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Gandhi and Partition

I read V.N. Datta’s letter, “Gandhi and Partition” (Perspective, Aug 29). It is a fact that Gandhi was against Partition, emanating from Jinnah’s two-nation theory. When Lord Wavell announced his plan to form an interim government of six Congress Hindus, five Muslim Leaguers, a Sikh and an Indian Christian, Jinnah accepted the plan. Even Nehru and Patel were ready to acquiesce, but Gandhi rejected it to demonstrate to Muslims that the Congress was their party too.

Finally, when India was partitioned, Gandhi, in the words of Mountbatten, was “a very disappointed man indeed”.



The Congress Working Committee members, including Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Patel agreed to Mountbatten’s Partition plan against the wishes of Mahatma Gandhi and without sin consent. Mountbatten wanted to get him final approved, but Gandhi refused to say anythig because of the ‘Silence Day’ being observed by him.

SUDESH K. SOOD, Taran Tarn

For the record

S.S. Dhanoa’s article, “When the officers had to apologise for their folly” (Perspective, Aug 15) is replete with errors. In July 1963, Mohan Singh (not Dalip Singh), known as Mamlebaz among the Sikh community in Calcutta, took up the issue with higher authorities. Jawaharlal Nehru forwarded Mamlebez’s complaint to former Bihar Chief Minister K.B. Sahay who appointed the one-man Dayal Commission to probe the conduct of five senior officials in question. A barber was brought to the bungalow to shave off driver Charan Singh’s beard and moustache. I had drafted the complaint which was regarding the great Sikh Gurus’ sacrifices to protect the Kashmiri Pandits, Hinduism and secularism.

Mamlebaz was not a “busybody in the drivers’ fraternity” but a freedom fighter, crusader against corruption and one who was always helping the victims of police atrocities and official highhandedness at his own cost.


Love and sex: Nature’s gambit

KHUSHWANT SINGH’s article, “Meaning of love” (Saturday Extra, Sept 25) was interesting. Love and sex go hand in hand. The latter is an extension of the former. Sexologists agree that sexual desires and dispositions are the nature’s gambit devised for achieving the dual objective of ensuring pleasure and for the procreation of species.

According to Desmond Morris, the human animal is basically and biologically a pair-forming species. As the emotional relationship develops between a pair of potential mates, it is aided and abetted by the sexual activities they share. Sometimes a powerful and intelligent man will do the most irrational thing. History is replete with numerous examples.

In 1963, John Profume, War Minister in the Harold Macmillian Cabinet in the UK, fell in love with a call girl, Christine Keeler, when he saw her climbing nude out of a swimming pool, thereby putting an end to Profumo’s political career. For Cleopatra, Caesar risked his empire and Antony lost his power and life. Josephine made Napoleon her virtual “prisoner.” What is love if it is not madness?

Sex is such a powerful urge, which drives the saints and mystics mad even when they claim to have renounced all the worldly desires. However, one cannot lose sight of three components of “consummate love”: intimacy, passion and commitment.




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