Rajaji: A Life

Rajmohan Gandhi
Penguin Books India
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From Google Books: "The definitive biography of free India's first Head of State Chakravarti Rajagopalachari (1878-1972), popularly called C.R. or Rajaji, is usually remembered as free India's Governor-General, or the first Indian Head of State. At one time considered Gandhi's heir, this brilliant lawyer from Salem was regarded in pre-independence years as one of the top five leaders of the Congress along with Nehru, Prasad, Patel and Azad. This biography written by Rajaji's grandson, the noted historian and biographer Rajmohan Gandhi, highlights Rajaji's role in the events preceding Partition. A statesman and conciliator of conflicts between stalwarts, he was perhaps the sole Congress leader in the forties to admit to the likelihood of Partition. He prophesied even then that Pakistan might break up in twenty-five years! Later, C.R. became a strident critic of Nehru and the Congress. As a founder of the Swatantra party in the fifties, he attacked the 'permit-license Raj' fearing its potential for corruption and stagnation, even while the tide was in favour of Nehru's socialistic pattern. Meticulously researched, using C.R.'s private papers, his contemporaries' archives, extensive interviews with eyewitnesses and contemporary accounts and newspapers, this intensely personal, yet objective account gives us an unparalleled portrait of one of the outstanding Indians of this century."