Presentation at University of Lahore, October 2016.

Presentation at University of Lahore, October 2016.

Yogesh Joshi-CSSPR-Final

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Some scholarship on Indian Nuclear Weapons program

George Perkovich, India’s Nuclear Bomb: The Impact on Global Nuclear Nonproliferation (University of California Press: Los Angeles, 2002);

C. Raja Mohan, “India’s Nuclear Exceptionalism,” In Sverre Lodgaard, Nuclear Proliferation and International Security, (New Delhi: Routledge, 2007), pp. 152-171;

Raj Chengappa, Weapons of Peace: The Secret Story of India’s Quest to be a Nuclear Power, (HarperCollins: New Delhi, 2002);

Itty Abraham, The Making of Indian Atomic Bomb: Science, Secrecy and the Postcolonial State (Zed Books: London, 1998);

Bharat Karnad, Nuclear Weapons and Indian Security: The Realist Foundations of Strategy, (Macmillan: New Delhi, 2002);

Andrew B. Kennedy, “India’s Nuclear Odyssey: Implicit Umbrellas, Diplomatic Disappointments, and the Bomb,” International Security, Vol. 36, No. 2 (Fall 2011), pp. 120-153;

Gaurav Kampani, “New Delhi’s Long Nuclear Journey: How Secrecy and Institutional Roadblocks delayed India’s Weaponization,” International Security, Vol. 38, No.4 (Spring 2014), pp. 71–114;

Jayita Sarkar, “The Making of Non-aligned Nuclear Power: India’s Proliferation Drift, 1964-68,” International History Review, Vol. 37, No. 5 (2015), p. 933-950;

Balazs Szalontai, “The “Elephant in the Room: The Soviet Union and India’s nuclear program, 1967-1987”, Working Paper No. 1, Nuclear Proliferation International History Project, Woodrow Wilson Center, November 2011;

Yogesh Joshi, The Imagined Arsenal: India’s Nuclear Decision-Making, 1973-76,” Working paper No. 6, Nuclear Proliferation International History Project, Woodrow Wilson Center, June 2015.

For older works on India’s nuclear policy see,  D. Som Dutt, “India and the Bomb, The Adelphi Paper, Vol. 6, No. 30, 1966; RLM Patil, India-Nuclear Weapons and International Politics (Delhi: National 1969); Ravi Kaul, India’s Strategic Spectrum (Allahabad: Chanakaya, 1969);  KP Mishra (ed.), Studies in Indian Foreign Policy, (New Delhi: Vikas, 1969); AB Shah (ed.), India’s Defence and Foreign Policy (Bombay: Manak Atlas, 1969);  Bhabhani Sen Gupta, Nuclear Weapons: Policy Options for India (New Delhi: Sage, 1983).

 

PN Haksar Papers, Transcript List III, P. 164

Subject Files 289, 290 , 291 and 292 are listed in Transcript List (IIIrd Installment) of PN Haksar Papers available at Nehru Memorial and Museum Library (NMML), New Delhi. These have not been categorised under “Prime Minister’s Secretariat” by the NMML. They are rather under a subject called as “Papers on Foreign relations, US, China, Pakistan, USSR etc.”

They are a bunch of random papers (in my assessment, early drafts of book written by a right wing ideologue on foreign policy matters). The drafts keep referring to “chapters” and also the “book”.

PN Haksar papers being a private collection have all kind of  stuff. Upon PN Haksar death in 1998, her daughter had deposited everything which was lying in his house to the NMML. These were then sorted out by the NMML and opened for researchers in mid-2000’s. However, being a private collection, the responsibility of attribution is always on the researcher.

On Page 164 of the Transcript List (IIIrd Installment), file 289, 290, 291 and 292 are listed.

Subject File No. 289 (undated): Papers Related to Importance of Tibetan Question in perspective of China’s Relations with India. 

