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Decolonization of French India

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Ajit K. Neogy

16. Talks Resumed at New Delhi: France Departed

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  • 1 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel. urgent) 6 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

1Before the Paris talks were officially over, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed the French Embassy in New Delhi that the Paris negotiations had failed to achieve any results and that Ostrorog was returning to New Delhi on 5 June 1954. The Indian delegation, it has been stated earlier, prolonged their stay for a few more days in the hope of finding a way out of the impasse. Coming back to New Delhi Ostrorog met the Secretary-General and apprised him of the controversial points over which the negotiations foundered.1 He also met Prime Minister Nehru and told him that the negotiations had failed because of the firmness of the Indian delegation. The French Ambassador asked for some months’ time to extricate France honourably from the situation. The Prime Minister told him that he was genuinely desirous of honouring the dignity of France, but the settlement of the police question was an essential point and France should not make it a prestige issue. The Indian Prime Minister renewed his friendly disposition towards France. To the query of the Secretary-General whether the French Government was serious for the merger of the French settlements within 4 months, Ostrorog replied in the affirmative. The Secretary-General assured the French Ambassador to find a compromise solution without preconditions. In fact France was more eager to continue the talks than she had been in the past. In the changed scenario France was not opposed to the merger of the French Indian settlements with India, but she did not know how to do it without impairing her interests and dignity. Colin Reid, who had visited Pondicherry around the same time, echoed the same when he wrote

  • 2 Colin Reid wrote this in The Daily Telegraph, 23 June 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 18 (Qd).

It is widely believed that French goodwill exists to evacuate these untenable Indian pockets. But no French Government either dares or knows how to effect the hand over. This is partly owing to the present state of party politics in France, partly for fear of repercussions elsewhere in French possessions overseas...2

2 The Indo-China question had, in fact, occupied a top most position in the list of her priority. French India was to come next. France was yet to address herself on French India. But she did not wish to push it out of her bounds by discontinuing the talks with India. The solution to Indo-French problems depended largely on the outcome of the Geneva Conference. France had another reason to maintain the continuity of diplomatic confabulation. It has been stated that the failure of the Paris talks had cast a pall of gloom on the French Indian people and they had lost their patience. Perhaps France was afraid that it would have to face a severe recrudescence of movement for merger if the problem continued to rot. France might also have borne in mind the thunderings of Arul Raj, President of the French India Youth Congress. To quote him

  • 3 The Madras Mail, 7 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

To achieve our liberation the French Indian people should prepare for the final struggle to make foreigners quit the pockets.3

  • 4 The Indian Express, 2 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 5 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel. urgent), 6 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd)

3The French Ambassador pointed out that while India made good gesture for creating better atmosphere for the negotiations France did nothing. Repressive measures were intensified in Yanam while the negotiations were going on in Paris. A scurrilous attack through hand bills and pamphlets was launched against Kewal Singh.4 Ostrorog wanted France to reciprocate in the same manner. He urged the Foreign Ministry that Ménard should be instructed not to take any step or initiative likely to impair the last chance of success, that French Government should also choose a representative for carrying out the function of a diplomatic counsellor and ensuring liaison with the French Embassy. Ostrorog claimed that he had convinced the Indian Secretary-General that in the absence of an agreement of principle before the return of R. K. Nehru who was to arrive on 9 June, everything would be uncertain.5

  • 6 Ostrorog a la Tournelle (tél. très secret), 7 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

4Coming back from Paris, Ostrorog made a thorough analysis of the situation in the settlements. In a “Very Secret” telegram to de la Tournelle, Ostrorog informed him that the action of the French police in Yanam on the pro-mergerists, while the Paris talks were going on, prompted the Indian delegation to take a firm stand for control over police administration. He lamented the failure of the local administration to realize the changes that were going on.6 This policy of supporting by all means French partisans and torturing their adversaries was, according to him, incapable of creating a cooling-off atmosphere favourable for a dignified departure of the French. He further regretted that officers in-charge of old policy had neither understood the situation nor adapted with it. The dig was obviously directed against rue Oudinot. In the same telegram he suggested de la Tournelle for the adoption of certain urgent measures if Indo-French relations were to be placed on a superior level. They were

  1. Immediate recall of Ménard,
  2. Nomination of a successor with concerted instructions from the French Overseas and Foreign Ministries with a view to effecting a détente by means of immediate and constant collaboration with the Consul General of India.7

5The Paris conference was in many respects a watershed in the Indo-French relations. If it had been successful the relations would have been strengthened by a golden bond of friendship. All eyes were fixed on the outcome of the Paris talks. They were sorely disappointed at the failure of the bilateral talks. The repressive measures resorted to by the French India police and hired ruffians during the Paris talks were now paid back by the pro-mergerists. The most spectacular event in the aftermath of the collapse of the Paris conference was the fall of Yanam where tyranny of the French police had produced an explosive situation. The pro-mergerists of Yanam had developed a rebellious mood. Since 2 June Yanam had practically gone out of French control. They cut off canal, interrupted with the passage of merchandises and seized the car of the Yanam administration and smuggled it into Indian territory. Colin Reid depicted the mood of the Yanamese thus

  • 8 As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 18 (Qd).

Rebellion is in the air in this old French India possession. Fear of coups, with great danger of bloodshed, has become accentuated since the collapse of the Paris negotiations...8

  • 9 Tél. Démarqué de Pondichéry, 7 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 10 Robert Buron au Président du Conseil, 10 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 72 (Qd).

