142 Facts About Sardar Patel


Sardar Patel was a barrister and a senior leader of the Indian National Congress, who played a leading role in the country's struggle for independence, guiding its integration into a united, independent nation.

FactSnippet No. 931,788

Sardar Patel was one of the conservative members of the Indian National Congress.

FactSnippet No. 931,789

Sardar Patel acted as the Home Minister during the political integration of India and the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947.

FactSnippet No. 931,790

Sardar Patel was born in Nadiad, Kheda district, and raised in the countryside of the state of Gujarat.

FactSnippet No. 931,791

Sardar Patel was appointed as the 49th President of Indian National Congress, organising the party for elections in 1934 and 1937 while promoting the Quit India Movement.

FactSnippet No. 931,792

Sardar Patel led the task of forging a united India, successfully integrating into the newly independent nation those British colonial provinces that formed the Dominion of India.

FactSnippet No. 931,793

Sardar Patel persuaded almost every princely state to accede to India.

FactSnippet No. 931,794

Sardar Patel is remembered as the "patron saint of India's civil servants" for having established the modern All India Services system.

FactSnippet No. 931,795

Vallabhbhai Jhaverbhai Sardar Patel, one of the six children of Jhaverbhai Sardar Patel and Ladba, was born in Nadiad, Gujarat.

FactSnippet No. 931,796

Sardar Patel followed Vaishnavism and belonged to pushtimarg of Mahaprabhu Vallabhacharya and took the diksha from the descendant of Vallabhacharya.

FactSnippet No. 931,797

Sardar Patel belonged to the Leva Patel community of Central Gujarat, although after his fame, both Leva Patel and Kadava Patidar have claimed him as one of their own.

FactSnippet No. 931,798

Sardar Patel travelled to attend schools in Nadiad, Petlad, and Borsad, living self-sufficiently with other boys.

FactSnippet No. 931,799

When Sardar Patel passed his matriculation at the relatively late age of 22, he was generally regarded by his elders as an unambitious man destined for a commonplace job.

FactSnippet No. 931,800

Sardar Patel spent years away from his family, studying on his own with books borrowed from other lawyers, passing his examinations within two years.

FactSnippet No. 931,801

Sardar Patel cared for a friend suffering from the Bubonic plague when it swept across Gujarat.

FactSnippet No. 931,802

When Sardar Patel himself came down with the disease, he immediately sent his family to safety, left his home, and moved into an isolated house in Nadiad ; there, he recovered slowly.

FactSnippet No. 931,803

Sardar Patel practised law in Godhra, Borsad, and Anand while taking on the financial burdens of his homestead in Karamsad.

FactSnippet No. 931,804

Sardar Patel was the first chairman and founder of "Edward Memorial High School" Borsad, today known as Jhaverbhai Dajibhai Sardar Patel High School.

FactSnippet No. 931,805

Sardar Patel was given a note informing him of his wife's demise as he was cross-examining a witness in court.

FactSnippet No. 931,806

Sardar Patel broke the news to others only after the proceedings had ended.

FactSnippet No. 931,807

Sardar Patel raised his children with the help of his family and sent them to English-language schools in Bombay.

FactSnippet No. 931,808

Sardar Patel nurtured ambitions to expand his practice and accumulate great wealth and to provide his children with modern education.

FactSnippet No. 931,809

Sardar Patel had made a pact with his brother Vithalbhai to support his entry into politics in the Bombay Presidency, while Patel remained in Ahmedabad to provide for the family.

FactSnippet No. 931,810

On Gandhi's encouragement, Sardar Patel became the secretary of the Gujarat Sabha, a public body that would become the Gujarati arm of the Indian National Congress.

FactSnippet No. 931,811

Sardar Patel emphasised the potential hardships and the need for complete unity and non-violence in the face of provocation response from virtually every village.

FactSnippet No. 931,812

Sardar Patel organised a network of volunteers to work with individual villages, helping them hide valuables and protect themselves against raids.

FactSnippet No. 931,813

The government agreed to negotiate with Sardar Patel and decided to suspend the payment of taxes for a year, even scaling back the rate.

FactSnippet No. 931,814

Sardar Patel supported Gandhi's controversial suspension of resistance in the wake of the Chauri Chaura incident.

FactSnippet No. 931,815

Sardar Patel fought for the recognition and payment of teachers employed in schools established by nationalists and even took on sensitive Hindu–Muslim issues.

FactSnippet No. 931,816

Sardar Patel personally led relief efforts in the aftermath of the torrential rainfall of 1927 that caused major floods in the city and in the Kheda district, and great destruction of life and property.