Subject File No. 290 (undated): Reassessment of India’s National Interest and foreign policy in perspective of Japan, Britain, China, Russia, Australia, New Zealand and Pakistan.

Subject File no. 291 (undated): Papers regarding “the Nature of the problem between India and Pakistan”.

Subject File no. 292 (undated): India and Nuclear Arms, brief survey of position in respect of the nuclear countries such as USA, USSR, France, Britain and China etc.

 

I checked who has looked at these files since 2009. Every file at NMML has a researcher’s log at the end of the file. Since 2009, both files 290 and 292 have been looked at by 11 scholars. I am not revealing the identity of the researchers but just providing the dates on which this file issued since 2009

Subject File 290:

14/09/2009

03/12/2009

21/01/2010

13/12/2011

11/9/2013

24/4/2014

25/6/2014

5/12/2014 (I issued it on this date)

4/2/2015 (the author of the long telegram issued it on this date)

23/6/2015

28/9/2015

31/12/2015

Subject File 292

11/01/2009

3/12/2009

21/01/2010

13/12/2011

23/1/2014

24/4/2014

25/6/2014

16/7/2014

13/2/2015 ( I issued this file on this date)

16/6/2015 (Ji Yeonjung of Belfer Center issues this file on this date)

8/4/ 2016

The author of the long telegram has not seen this file.

Subject File 289:

Researchers Log  was not there when I again saw it on 14th December 2016. NMML removes the log once the paper is full of names.

Subject File 291:

I have seen this file on 8/12/2014. Author of the “long Telegram” has not seen this file.

The Verbatim version of the “Long Telegram” (with some pointers)

There are two drafts of the paper titled “Need for India in a Changing World to reassess her national interest and foreign policy” in File no. 290, Haksar papers (IIIrd Installment) which was cited as PN Haksar’s “long telegram” in the National Interest Article.

File no. 290 also contains “chapters” on Pakistan, Russia, USA and China. There are no signatures, no dates, no government insignia.  There is also no category – immediate, confidential, secret or top secret – on these papers as is the norm for any government document. These were most probably drafts of a book being written in mid-1969 and may have been published in late 1969 or 1970 or may be later (There is no way to ascertain that; I have checked over 20 books in NMML). The “long telegram” is summary of the policy prescriptions accompanying the research done on foreign policy matters in this book draft.

Anyways, the burden of proof regarding attribution of these papers to PN Haksar is of the author of the “long telegram.”

I am also ready to share scanned copies of Subject File. 290 and 292 on a personal basis.

Please read this with  two things in mind. ‘Insertions’ are my own additions and provide further evidence how this could not have been written by PN Haksar. Second, wherever I have emphasized the text, I have written ’emphasis added’.

Here is the verbatim reproduction of the “long telegram”.

Need For India in a changing world to reassess her national interest and foreign policy (pp. 11-17, File No. 290, Haksar papers (IIIrd Installment)

“Against the backdrop of a world of increasing complexity in power relationships and varying political alignments, a world where the tremendous power of Russia and America is under increasing and, in a sense, permanent challenge, where power balances have been found more conducive to regional and global political stability than moral exhortations, where the problems of the rich and the poor are even more important than ideological disputes which have waned in favour of pragmatic sanctions, almost of the eighteenth century type between powerful nations, and where those who falter and go slow fall behind very rapidly in the race for progress, India has to reassess from top to bottom her national interests and the best ways of protecting and furthering them (Insertion: This opening sentence is of 13 lines). At one time she could have affected greatly world power balance by going in either with the international system led by Stalin or the one led from Washington, and when the technology of nuclear weapons had not advanced anything like as much as it has today.  She could perhaps have held China at bay from Tibet with or without a firm alliance with the United States and, up to a point – such was the American desire to make an early ally of her then -there may have been certain benefits deriving from such an alliance particularly in respect of the creation of considerable military power of the modern type in India (Insertion: a clear criticism of Nehru’s Tibet policy, non-alignment and ignorance towards military power. This is a trend all over the file.) In such circumstances, the Western world may well have been indifferent to Pakistan’s bleatings (sic) over Kashmir and her hostility to Indian progress in more general terms. But the price may have been political subordination to Washington and, as it happened, no-alignment was still probably the wiser course at that time and judged solely by the test of India’s national interests- not by messianic visions. As applied to China in Tibet, India’s foreign policy had obvious defects (Insertion: Criticism of Tibet Policy). The pressure which China has applied and can apply increasingly from the Tibetan plateau are such that it is more urgent than ever for India to build power within her frontiers, military and economic, with great urgency and with great effort. It is suggested that the mainlines of India’s foreign policy should be so:-

