Nehru was delusional, a day dreamer who believed himself to be some sort of reincarnated amalgam of Ashoka and Aurangzeb in the form of an Englishman. The most charitable concession that could be afforded to him is that of being an impractical idealist who was constantly attempting to think and articulate in a manner that he believed would please his teachers and tutors at Harrow and Cambridge while struggling with the demands that were being placed upon him by the People of India whom he viewed with a hearty but reasonably well concealed contempt, the Princes whom he viewed with uncontrollable jealousy and a deep sense of inferiority born hatred, the Brahmanas whom he regarded with deep suspicion, and the Military whom he suffered with fear.
Nehru was anointed Prime Minister by Gandhi at British behest setting aside Patel who had been voted time and again to lead the country by the conclave who postured as the will of the People of India at that time.
Patel on the other hand was a Pragmatic Nationalist who was so impelled to sacrifice his personal interest and ambitions to serve the Indian cause even as a second fiddle to Nehru who he rightly viewed with contempt as a poseur and a man with little to command respect other than the vestment of power to abuse to his personal whims.
They were neither friends nor enemies, but were often at loggerheads on matters of “principle” (Nehru’s delusions) and “imperative necessity” (Patel’s priorities). They were both amoral and unprincipled, but Nehru more for the attainment of his personal power, pomp, pleasure, pelf and perversions, and Patel for the fledgling idea of a Nation. Nehru postured, fumed and fretted on stage, while Patel went about the task of holding what remained of India together as a Nation.