A decision on the formation of a new regional political party will be taken in a day or two, said Karnataka Chief Minister Devraj Urs. Before emplaning for Delhi, Urs told The Indian Express in Hyderabad that he would review the situation in the state and take a decision after consulting like-minded leaders in Delhi. He denied that he has resigned from the Congress as has been reported in some newspapers. “Why should I resign?” the Karnataka chief minister asked in response to a question from The Indian Express reporter. Urs arrived in Hyderabad unannounced and had a meeting with Dr M. Chenna Reddy, who had hosted a dinner for him. The two leaders discussed the Congress’s affairs vis-a-vis the demand for democracy within the party. Reddy also accompanied Urs to Delhi.
J&K safety ordinance
Almost all sections of the Lok Sabha criticised the “draconian” provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Ordinance. Home Minister Charan Singh hoped that the patriotism of Sheikh Abdullah would influence him to accept suitable modifications in the ordinance when it brought before the assembly. He noted that many persons found three of the provisions objectionable. First, that the state government could confiscate any book or document and the interested party could not go to a court to challenge the action. Second, the state government could put restrictions on the circulation of newspapers published within the state or outside and the publisher or the printer did not have the right to challenge this in a court of law. Third, the state government could detain anybody for two years without bringing the matter before a review board or providing the reasons for the aforementioned detention.
Sops to small farmers
IG Patel, the RBI governor, has injected a modest dose of the Janata economic blueprint to the credit policy by announcing a new year gift to small farmers and small-scale industrial units and road transport operators by way of cheap bank loans. Some concessions have also been given for promoting investment in the agriculture sector.