a) Non-alignment should continue as the initial premise of this Foreign Policy in the sense that military alliance with either Russia or America or both should be avoided as serving, at this stage of India’s development, no real national purpose;

b) To the extent that foreign powers may be interested in maintaining India’s integrity as a state and the integrity of her Himalayan frontiers with China, India’s own ability to fight in defence of these instruments will more surely influence Moscow or Washington, or both, than any open engagement with either or both of these powers seeking this protection which, as explained in the chapter on nuclear arms for India (emphasis added) is wholly unreliable. (Insertion: this chapter is available in File No. 292 which the author of the “long telegram” has not seen. Towards the end of this chapter in the conclusion, it is more than evident that these random papers are part of a book: “the areas where advantageous collaboration between China, Japan and India is possible are elaborated in the final chapter of this book (emphasis added), File No. 292, p. 24.)

c) It is certain that India must not surrender her nuclear options in her vital national interests;

d) A primary aim of Indian Foreign Policy should be take steps to keep open and indestructible the avenues which permit this great country, with a great history and vast human and natural resources, to attain progressively a position of real dignity, power and authority in the comity of nations; an this certainly involves the following measures taken in the shortest possible span of time:-

  1. the making of nuclear arms in the shape of missiles of medium range (2,000 to 2,500 miles) (emphasis added, Insertion: the National Interest article says 2000-3000 miles; why because in 2500 miles one can’t reach Manchuria from New Delhi-distance between New Delhi and Changchun (Manchuria) is 2832.1 miles approx) capable, from sites within India’s frontiers, of striking with success not only a few chosen targets in Tibet but of ranging as far afield as the industrial heartland of China in Manchuria and in great river valleys south of it which include some of her principal industries and urban centres of population:
  2. the development simultaneously of submarine driven by nuclear power fitted out to carry nuclear missiles as this would extend and re-inforce the scope and effect of India’s military and, by implication, political authority in South and South East Asia and indeed, further afield eventually;
  3. this nuclear arms programme should be based on adequate stock-piling of those instruments and machineries which, as Russia and America advance their common policy towards nuclear non-proliferation (emphasis added), will be difficult to import from abroad increasingly;
  4. all Indian metallurgists, physicists and others who could be really useful in developing a nuclear arms programme for India and, attracted by better material and other conditions abroad, are working in foreign countries, should be called back (emphasis addedand integrated with the establishments controlled by the Indian atomic energy Commission at high rates of pay and with every incentive available to them;
  5. every attempt should be made in conditions of assured secrecy (emphasis added) to sound the Japanese about collaboration in these fields.

e) Indian arms industry should be modernised and developed rapidly and, in this context the Soviet Union should be made to realise that France, England and other countries will be resorted to increasingly by India for the development of her aircraft and tank industries and for her weapon industries generally if the Soviet Union shows any marked tendency to  maintain a sort of fictitious balance of power between Pakistan and India – in the manner Western countries in the past (Insertion: Clearly, if written by Haksar, he was unaware that Western countries had imposed an Arms embargo in April 1965):

f) Japan may not as yet wish to develop heavy defence industries for India but probes in this direction should be made continually (Insertion: India and Japan had a bilateral dialogue in place at least since 1964; Haksar was even unaware of this):

g) electronic and computers and allied industries should be pressed ahead with vigorously and telescoped increasingly into a developing nuclear arms programme where every recent technological evidence should be made use of (Insertion: in those years, as the minutes of Committee on Science and Technology suggests, India was not even able to produce enough of small arms. The PN Haksar of “Long Telegram” obviously was unaware of this).

