The decade of the 1930s provided a near perfect backdrop for a leftist surge in Indian national politics whose trajectory so far had been mapped under the political leadership of Gandhi. It had its moments of excitement, glory and disappointments. Although ample opportunities presented themselves to the Left to decisively influence the nationalist struggle during this period, it failed in its endeavour to play a historical role, beaten by a smarter, tactful, opportunist ‘Old guard’, the ‘right-wing’ leadership of the Indian National Congress, who, as events indicated in the later years, left behind all scruples to cling to political power.
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