From the wall of Lakshmichand ji Soni:
UNKNOWN MANIBEN AND UNGRATEFUL NEHRU!
Maniben Patel was Sardar Patel’s only daughter!
When only 16, she switched to Khadi and worked in Gandhi Ashram!
When 17, she put all her gold bangles, earrings Gold Wrist Watch and all other ornaments & jewellery in a bundle of cloth, and obtained her Father’s nod, deposited them in Gandhi Ashram, for the cause of Freedom!
All the garments that Sardar Patel used to wear after 1921, were woven out of the yarn made by Maniben!
Unlike Nehru’s daughter Indira, Maniben was a Freedom Fighter, and actively participated in the Non-Co-operation Movement!
In 1928, in the Bardoli Satyagraha, she helped out Satyagrahis in various Camps!
She was arrested and jailed in 1930 in the Salt Satyagraha!
Thereafter, she was arrested and jailed on several occasions!
Defying the ban in Bardoli, arrested in 1932, again re-arrested for defying ban in Kheda and sentenced to 15 months imprisonment, for arousing people in villages of Rajkot arrested in 1938!
Gandhiji complimented the girl that he had not seen another daughter like Maniben!
Under Gandhiji’s selective disobedience, Maniben was arrested in 1940 and was released from Belgaum jail in May 1941!
When she again wanted to court arrest, Gandhiji had prevented this frail girl for ill-health!
She got arrested during the Quit India Movement of 1942, together with Kasturba Gandhi, and was released in March 1944; but again re-arrested in May 1944 in Bardoli! And was sent to Surat Jail & then to Yervada jail!
She didn’t get married and served her Father till Sardar Patel died in 1950!
Here is a shocking episode relating to Maniben, based on various sources of info, specifically Dr. Verggese Kurien’s autobiography: ‘I too had a Dream’!
Sardar Patel had no bank balance or property!
Even though he had substantial earnings as a very successful Lawyer, he gave away everything after plunging into the Freedom Movement!
He used to say: THOSE IN POLITICS SHOULD NOT HOLD PROPERTY, AND I HOLD NONE!
Today, everybody in the Congress, may think of Sardar Patel as a Big Fool! But that was the selfless Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel!
When Sardar died, he left nothing for his daughter!
With Sardar no more, she had to vacate the house! With no roof over her head and no money, Maniben had to fend for herself!
Obeying Sardar Patel’s parting instructions, Maniben had gone to Nehru to hand over a bag and a book!
Dutifully, she took an appointment with PM Nehru, she handed over the bag and the book to Nehru in person!
The book was an Account Book! The bag contained Rs. Thirty Five Lakhs! (It was in 1950)!
After delivering both to Nehru, she waited a while!
Nehru did not thank her!
Nehru didn’t enquire what she would now do!
Nehru didn’t ask where she would stay!
Nehru didn’t ask if she had any money on her!
Nehru didn’t ask if she was in need of any assistance or needed help!
Nehru didn’t ask, if he could do anything for her!
Nehru, did not show or speak of any sympathy, and had shown absolutely no interest in her!
For him, after receiving the huge sum of Rs. 35 lakhs, Maniben didn’t exist any more!
And the Congressmen, having no character, were preoccupied in licking the boots of the Nehru family, which they continue with great fervor even today, after seven decades!
Maniben went back to Ahmedabad, to stay with a cousin for the rest of her life, forgotten by an ungrateful Congress!