6However, the explosion took place on 13 June. 6 000 people of Yanam liberated themselves from the yoke of French rule. The failure of the Paris negotiations also set the zero hour. There was complete chaos everywhere. Pondicherry, Karaikal and Mahe had become centres of disaffection and Yanam had slipped away. Pondicherry administration reported that condition of Pondicherry and Karaikal were worsening. The European population were passing through days of agony, but by and large general people were inclined for merger though they were set against Goubert.9 The plight of the people of Pondicherry continued to worsen day by day due to short supply of essential commodities. Progressive shortage of Indian currency made it increasingly difficult to exchange French bank notes. The demand for Indian currency outstripped its supply and caused considerable inconvenience to the local population. Kerosene disappeared from the market. Supply of electricity was snapped. Bus traffic between Pondicherry and Madras had to be suspended due to frequent interruptions by the French India refugees. The situation of Karaikal seemed more vulnerable. It had been getting supply of water for cultivation of rice and electricity from Indian Union and the French Overseas Minister feared that these considerations might induce the people to choose for union with India and in such a case Karaikal would become a tributary of India.10

  • 11 Consul de Madras a New Delhi (tél.), 16 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 72 (Qd).
  • 12 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tél.), 16 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 54 (Qd).
  • 13 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tél.), 17 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 54 (Qd).

7Suddenly the arrival of 50 armed police under command of a French officer on board the “Vietnam” caused quite a stir and added fuel to the fire.11 The landing of French troops, while talks were going on between the two countries, was considered “disturbing” by the Government of India. Kewal Singh pointed out that they had been landed with a view to intimidate the people of the settlements.12 The Government of India handed over a strong protest note to the French Embassy stating that apart from being provocative, this step of the French Government constituted a violation of the Treaty of Paris (30 May 1814). The Pondicherry administration denied the charge and maintained that they had been disembarked at Pondicherry for maintenance of peace and order.13

  • 14 Note: Etablissements français de l’Inde, 5 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 15 Affaires Etrangères (la Tournelle) a New Delhi (tél.), 29 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. (...)
  • 16 The Hindu, 20 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.). Also The Indian Express, 25 June 1954. (...)
  • 17 The Times of India, 21 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 18 The Hindu, 28 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 19 Ibid.
  • 20 The Indian Express, 7 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 21 The Indian Express, 23 May 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 22 As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).
  • 23 The Times of India, 20 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

8After the breakdown of the Paris talks both the French Overseas Ministry and the Pondicherry authorities began to think in terms of applying military measures in the settlements for the solution of the vexed problem. This was evident from the telegram of the Mahe Administrator stating that “La présence d’un bateau de guerre réglerait tout. La mer est peu agitée”14 (The presence of a man-of war would settle everything. The sea is little agitated). The French Ministry was, of course, in favour of despatching a man-of-war to Mahe for safe evacuation of its citizens,15 but Ostrorog rejected the idea. According to him the situation had changed in the whole of Asia after the Nehru-Chou-en-lai meeting at New Delhi. The official note admitted that the Pondicherry authorities had been instructed since many years to oppose Indian policy by recourse to military measures in order to strengthen its position there. The same note admitted that this was a faulty policy and even Mendès France was not happy with certain measures taken by the Pondicherry authorities. The military preparation of the Pondicherry authorities were further confirmed from the fact that large consignments of ammunitions were unloaded in Pondicherry from a cargo ship “St. Nazaire”.16 Again, trenches were dug all along the borders of Pondicherry settlement on the French side while several French Indian police stations were equipped with wireless sets.17 Trenches were also dug inside Mahe border.18 In addition to these notifications were issued by the French Indian Government announcing that between 21 May and 10 June, 22 ex-military personnel consisting of sergeants, chief corporals, sepoys and sergeants-major were recruited for service in French India.19 Moreover, a full-armed French officer and 5 French India policemen, who were found in Indian territorial waters near Cuddalore with a cargo of arms and ammunitions, were intercepted in the first week of July and taken to the shore and detained. The cargo, consisting of 27 packages, were bound for Karaikal where merger movement had been gathering force.20 As early as May the French Indian Government had reinforced the police force of Pondicherry to foil any “march of Pondicherry” by the Liberation Force Volunteers.21 An undated letter from the French Foreign Minister to the French Overseas Minister apprehended the possibility of the invasion of Pondicherry from Bahur by the pro-mergerists and the Pondicherry authorities were instructed to thwart it.22 The various steps stated above were taken possibly to defend its territories. The French Government again and again instructed the French Indian authorities to avoid bloodshed under any circumstances and the demonstration of military measures were taken possibly to strike a fear psychosis among the people of the settlements. Nationalist leaders interpreted that these steps were “intended for future military use against India should such a contingency arise”.23

  • 24 Note sur Etablissements français de l’Inde (Ministre des Affaires Etrangères), 8 juillet 1954. As 4 (...)
  • 25 The Indian Express, 17 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 26 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tel. démarqué), 7 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 27 The Indian Express, 25 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 28 The Indian Express, 18 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 29 De la Tournelle a New Delhi (tel.), 24 juin 1954. Ostrorog a Paris, (tel.), 30 juin 1954. As 44-55. (...)
  • 30 The Hindu, 4 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).
  • 31 The Hindu, 5 July 1954
  • 32 The Hindu, 17 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.). Also The Hindusthan Times, 16 July 1954 (...)
  • 33 Ostrorog a de la Tournelle, 16 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 34 The Madras Mail, 21 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