h) Rumania and Jugoslavia are important countries of the Leninist-Marxist persuasion and India should develop her industrial, commercial, technological and indeed, political relations with these countries to the maximum (Insertion: India always had great relations with Yugoslavia. Rumania on the other hand was central to US-China dialogue in mid-1960s. Haksar appears to be most under-informed Secretary in the PMO’s office ever.)

i) there should be no inhibitions (emphasis added) whatever about the Hitlerian past of Germany (emphasis added) to prevent India from seeking, at every level, to establish good relations with this state – particularly in varied fields of industry and technology while, of course, maintaining the links which have already grown up between East Germany, and India (Insertion: This may be the proof of Haksar’s ignorance of Fascist tendencies or its celebration. As far as we know, PN Haksar was a great champion of liberal ideas. With the long telegram, that may be under doubt). 

j) every sort of technical aid and training, including military training, should be offered to freely by India (emphasis added) to countries of South and South East Asia and to those of West Asia and Africa and, where available resources are limited, priority should be given to neighbouring Asian countries. (Insertion: This is Haksar’s wonderland. PN Haksar doesn’t even know what the financial and economic situation is. 1966-67, India suffered its worst food crisis. It is completely dependent on outside assistance for its defence requirements. Yet, Haksar want to offer freebies.)

k) all efforts within the United Nations and elsewhere which aims at freeing Southern Africa from the grip of settlers of foreign origin should be supported to the full and, at a later stage, arms and military training can be provided through African governments for African patriots. (Insertion: Now Haksar believes in supporting armed struggles. Also, he is unaware that India has always been diplomatically supporting independence for African states.)

l) by the same token India should cease to be either surprised or affected, in respect of her co-operation with a country like Britain to their mutual advantage where such cooperation is possible, when that country pursues increasingly a policy of direct or indirect support for the lands of apartheid (emphasis added) – be they South Africa or Rhodesia – to the extent of selling arms in even greater volume than at present to the Government of Pretoria and voting everywhere against any measures derived, in any international body, to bring power economic and other sanctions to bear against the protagonists of apartheid. These policies of Britain are pursued in her own material self interests which is, for better or for worse, bound up considerably with her South African gold marketed in London. (Insertion: First of all Haksar’s english is really difficult to understand. Second, if I understand correctly, he is fine with British support for South Africa’s apartheid practices. Indian foreign policy is going down the drains.) 

m) in dealing with African governments generally India should apply the yardstick of her own national interests where they coincide with the policies of individual governments in this region. But is is neither profitable nor necessary (emphasis added) to act in a manner which suggests that India’s support of such states and governments in outright and unqualified in all circumstances. There is no need to associate India’s national interests in these regions with the fate of these Asian settlers there who have remained bound to forms of wholesale and retail trade which, quite obviously, must be entered by the emergent African middle class in these societies. Indeed, many of these people have been told repeatedly by their friends and sympathisers in India to switch to industrial enterprises while employing and associating more and more Africans and, unfortunately, many of them have not chosen to do so. Those who chose to adopt the nationality of the areas where they were reluctant when given the option have done better. But unfair treatment of Asians where it occurs should be opposed strongly at diplomatic levels. India’s basic national interests are involved in Africa to the extent that blatant racialism of the white settler variety must be opposed to the hilt by New Delhi and technical, cultural, and other forms of collaboration with rising African nations would be of advantage for all concerned on as India’s industrial capacity increases, together with her ability to trade more and more with these countries and perhaps not so long hence, to establish joint industrial ventures in these parts. There is no reason at all why Indian small arms and, indeed other weapons as they become increasingly available should not be sold to African governments (emphasis added) (Insertion: An area for African experts in India. May have consequences if written by Haksar. I still can’t understand his english. Other papers written by PN Haksar were so lucid otherwise.)

