Charan Singh’s Lok Dal was all set for its fourth and biggest split since the 1980 elections. The Socialists led by Madhu Limaye declared themselves as the “genuine Lok Dal”. They also “derecognised” Singh as party president, re-affirmed their decision to hold the August 9 meeting to be preceded by the meeting of the 11-member Parliamentary Board in which Charan Singh has only three supporters.
Peace Pact With Pak
Prime Minister Indira Gandhi stressed India’s desire to normalise relations with Pakistan and affirmed that the scope of the Treaty of Peace and Friendship she had offered to that country would extend “far beyond a mere no war pact”. She recalled that a “no-war pact was first offered to Pakistan by my father and repeated in different forms subsequently. But Pakistan seemed to be allergic to words. It has now come forward with a proposal for a no-war pact. We are ready to take it up once more.”
Anti-Press Bill Stuck
The widely-condemned anti-press bill got stuck in the Bihar Legislative Council after it was tabled amid rumpus. Several opposition members called it “unconstitutional and illegal” as it had not been “duly passed” by the lower House. The local newsmen, who earlier in the day, led by editors of local dallies, marched in a silent procession to the council to urge the chairman to see that the bill was not passed through the House, walked out of the press gallery in protest.
Fresh Fire In Beirut
Israeli and Palestinian forces exchanged fire at Beirut’s International Airport — the scene of 14 hours of devastating Israeli air and land attacks that left 165 persons dead.