, crowds showered her with flower petals. She kissed many women Members of Parliament, including her aunt, Mrs. Vijayalakshmi Pandit. Earlier, one of the women members had pinned on her shawl a red rosebud like those her father, India's first Prime Minister, always wore in his buttonhole.
"Security men had to link arms to save Mrs. Gandhi from being knocked over as she passed through the cheering crowds. Many people were pushed into empty ornamental pools.
"Mrs. Gandhi began her day with a pilgrimage to the shrines of Indian Independence. Early in the morning, she visited the cremation sites of Mahatma Gandhi
In September 1967, I visited Ceylon and in October, I visited Moscow, Poland, Yugoslavia, Romania, Bulgaria and the UAR. In November, I paid a very rushed visit to the Soviet Union again on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Russian Revolution.
On 5 September 1967, I took also charge of the Ministry for Atomic Energy, of the Foreign Ministry and of the Planning Commission. I resolutely resisted the demands that India should
1. One of India’s problems is the cow population, consisting of about 230 million useless cows. In primitive Aryan societies, the dairy became the temple of worship; perhaps that is how cows became sacred in the old Hindu society and were protected. The campaign for the prohibition of cow slaughter was started by the Jan Sangh. The motive of its members was the desire to strike at the central government, and therefore they did not take up their demands in the States which alone had the constitutional powers for
In September 1971 I visited Moscow and then in October I undertook a three-week official tour of European countries to tell people there, that if they had any influence on the Pakistanis, they should try and get them to act more reasonably. It is then that I met Mairaux again. He was a very remarkable man and delightful to talk to. We discussed so ma Lim then and even later when he came to India, he was not at all well ,but for a man of his age and health, his enthusiasm and his passionate feeling for freedom, were something which one should associate with youth. And that he did not just talk about it but he wanted to be brave, and wanted to do something, however small, made a deep impression on me.
I had no doubt in my mind that the Bangladeshis would win their freedom. Not the slightest doubt. The only question was when would it happen and which side of the fence would we be on... If only for geographical reasons, we couldn't afford to be on the wrong side.
AS FOR THE FUTURE OF INDIA, WHAT IS THE POINT IN prophetizing. We all s have ideas about our children; some arents do all they can to force their children to develop in a particular way. But they cannot.'
This also applies to one's country. No matter what one wants and what one does for it, it develops in its own way. Its development is influenced by whatever is happening and also by the trends of the ordinary people.
I should not waste time foretelling India's future. I have been brought up to feel that India is a special place. It does not mean that the people are better, more moral or more spiritual than other people; but I think that, in spite of a great deal of hypocrisy, they have aimed at certain ideals which other countries have jettisoned. These ideals also feature in other religions but people and governments pay little attention.
In India, our ideals have mattered, even though nothing may have been done about them. They
We must concern ourselves not only with the kind of world we want but also with what kind of a man should inhabit it. Surely we do not desire a society divided into those who condition and those who are conditioned.
And in this perspective, women may have a special role to play. It has often been said that the level of any society should be judged by the level of its women. It is certainly true that a country's progress can be measured by the progress of its womenfolk. But we have to think carefully about the meaning of ' progress." My father had a pet quotation about women, it was written some 20 years ago not about India, but I think it is largely true of the Indian woman: "She lives in her own time, in the rhythm of her own history which does not quite keep time with the clock of the twentieth century."
Women should have equality in wages and such matters. They must have better services and conditions of work and living,