9Despite these military preparations the solidarity of the nationalist forces in Mahe remained intact. The fall of Yanam had broken the morale of both the French Indian authorities and the pro-French elements in Mahe. The situation in Mahe became visibly tense after the adoption of the pro-merger resolution. The French Ministry of Foreign Affairs wrote in a note of 8 July that Mahe was going the Yanam way.24 The Action Committee of the Mahe Mahajana Sabha met at Naluthera and decided to intensify the blockade around Mahe as part of the liberation struggle.25 With the tightening of the peoples’ blockade round French Mahe scarcity conditions had set in. Prices of commodities shot up. Several items of daily use and consumption were not available. The Pondicherry authorities, worrying over the security of 3 French officers, thought in terms of sending a man-of-war which would patrol in the sea and intervene in case of outbreak of grave incidents within Mahe.26 But police repression and vandalism of the goondas continued. The house of I. K. Kumaran was attacked by the goondas towards the end of June.27 This was followed by the exodus of large number of pro-merger elements from Mahe. More and more employees of the Mahe administration belonging to different departments and cadres crossed over to Indian Union causing a virtual paralysis of the administration.28 The communists committed some excesses by attacking the hospital of Mahe and on the instruction of French Foreign Ministry, Ostrorog lodged a strong protest against this.29 Meanwhile the Mahajana Sabha volunteers entered Mahe from different directions and hoisted Indian Union flags. The Mayor of Mahe left the town on 30 June and took shelter in Indian territory after making a declaration demanding immediate merger of the French settlements. Those who signed the merger resolution were expelled from Mahe.30 The Mahe administration warned that citizens indulging in pro-merger activities would be dealt with according to the French Penal Code. This threat failed to dampen the enthusiasm of the nationalists who had suffered so much in the past. The Secretariat of the Malabar Committee of the Communist Party of India called upon the citizens of Mahe and its neighbouring people to unite as one man against the French “imperialists” and oust them from there. The committee had issued instructions to party units to treat the liberation of Mahe as a “foremost issue” and not to cloud it with other issues.31 The Mahe Administrator found himself unable to maintain order and solicited permission from Paris authorities for evacuating the pocket. Accordingly on 16 July Deschamps, Mahe Administrator, handed over de facto governmental charge to the people of Mahe. I. K. Kumaran, President of the Mahajana Sabha and Joint Action Committee, took over charge of the Mahe administration on behalf of the people. He hoisted the national flag on the Government House. Wishing happiness and prosperity of the people, Deschamps left Mahe the same afternoon.32 In Mahe, the French government had not really transferred power to Indian hands. France was, in fact, compelled to retire. A different procedure. according to Ostrorog, might have tragic consequences.33 The Government of India did not take over the territories on the ground that the transfer was not legal because transfer was not made from government to government basis.34

  • 35 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 13 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).
  • 36 Ostrorog à Guy de la Tournelle, 23 juin 1954. 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

10Situation had really become “different and difficult”35 in the aftermath of the Paris talks. France was passing through a critical period. Her position in Indo-China was precarious. There were fresh waves of unrest in Tunisia and Morocco. In French India Mahe and Yanam had fallen and many villages around Pondicherry had slipped away. Prime Minister Nehru, who held high hopes in the new government headed by Mendès France, was in favour of moderation and reaching an amicable settlement with France. R. K. Nehru, who had taken a firm stand from the outset and who had told the Prime Minister that such a step would oblige France to yield to Indian demands, was hopeful of a solution after he had met the French Foreign Minister at Paris. Nevertheless he had not departed from his original stand. According to him, already enough test of public opinion had been found. Even if France insisted on holding popular consultation, he demanded that police, if not judiciary, must be in Indian hands. He told the same thing to Middleton, British High Commissioner in New Delhi, who met him on the instruction of the British Foreign office which was again approached by the French Government. Middleton later told Ostrorog that no amount of persuasion would have any effect on him.36

  • 37 Ibid.

11French attitude was also changing after the assumption of power by Mendès France as Prime Minister in June 1954. At the forthcoming Geneva Conference, France was determined to effect an armistice in Indo-China by 20 July. India was destined to play a prominent part there and France banked on Indian support to reach the goal. It was in this backdrop that Ostrorog wrote to de la Toumelle to expedite the proposed talk with India.37

  • 38 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel.), 13 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).
  • 39 Paris (Affaires Etrangères) à l’Ambassade de France (tél.), 29 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, (...)
  • 40 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangbèes (tél.), 1 août 1954. As 44-55 française Vol. 20 (Qd). Also tél. (S (...)
  • 41 Réunion tenue le 28 juillet 1954 dans le bureau et sous la présidence de M. de la Tournelle 29 juil (...)

12The new French Government’s commitment for solution to Indo-China and French India problems was genuine. Ostrorog had left for Pondicherry in the middle of June to gather first hand knowledge of the French India situation which had taken a new turn after the unsuccessful talk at Paris. He told Ménard that the French Government had formally decided to quit India within a short time. But they were unsure as to the procedure of pulling out. They discussed the alternative suggestions which the French Ambassador had submitted to the French Foreign Ministry as early as 11 June. They were capitulation, resistance and evacuation.38 It was difficult to choose any one of them. The two ministries –the Foreign Ministry and the Overseas Ministry– examined them and found them “unsatisfactory”. Resistance was considered impossible and unthinkable. The primary anxiety of the French Government was to offer protection of all kinds to the citizens. Evacuation was practically difficult for it was not possible to send a warship capable of accommodating 1 300 people. Capitulation was deemed prejudicial to national self-respect and a dangerous precedent. The suggestions were ruled out and it was decided to resume negotiations on a new basis. The French Foreign Affairs Ministry telegraphically sent to its Ambassador in New Delhi the new basis of negotiations on 29 June.39 They were modified on 6 July. In fact the new basis of negotiations was framed and reframed to suit the needs of the French Government. A seven point plan was finally prepared by the French Foreign Ministry on 15 August and accepted by the French Overseas Ministry. This Schéma des Instructions was, however, despatched to the French Ambassador in New Delhi on 19 July who in his turn informed the French Foreign Ministry that they had favourable chance of being accepted by the Indian Government.40 The seven-point proposition, slightly modified at an interministerial meeting41 held on 28 July under the chairmanship of de la Tournelle, ran as follows

