The Lok Sabha gave its unanimous approval to the Constitution (Forty- fifth Amendment) Bill amidst thunderous applause from all sides. The historic measure seeks to remove the obnoxious provisions inducted into the Constitution during the Emergency. The bill was passed with the massive support of 355 members and none opposing it. In the words of a smiling law minister, Shanti Bhushan, who piloted the bill, the measure would re-frame the Constitution in such a manner as it would the people to safeguard their rights and pave the way for a more glorious future for them.
Mrs Gandhi’s bail
Indira Gandhi was released on bail by the Additional Sessions Judge J D Jain after she had furnished a personal bond of Rs 15,000 and a surety for a like amount. She has been prohibited from leaving the country without permission. Gandhi’s appearance in court was in connection with the jeep case, in which she has been accused by the CBI of criminal conspiracy and abuse of power in obtaining jeeps, without paying hire or cost charges, for use in electioneering in the 1977 Lok Sabha elections.
PM on atrocities
Prime Minister Morarji Desai assured the Lok Sabha that the government would make arrangements to prevent atrocities on Harijans and tribals. Responding to a call-attention notice on the reported throwing of some tribals, including women and children, into the Subaranarekha river by “musclemen” of a contractor at Jamshedpur on August 16 Desai said the Bihar Government had taken prompt action.
Zia expands cabinet
A 24-member Central Cabinet, headed by the Pakistan Chief Martial Law Administrator, Zia-ul-Haq, was sworn in in Rawalpindi. Twenty-one of them are cabinet ministers and the rest ministers of state.