25 JUNE 1948, Page 2

Hand Over in Delhi

On Monday Lord Mountbatten left New Delhi and a few hours later Mr. Chakravarti Rajagopalachari was sworn in as Governor- General in the Durbar Hall. He referred to his predecessor's achieve- ments during his term of office as " a marvellous instance of detach- ment, devotion and energy," and there is no doubt that the last Englishman to be Viceroy of India brings home with him the good

wishes and the gratitude of a nation whose interests he served at a crucial phase of her development. To supervise the liquidation of an Empire is a task no less uncongenial than delicate, but Lord Mountbatten's vigorous yet sympathetic handling of Indian affairs during the somewhat brusque transition to independence did much to contain the disruptive forces which the hand-over was bound to let loose. He persisted to the last in the attempt to effect a settlement between India and Hyderabad, acting, of course, as Governor-General of India and not as representing the British Government in any shape or form. He has deserved well of the State, and it will be surprising if fresh duties, of a wider scope than the Navy can offer, are not found for so indefatigable a public servant. Meanwhile the new Governor-General, whose past career has given impressive proofs of his integrity and good sense, takes over a series of problems whose urgency he is the last man to underestimate. Everyone will wish him the best of fortune in his arduous task,