India was left in a highly divisive and crumbling state by the Britishers. Sardar Patel played a great role in unifying and rebuilding the nation.

British would not be British if they quit Bharat honourably without causing immense harm to the country, subcontinent and the people. They did every thing   possible in their capacity to sow the seeds for the long lasting hatred, conflict, unrest and war between brethren. They vivisected, split Bharat by drawing irresponsible, illogical boundaries and created 2 nations instead of one as per their wish and convenience. They used all cheating wits, methods and immoral ways. Avoided, obstructed proper deliberations, discussions and negotiations among the would be effected people of Bharat. They planted high-level moles and exploited personal weaknesses of some key figures.

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A portrait of Sardar Patel on his 74th birthday, 1949.

Divisive Strategies of The British Rule

This could have been easily avoided but why would the evil vanquished British do it. In fact they meticulously planned this from 1930 onwards by constantly driving a wedge between Muslims and Sanatan Dharmis of Bharat, fanning their differences, creating and encouraging splits and fights.They exploited the inherent weakness, viz. the most abominable and inhuman caste system. There was also forcible  conversion of  Sanatan Dharmis into Christianity. They destroyed the then universal education in all urban and rural areas and spread English medium education thus creating permanent mental slaves of British in Bharat. Macaulay dreamt of it, designed and initiated implementation and succeeded. His dream materialized and he successfully created a class of brown British in Bharat. There was destruction of the indigenous skills and industries and the agriculture thus ruining the harmonious life style in the rural social fabric.

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Gandhi in conference with President Maulana Azad and Sardar Patel, A.I.C.C., Bombay, September 1940

The British saddled Bharat with a permanent warring neighbor country and 560 princely states within its geographical boundary — potential serious problems likely to cause almost internal wars — came into being most unexpectedly. It was a truncated and split Bharat, simmering with problems with a gloomy, dark threatening future. Mahatma Gandhi never expected it. He was not prepared for it. He did not prepare his followers for it. He had no clear-cut plan or blue print for managing an independent Bharat and build it. The Congress leaders were also not prepared for it. They were not ready for it at all.It looks only Subhash Chandra Bose was expecting it, had some vision and was wanting to get prepared for it. That is why during his tenure as the President of the Congress he initiated action to plan for the building and development of Bharat as and when the British rule ended.

Gandhi saw the inherent danger of the evil designs of the foxy, villanish British. In his characteristic way he initiated action for damage control by going to Naokhali to stop possible potential communal carnage and hatred. We must always remember that Gandhi did not participate in any of the Independence celebrations. He never accepted what we got as the real Independence that he had dreamt of or worked for. He had plans to go to Pakistan in February 1948 and towards uniting the two nations or work for their co-existence even without a war pact.

Unifying Role Of Sardar Patel

Serendipitously, Bharat is always blessed at the right opportune time. There was the great man among the Congress leaders. An absolutely selfless patriot, highly capable with an iron will. He was in total command of the organisation of the Congress party.Thirteen of the sixteen provincial Congress party governing bodies selected Sri Vallabhbhai Patel as the Prime Minister to lead the country. But being a disciplined soldier, at the behest of  Gandhi, Sardar Patel yielded place to Jawaharlal Nehru. Selflessly. Fortunately for Bharat Vallabhbhai was in charge of the Home Affairs. He got onto the task as soon as the responsibility fell on his broad able shoulders.

He went to places of communal fights inspite of his busy official duties, talked to the warring communities. Calmed them and brought peace by his intelligence, well argued speeches. He pleaded, cajoled and persuaded the fighting groups for amity and peace. He co-opted the able services of the then patriotic Indian bureaucracy who were serving the British till that time by reposing full confidence in them  creating mutual trust by assuring respect, safety and security by creating even constitutional safeguards. He handled the unprecedented inflow of 1.5 million refugees. Settled them. Saw to it that there are no conflicts in the camps and there are no starvation deaths or epidemics. In fact with his political acumen and foresight, he suggested the resettlement of the refugees in Kashmir. The suggestion was supposed to have been vetoed by Nehru. As a result the country is paying a heavy price even today and the issue of Kashmir has become an open sore point in the country’s body politic.

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Congressmen Maulana Azad, Acharya Kripalani, Sardar Patel and Subhash Bose at Wardha Railway Station

Just in a few months time with great élan, tact by employing all political means and options he achieved the super human job, unparalleled in human history , of integrating almost all of the princely states  except for 3 states into Bharat before 15th August 1947. He strongly opposed Bharat joining Commonwealth as it would mean continuing with the symbols of nightmarish colonial rule and giving credence to it. He forewarned Nehru about the sure and certain impending attack of China and objected  to Bharat  accepting the Chinese occupation of Tibet. He was responsible foe making  Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar  the chairman of the drafting committee of the constitution. Thereby he created the then much needed constitutional safeguards and assurances to the socially deprived castes and classes of Bharat.

Thus Sardar Patel, almost single handedly, knit Bharat into one nation for the first time in human history. He must be for this great act remembered as the Architect and the real maker of Bharat. He left his indelible mark in history. It is for us to express our gratitude, pay respect and homage. He does not need it. We need it.

By Garimella Narayana

Also See:
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: The Iron Man
Can Congress claim Legacy over Sardar Patel?
India’s Destiny – Thousand Cuts on a Thousand Branched Tree

Image Source: By Government of India work [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons, By upload by Rama’s Arrow ( [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons, By Not listed [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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