FactSnippet No. 931,817

Sardar Patel established refugee centres across the district, mobilised volunteers, and arranged for supplies of food, medicines, and clothing, as well as emergency funds from the government and the public.

FactSnippet No. 931,818

When Gandhi was in prison, Sardar Patel was asked by Members of Congress to lead the satyagraha in Nagpur in 1923 against a law banning the raising of the Indian flag.

FactSnippet No. 931,819

Sardar Patel organised thousands of volunteers from all over the country to take part in processions of people violating the law.

FactSnippet No. 931,820

Sardar Patel negotiated a settlement obtaining the release of all prisoners and allowing nationalists to hoist the flag in public.

FactSnippet No. 931,821

Sardar Patel organised hundreds of Congressmen, sent instructions, and received information from across the district.

FactSnippet No. 931,822

Sardar Patel'storians believe that one of Patel's key achievements was the building of cohesion and trust amongst the different castes and communities, which had been divided along socio-economic lines.

FactSnippet No. 931,823

Sardar Patel organised volunteers, camps, and an information network across affected areas.

FactSnippet No. 931,824

Once released, Sardar Patel served as interim Congress president, but was re-arrested while leading a procession in Bombay.

FactSnippet No. 931,825

Sardar Patel used his position as Congress president to organise the return of confiscated land to farmers in Gujarat.

FactSnippet No. 931,826

When Gandhi embarked on a fast-unto-death protesting the separate electorates allocated for untouchables, Sardar Patel looked after Gandhi closely and himself refrained from partaking of food.

FactSnippet No. 931,827

Sardar Patel was later moved to a jail in Nasik, and refused a British offer for a brief release to attend the cremation of his brother Vithalbhai, who had died in October 1933.

FactSnippet No. 931,828

Not contesting a seat for himself, Sardar Patel nevertheless guided Congressmen elected in the provinces and at the national level.

FactSnippet No. 931,829

In 1935 Sardar Patel underwent surgery for haemorrhoids, yet continued to direct efforts against the plague in Bardoli and again when a drought struck Gujarat in 1939.

FactSnippet No. 931,830

Sardar Patel clashed with Nehru, opposing declarations of the adoption of socialism at the 1936 Congress session, which he believed was a diversion from the main goal of achieving independence.

FactSnippet No. 931,831

In 1938 Sardar Patel organised rank and file opposition to the attempts of then-Congress president Subhas Chandra Bose to move away from Gandhi's principles of non-violent resistance.

FactSnippet No. 931,832

Sardar Patel led senior Congress leaders in a protest that resulted in Bose's resignation.

FactSnippet No. 931,833

Sardar Patel promptly handed the money over to the Vithalbhai Memorial Trust.

FactSnippet No. 931,834

Sardar Patel participated in Gandhi's call for individual disobedience, and was arrested in 1940 and imprisoned for nine months.

FactSnippet No. 931,835

Sardar Patel opposed the proposals of the Cripps' mission in 1942.

FactSnippet No. 931,836

Sardar Patel lost more than twenty pounds during his period in jail.

FactSnippet No. 931,837

Sardar Patel raised funds and prepared a second tier of command as a precaution against the arrest of national leaders.

FactSnippet No. 931,838

Sardar Patel'storians believe that Patel's speech was instrumental in electrifying nationalists, who up to then had been sceptical of the proposed rebellion.

FactSnippet No. 931,839

Sardar Patel's organising work in this period is credited by historians with ensuring the success of the rebellion across India.

FactSnippet No. 931,840

Sardar Patel was arrested on 9 August and was imprisoned with the entire Congress Working Committee from 1942 to 1945 at the fort in Ahmednagar.

FactSnippet No. 931,841

Sardar Patel provided emotional support to his colleagues while awaiting news and developments from the outside.

FactSnippet No. 931,842

Sardar Patel was deeply pained at the news of the deaths of Mahadev Desai and Kasturba Gandhi later that year.

FactSnippet No. 931,843

When Sardar Patel was released on 15 June 1945, he realised that the British government was preparing proposals to transfer power to India.

FactSnippet No. 931,844

Sardar Patel engaged in discussions with the British envoys Sir Stafford Cripps and Lord Pethick-Lawrence and obtained an assurance that the "grouping" clause would not be given practical force, Sardar Patel converted Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajendra Prasad, and Rajagopalachari to accept the plan.

FactSnippet No. 931,845

Under Nehru, who was styled the "Vice President of the Viceroy's Executive Council", Sardar Patel took charge of the departments of home affairs and information and broadcasting.

FactSnippet No. 931,846

Sardar Patel moved into a government house on Aurangzeb Road in Delhi, which would be his home until his death in 1950.

