Eight relatively younger ministers of the Union Cabinet met at the residence of L K Advani for three hours of intense discussion. They were extremely tight-lipped as they came of their meeting at 11.15 pm. Asked if and when they would be giving an ultimatum to the three senior members of the Cabinet — Morarji Desai, Charan Singh and Jagjivan — to unite or quit, they refused to say a word. Biju Patnaik, when asked whether Atal Bihari Vajpayee or George Fernandes would be delivering an ultimatum to the three elder statesmen at the Janata Parliamentary Board meeting, merely said: “Ask them”. Neither Vajpayee nor Fernandes wished to say anything. The ministers who attended the meeting, besides Advani, were: Madhu Dandavate, Mohan Dharia, Fernandes, H M Patel, Biju Patnaik, Vajpayee and Ravindra Varma.
Crisis In UP
President of the Uttar Pradesh Janata Party, Abbas Ali, in a telegram to the party president, Chandra Shekhar, has demanded immediate intervention to resolve the “serious crisis” in the party as a result of the resignation of Mukhtar Anis, minister of state, dismissal of Malaviya, minister for local self-government, and the party’s defeat in all the three by-elections held recently, one to the Lok Sabha and two to the Vidhan Sabha.
Pakhtoon leader Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan called on the President of the Revolutionary Council and Prime Minister Nur Mohammad Taraki. Badshah Khan was also among those who attended the feteha of Mir Akbar Khyber, the trade union leader whose murder on April 17 led to the uprising which ousted President Daoud. Meanwhile, hundreds of government employees are being dismissed and replaced by cadres of the Democratic People’s Party or its close sympathisers. Whether this is evidence of the regime’s confidence or nervousness is unclear.