By Sekhar Bandyopadhyay
This ebook explores the meanings and complexities of India’s adventure of transition from colonial to the post-colonial interval. It makes a speciality of the 1st 5 years – from independence on fifteenth August 1947 to the 1st basic election in January 1952 – within the politics of West Bengal, the hot Indian province that was once created because of the Partition.
The writer, a consultant at the historical past of recent India, discusses what freedom truly intended to varied participants, groups and political events, how they replied to it, how they prolonged its which means and the way of their anxiousness to confront the realities of unfastened India, they started to invent new enemies in their newly obtained freedom. by way of emphasising the representations of well known mentality instead of the institutional alterations introduced in by way of the method of decolonization, he attracts recognition to different matters and anxieties that have been with regards to the issues of coming to phrases with the newly completed freedom and the accountability of devising self sustaining principles of governance that might swimsuit the historical wishes of a pluralist state.
Decolonization in South Asia analyses the transitional politics of West Bengal in mild of modern advancements in postcolonial concept on nationalism, treating the ‘nation’ as an area for contestation, instead of a average breeding floor for homogeneity within the complicated political situation of post-independence India. it's going to entice teachers drawn to political technological know-how, sociology, social anthropology and cultural and Asian studies.
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Additional resources for Decolonization in South Asia: Meanings of Freedom in Post-independence West Bengal, 1947-52
117 The food situation in 1951 was critical all over India. 120 This was ‘the legacy we had inherited from the past’, the West Bengal Finance Minister Nalini Ranjan Sarkar reminded everyone when he presented his first budget on 17 February 1948. 4 per cent of the area of undivided Bengal. West Bengal received most of the industries of the previous province, but much less of the arable land. This had anomalous consequences for food supply, as the scarcity of food was partly caused by this imbalance.
160 Corruption, in other words, was in the process of becoming a normalized social practice in West Bengal’s public life after independence, so that it became, it seems, less and less of a moral issue. Everyone knew about it and yet no one could do anything about it, except making fun of it in resigned anguish. 161 But how do we comprehend this public perception of corruption that gives the impression of a complete breakdown of the ethical order so soon after independence? Corruption certainly was not anything new in Bengal’s public life.
In his mind he has gone through all the arguments that he believes exist in favour of and against stealing. Why shall I steal? 1 Everyone is stealing in his or her respective fields. 2 A successful thief is never disparaged; on the contrary, he gains in social status. 3 If you do not steal you cannot maintain your family – let alone ideology. 4 If you do not steal, your wife will think you are a coward, friends will consider you to be a hypocrite, and the servants will think you are unemployed.