Although the Afghanistan issue came up prominently in the Indo-Soviet talks, President Leonid Brezhnev gave no indication to Prime Minister Indira Gandhi as to when the Soviet Union will actually pull out from Afghanistan. The Soviet spokesman A Zamiatian insisted at the joint briefing after the meeting that Moscow was keen on a political solution to the Afghanistan question, but this had to be sought on the basis of the May 14 proposals announced by the Karmal government. He regretted that the Pakistan government had not cared to name a representative for conducting negotiations with the government in Kabul on the basis of these proposals. These proposals include Kabul’s demand that all forms of interference in Afghanistan’s internal affairs come to an end.
The Soviet President Leonid Brezhnev made it clear that the deepening of Indo-Soviet friendship was not direct against any third country. He said a strong and peace-loving India was necessary for peace in Asia.
CRPC Bill Passed
The Lok Sabha passed the Criminal Procedure Code (CRPC) amendment bill which makes it difficult for habitual offenders to obtain bail and transfers the power of initiating security proceedings under Sections 108, 109 and 110 from judicial magistrates to executive magistrates. The okay for the bill came late at night after the Opposition bent on countering every proposal pressed every amendment and every clause to vote. The bill also came in for criticism from members in the treasury benches who said the powers to the executive magistrates violated provisions of the Directive Principles of State Policy.
Lennon Shot Dead
Former Beatle John Lennon, who catapulted to stardom with the long-haired British rock group in the 1960s, was shot dead as he entered his luxury apartment building in Manhattan. Lenon, 40, was rushed in a police car to the nearby Roosevelt Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
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