July 2, 1978, Forty Years Ago: Jana Sangh divided

The Jana Sangh group in the Janata Party is unhappy over the developments in the party. But when it comes to specific issues, the group appears to be divided.

By: Editorial | Published: July 2, 2018 6:08:19 am
This is the front page of The Indian Express, published on July 2, 1978. This is the front page of The Indian Express, published on July 2, 1978.

The Jana Sangh group in the Janata Party is unhappy over the developments in the party. But when it comes to specific issues, the group appears to be divided. Atal Bihari Vajpayee is upset over the action taken against Charan Singh and is considering what course to follow. The foreign minister did not want the PM to go to the extent of seeking the Home Minister’s resignation but favoured only a show-cause notice against Singh. Vajpayee was not opposed to any action against Raj Narain. He argued about it first in the Cabinet and later at a meeting with the PM. The other strain of thought, represented by Nanaji Deshmukh, was that the situation had reached a point where the exit of Singh and Narain was inevitable.

Charan to explain
Former Home Minister Charan Singh said he would like to explain in the Lok Sabha, on the first day of its monsoon session, beginning on July 17, the circumstances which led to his and Raj Narain’s resignations from the Union Cabinet. Addressing some erstwhile Bharatiya Lok Dal (BLD) workers and MPs at his residence, he also asked the party leadership to convene a meeting of the Janata Parliamentary Party a day earlier, to enable him to nave his say there on this matter. He wanted that at least eight hours should be allocated for discussion on the Issue.

CPM on Janata
Expressing concern over the ministerial crisis and the conflicts in the Janata Party, the CPM politburo said Charan Singh must share the blame along with his cabinet colleagues for the “failure to prosecute Mrs Indira Gandhi for her ministerial misdeeds during the Emergency”. The CPM said Singh “cannot absolve himself from his responsibility and pose as one victimised for his views. It is clear that Mr Charan Sigh and Mr Raj Narain were campaigning to capture the leadership of the Janata Party for their group and dislodge its president.”

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