Rajeev Shukla–(The writer is a Former Minister Government of India & ex Chairman IPL)
With the victory in 1971 India had emerged at the global stage as world leader. The Indian leadership had demonstrated to the world that with a world class Indian Army and equally strong leadership, a war may be fought and won. The world had just recovered from the two consecutive World Wars and was in the grip of Cold War between USA and USSR.
India had just breathed three decades as a free and democratic nation. However, lakhs of Indian soldiers had scored unscripted tales of bravery and righteousness in both the wars. India under British rule was not subjected to even a single bombardment from the aggressors in both World Wars.
Since its formation the Congress party has always startled the world. It startled the world when it declared a non-violent war against the mighty British Empire. Congress party startled the world when it decided to accept British devised partition based on religion and further declared to develop a democratic state with actual power to be transferred to the people through a written constitution. In free and democratic India, the Congress leadership pursued an independent path to emerge at global stage.
The victory of 1971 was also the result of our preparations to emerge at the world stage and as an undisputed regional power. India’s victory against Pakistan and formation of Bangladesh was also the perfect statement to the world and to its immediate neighbours in South Asia that India is capable of defending human rights and delivering to its vision of democratic and equitable world.
The victory of 1971 is also an alibi to the strength of our leadership who co-operated with the army in its decision making and then trusting the army top brass in delivering the victory. The victory also reflects farsightedness of our leadership for concluding the historic Indo-Soviet friendship treaty with USSR in August 1971.