The 1975-77 Emergency period reflected mainly the failure of political parties who should have stood up more forcefully than they did,BJP leader L K Advani said on Thursday,38 years since the Emergency was imposed. He said,the three most affected institutions during the Emergency were political activists from the opposition,media and judiciary,of which the judiciary behaved the best.
After 1947,there has been a progressive decline in our values and ethical conduct, he said.
The BJP leader was speaking at the book launch of senior journalist Kuldip Nayars book,Emergency Retold,which is the authors account of the true story behind the Emergency.
According to Nayar,the worst thing former prime minister Indira Gandhi did during her tenure and especially by imposing the Emergency was to banish all morality from politics. Till today,we havent been able to get those values back. This was the worst thing she did and we are still suffering because of it, Nayar said. He said that Indiras instincts were never democratic and she was doing all she could to weaken all institutions. Her instinct was to concentrate power in herself, he said.
Nayar elaborated on how all sections,including the bureaucracy,judiciary and press,were afraid during the Emergency,barring a few exceptions. It all shows the lack of our commitment towards the ethos of our freedom struggle…The lesson from the Emergency for us is that if we want democracy,we should be prepared to stand up, he said. He also recounted how senior politicians like NC leader Sheikh Abdullah and DMK supremo M Karunanidhi were afraid of Indiras power and hence,resisted speaking out openly during the Emergency.
The results of the 1977 Lok Sabha polls are a big hope for our democracy, Advani said,referring to the mandate against the Congress in 1977.