n) Canada, the smaller countries of Western Europe and of Eastern Europe represent regions and states which have no real conflict of interest with India and which, in the case of Canada, have pursued remarkably friendly and generous policies towards her as indeed have many smaller countries of which Sweden is a notable example. Not prone to racialism, or to any arrogant assumptions of glory and superiority deriving from past grandeur, these countries are among the better humanising and liberalising forces of mankind and can be counter on to agree with India in many fields of endeavour, economic, technological and other pertaining to good fellowship between the rich and the poor of this world. Liberalising the terms of international trade and broadening what is called aid well beyond the heavy burdens of debt which so much of it represents for the poor nations today – these are all issues on which smaller and advanced countries are liable to take a balanced and helpful attitude, both in their own interests and in the interests of less fortunate countries. The great industrialised states of Eastern Europe, Czechoslovakia, Rumania, Hungary, Bulgaria, East Germany and others – let alone the particularly friendly and well-disposed Jugoslavia – can be counted on in these contexts as can the Scandinavian countries. Holland, Belgium, Australia, Switzerland and many other places including Italy and Spain. Indeed, every type of cultural and economic exchange of views between the Government of India and the governments of countries such as these should be widespread and lead to real mutual understanding at many points and, therefore, to collaboration of the sort referred to (Insertion: Not much to say but was PN Haksar not being briefed by the MEA on relations with these countries; also, most of these were American allies)

o) Latin America is a potentially rich, developing and under-privileged area of the world. India must cultivate cultural, trade and friendly relations generally with all these countries and particularly with Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and others of particular importance in the region. Their national and regional aspirations have India’s support at the United Nations and elsewhere and there should be an increasing attempt by New Delhi (emphasis added) to get its policies and attitudes on international issues across to the governments of these states while taking pains to understand their opinions and feelings in exchange. Common denominator of long-term interest are to be found in obtaining better terms of trade and aid for the developing world from the rich and advanced nations and in maintaining a common front against entrenched discrimination in all it’s forms by rich areas against the poor ones. Cuba is a special case, and it is desirable that Indian government should be understood fully the political outlook and policies of the Havana government. It may, as time goes by,be found to have had a fairly pervasive effect in Latin America but, here again, there need not be any blind identification of India’s interests with policies and purposes of Havana as there has tended to be in the past, sometimes in relations with certain African states. (Insertion: This is the first I have seen where a top government bureaucrat refers to his own government as “New Delhi.” Second, in 1968, India and Brazil had signed a cultural agreement which included cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Haksar again appears to be highly uninformed of India’s external relations.)”

 

The Note ends here on page no 17 of File no. 290. A copy of the same note starts at page 18 till 24.

Power Point on Haksar’s Fictitious “Long Telegram”

yogesh-joshi-26-dec-2016-monday-morning

The “Long Telegram”, Right Wing Politics and PN Haksar

This is an extract from a 12000 words research paper submitted to The Nuclear Proliferation International History Project at the Woodrow Wilson Center for review on 23rd December 2016 entitled The “Long Telegram” or a “Long Imagination”: PN Haksar and India’s Nuclear Policy in late 1960s. Most of the “long telegram” has been reproduced here. The National Interest article quotes very selectively from the so called “long telegram”.

