India TV Correspondent [ Updated 04 Nov 2011, 08:20:09 ]
New Delhi, Nov 4 : India’s first Home Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, regarded as Iron Man of India, had told the them prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru that the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi was not result of any conspiracy by RSS, but by a section of the Hindu Mahasabha, The Indian Express reported today.
Previously unpublished correspondence between the two leaders reveals that Patel was miffed over orders being issued by the prime minister “in matters which fall within my departmental responsibility”.
While Patel agreed with Nehru on banning the RSS after the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi in 1948, he was convinced that “Bapu’s murder was not the result of an RSS conspiracy but that of a section of Hindu Mahasabha” who he regarded “a greater danger than RSS”.
These form part of a collection of letters — published in three volumes and released by the National Book Trust — between Nehru and Patel, Gandhi and Patel, and Gandhi and Nehru at the height of the freedom struggle and in the immediate aftermath of Independence.
In one letter in Nehru-Patel: Agreement within Differences — compiled by Delhi University history professor Neerja Singh — Patel objects to Nehru’s direct involvement in matters under his department.
“I should like to suggest that it is somewhat embarrassing both to me and to the local officials if orders are issued to them direct by you in matters which fall within my departmental responsibility… Even if some instructions were issued by you, I feel that I should have at least been informed and that those instructions should not have come to my office indirectly…”
On Nehru’s concern about open-air Gita classes by the RSS in Delhi, Patel said; “I doubt it will be possible to interfere with these Gita classes if they are held in private buildings or on private lands, but I have asked the DIG to make enquiries and to see that our men are there to report to us what exactly happens there.”
Responding to a lengthy letter from Nehru pointing points of disagreement between them including a meeting of MPs at Patel’s residence, where he is said to have expressed strong “disapproval of many of Nehru’s policies, Patel wrote: “I told the meeting that I myself have had some general talks with the RSS leader and have found him generally confirming to my advice of restricting himself to social or cultural matters and advising his followers to support Government. I also told them that my original belief that Bapu’s murder was not the result of an RSS conspiracy but that of Hindu Mahasabha had been confirmed and that I personally regarded the Mahasabha as a greater danger than RSS.”