Prime Minister Indira Gandhi told the Lok Sabha that those who had lived and voted in Assam for years should normally be considered as citizens not “foreigners”. Intervening during a calling-attention motion on the violence against linguistic minorities in Assam, she said that the question as to who was a foreigner and to what date one must go back to establish citizenship, had to be discussed with the people of Assam.
Lok Sabha unanimously passed the 45th Constitution Amendment Bill extending for a period of 10 years the reservation of seats in state assemblies and the Lok Sabha for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Anglo Indians. All the 423 members present in the House voted for the Bill which was piloted by the home minister, Giani Zail Singh. The extension is quite timely as the reservation of seats expires tomorrow.
US On Persian Gulf
President Jimmy Carter in a major new unilateral American commitment told a joint session of Congress last night that “an attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States of America, and it will be repelled by use of any means necessary, including military force.” American officials immediately amplified his message to include not only political intimidation and external threat but also internal subversion.
Developing countries stepped up their pressure on developed countries at the UNIDO conference to ensure that the New Delhi meet yields something substantial. While India offered to share its experience and expertise with other developing countries, Tunisia turned the table on the richer countries by asking them to adopt a more realistic attitude.
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