New Delhi:Indira Gandhi made two “serious mistakes — declaring the Emergency in 1975 and allowing Operation Bluestar to happen”, but regardless of these she was a great and powerful Prime Minister and a considerate humanist, feels veteran Congressman K Natwar Singh.
Singh worked in her office from 1966 to 1971 as a civil services officer before joining the Congress in the 1980s and becoming a minister in the Rajiv Gandhi Cabinet.
“Ever so often, Indira Gandhi is depicted as solemn, severe, prickly and ruthless. Seldom is it mentioned that this beautiful, caring, charming, graceful and sparkling human being was a considerate humanist and a voracious reader, that she was endowed with charm, elegance, style, good taste and, above all, gravitas,” he says about the former Prime Minister. Singh expresses these views in his new book, ‘Treasured Epistles’, a collection of letters. Those who regularly wrote to him included friends, contemporaries and colleagues, from the days of his foreign service to ambassadorship, to recent days as the minister of foreign affairs.
The topics of Indira Gandhi’s letters to Natwar Singh ranged from congratulating him for becoming a father to politics, books, birthday wishes and get-well-soon messages.