The “Long Telegram”, Right Wing Politics and PN Haksar

The National Interest article plays a number of tricks with file no. 290.[1] First of all the note titled “Need for India in a Changing World to Reassess her National Interest and Foreign Policy” is just seven pages long. Many of the additional points are from ‘chapters’ on Pakistan, Russia, USA and China.[2] Therefore, File No. 290 becomes the “long telegram” and not just the note which has been specifically mentioned in the National Interest article.  Second, the policy prescriptions including that on nuclear weapons have been quoted very selectively. This is how foreign policy prescriptions including those on nuclear matters in Haksar’s unattributable “long telegram” begin (in verbatim on page 12-17 of File No. 290):

a) “Non-alignment should continue as the initial premise of this Foreign Policy in the sense that military alliance with either Russia or America or both should be avoided as serving, at this stage of India’s development, no real national purpose;

b) To the extent that foreign powers may be interested in maintaining India’s integrity as a state and the integrity of her Himalayan frontiers with China, India’s own ability to fight in defence of these instruments will more surely influence Moscow or Washington, or both, than any open engagement with either or both of these powers seeking this protection which, as explained in the chapter on nuclear arms for India (emphasis added) is wholly unreliable. (Insertion: this chapter is available in File No. 292 which the author of the “long telegram” has not seen. Towards the end of this chapter in the conclusion, it is more than evident that these random papers are part of a book: “the areas where advantageous collaboration between China, Japan and India is possible are elaborated in the final chapter of this book (emphasis added), File No. 292, p. 24.)[3]

c) It is certain that India must not surrender her nuclear options in her vital national interests;

d) A primary aim of Indian Foreign Policy should be take steps to keep open and indestructible the avenues which permit this great country, with a great history and vast human and natural resources, to attain progressively a position of real dignity, power and authority in the comity of nations; an this certainly involves the following measures taken in the shortest possible span of time:-

  1. the making of nuclear arms in the shape of missiles of medium range (2,000 to 2,500 miles) (emphasis added, Insertion: the National Interest article says 2000-3000 miles) capable, from sites within India’s frontiers, of striking with success not only a few chosen targets in Tibet but of ranging as far afield as the industrial heartland of China in Manchuria and in great river valleys south of it which include some of her principal industries and urban centres of population:
  2. the development simultaneously of submarine driven by nuclear power fitted out to carry nuclear missiles as this would extend and re-inforce the scope and effect of India’s military and, by implication, political authority in South and South East Asia and indeed, further afield eventually;
  3. this nuclear arms programme should be based on adequate stock-piling of those instruments and machineries which, as Russia and America advance their common policy towards nuclear non-proliferation (emphasis added), will be difficult to import from abroad increasingly;
  4. all Indian metallurgists, physicists and others who could be really useful in developing a nuclear arms programme for India and, attracted by better material and other conditions abroad, are working in foreign countries, should be called back (emphasis addedand integrated with the establishments controlled by the Indian atomic energy Commission at high rates of pay and with every incentive available to them;
  5. every attempt should be made in conditions of assured secrecy (emphasis added) to sound the Japanese about collaboration in these fields.”[4]

At even the most superficial reading, this appears to be written by a nuclear hawk. Unlike the  claim in the National Interest article over how the “long telegram” supports India’s nuclear doctrine of Credible Minimum Deterence vis-a-vis the revisionist comments recently made by Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, the “long telegram’ is proposing a tous azimuts nuclear force structure, which till date is only subscribed by a handful of Indian strategists and has been completely ignored by successive governments since 1998, irrespective of their political ideology.[5] Second, the numbers on the range of the missile are also changed: the National Interest article claims 2000 to 3000 miles whereas the “long telegram” puts a limit to 2500 miles. One wonders why? The logic is simple: in 2500 miles, one cannot reach Manchuria (for example, the distance between Changchun (Manchuria) and New Delhi is approximately 2832.1 miles). Given PN Haksar’s intellect and resources, one cannot expect him to make such a basic mistake especially if the note is being addressed to the Prime Minister.  Third and most important, point no. 3 and 5 indicate that Haksar was inclined towards nuclear proliferation; India’s nuclear energy programme between 1968 and 1974 was therefore just a mask for its weapons program. If extrapolated, it also translates to the fact that all peaceful nuclear programs which India had with US and Canadian cooperation between 1968 and 1974 were geared towards nuclear proliferation. One can only wonder how many Indian nuclear scientists, diplomats and other decision-makers would agree to this idea. It also belies the most important attribute of India’s nuclear program: its quest for self-reliance and its unmatched record on nuclear non-proliferation even after the 1974 tests, US refusal to provide fuel for Tarapur reactor in late 1970s and early 80s and targeting of Indian nuclear and space program in decades following. For the good of scholarship on India’s nuclear history, this was never written by PN Haksar. Till his death bed, as George Perkovich recently told me on an email the details of his telephonic interview with PN Haksar in 1996-97, Haksar did not see a lot of merit in nuclear weapons.[6]