FactSnippet No. 931,847

Vallabhbhai Sardar Patel was one of the first Congress leaders to accept the partition of India as a solution to the rising Muslim separatist movement led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

FactSnippet No. 931,848

Sardar Patel had been outraged by Jinnah's Direct Action campaign, which had provoked communal violence across India, and by the viceroy's vetoes of his home department's plans to stop the violence on the grounds of constitutionality.

FactSnippet No. 931,849

Sardar Patel severely criticised the viceroy's induction of League ministers into the government, and the revalidation of the grouping scheme by the British government without Congress's approval.

FactSnippet No. 931,850

In December 1946 and January 1947, Patel worked with civil servant V P Menon on the latter's suggestion for a separate dominion of Pakistan created out of Muslim-majority provinces.

FactSnippet No. 931,851

When Lord Louis Mountbatten formally proposed the plan on 3 June 1947, Sardar Patel gave his approval and lobbied Nehru and other Congress leaders to accept the proposal.

FactSnippet No. 931,852

Sardar Patel took the lead in organising relief and emergency supplies, establishing refugee camps, and visiting the border areas with Pakistani leaders to encourage peace.

FactSnippet No. 931,853

Understanding that Delhi and Punjab policemen, accused of organising attacks on Muslims, were personally affected by the tragedies of partition, Sardar Patel called out the Indian Army with South Indian regiments to restore order, imposing strict curfews and shoot-on-sight orders.

FactSnippet No. 931,854

Sardar Patel suppressed from the press reports of atrocities in Pakistan against Hindus and Sikhs to prevent retaliatory violence.

FactSnippet No. 931,855

Sardar Patel assured the community leaders that if they worked to establish peace and order and guarantee the safety of Muslims, the Indian government would react forcefully to any failures of Pakistan to do the same.

FactSnippet No. 931,856

However, Sardar Patel was criticised by Nehru, secular Muslims, and Gandhi over his alleged wish to see Muslims from other parts of India depart.

FactSnippet No. 931,857

Sardar Patel clashed with Nehru and Azad over the allocation of houses in Delhi vacated by Muslims leaving for Pakistan; Nehru and Azad desired to allocate them for displaced Muslims, while Sardar Patel argued that no government professing secularism must make such exclusions.

FactSnippet No. 931,858

However, Sardar Patel was publicly defended by Gandhi and received widespread admiration and support for speaking frankly on communal issues and acting decisively and resourcefully to quell disorder and violence.

FactSnippet No. 931,859

Sardar Patel is, in this regard, compared to Otto von Bismarck who unified the many German states in 1871.

FactSnippet No. 931,860

Sardar Patel was considered a statesman of integrity with the practical acumen and resolve to accomplish a monumental task.

FactSnippet No. 931,861

Sardar Patel asked V P Menon, a senior civil servant with whom he had worked on the partition of India, to become his right-hand man as chief secretary of the States Ministry.

FactSnippet No. 931,862

On 6 August 1947, Sardar Patel began lobbying the princes, attempting to make them receptive towards dialogue with the future government and forestall potential conflicts.

FactSnippet No. 931,863

Sardar Patel used social meetings and unofficial surroundings to engage most of the monarchs, inviting them to lunch and tea at his home in Delhi.

FactSnippet No. 931,864

At these meetings, Sardar Patel explained that there was no inherent conflict between the Congress and the princely order.

FactSnippet No. 931,865

Sardar Patel invoked the patriotism of India's monarchs, asking them to join in the independence of their nation and act as responsible rulers who cared about the future of their people.

FactSnippet No. 931,866

Sardar Patel persuaded the princes of 565 states of the impossibility of independence from the Indian republic, especially in the presence of growing opposition from their subjects.

FactSnippet No. 931,867

Sardar Patel proposed favourable terms for the merger, including the creation of privy purses for the rulers' descendants.

FactSnippet No. 931,868

Sardar Patel combined diplomacy with force, demanding that Pakistan annul the accession, and that the Nawab accede to India.

FactSnippet No. 931,869

Sardar Patel sent the Army to occupy three principalities of Junagadh to show his resolve.

FactSnippet No. 931,870

In September 1948 Sardar Patel emphasised in Cabinet meetings that India should talk no more, and reconciled Nehru and the Governor-General, Chakravarti Rajgopalachari, to military action.

FactSnippet No. 931,871

Sardar Patel insisted that if Hyderabad were allowed to continue as an independent nation enclave surrounded by India, the prestige of the government would fall, and then neither Hindus nor Muslims would feel secure in its realm.

