NEW DELHI, India -- India renounced its allegiance to the British crown and proclaimed itself an independent republic today in a nation-wide celebration marred by Communist violence in Bombay and an attempt to assassinate the nizam of Hyderabad.
Reports from Hyderabad said a man believed a Hindu fanatic tossed a hand grenade at the car of the nizam as he drove from his palace to take an oath of al legiance to the new republic of India.
The grenade bounced off the car and rolled to the ground without exploding.
World's Richest Man.
Although believed the world's richest man with tons of precious jewels in his palace vaults, the nizam lives on a personal income of $2.60 a week as frugally as a peasant.
The would-be assassin told police he was a member of the reactionary Hindu organization known as Mahasabha. It was a member of the same organization who assassinated Mohandas K. Gandhi.
In Bombay, 10 demonstrators were wounded and eight police were injured during a Communist demonstration protesting inauguration of a non-Communist government for India.
Police said they opened fire on the crowd after two demonstrators threw acid bombs at them. The demonstrators were dispersed and 55 were arrested.
India's long dream of independence became a reality at a solemn ceremony in stately Durban Hall in New Delhi's Government House.
There, Chakaravarty Rajagopalachari, the last of Britain's 49 governor-generals for India, read the proclamation establishing India as a sovereign republic.
First President Inaugurated.
Rajendra Prasad, a long-time associate of Gandhi, ws inaugurated immediately as India's first president. Jawaharlal Nehru and his cabinet were sworn in as the republic's first government under the new American type constitution.
At the same time, new local governments were installed in the 26 states of the republic.
With the ceremony, Britain's King George VI lost his biggest dominion and more than half his subjects. It marked the end of British domination of India dating back to 1772.
India had taken the first step toward independence June 3, 1947, when it became a self-governing dominion in the British commonwealth of nations. But until today, its 337,000,000 inhabitants recognized the sovereignty of King George VI.