If this “long telegram” was sent by PN Haksar to Indira Gandhi, it will also sabotage the foundations of Indian foreign policy in 1960’s and 1970’s. There are a total of 15 policy prescriptions (from point ‘a’ till ‘o’).[7] For the want of space, the rest can only be summarised here:  (e) Indian arms industry should be modernised; (f) cooperation with Japan on heavy defense industries; (g) development of computers and allied industries; (h) cooperation with Romania and Yugoslavia; (i) cooperation with “no inhibitions whatever about the Hitlerian past (emphasis added) of Germany”; (j) military training (emphasis added) to South, South East Asian, West Asian and African countries; (k) efforts to be made with the United Nations for freeing Africa from the “grip of settlers of foreign origin”; (l) cooperation with Britain for “mutual advantage (even) when that country pursues increasingly a policy of direct and indirect support for the lands of apartheid (emphasis added)”; (m) deal with African countries on the “yardstick of her own national interests” and “it is neither profitable nor necessary (emphasis added) to act in a manner which suggests that India’s support of such states and governments is outright and unqualified in all circumstances”; (n) cooperate with Canada, other smaller countries of Western and Eastern Europe who have “no conflict of interest with India” and finally (o) cultivate relations with Latin American countries. By attributing the so called “long telegram” to PN Haksar, India’s whole foreign policy approach in 1960’s and 1970’s has been left in ruins. PN Haksar, on the other, has been turned into a “right wing ideologue.”

If one looks at the arguments coming from the right wing political parties like Jan Sangh and Swatantra between 1967 and 1970, Haksar’s “long telegram” appears eerily similar. Broadly, the reasons for the “long telegram” in author’s understanding of File No 290 originate from two major factors: USSR supplying military equipment to Pakistan in 1968 and the USSR-Soviet detente resulting in the non-proliferation treaty. Between 1967 and 1970, writings of Jan Sangh and Swatantra ideologues and sympathisers whether it is HM Patel, Balraj Madhok, Deen Dayal Upadhaya, KR Malkani, Piloo Mody, MR Pai, MR Masani,  Subramaniam Swamy, Major Ranjith Singh, ML Sondhi, Prince Dev Prasad Ghosh and Dr. G.K Mukherjee, to name a few, continuously attacked Indira Gandhi’s foreign policy on two counts: softening of Soviet attitude towards Pakistan and the detente between the two superpowers resulting into the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.[8]  As the President of Bharatiya Jan Sangh, former Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, argued in his presidential address at the Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha Session (Indore) in September 1968, “The USSR’s decision to supply arms to Pakistan provides a glaring instance to show how our foreign policy has failed to protect and promote the enlightened self-interests of the country.”[9] Similarly on the non-proliferation treaty, the Jana Sangh party resolution of March 22, 1968 proclaimed, “Soviet Russia and USA are mounting their pressure on India to sign the non-proliferation treaty. The Government of India seem to be somewhat weakening in its resolve not to sign the treaty in its present form.”[10] Similar questions on foreign policy were raised by HM Patel, MR Pai and Piloo Mody during the Fifth National Convention of the Swatantra Party in October 1968 in Bhubaneshwar.[11]

Attribution of the “long telegram” to PN Haksar therefore not only changes Haksar’s political inclinations but also puts into question his loyalty to Indira Gandhi and the Indian government? Was PN Haksar a closet “right wing ideologue” who was masquerading in the Prime Minister’s Secretariat? Absolutely not; PN Haksar papers at NMML and documents at the National Archives of India also provide answers to confusion created by the “long telegram”.