  1. Acceptance by France of the principle of de facto cession before the de jure cession.
  2. Determination between the Ambassador of France assisted by Pondicherry officials and the Government of India of the modalities for transfer of power and working out a project of agreement aimed at safeguarding the cultural and economic interests of France.
  3. Taking over by the Government of India the charge of administration of the territories which had escaped French control.
  4. Meeting of the Representative Assembly and the Municipal Councils in a Congress within three months and without preliminary elections with a view to expressing their opinions on the above noted arrangements and on the conditions of transfer of power.
  5. If the vote is favourable for integration, de facto cession according to accepted modalities.
  6. Preparation of an agreement for transfer of sovereignty.
  7. Signature of the agreement and ratification by Parliaments.42

13These arrangements would make it possible

  • to consult the population of the settlements even though two of them had slipped out of their control
  • to cede nothing to the Government of India before consultation
  • to inform exactly the representatives of the people the conditions under which the transfer would be carried out
  • to define before the possible transfer guarantees of political, economic and cultural order which would benefit the people.43
  • 44 Ostrorog aux Etrangères (tel. secret), 25 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 45 Note pour le Président sur des Etablissements français de l’Inde (Rédigée par de la Tournelle), 23  (...)
  • 46 Ostrorog à de la Tournelle, 27 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 47 Ibid.
  • 48 Reunion tenue le 28 juillet 1954 dans le bureau et sous la présidence de M. de la Tournelle, 29 jui (...)

14The seven-point plan did not contain any reference to direct popular suffrage. This was not insisted upon. India would have rejected it because if she had accepted this in French India, it would have created a precedence in Kashmir.44 Pakistan and Portugal might have demanded the same in Kashmir and Goa.45 Moreover, India had no intention to legitimize the incorporation of the French territories by a popular consultation. However, the basis of Indo-French negotiation was thus set right. Indo-French relations, though still hanging in a balance, at least entered a new phase dispelling the despondency which had overtaken them since the break down of the Paris Conference. Ostrorog wrote to de la Tournelle that the success of the Geneva Conference had created a favourable impression in New Delhi. The Indian Prime Minister paid a rich homage to Mendès France.46 India’s role in Geneva Conference, her chairmanship of International Control Commission in Indo-China, her close relations with China reinforced after Chou-en-lai’s visit to New Delhi in mid-June had given her a dominant position in South East Asia. France could not afford to ignore these developments and Ostrorog believed that this was the time to take up the problems of French Indian settlements with New Delhi.47 Hibbon also remarked in the interministerial meeting that if France was really interested to safeguard her material and cultural interests in the French settlements, she should negotiate with India48

  • 49 Outre-mer au Commissaire de la République (Pondichéry) tél. 30 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Françai (...)
  • 50 Mendès France à Buron, Ministre de la France d’outre-mer, 25 juillet 1954. As 44-
  • 51 The Times of India, 5 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 52 The Hindu, 6 July 1954. The Indian Express, 6 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 53 The Times of India, 7 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 54 The Hindu, 6 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

15Ostrorog was, however, instructed to submit the seven point propositions to the Indian Government pointing out, as directed by the French Foreign Ministry, that its acceptance must accompany the immediate relaxation of economic pressure on the French settlements. He also made it clear that in case of refusal, France would evacuate from Pondicherry and Karaikal reserving all rights of sovereignty on the four settlements with the declaration that she had to withdraw under pressure of force. Fearing that India might not relax her economic grip over Pondicherry and Karaikal and bearing in mind Subbiah’s declaration to observe Quit India Day on 9 August and treat the day as “le dernier stade pour l’independance” (last stage of independence) and Hibbon’s apprehensions that the anniversary of Indian independence (i.e. 15 August) might witness large scale demonstrations by the nationalist forces in Pondicherry and Karaikal, arrangements were made for the evacuation of the French families and functionaries, particularly metropolitan, of these places before 15 August and the French Overseas Minister instructed Ménard to apply his judgement in such an eventuality and informed him that he might press into service S/S Charlton Star, S/S Menam and S/S Espérance if situation so demanded.49 The plan for evacuation had already been considered unsatisfactory by the French Government, but it was used as a ploy to embarrass the Indian Government and endorsement for it came from a person no less than Mendès France.50 According to local sources the Treasury of Pondicherry had been instructed to prepare pay bills of all government officials for the month of August well in advance. The Treasury also worked on Saturdays and Sundays to keep balance sheet of revenue and expenditure up to date.51 Moreover, the Pondicherry authorities had asked various police stations in the settlements to send their stocks of arms and ammunitions to Central Police Depot where they were packed in cases. It was believed that these cases would be shipped in the next few days either to France or to French colonies in Africa.52 Preparatory to their leaving before the middle of the month, over 400 persons, mainly of French families, were vaccinated in the first week of August. Aside from these, French India authorities burnt in Pondicherry more than lorry load of French India postal and revenue stamps because they would be of no use in future.53 So long Pondicherry administration was in a fix. Shaky position of France in North Africa, uncertain future in Indo-China, developments within the French India settlements, rise of Malagasy nationalism and gloomy financial conditions in French India –all combined to render her position precarious. Mendès France lifted her from the morass by effecting a cease-fire in Indo-China and granting some sort of home rule in Tunisia. Her position in French India was far from reassuring. At Geneva Mendès France had taken the historic decision of handing over the French establishments to India. But he did not disclose it fearing that premature publicity might have unfortunate effects on French public opinion some section of which was opposed to the “new anti-imperial broom” which he had been wielding so categorically since he began to dominate the French political scene. It was widely believed that Mendès France and V. K. Menon who “shook hands warmly” had discussed the date and manner of transfer. The French decision to hand over French India settlements to India, coming closely after the grant of independence to Indo-China and a large measure of self-government to Tunisia, had heartened Washington. The general feeling was that western powers’ moral position had been strengthened by France’s breakaway from her colonial moorings.54

