Tuesday, February 26, 2013

My Reminiscences: Social Development during the Gandhian Era and After

My Reminiscences: Social Development during the Gandhian Era and After
Renuka Ray
demy octavo hb 271pp ISBN 81-85604-78-9 Rs 350 Jan 2005

In writing about her life and work, Renuka Ray also relates the momentous history of India, from her birth in 1904 to her death in 1997, encompassing the years of the growth and consolidation of the nationalist movement, to partition and independence, and the equally compelling post-independence period. As a participant member of the ruling elite, a close associate of Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore, Jawaharlal Nehru, Bidhan Chandra Ray, Durgabai Deshmukh, a member of the Constituent Assembly, and later of the Lok Sabha and the West Bengal State Assembly, she provides an insider’s view to the historical events she witnessed. Of particular interest is her cogent critique of the Central Government’s policy towards refugee rehabilitation in West Bengal, where she was minister for Rehabilitation and Relief.

Renuka Ray became a Gandhian and a nationalist at sixteen when she met Mahatma Gandhi at the house of her uncle, Chittaranjan Das, in Calcutta. Aside from her political career, she was a well known pioneering social worker, and a former president of the All India Women’s Conference.

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