After seeking clarification from the government, the President has approved the Union cabinet’s decision to seek the approval of the Supreme Court on whether a special court should be set up to try Mrs Gandhi and some of her associates. The President sought clarification on two points: One was whether the government had ascertained the opinion of the Attorney General. Two, whether the Supreme Court can be moved when a bill introduced by Janata Party member, Ram Jethmalani, is pending before the Lok Sabha.
Strengthened by the return from abroad of Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the Janata peacemakers hope to resume their efforts at bringing about a reconciliation between Morarji Desai and Charan Singh. The peacemaking efforts initiated by Biju Patnaik and Madhu Limaye that brought about an earlier meeting between Desai and Singh have not led to any success as yet. The Janata Party’s executive committee’s met to discuss organisational matters and some of Raj Narain’s speeches in Parliament came in for sharp criticism.
Prime Minister Morarji Desai has reiterated his assurance that Hindi will not be imposed on non-Hindi speaking states. Desai said that the government stood committed to the provisions of the Official Languages Act. He conceded that there might have been some errors in the implementation of the act: “I have been saying that its not the compulsion of the government but the compulsion of patriotism which will bring in Hindi.”.
Bottle and Bench
The judiciary is unhappy that judges are being made to affirm that they will not drink as long as they are on the bench. The earlier understanding was that the clearance was only a formality. But now a new entrant has to give an undertaking in writing that he will not drink.