July 3, 1978, Forty Years Ago: Atal on Janata crisis

Atal on Janata crisis External Affairs Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee stressed the need for strengthening the party. He said if necessary, he was willing to leave the government and do party work. He said he had conveyed his willingness to the prime minister also and expected that Charan Singh and his followers would not act […]

Updated: July 3, 2018 12:03:43 am
The Indian Express newspaper of July 3, 1978.

Atal on Janata crisis

External Affairs Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee stressed the need for strengthening the party. He said if necessary, he was willing to leave the government and do party work. He said he had conveyed his willingness to the prime minister also and expected that Charan Singh and his followers would not act in a manner that would lead to an open rift in the party. He said: “We have come together under one banner because of our commitment to certain principles, policies and programmes. It has to be demonstrated that power is not the only cementing force. Even if they feel that injustice has been done to them, they should thrash out all the issues within the party. Any weakening or division of the party will only help those who tried to destroy democracy once and who will not hesitate to do so again if given an opportunity.” A number of leaders of the Jana Sangh segment of the Janata Party met at Vajpayee’s house presumably to discuss the segment’s stand at the Janata Parliamentary Board meeting.

Cases against Indira

Sources reiterated the government’s intention to proceed against Indira Gandhi and her associates with regard to all specific acts, including her direction to detain several persons illegally during the Emergency. The sources said the detentions under MISA without any valid grounds would be punishable under the relevant provisions of the IPC.

CMs in the south

In the background of the current crisis in the Janata government more than what meets the eye is seen in an unscheduled meeting of the three non-Janata chief ministers of the south, M G Ramachandran (Tamil Nadu), Devaraj Urs (Karnataka), and M Chenna Reddy (Andhra Pradesh). MGR hosted a lunch to the two Congress (I) CMs, who arrived from Tirupati by car. “Interesting developments are in the offing,” Urs told journalists.

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