July 21, 1978, Forty Years Ago: Dalit Atrocities

Desai said he had been informed that the chief minister was appointing a retired high court Judge to probe the Agra incidents.

By: Editorials | Updated: July 21, 2018 1:10:21 am
Indian Express Front page from forty years ago. (Express Archives)

The issue of atrocities towards Dalits was defused in the Rajya Sabha with the announcement by Prime Minister Morarji Desai that the Uttar Pradesh chief minister had agreed to appoint a commission of inquiry into the Agra incidents of May. Desai said he had been informed that the chief minister was appointing a retired high court Judge to probe the Agra incidents.

All-party Teams

The government and the opposition parties arrived at an agreement that whenever serious cases of atrocities towards Dalits come to light, all-party teams of MPs should be sent out to carry out an on-the-spot investigation. The agreement was reached at a meeting between PM Desai and leaders of Opposition parties.

MP Ends Fast

Veteran CPI MP of the Lok Sabha, M N Govindan Nair ended the fast he had kept to demand a judicial inquiry into the police firing in Agra. He ended the fast after the announcement by the PM that the UP chief minister had decided to appoint a retired high court judge to look into the police firing.

Bihar Floods

Over eight lakh people were badly hit by the first spell of floods in three districts of north Bihar — Sitamarhi, West Champaran and Muzaffarpur. This necessitated the induction of power boats from the army and the requisite complement of officers and jawans.

Turkey And NAM

Cyprus and Greece sought a clarification from New Delhi on whether Turkey was about to make an entry into the non-aligned club and if Turkish presence as a “guest” was imminent at the ministerial meeting of the NAM at Belgrade. During his recent Delhi visit, Turkey’s foreign minister Gunduz Okoun indicated his country’s interest in being accorded guest status in NAM.

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