  • 55 The Hindu, 10 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 56 The Indian Express, 9 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

16Following the “cracking off” the adjoining communes from French Indian administration and considerable travel restrictions, there had been a steep fall in the business of the jewel-mortgage section of the Bank of Indo-China. The public was gradually diverting their banking transactions to the branches of two Indian Union banks in Pondicherry.55 Indian Post Offices had also suspended acceptance of French currency for their transactions. One of the reasons for this was the accumulation of large sums of currency to the credit of the postal department and the inability of the French India Government to reimburse these sums in Indian currency. Under the system in vogue, money received in French currency was deposited by the Post-Offices to the United Commercial Bank and at the end of every month the French India Administrator reimbursed it in Indian currency. But during the preceding few months the French India Government had not been able to reimburse these amount.56 This suspended the activities of the Bank of Indo-China – chief patron of smuggling and contraband trade.

  • 57 The Hindu, 3 July 1954.
  • 58 Pondichéry à Paris (tél.), 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).
  • 59 The Indian Express, 23 July 1954 Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 60 The Madras Mail, 20 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 61 Muthupillai a Mendès France (tel.), fin juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd). Also (...)

17The French India administration, even after the fall of Yanam and Mahe, refused to mend itself. It continued to follow its policy of repression much to the dissatisfaction of Mendès France. Nationalists were still being assaulted. The assault on Swamy Lourdes, in front of his house, by a group of goondas and the indifference of the French India Governor to take any action when requested to do so clearly indicated the unwillingness of the French Indian administration to put down the goondas who went about merrily assaulting nationalists and pro-mergerists in broad daylight on public thorough fares of French Indian capital itself.57 Despite being indicted by Ostrorog, Ménard had not yet changed his style. Far from adding to its strength, this policy eroded its credibility and alienated its well-wishers. It had always picked up and promoted pro-French group or groups from among the local population to counteract the nationalist forces. Aside from J. E. Sarcey, editor of République française or Goubert, Duthamby, referred to earlier, was one such person. It was this man who founded, under the direct patronage of the Pondicherry administration, the French India Democratic Party. The party had the backing of the influential section of the population and Duthamby had been acting as the mouthpiece of French Indian administration. The Pondicherry administration had also spent a good amount to buy off the support of his party. People like Duthamby had no integrity of character. They were selfish and wished well for none but themselves. Sensing that French colonial rule was cracking and the French boat sinking, he withdrew the support of his party informing Ménard that he could no longer go against the strong current of public opinion and decided to work for the merger of the French settlements with India. The desertion of Duthamby and his party deprived the Pondicherry Government of its last ally. Even dependence on police force was becoming risky. In Pondicherry, police was tired and overworked. Their loyalty, it was feared, might not last long.58 In such an eventuality the administration was sure to collapse. As in Mahe and Yanam, government officials of Pondicherry and Karaikal were also dissociating themselves from the administration which was crushing the legitimate aspirations of the people.59 People became more desperate and held meetings and demonstrations defying government ban.60 Repression of the French police in Bahur compelled many citizens to leave the enclave. This only resulted in steeling their nerve and intensifying the movement for merger. Dadala, Administrator of Yanam, who was organizing liberation movement on the border of Pondicherry, urged the people of the yet unliberated French India commune of Bahur on the sea coast to follow the example of Yanam where people freed themselves by their own efforts and appealed to them to fight unitedly. Muthupillai threatened from Madras that if the talks between France and India failed to give any material benefit some form of direct action would be resorted to.61 The Ajmer session of the AICC expressed satisfaction that the people of the French settlements had declared themselves in favour of union with India.

  • 62 The Indian Express, 25 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 63 The Hindu, 1 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 64 The Hindu, 31 July 1954.
  • 65 The Hindu, 30 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 66 The Hindu, 6 July 1954.
  • 67 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (démarqué téléphone par la France d’outre-mer), 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. I (...)
  • 68 Consul de Madras à Ostrorog, 4 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).
  • 69 Escargueil (Secrétaire Général, Ambassade de l’Inde) au Ministre de la France d’outre-mer, 17 août  (...)
  • 70 Ostrorog au Ministre des Affaires Etrangbres, 3 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