FactSnippet No. 931,872

Governor-General of India, Chakravarti Rajagopalachari, along with Nehru and Sardar Patel, formed the "triumvirate" that ruled India from 1948 to 1950.

FactSnippet No. 931,873

Prime Minister Nehru was intensely popular with the masses, but Sardar Patel enjoyed the loyalty and the faith of rank and file Congressmen, state leaders, and India's civil servants.

FactSnippet No. 931,874

Sardar Patel was a senior leader in the Constituent Assembly of India and was responsible in large measure for shaping India's constitution.

FactSnippet No. 931,875

Sardar Patel was the chairman of the committees responsible for minorities, tribal and excluded areas, fundamental rights, and provincial constitutions.

FactSnippet No. 931,876

Sardar Patel worked closely with Muslim leaders to end separate electorates and the more potent demand for reservation of seats for minorities.

FactSnippet No. 931,877

Sardar Patel's intervention was key to the passage of two articles that protected civil servants from political involvement and guaranteed their terms and privileges.

FactSnippet No. 931,878

Sardar Patel was instrumental in the founding the Indian Administrative Service and the Indian Police Service, and for his defence of Indian civil servants from political attack; he is known as the "patron saint" of India's services.

FactSnippet No. 931,879

Sardar Patel pledged the reconstruction of the ancient but dilapidated Somnath Temple in Saurashtra.

FactSnippet No. 931,880

Sardar Patel oversaw the restoration work and the creation of a public trust, and pledged to dedicate the temple upon the completion of work .

FactSnippet No. 931,881

Sardar Patel then oversaw India's military operations to secure Srinagar and the Baramulla Pass, and the forces retrieved much territory from the invaders.

FactSnippet No. 931,882

Sardar Patel strongly advised Nehru against going for arbitration to the United Nations, insisting that Pakistan had been wrong to support the invasion and the accession to India was valid.

FactSnippet No. 931,883

Sardar Patel did not want foreign interference in a bilateral affair.

FactSnippet No. 931,884

Sardar Patel strongly criticised Nehru's plan to sign a pact that would create minority commissions in both countries and pledge both India and Pakistan to a commitment to protect each other's minorities.

FactSnippet No. 931,885

Sardar Patel gave emotional speeches to members of Parliament, and the people of West Bengal, and spoke with scores of delegations of Congressmen, Hindus, Muslims, and other public interest groups, persuading them to give peace a final effort.

FactSnippet No. 931,886

Sardar Patel was instrumental in the creation of the All India Services which he described as the country's "Steel Frame".

FactSnippet No. 931,887

Sardar Patel reminded them that the ICS was no-longer neither Imperial, nor civil, nor imbued with any spirit of service after Independence.

FactSnippet No. 931,888

Rajmohan Gandhi, in his book writes that Nehru was focused on maintaining religious harmony, casting an independent foreign policy, and constructing a technological and industrial base, while Sardar Patel focused on getting the princely states to join the Indian Union, modernising the administrative services, and constructing a cross-party consensus on the significant elements of the Constitution.

FactSnippet No. 931,889

Sardar Patel was intensely loyal to Gandhi, and both he and Nehru looked to him to arbitrate disputes.

FactSnippet No. 931,890

When Nehru asserted control over Kashmir policy, Sardar Patel objected to Nehru's sidelining his home ministry's officials.

FactSnippet No. 931,891

Nehru was offended by Sardar Patel's decision-making regarding the states' integration, having consulted neither him nor the Cabinet.

FactSnippet No. 931,892

Sardar Patel asked Gandhi to relieve him of his obligation to serve, believing that an open political battle would hurt India.

FactSnippet No. 931,893

Sardar Patel was the last man to privately talk with Gandhi, who was assassinated just minutes after Sardar Patel's departure.

FactSnippet No. 931,894

At Gandhi's wake, Nehru and Sardar Patel embraced each other and addressed the nation together.

FactSnippet No. 931,895

Sardar Patel gave solace to many associates and friends and immediately moved to forestall any possible violence.

FactSnippet No. 931,896

Emotionally exhausted, Sardar Patel tendered a letter of resignation, offering to leave the government.

FactSnippet No. 931,897

Sardar Patel's secretary persuaded him to withhold the letter, seeing it as fodder for Sardar Patel's political enemies and political conflict in India.

FactSnippet No. 931,898

Sardar Patel reminded Patel of their 30-year partnership in the independence struggle and asserted that after Gandhi's death, it was especially wrong for them to quarrel.

FactSnippet No. 931,899

Moved, Sardar Patel publicly endorsed Nehru's leadership and refuted any suggestion of discord, and dispelled any notion that he sought to be prime minister.

