Natwar Singh Autobiography

Natwar Singh, former Congress leader, today released his autobiography tilted , One Life Is Not Enough – An Autobiography. It’s another thing that the Jagran Josh, the education site of Dainik Jagran, wants to call the book as the autobiography by former External Affairs Minister and ‘Senior Congress Party Leader Natwar Singh’. When the fact is Mr. Singh was suspended from the Congress party in 2006. He resigned from Congress in 2008. The reason for the resignation was the Paul Volcker report of 2005 , investigating the corruption in the Oil-for-Food program. It stated inter alia that “India’s Congress party” and Natwar Singh’s family were non-contractual beneficiaries of the Oil for Food programme. Mr. Singh was disappointed with Sonia Gandhi for having failed to defend or support him. He announced his resignation at a BJP-sponsored rally of Natwar Singh’s own Jat community held at Jaipur in the presence of Vasundhara Raje, then Chief Minister of Rajasthan. On this occasion, Natwar Singh not only asserted his innocence but also launched a bitter attack on Sonia Gandhi for having failed to defend or support him. He and his son jagat Singh joined Mayawati’s BSP in 2008, only to be expelled by that party within four months (in November 2008) for alleged indiscipline, anti-party activities and “lack of faith” in the ideology of the Bahujan Samaj Movement. At present, Natwar Singh’s son Jagat Singh is a BJP MLA from Rajasthan. In this light, Natwar Singh can hardly even be a former Congressman.

The book is reported to be critical of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her style of working. Mr. Singh believes that the book has touched some raw nerve of Sonia Gandhi and that has upset her to the extent that she came out to comment on the book. Yesterday, commenting on Natwar Singh’s book, Sonia Gandhi said,

“I will write my own book and then you will come to know everything … the only way truth will come out is if I write … I am serious about it and I will be writing.”

This morning many Hindi Newspapers published a front page news, quoting Natwar Singh’s autobiography. The headline read : Sonia declined PM post due to fearful Rahul, not conscience: Natwar Singh . Such articles claimed that all the reports regarding Sonia declining PM post by listening to her conscience are rubbish. In fact, it was the Rahul who was afraid for his mother’s Life; and believed that if she becomes the PM she will be assassinated. Although, you will be viewing hour long programmes on various news channels today and tomorrow; publishing this on the front page is foolish as well. As , it doesn’t matter whether Sonia Gandhi listened to her son or the MPs; what matters is she didn’t become the PM when she could have. Sonia Gandhi may have refused to take charge as Prime Minister in 2004 when the UPA-I came to power due to strong opposition from son Rahul Gandhi; but still, what public purpose the so called revelation serves. When country must be debating the present Government’s stand on inflation, GM crops and electricity (and availability of coal with the Thermal Power plants), the media is discussing the motives behind ‘Sonia declining PM post in 2004’. That apart, how can Natwar Singh say for sure it was not her conscience?

Talking about important issues, in coming months the country may face severe drought in some parts of the country. Low rainfall will also mean low hydro power generation in the country. This means that , the country already reeling under power shortage will see the power situation aggravate in near future. In reply to a question regarding the availability of coal with the Public sector power generation Companies, the Government portrayed a picture of severe coal shortage in the power generation companies. The Government attributed this to Coal scam during the previous Government. In order to cross check the Government’s response, a TV News channel enquired about the coal availability and stock situation with the power generation Public sectors (In India public sectors make most of thermal power). In a written reply to the News Channel, all the public sectors said that up to now, they have received 111 percent of coal promised to them. This means if they were promised 100 tonnes of coal by July 2014, they received 111 tonnes. Is this scarcity? They are getting more than what they had been promised. There’s a reason why the Government is blaming everything on coal scam, as it promised moon to the nation, and since that’s not possible, it’s looking for some scapegoat. If as aware citizens of the country we need to be guarded against any lies, then these Lies qualify to that definition. Not whether Sonia Gandhi took some decision by listening to her conscience or to her children.

PS: Natwar Singh Autobiography is available at Flipkart, but at a slightly higher price. Though here, the eBook version is available. )