By Brij V Lal
Dr Lal's booklet is greater than an eloquent account of the political fight of 1 of Fiji's notable leaders. it's a well timed reminder that the method of constitutional swap hangs within the stability, because it did on the time of Mr Patel's dying. i am hoping his instance will motivate destiny generations in Fiji to understand the imaginative and prescient articulated via a super and brave suggest of democracy, and a faithful son of Fiji. overdue Adi Kuini Bavadra** [C:\Users\Microsoft\Documents\Calibre Library]
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Extra resources for A Vision for Change: AD Patel and the Politics of Fiji
Political ambition would naturally have been a factor: Patel was no saint. As an aspiring political leader, he must have mapped out the cultural and social contours of the Indian landscape and assessed the best path to take him forward. But perhaps there are other reasons as well for Patel’s involvement in the concerns of the Indian farmers. He had been a part of the landed gentry of Gujarat, many of whose members were variously engaged in agriculture, either cultivating or overseeing the cultivation of such crops as spiked millet (bajari), pigeon pea (tuver), sesame, castor, chillies and culinary spices, and such cash crops as cotton and tobacco which grew well in the fertile soil of the Charotar.
Soon after arriving in Fiji, Patel set up his legal practice at Renwick Road in Suva, which was then the heart of the Gujarati (Patidari) business community. A few years later, he moved to Ba, which by the 1930s had become the dominant area of Indian settlement. While he retained an office in that sugar town, Patel moved to Nadi in the mid-1930s, and he remained there for the rest of his life, except for a brief period in the mid-1960s, when he was the Member of Social Services and lived in Tamavua, Suva.
7 per cent of the state’s total land area) lies in this fertile central region of Gujarat. Within the state, this region is known as the Charotar, the name generally thought to derive from the Sanskrit word Charu (beautiful), but there are other interpretations as well. To most Gujaratis, the cultural and political boundaries of the Kheda district and the Charotar region are one and the same thing. The prosperity of the Charotar region impressed early English visitors. Alexander Kinloch Forbes wrote in 1878: The fields are, in the richer part of the province, enclosed with strong and high permanent hedges, which, with the noble trees that everywhere abound, render the country so close, that the boundaries of a field circumscribe the view, and unless the hum of voices, the whirr of the spinning wheel, or the barking of dogs, gives him notice of its vicinity, the traveller may enter a village almost unawares.
A Vision for Change: AD Patel and the Politics of Fiji by Brij V Lal