May 9, 1978, Forty Years Ago: Janata Young Turks

Front page of The Indian Express on May 9. 1978

By: Editorial | Updated: May 9, 2018 12:02:37 am
Indian express forty years ago, indian express front page, indian express in 1978, Indian express editorial Front page of The Indian Express on May 9. 1978

The comparatively young ministers at the Centre may give an ultimatum to the Janata’s top leadership to stop their fighting or retire. Atal Bihari Vajpayee, George Fernandes, Madhu Dandavate, Mohan Dharia, L K Advani and Biju Patnaik have met more than once to discuss the party’s infighting: They have also met in twos and threes to pursue the subject. They feel that the Janata governments, both at the Centre and in the states, cannot make any headway, much less impact, if the top leadership does not pull together. When all six ministers met at H M Patel’s house in Delhi for “dinner”, they spent practically all the time thinking of ways to make Morarji Desai, Charan Singh and Jagjivan Ram sink their differences which, it was agreed, were primarily personal.

Devi Lal Wins

Haryana Chief Minister Devi Lal won a clear victory over the dissidents in the State Janata legislature party and defeated them 45 votes against 31 in a secret ballot supervised by the External Affairs Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was the party high command observer. As the defeated dissidents emerged from the Vidhan Bhavan, thousands of Devi Lal’s supporters literally pounced upon them, and shoved them out of the premises. The police had to move in to protect the dissidents from the irate crowd.

Sanjay In Tihar

The Tihar Jail ward in which Sanjay Gandhi, the accused in the Kissa Kursi Ka case is lodged, has a radio and a television set. According to the jail authorities, Gandhi spends his time by reading books and newspapers, listening to radio and watching television. He watched the Hindi movie shown by the Delhi Doordarshan. Gandhi gets all his food from outside. However, the food is checked by the jail authorities before it is sent to his ward. Although the ward can accommodate several persons, he is the only under-trial prisoner lodged there.

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