[1] Prahladan, The Recent Declassification.

[2] NMML, Unattributable and undated, Subject File 290, PN Haksar Papers (IIIrd Installment).

[3] NMML, Unattributable and undated, “India and Nuclear Arms,” Subject File 292, PN Haksar Papers (IIIrd Installment).

[4] NMML, Unattributable and undated, Subject File 290, PN Haksar Papers (IIIrd Installment).

[5] Prahladan, The Recent Declassification. For schools of thoughts on India’s nuclear posture see, Kanti Bajpai, “The Great Indian Nuclear Debate,” in Anindyo J. Majumdar (ed.), Nuclear India into the New Millennium, (New Delhi: Lancers, 2000), pp.47-74.

[6] Email conversation with George Perkovich, 16 December 2016.

[7] NMML, Unattributable and undated, Subject File. 290, PN Haksar Papers (IIIrd Installment).

[8] A good summary of these can be found in Mohammed Ali Kishore, Jana Sangh and India’s Foreign Policy, (New Delhi: Associated Publishing House, 1969); for original writings see, H.M Patel, “India’s Defence Preparedness,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 44-47, p. 38-40; Piloo Mody, “India’s Foreign Policy,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 44-47; M.R. Pai, “India’s Foreign Policy: The Need for Reappraisal,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 168-169; Deen Dayal Upadyaya, “Fundamentals of a War economy,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of Mid-Term elections, 1971), pp. 15-20; K. R. Malkani, “How Jana Sangh looks at Russia and America,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of Mid-Term elections, 1971), pp. 56-59; Ram Singh, “India: a country without friends,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of Mid-Term elections, 1971), pp.139-141; M.L. Sondhi, “Wanted: A National Foreign Policy,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 14th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Calicut, December 1967), pp. 47-53; K.R. Malkani, “How we look at the Middle East,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 14th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Calicut, December 1967), pp. 63-65;  Balraj Madhok, “India’s Unity,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 15th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Bombay,  April 25-27, 1969), pp. 62-66; Subramaniam Swamy, “Defence and Economic Growth in India: a study in an inseparable relationship,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 15th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Bombay,  April 25-27, 1969), pp. 67-87; Prin. Dev Prasad Ghosh, “let’s make the indian ocean REALLY INDIAN,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 15th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Bombay,  April 25-27, 1969), pp. 88-89: Nana Deshmukh, “Essentials of a National Industrial Policy,” Jana-Deep Souvenir (A Publication brought out on the occasion of the 15th Annual Session of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, Bombay,  April 25-27, 1969), pp. 98-101.

[9] Bharatiya  Jana Sangh, “Presidential Address by Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee,” Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha Session, Indore, September 7 and 8, 1968, p. 22.

[10] Bharatiya  Jana Sangh,  “Beware of Non-proliferation Treaty,” Resolution adopted on 22 March 1968 at CWC, Bhopal, in Party Documents (Volume 3), Resolutions on Defence and External Affairs (New Delhi: Bharatiya Jana Sangh, July 1973).

[11] H.M Patel, “India’s Defence Preparedness,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 44-47, p. 38-40; Piloo Mody, “India’s Foreign Policy,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 44-47; M.R. Pai, “India’s Foreign Policy: The Need for Reappraisal,” Swatantra Souvenir (Fifth Annual Convention, Bhubaneshwar), 5and 6 October 1968, p. 168-169

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