18A glimpse of the frayed temper of the pro-mergerists could be obtained when 5 college students of Pondicherry commenced a fast “to bring a change of heart in those who still lent their support to the French”.62 Dorai Munussamy said that it was only the beginning of a chain of fasts proposed to be undertaken in the following few days in front of government offices and educational institutions. This had a tremendous effect on the student community in Pondicherry. In Karaikal Léon St. Jean, along with others who called themselves “satyagrahis”, had fasted with a view to rallying the mass round the movement for merger. The French India administration was under terrible pressure. Excitement reached its climax when the “Massacre Day” was observed on 30 July. It was on this day in 1936 that French India police had shot dead a few workers at the local Savana Mill for organizing a trade union to fight for their legitimate rights. In the changed context the observance of the "Massacre Day” had a special significance.63 This whipped up public sentiment. Processions were taken out by the workers to commemorate the days. The volunteers were beaten by the French Indian police and the flags were forcibly taken away from them.64 Joined by the public they demanded the French to quit. In fact, both Pondicherry and Karaikal were tossing with excitement.65 Picketing was going on along the border of Karaikal. No bus entered Karaikal limits from Indian Union. Entry of essential commodities and foodstuffs into Karaikal from India was interdicted. This caused terrible inconvenience to the people, but this measure was taken to make the people understand that these hardships were due to French misrule in Indian soil.66 It was no longer an affair of the nationalists or the pro-mergerists or the politicians. Government officials, merchants, students and a cross section of the population lent their support to the movement.67 The Executive Committee of Karaikal Muslim Welfare Committee passed a resolution emphasizing the need for merger of the remaining French settlements and a similar resolution was taken by the Muslim Community of Nagore (south of Karaikal).68 The representatives of various political parties and nationalist organizations, merchants and prominent citizens constituted a Liberation Committee whose purpose was, according to Léon St. Jean, Convenor of the Committee, “to co-ordinate the work of all organizations for merger”.69 In the light of these developments, Ménard wanted Ostrorog to write a strong note to the Government of India, but he refused because such a step might jeopardize the prospect of a peaceful settlement which the French Government was eager to reach upon.70 It was in this background that Ostrorog submitted the seven-point propositions to Prime Minister Nehru. The initial reaction of the Prime Minister was, however, favourable. He told Ostrorog that the scheme needed close and careful study. The Indian Prime Minister pointed out that India had been following a policy of moderation since Mendès France had started negotiations at Geneva and it would continue to do the same hoping that France would also do the same.

  • 71 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 5 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).
  • 72 Ostrorog au Ministre des Affaires Etrangères, 6 oct. 1952. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 2 (Qd).
  • 73 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel.) 5 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

19The seven-point proposal was finally accepted by Nehru on 7 August. Ménard was recalled to Paris and Pierre Landy, a senior diplomat and former Consul General of Calcutta, was sent to Pondicherry on 14 August as diplomatic adviser. Escargueil, Secretary-General of the French Embassy at New Delhi, took charge of the Pondicherry administration. Realizing the gravity of the situation Ostrorog sent Costilhes to Pondicherry for reasons more than one –to study the situation in Pondicherry and Karaikal in the background of all kinds of rumour going on there, to talk to the Indian Consul General for arranging peacefully the process of transfer and to normalize relations with the Indian Consul General which had practically broken down in the previous regime.71 This was a prelude to the imminent transfer of power. In the changed scenario the French Government was giving much emphasis on forging better relations with the Indian Consul General at Pondicherry. Ostrorog was happy over the nomination of Pierre Landy as diplomatic Counsellor. He had been representing to the French authorities during the last two years for deputing such an official for assisting the Commissaire de la République.72 He wished to utilize Landy for another reason. Escargueil was a highly respected, upright man, but according to Ostrorog he did not have broadness of views for undertaking a difficult task like the liquidation of French Indian settlements. He particularly bore in mind the hostile relations Escargueil had with the Consul General. A competent person like Pierre Landy was also thought indispensable to facilitate the path of the dignified departure of the French from Pondicherry.73 The Indian Government having agreed to withdraw all measures of economic pressures and the independence day having passed off peacefully, there was no more any need for evacuation which, Ostrorog admitted, he had suggested to embarrass the Indian Prime Minister.

  • 74 Le Monde, 12 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 75 The Times of India, 13 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).
  • 76 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 12 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).
  • 77 The Hindu, 16 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

20The French Ambassador met Nehru on 7 August and they discussed about the details of a common declaration. It was expected that an official announcement for the transfer of power was to be made soon. Suddenly on 10 August Ostrorog received a telegram from the French Foreign Ministry instructing him to suspend the publication of the communiqué till 10 September. Mendès France was not in favour of making public the basis of negotiation when the French National Assembly was going to debate the issue and certain interpellations had already been made. Meanwhile, Buron remarked that no transfer or cession of sovereignty over the French pockets in India without popular consultation could take place and Ostrorog was instructed to adhere to this in principle.74 If not referendum, the statement made in the French National Assembly by the French Overseas Minister gives the impression that France was possibly insisting on the adoption of some kind of consultation with the people involved before the transfer of power.75 Ostrorog was personally inclined to publish such a communiqué. He feared that prolonged silence might provoke the resentment of the people and affect the situation in the settlements. Moreover, the press must be made aware of the French attitude. Prime Minister Nehru was going to make a statement in Parliament on 25 August and he had already told him that nothing would be done which might seem embarrassing to the French Government without preliminary consultation.76 Ostrorog further reported that Nehru had requested him to inform the French Foreign Minister that he would do his best to effect a détente with regard to the French Indian problems and urged him to start the negotiations without delay at New Delhi in order to resolve the issue. Ostrorog saw no reason to make any further delay in resuming the talks. It has already been pointed out that 15 August had passed off peacefully. From the lofty rampart of the Red Fort Prime Minister Nehru had declared that Asia was on the march and that time had long passed when any country could rule over another by force any where in the world.77 This was followed by his speech on foreign affairs in Parliament on 25 August. He expressed the hope that a solution to the French Indian problem would soon be found out. He added

  • 78 The Indian Express, 26 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

Exchange of views and ideas between ourselves and the Government of France have been in progress for some time and they are being pursued with good will on the both sides. The Prime Minister of France had demonstrated to the world his patriotism and boldness as well as his desire for peaceful settlement by negotiations. I have every hope that we shall before long witness the solution of this problem in the context of the full freedom of our people and of firmer friendship between India and France.78

  • 79 Note pour le Secrétaire d’Etat, 10 sept. 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd). Also The Hin (...)

