When Nehru rebuffed the Nazis

Last Updated: Nov 13, 2011, 00:45 AM IST

New Delhi: A rare typewritten letter by India`s first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru from London to a diplomat in Nazi Germany turning down his invitation will be auctioned by British auction house Mullock`s Nov 17, a statement said Friday.

The latter dated Sep 7, 1938 expressed Nehru`s inability to travel to Germany at the invitation of then diplomat Hans-Georg von Studnitz and the Nazi authorities.

"As you know I am not at all in sympathy with the Nazi philosophy and aims. I am grateful however to you and to the German authorities for the invitation," Nehru said in his letter.

In the letter, Nehru commented on his daughter`s health which prevents him from travelling far but then adds: "...in any event the present international situation would come in the way of my going to Germany".

Hans-Georg von Studnitz, the author of "While Berlin Burns", a chronicle of war time Germany from his dairies, held a senior post in the German foreign office`s press and information section in Berlin throughout the war.

He also edited the official German diplomatic correspondence.

Two letters by Mahadev Desai, the personal secretary of Mahatma Gandhi, discussing Gandhi and his political views, will also be on sale.

They are expected to sell for 1,000 to 1,500 pounds.