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India Against Apartheid: Speeches of Krishna Menon at the United Nations

India Against Apartheid: Speeches of Krishna Menon at the United Nations

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Published by Enuga S. Reddy
Speeches delivered by Krishna Menon, leader of the Indian delegation to the United Nations General Assembly on apartheid and racial discrimination in South Africa, 1953-1962, edited by ES Reddy
Speeches delivered by Krishna Menon, leader of the Indian delegation to the United Nations General Assembly on apartheid and racial discrimination in South Africa, 1953-1962, edited by ES Reddy

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Published by: Enuga S. Reddy on May 26, 2009
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02/14/2012

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INDIA AGAINST APARTHEID
Speeches of Krishna Menon at the United NationsEdited byE. S. ReddySANCHAR PUBLISHING HOUSENEW DELHI1994
 
 
FOREWORD
This book by E.S. Reddy on
 India Against 
 
 Apartheid 
is appearing at an appropriate juncture in history. The last bastion of colonialism and racialism in the world has fallenwith the holding of non-racial democratic elections and the assumption of power byNelson Mandela as Head of State in South Africa. It is a consummation that India haddevoutly wished for, the final outcome of the struggle that Mahatma Gandhi hadlaunched against racial discrimination and oppression in that country. Pandit JawaharlalNehru had seen the struggle for Indian independence as an integral part of the anti-colonial movement and declared that India would not be fully independent until Africawas free. Africa is now really and fully free with the end of apartheid in South Africa.In India’s campaign against colonialism and apartheid Krishna Menon was in thevanguard in the United Nations and in the world at large. He articulated the anti-colonial,anti-racial policy of India with crusading passion and irresistible logic. He rallied withinthe United Nations, Asian-African and world opinion against apartheid and demolishedwith his scorching intellect and captivating eloquence all the defences which were beingconstantly propped up in favour of the obnoxious system of discrimination andoppression.In this Menon was, of course, pursuing India’s national policy. But he was also pursuinghis own personal credo, his glowing hatred and uncompromising opposition to colonialand racial domination. It is not widely known that as early as 1946 Krishna Menonestablished within his India League in London a South Africa Committee to support thestruggle of the Indian minority as well as African majority in South Africa. Indeed theIndia League had become the meeting place for African and Asian nationalists of the time.Menon was absolutely convinced that ultimately the cause would win in South Africa.Looking towards the day of that victory he said in the UN General Assembly onNovember 18, 1956, “My Government and my people are not without hope that the vastpopulation of ten million people [of South Africa then] to all of whom that countrybelongs… will one day, however hard the road, however great the obstacles and howeversevere the prejudices, break the bonds that now bind them and become citizens of acivilised humanity. We hope that we shall be able to establish with them unbreakablebonds of friendship and fraternity.” Seeing further ahead and anticipating, it seems, afuture basis for cooperation he said, “… we are two countries in the lap of the IndianOcean.”Krishna Menon did not evade in his utterances the future of the Indian community inSouth Africa. “So far as the Indian population on the African continent are
 
concerned,”he declared, “it is the deliberate policy of my Government to point out to them thatnationalism is territorial. An Indian in Africa is an African-Indian or Indian-African.”Pandit Nehru had also declared that the question of the people of Indian descent in South

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