21During the intervening period, i. e. from 15 August to 25 August, no major incidents to hinder the process of negotiation had occurred in the French Indian establishments and the French National Assembly, as it will be evident later, cleared the deck for resuming the negotiations between the two countries. On 27 August the French Overseas Minister had to satisfy the French National Assembly by replying to the various queries and he mentioned the guarantees wrested from India as condition of the talks. By a vote of 371 against 215 was adopted a motion favouring the continuation of the negotiation having due regard to the French constitutional principles, safeguarding the interests of the French nationals and the protection of French economic and cultural interests.79

  • 80 Ostrorog à Paris (tel.), 26 sept. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 465 (A. O. M.).
  • 81 The Hindu, 15 Oct. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

22The Indo-French talks at New Delhi had been virtually going on from early August, but the final phase of the talks on the modalities for the transfer of power had commenced from 24 August. The initial difficulties which had hamstrung the Paris talks were, in the meanwhile, sorted out and the following weeks witnessed an elaboration of the draft agreement between the representatives of the two governments. The main issues covered during the negotiations proceeded in the line of the motion passed by the French National Assembly on 27 August, i. e. the protection of French cultural, commercial and financial interests and safeguarding the rights of those associated with the French Indian administration. The negotiations, however, resulted in complete agreement towards the end of September.80 The text of the agreement, along with the 8 letters exchanged, was fully signed on 11 October. While Indo-French talks had been going on in New Delhi, Paris was proceeding towards holding the local consultation in fulfilment of French constitutional obligations. France had always regarded the affairs of the French Indian settlements as her internal matter and for that matter falling exclusively within its competence. The arrangements it made for holding the consultation were brought to the knowledge of the Indian Government as a matter of information. Under the existing circumstances the only way in which this could be done was through taking a vote of the Representative Assembly and the Municipal Councils of south Indian settlements elected by adult franchise. By accepting this procedure as being tantamount to the “consultations” required under the French constitution, France gave proof of her practical wisdom and her genuine desire of washing off her hands from the vexed French Indian problems and laid the foundation of closer friendship between India and France.81 The procedure, incorporated into the joint communiqué which was published simultaneously from New Delhi and Paris, ran as follows

  • 82 The Hindu, 15 Oct. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

Desirous of reaching a final settlement on the question of the French establishments in India, the Government of India and the Government of French Republic through their representatives in Delhi have engaged in negotiations. As a result of these negotiations the two governments have agreement on the following procedure. All elected members of the Representative Assembly and the Municipal Councils of the establishments will met at a congress on October 18 in the settlement of Pondicherry to consider the joint proposals of the two governments for a final settlement of the future of the settlements and record their decision on these proposals as an expression of the wishes of the people.82

  • 83 Journal officiel de l’Inde Française, 105 années supplémentaires, Lundi 11 oct. 1955. Aff. Politiqu (...)
  • 84 Note sur des Etablissements français de l’Inde, dec. 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

23An arrêté of the Commissaire de la République was published on 11 October in the Journal officiel of Pondicherry with a view to acquainting the people the conditions of the consultation.83 The Pondicherry Government issued summons to the elected Municipal members of the south Indian settlements and the Representative Assembly to meet at Kizhur (Kisoor) about 10 miles on the border west of Pondicherry on 18 October at 10 o’clock to decide the future of the French settlements in India. The members of the four settlements whose election was valid up to 1 January 1954 had been asked to vote on that day either for the continuation of French rule in these settlements or for merger of these settlements with the Indian Union. The importance of the congress and the necessity of the members to attend the congress was expressed in a circular which was signed by the Secretary-General for French India and despatched to the elected members accompanied by the topographical map of the place where the congress was to be held together with an admission card. There was a proposal to hold the congress at Karaikal, but that was set aside. Kizhur, a tiny hamlet situated in Indian territory, was finally chosen in order to avoid the disturbances which the presence of Goubert and Muthupillai might have provoked if the congress had been held at Pondicherry.84 Balasubramanian, President of the Representative Assembly, acted as the Presiding Officer of the congress. Out of 178, 170 members voted overwhelmingly in favour of merger with Indian Union and 8 voted against. The results were declared in the presence of Pierre Landy and Kewal Singh. The period of suspense was over. The usual scene of excitement, tension and violence which had tainted previous elections in French India was totally absent here in this hamlet. It was so to speak a parody of consultation. France had to agree to this as a sop to satisfy her constitutional requirements and India had to accept the verdict given by the members of the Municipal Councils and Representative Assembly whose elections she had protested as irregular. This was followed by the signing of the treaty at New Delhi on 21 October. The remaining ten days witnessed the French India authorities making hectic preparations for total withdrawal from Pondicherry and Karaikal. As fixed earlier Escargueil left Pondicherry for France on 31 October handing over charge to Pierre Landy. The French national flag was removed from the top of the Governor’s house in the evening of the same day. On 1 November of 1954 at 6.45 in the morning a document of transfer was signed between Pierre Landy representing France and Kewal Singh, Indian Consul General and Indian Commissioner designate in the official residence of the former. In Karaikal too Boucheney aided by Duvauchelle, an officer of the Foreign Department who had recently arrived there, handed over power to the Indian administration. Immediately after this the Indian national flag was unfurled over the Government House to the tumultuous ovation of thousands of people who had gathered there marking the close of seven year old tortuous negotiations. Throughout the day there was jubilation everywhere in Pondicherry, in Karaikal, in Mahe and in Yanam and the rest of India joined them in this hour of joy. As a result of the historic decision taken at Kizhur (Kisoor) more than three lakhs people rejoined their mother country –India– at the dawn of 1 November thereby ending 240-year old French rule on the four settlements of south India. The people of India welcomed the residents of the erstwhile French settlements into the larger fold of Indian citizenship. “A part of India separated from the motherland is coming back to us of its own free will”, Prime Minister Nehru said in a message welcoming the people inhabiting of “what used to be the French enclaves in India” “as nationals of the Republic of India”. Similarly President Rajendra Prasad, welcoming the people of Pondicherry and other settlements in his message, said “we shall be equal partners in a common endeavour to work for the progress and prosperity of India”. The congress of Kizhur (Kisoor) facilitated the dissolution of French colonial rule in the French pockets, but French sovereignty over them continued legally till de jure transfer had taken place in 1962.

