Sanjay to face trial
Sanjay Gandhi contended before the Shah Commission that he was not legally and constitutionally bound to take oath and tender it. Justice Shah ordered his trial before the chief metropolitan magistrate under sections 178 and 179, IPC. Gandhi came to the Commission about half an hour before the proceedings were due to begin. Trouble broke out soon after, triggered by Gandhi’s entourage raising slogans like “Shah Commission hai hai’’ and “Sanjay Gandhi zindabad”. There were counter-slogans followed by scuffles with the two sides brandishing chairs. Gandhi was accompanied by his wife, Menaka, Surinder Singh, son of Bansi Lal, and Khushwant Singh, editor of The Illustrated Weekly of India. Before he passed the order for Gandhi’s prosecution, Justice Shah rejected a number of objections by Gandhi. He said it was difficult to appreciate how equal protection of law was denied to Gandhi.
Passport for Indira
Indira Gandhi is being given a passport to visit Zurich. The Home Ministry decided at the highest level to grant Mrs Gandh’’s application for a passport. The passport will enable Mrs Gandhi to go only to Zurich. It will not be endorsed for any other country. Mrs Gandhi had written to the external affairs minister some days ago for a passport. She had attached a copy of the invitation, which she had received from the organisers of the International Disarmament Conference.
Janata leaders meet
While the national executive of the Janata Party set up a 19-member committee to draw up plans to revitalise the organisation, behind-the-scene efforts also seem to be afoot to patch up differences among senior leaders of the party. Considerable significance is being attached in this connection to the meeting Biju Patnaik brought about over dinner at his house between Charan Singh and Jagjivan Ram, who are leading the opposing camps in the ruling party.