Haribhai M. Patel

Haribhai M. Patel

Haribhai M Patel (1903 - November 30, 1993) was an Indian civil servant who played a major role in the issues regarding internal and national security in the first years after the independence of India. From 1977 to 1980, he would serve as the Finance Minister and later the Home Minister of India.

Early life

Haribhai Patel was a Gujarati, He was from the richest town of gujarat call Dharmaj, di- anand. who joined the Indian Civil Service after completing his education.

Cabinet Secretary

H.M. Patel became cabinet secretary to the Ministry for Home Affairs under Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in 1946, serving till 1950. He was the head of the Emergency Committee administering Delhi in the days following the outbreak of massive violence following the Partition of India. Patel headed the effort to rehabilitate millions of Hindu and Sikh refugees entering the city, while protecting the Muslims living in the city.

He continued as one of India's highest-ranking civil servants till 1959. He would be Patel's closest aide on curbing the communal violence, fighting the first Kashmir war and integrating over 500 princely states into the Union, under Patel's leadership with V.P. Menon.

Patel was a fervent admirer of Patel, and a critic of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. He wrote two books, "Rites of Passage: A Civil Servant Remembers" and "The First Flush of Freedom: Recollections and Reflections".

Political career

H.M. Patel became the Chairman of the Gujarat Electricity Board and was a trustee and supporter of the Vallabh Vidyanagar University in Anand.

He also joined the Swatantra Party of Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari, which was committed to free market economic policies, and critical of the socialist policies of Jawaharlal Nehru.


Following the defeat of Indira Gandhi's Congress Party in the 1977 elections that ended the Indian Emergency, H.M. Patel was appointed the Finance Minister by the new Prime Minister Morarji Desai, who was leading India's first non-Congress administration. He changed many of India's socialist economic policies, ending barriers to foreign investment and reducing tariffs while protecting home industries. He was responsible for the policy that all foreign companies must form corporations with an Indian company holding 50% stake, which caused Coca Cola to pull out of India, but most others did not.

Patel was later appointed Home Minister in the administration of Charan Singh, who briefly succeeded Desai in 1979.

First Power Plant was built by British in Gujarat at Dhuvaran. Dhuvaran is situated at the bank of mahi river. Now a days the old plant is not in operation. New plant inaugauration was just held by chief minister of gujarat on 21st August 2007.

Dhuvaran Power Station was built in 1961-65 and therefore, it was built by British is incorrect. This error needs to be corrected. First phase plant consisted on 4 units of 63.5 MW capacity whereas second phase units (2 nos. 140 MW each) were commissioned in 1972.


For one of the meetings of the Swatantra party, Patel had to sit outside the gate of Dhuvaran Thermal Station, on a concrete bench below a tree, though he was the Chairman of GEB earlier. When he was asked inside after the meeting he refused saying that his position is different. He was thus very principled.

Dhuvaran Power Station was built in 1961-65 and therefore, it was built by British is incorrect. This eror needs to be corrected. First phase plant consisted on 4 units of 63.5 MW capacity whereas second phase units ( 2 nos. 140 MW each) were commissioned in 1972.

ee also

* Sardar Patel, Partition of India
* Indian Emergency, Janata Party, Morarji Desai

External links

*worldcat id|lccn-n82-47045

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