Notes

1 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel. urgent) 6 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

2 Colin Reid wrote this in The Daily Telegraph, 23 June 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 18 (Qd).

3 The Madras Mail, 7 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

4 The Indian Express, 2 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

5 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel. urgent), 6 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

6 Ostrorog a la Tournelle (tél. très secret), 7 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

7 Conseil de Cabinet. Expose verbal de M. le Ministre de la France d’outre-mer. Object: Situation des Etablissements français, Vol. 20 (Qd).

8 As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 18 (Qd).

9 Tél. Démarqué de Pondichéry, 7 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

10 Robert Buron au Président du Conseil, 10 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 72 (Qd).

11 Consul de Madras a New Delhi (tél.), 16 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 72 (Qd).

12 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tél.), 16 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 54 (Qd).

13 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tél.), 17 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 54 (Qd).

14 Note: Etablissements français de l’Inde, 5 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

15 Affaires Etrangères (la Tournelle) a New Delhi (tél.), 29 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

16 The Hindu, 20 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.). Also The Indian Express, 25 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

17 The Times of India, 21 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

18 The Hindu, 28 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

19 Ibid.

20 The Indian Express, 7 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

21 The Indian Express, 23 May 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

22 As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

23 The Times of India, 20 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

24 Note sur Etablissements français de l’Inde (Ministre des Affaires Etrangères), 8 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd). Also la Tournelle a New Delhi (tel.). 29 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

25 The Indian Express, 17 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

26 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (tel. démarqué), 7 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

27 The Indian Express, 25 June 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

28 The Indian Express, 18 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

29 De la Tournelle a New Delhi (tel.), 24 juin 1954. Ostrorog a Paris, (tel.), 30 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

30 The Hindu, 4 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 464 (A. O. M.).

31 The Hindu, 5 July 1954

32 The Hindu, 17 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.). Also The Hindusthan Times, 16 July 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 12 (Qd).

33 Ostrorog a de la Tournelle, 16 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

34 The Madras Mail, 21 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

35 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 13 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

36 Ostrorog à Guy de la Tournelle, 23 juin 1954. 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

37 Ibid.

38 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel.), 13 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

39 Paris (Affaires Etrangères) à l’Ambassade de France (tél.), 29 juin 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 19 (Qd).

40 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangbèes (tél.), 1 août 1954. As 44-55 française Vol. 20 (Qd). Also tél. (Secret), 25 juillet 1954.

41 Réunion tenue le 28 juillet 1954 dans le bureau et sous la présidence de M. de la Tournelle 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

42 Note sur des Etablissements français de l’Inde, déc. 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

43 Ibid.

44 Ostrorog aux Etrangères (tel. secret), 25 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

45 Note pour le Président sur des Etablissements français de l’Inde (Rédigée par de la Tournelle), 23 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

46 Ostrorog à de la Tournelle, 27 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

47 Ibid.

48 Reunion tenue le 28 juillet 1954 dans le bureau et sous la présidence de M. de la Tournelle, 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

49 Outre-mer au Commissaire de la République (Pondichéry) tél. 30 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

50 Mendès France à Buron, Ministre de la France d’outre-mer, 25 juillet 1954. As 44-

51 The Times of India, 5 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

52 The Hindu, 6 July 1954. The Indian Express, 6 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

53 The Times of India, 7 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

54 The Hindu, 6 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

55 The Hindu, 10 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

56 The Indian Express, 9 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

57 The Hindu, 3 July 1954.

58 Pondichéry à Paris (tél.), 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

59 The Indian Express, 23 July 1954 Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

60 The Madras Mail, 20 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

61 Muthupillai a Mendès France (tel.), fin juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd). Also The Indian Express, 22 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

62 The Indian Express, 25 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

63 The Hindu, 1 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

64 The Hindu, 31 July 1954.

65 The Hindu, 30 July 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

66 The Hindu, 6 July 1954.

67 Pondichéry à Outre-mer (démarqué téléphone par la France d’outre-mer), 29 juillet 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

68 Consul de Madras à Ostrorog, 4 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

69 Escargueil (Secrétaire Général, Ambassade de l’Inde) au Ministre de la France d’outre-mer, 17 août 1954. Aff. Politiques. Inde E 32 (A. O. M.).

70 Ostrorog au Ministre des Affaires Etrangbres, 3 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

71 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 5 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

72 Ostrorog au Ministre des Affaires Etrangères, 6 oct. 1952. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 2 (Qd).

73 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tel.) 5 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

74 Le Monde, 12 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

75 The Times of India, 13 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

76 Ostrorog aux Affaires Etrangères (tél.), 12 août 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 20 (Qd).

77 The Hindu, 16 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

78 The Indian Express, 26 Aug. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

79 Note pour le Secrétaire d’Etat, 10 sept. 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd). Also The Hindu, 17 Sept. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

80 Ostrorog à Paris (tel.), 26 sept. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 465 (A. O. M.).

81 The Hindu, 15 Oct. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

82 The Hindu, 15 Oct. 1954. Aff. Politiques, C 461 (A. O. M.).

83 Journal officiel de l’Inde Française, 105 années supplémentaires, Lundi 11 oct. 1955. Aff. Politiques, C 465.

84 Note sur des Etablissements français de l’Inde, dec. 1954. As 44-55. Inde Française, Vol. 55 (Qd).

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