A Nation in Transition

Mahesh Vikram Singh and Brij Bhushan Shrivastava, Centrum Press, 2011, Encyclopaedic History of India Series, viii, 296 p, ISBN : 93-80921-51-8, $55.00 (Includes free airmail shipping)

A Nation in Transition

Contents: Preface. 1. Princely states in British India. 2. Political integration of India. 3. National integration of India. 4. The question of national language of India. 5. Jawaharlal Nehru's Foreign Policy. 6. Relation with neighbours. Bibliography. Index.

The Congress wasted precious time denouncing the British rather than allaying Muslim fears during the highly charged election campaign of 1946. Even the more mature Congress leaders especially Gandhi and Nehru failed to see how genuinely afraid the Muslims were and how exhausted and weak the British had become in the aftermath of the war. When it appeared that the Congress had no desire to share power with the Muslim League at the centre, Jinnah declared August 16, 1946, Direct Action day which brought communal rioting and massacre in many places in the north. Partition seemed preferable to civil war. On June 3, 1947, Viscount Louis Mountbatten the viceroy 1947 and Governor general 1947-48 announced plans for partition of the British Indian Empire into the nations of India and Pakistan which itself was divided into east and west wings on either side of India. At midnight on August 15, 1947 India strode to freedom amidst ecstatic shouting of Jai Hind when Nehru delivered a memorable and moving speech on Indias tryst with destiny. The uniqueness of this book hence lies in the author's way of reconstructing the period under review by delving deep into the geo political ground of that time of India. (jacket)

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