October 31, 2016
Sardar Patel Born -October 31, 1875, Nadiad
Sardar VB Patel was , truly ,one of the greatest Indian leaders.
One lesser known point of his contribution to India.
India 's Lakshdweep and Minicoy Islands located very very strategically in the Indian Ocean are 100 % Muslim. When , in 1947 , India was being divided on communal lines , Sardar Patel sent an Indian Naval ship to Lakshdweep which raised the Indian Tricolor there. After a few days a Pakistani ship arrived but had to return.
The greatness of Sardar was that unlike Kashmir ( which is only Muslim MAJORITY ) that Sardar Patel never let Lakshdweep ever become an Issue.
How , in 1948 Pakistan Retained India's Northern Kashmir territories
However, while the army was on the job, Prime Minister Nehru took the fateful decision on January 1, 1948 - much against the advice of Sardar Patel - to complain to the UN Security Council.
Sardar Patel unified the entire country by merger of the numerous Princely states. Had Sardar 's views prevailed there would not have been any Kashmir problem and India would not have surrendered abjectly in Tibet. With Tibet existing as an independent nation , there would not have been any hostile Chinese neighborhood. Sardar Patel had warned Nehru against the Chinese designs on Tibet and the repercussions it would have on India.
Separatists and Pro Pakistan politicians in Kashmir valley would have been very effectively dealt with , had Nehru not made a mess of many things for which India is still paying the price. Mainly taking Kashmir to UNO , capitulation of Indian Interests in Tibet , Non use of Air Force in Indo Chinese War -1962 , Surrender of Coco Islands in strategic Bay of Bengal to Burma ( Burma later gave them to the Chinese ) Nehru rejected a proposal from Nepal for Nepal joining India etc etc.
Sardar Patel placed the interests of his country above every thing . He did not encourage his children to interfere in state matters and , he did not leave behind a dynasty.He was the true " Iron Man of India ) and after Mahatma Gandhi , Gujarat 's ( then Bombay Presidency ) biggest gift to India