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Once it was given to Mrs Gandhi herself. Shukla, former minister and Congress veteran.
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What does come across clearly is the book's premise that "the openness of India's democracy combined with the streak of corruption through its media and political system provided numerous opportunities for Soviet intelligence". KGB operations in India expanded rapidly in the '50s and '60s, and not just within Indian borders. Two other diplomats were also compromised. Soviet efforts were clearly helped by India's anti-American policy at the time and the fact that strategically, American reliance on Pakistan as a counterweight to Soviet influence in India, pushed Delhi into Moscow's orbit.
The book details how the then defence minister Krishna Menon, openly anti-American, was backed by the KGB on the assumption that he would succeed Nehru, a prospect that ended with the Chinese invasion in Khrushchev presented her with a mink coat on her first solo visit to Moscow Mrs Gandhi had earlier criticised an ambassador's wife for accepting a similar gift and the KGB surrounded her with "handsome, attentive male admirers". Apart from funding the CPI and other leftwing groups during the elections, the agency also funded several Congress candidates, including an "extremely influential" minister codenamed ABAD.
The KGB was also helped by India's decision, started in Menon's time, of getting almost all its arms requirements from Moscow, which began arriving by the early '70s, as then Delhi's KGB resident head Shebarshin noted in the files, "in an endless stream". How credible are the claims? Christopher Andrew. Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app.
Click on the cover image above to read some pages of this book! He had noted thousands of documents, described by the FBi as the 'greatest single cache of intelligence ever received by the West. After his defection, Mitrokhin teamed up with Christopher Andrew, Professor of Modern History at Cambridge and the world's leading intelligence scholar. The second volume, The KGB and the World, continues the revelations from the sublime to the absurd - which Third World leaders were in the pay of the KGB, precisely how extensive KGB penetration of foreign governments was, and how KGB agents were instructed to assess the spread of the influence of rival Chinese.
Related The Mitrokhin Archive II: The KGB in the World: Pt. 2
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