FactSnippet No. 931,900

Nehru sought Sardar Patel's help in winning the party over, but Sardar Patel declined, and Prasad was duly elected.

FactSnippet No. 931,901

Sardar Patel rejected Nehru's views and endorsed Tandon in Gujarat, where Kripalani received not one vote despite hailing from that state himself.

FactSnippet No. 931,902

Sardar Patel believed Nehru had to understand that his will was not law with the Congress, but he personally discouraged Nehru from resigning after the latter felt that the party had no confidence in him.

FactSnippet No. 931,903

The then Indian Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, Vallabhbhai Sardar Patel had remarked that the "RSS men expressed joy and distributed sweets after Gandhi's death".

FactSnippet No. 931,904

Sardar Patel then demanded an absolute pre-condition that the RSS adopt a formal written constitution and make it public, where Sardar Patel expected RSS to pledge its loyalty to the Constitution of India, accept the Tricolor as the National Flag of India, define the power of the head of the organisation, make the organisation democratic by holding internal elections, authorisation of their parents before enrolling the pre-adolescents into the movement, and to renounce violence and secrecy.

FactSnippet No. 931,905

Sardar Patel was awarded honorary doctorates of law by Nagpur University, the University of Allahabad and Banaras Hindu University in November 1948, subsequently receiving honorary doctorates from Osmania University in February 1949 and from Punjab University in March 1949.

FactSnippet No. 931,906

Previously, Sardar Patel had been featured on the cover page of the January 1947 issue of Time magazine.

FactSnippet No. 931,907

When Sardar Patel returned to Delhi, thousands of Congressmen gave him a resounding welcome.

FactSnippet No. 931,908

Sardar Patel later began coughing blood, whereupon Maniben began limiting his meetings and working hours and arranged for a personalised medical staff to begin attending to Patel.

FactSnippet No. 931,909

Sardar Patel was extremely weak and had to be carried onto the aircraft in a chair.

FactSnippet No. 931,910

Sardar Patel's cremation was planned at Girgaum Chowpatty, but this was changed to Sonapur when his daughter conveyed that it was his wish to be cremated like a common man in the same place as his wife and brother were earlier cremated.

FactSnippet No. 931,911

Sardar Patel was criticised by Maulana Azad and others for readily supporting partition.

FactSnippet No. 931,912

Guha says that, during the Partition, Nehru wanted the government to make the Muslims stay back and feel secure in India while Sardar Patel was inclined to place that responsibility on the individuals themselves.

FactSnippet No. 931,913

Sardar Patel told Nehru that the minority had to remove the doubts that were entertained about their loyalty based on their past association with the demand of Pakistan.

FactSnippet No. 931,914

However, Sardar Patel successfully prevented attacks upon a train of Muslim refugees leaving India.

FactSnippet No. 931,915

Sardar Patel was said to be more forgiving of Indian nationalism and harsher on Pakistan.

FactSnippet No. 931,916

Sardar Patel exposed a riot plot, confiscated a large haul of weapons from the Delhi Jumma Masjid, and had a few plotters killed by the police, but his approach was said to have been harsh.

FactSnippet No. 931,917

Sardar Patel was criticised by supporters of Subhas Chandra Bose for acting coercively to put down politicians not supportive of Gandhi.

FactSnippet No. 931,918

Also, Sardar Patel was more inclined to support the West in the emerging Cold War.

FactSnippet No. 931,919

Sardar Patel had long been the rival of Nehru for party leadership, but Nehru usually prevailed over the older man, who died in 1950.

FactSnippet No. 931,920

Noorani, in comparing Nehru and Sardar Patel, writes that Nehru had a broader understanding of the world than Sardar Patel.

FactSnippet No. 931,921

Sardar Patel represented Indian nationalism's Hindu face, Nehru India's secular and global face.

FactSnippet No. 931,922

Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was all three, a rare combination in any historic epoch and in any country.

FactSnippet No. 931,923

Sardar Patel'story holds many examples of the fruits of freedom squandered by lack of attention to stability and order, the twin foundations of society.

FactSnippet No. 931,924

Dahyabhai Sardar Patel was a businessman who was elected to serve in the Lok Sabha as an MP in the 1960s.

FactSnippet No. 931,925

Sardar Patel was posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna, India's highest civilian honour, in 1991.

FactSnippet No. 931,926

In 2012, Sardar Patel was ranked third in Outlook India's poll of the Greatest Indian.

FactSnippet No. 931,927

Sardar Patel is the namesake of many public institutions in India.

FactSnippet No. 931,928

Statue of Unity is a monument dedicated to Sardar Patel, located in the Indian state of Gujarat, facing the Narmada Dam, 3.

FactSnippet No. 931,929