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India as I Knew It

Michael O'Dwyer (Author)
Synopsis This volume is a critical assessment of the Indian political situation in the early decades of the present century by a British administrator who played a significant part in the events it describes. To the author who belonged to that coterie of stern, hardheaded administrators, the nationalist agitation was the handiwork of a small class of vocal, privileged and politically minded Indians echoing uncertain democratic formulae, who did not represent the real India which was to be found in the masses of the ignorant millions, Burke's famous simile anticipated this attitude. "Because half a dozen grasshoppers under a fern make the field ring with their importunate cries, while thousands of great cattle, repose beneath the shadow of the British Oak, chew their cud and are silent, pray do not imagine that those who make the noise are the only inhabitants of the fields." To govern this real India, he believed, authority and justice should be in full view, backed by the power necessary to enforce them. It was with these convictions that he took over the administration of the Punjab as Lieutenant Governor in 1912. He held the post till 1919. Forewarned on his appointment about the existence of inflammable material in the Punjab, O'Dwyer, as head of the administration was determined to hold aloft the banner of imperial prestige and to crush ruthlessly all those who dared agitate. The policy culminated in the large scale massacre of Jallianwalla Bagh, followed by widespread disorders in many parts of the country which had significant repercussions. These developments signalled the emergence of Gandhi on the political stage and a drastic change in the Congress policies. A vivid, forceful and provocative book by one who played a crucial role in the great events of the time India as I knew it is essential reading of inestimable value for all students of modern Indian history.
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Bibliographic information

Title India as I Knew It
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2004
Edition Reprint
Language: English
length x+464p., 23cm.
Subjects History