February 12, 1976, Forty Years Ago: Constitution Reform

The minister said the government wanted a wide-ranging debate on constitutional changes and added that 'up to a point this debate has already begun'.

By: Express News Service | Updated: February 12, 2016 12:00:21 am
constitution reform, lok sabha, HR gokhale, debate on constitution, gujarat turmoil, chimanbhai patel, forty years ago, BBC A look at the front page of The Indian Express, published on February 12, 1976, Forty Years Ago.

The Union government would come out with its proposals on constitutional reforms during the extended term of the Lok Sabha, said Union Law Minister H.R. Gokhale. The minister said the government wanted a wide-ranging debate on constitutional changes and added that “up to a point this debate has already begun”. The government would have before it various suggestions on constitutional amendments in two months. A committee of the Congress parliamentary party was examining what changes should be made. Gokhale mentioned the government’s resolve to keep the basic framework of parliamentary democracy intact.

No Bhangra

The deputy commissioner of Amritsar issued an order prohibiting band masters from playing tunes that arouse people to take to bhangra dance. The order also prohibits holding of bhangra dances in public places. The order said bhangra dances cause annoyance to the “peaceful citizens and humiliation to the family of the bride” and is likely to cause disturbances and create a law and order problem. The order was to be in force for two months.

Gujarat Turmoil

The Janata Front government in Gujarat lost its majority after Chimanbhai Patel, a former chief minister, dissolved the Kisan Mazdoor Lok Paksha (KMLP), the state party he floated in June 1974. The unconditional support to the government was automatically withdrawn with the dissolution. The 12 KMLP MLAs and eight independents had supported the 86-member Front government in Gujarat. Of the 179 members in Gujarat assembly, 73 belong to the Congress.

Quetta Blast

A BBC report said disturbances had broken out in Balochistan in protest against the imposition of central rule in the province. A bomb blast in a train in Quetta that killed four people was an indication of the unrest.

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