Children's Day: Children are nation's future & tomorrow's citizens, said Jawaharlal Nehru

 | Updated: Nov 14, 2020, 09:42 AM IST

'Children are like buds in a garden and should be carefully and lovingly nurtured, as they are the future of the nation and the citizens of tomorrow,' said India's first prime minister

Buds in a garden

'Children are like buds in a garden and should be carefully and lovingly nurtured, as they are the future of the nation and the citizens of tomorrow,' said Jawaharlal Nehru. We celebrate Children's Day, November 14, on his birthday. In photo: Nehru visits Nongpoh in Meghalaya.

What makes a nation powerful? Science

Nehru was a great believer in science, which he wanted to use to rid India of her superstitions. 'What is that makes a nation powerful in the modern world...The most important things today are science and technology and their offshoots...' Nehru said in Satara, Maharashtra on April 10, 1960.

Capitalism, communalism, socialism, or Gandhism?

'There are often heated debates about the ideology that should be followed -- capitalism, communalism, socialism or Gandhism... which means that we want to assure equal opportunities for progress to all... (Whatever we adopt) each one of them has to be backed by science and technology and machines and hard work,' Nehru continued in Satara. In photo: Nehru signs the Constitution of India.

I have a dream

'Do we believe in a national state which includes people of all religions and shades of opinion and is essentially secular...or do we believe in the religious, theocratic conception of a state which considers people of other faiths as something beyond the pale? This is an odd question to ask, for the idea of a religious or a theocratic state was given up by the world some centuries ago and has no place in the mind of the modern man. And yet the question has to be put in India today, for many of us have tried to jump back to a past age,' said Nehru.
In photo: Nehru addresses a public gathering in Ooty.

'I almost overlooked her'

Kamala Kaul married Nehru when she was 17. Her husband went on a trip to the Himalayas shortly after their marriage.
In his autobiography, referring to his wife, Nehru wrote: 'I almost overlooked her.'

Kamala gave birth to a girl child in November 1917. Indira Priyadarshini went on to become, like her father, head of the Congress party and prime minister of India.

Kamala gave birth to a boy in November 1924, but he lived for only a week

Cow slaughter?

'I think the majority of the people in India respect the cow and I respect their sentiment... But it is my view that there should be no legal ban on cow slaughter... There all kinds of people living in India and it would be absolutely improper, impossible and constitutionally wrong to pass a law forcing everyone against their wishes... Near the eastern border where the Nagas and other tribes live, you would not find a single man in the entire population who wishes to ban cow slaughter,' said Nehru. In photo: Nehru takes part in the Van Mahotsav, plants a sapling.

A person for the ethical treatment of animals

'A country is known by the way it treats its animals,' said Nehru. In photo: Nehru plays with a tiger cub at home in Delhi on August 12, 1955.

Democracy and socialism are means to an end, not the end itself

'Democracy and socialism are means to an end, not the end itself,' said Nehru. In photo: Nehru with Egyptian President Gamal Abadal Nasser.

A world of adventure

'We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open,' said Nehru.

The John F Kennedy-Jawaharlal Nehru 'disaster'

Nehru and a young Indira Priyadarshini are seen here with John F Kennedy and Jacqueline in the US in 1961. The visit did not go well, with JFK describing the visit as a 'disaster'.
Nehru and the younger JFK did not get along. Commentators however have mentioned that Nehru perked up when Jacqueline was around.

Life is like a game of cards

'Life is like a game of cards. The hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free will,' said Nehru.

In photo: Nehru is seen shaking hands with US President Harry S Truman in 1949. Also seen are Nehru's diplomat sister Vijaya Pandit (in sunglasses) and a young Indira Gandhi. Nehru, who was taken aback by the commercialism he saw in America, said: 'A person should never have to visit America for the first time.'

Truman retaliated by refusing to give economic or food aid.