Feeling seriously concerned at reports from several states about the infighting over the distribution of tickets for Assembly elections, the Janata Party headquarters made an impassioned appeal for unity among party workers and supporters. The appeal was made by the party president, Chandra Shekhar, and its general secretaries. Whatever reservations some people may have about the personnel of state election committees, “we appeal to Janata Party supporters, especially youth, to co-operate with us in overcoming the party’s teething troubles and help us in putting the party on an even keel,” Madhu Limaye and Rabi Ray, general secretaries said at a news conference.
UP Panel Divided
The 14-member Janata Party election committee in UP has become vertically divided, with seven members on each side drawing up parallel lists. The nominees of the erstwhile Congress for Democracy, the Socialist Party and the Old Congress have met separately from five nominees of the BLD and two members of the Jana Sangh. They are believed to have discussed the cases of sitting members and then separated. Thousands of aspirants, who have been camping in Lucknow for the past week, have started melting away without having been interviewed.
A Cabinet sub-committee has been set up to draft a paper on the economic policy of the Janata government. Home Minister Charan Singh is the committee’s convener and Mohan Dharia, Minister for Commerce, and Madhu Dandawate, Minister for Railways, are its members. No guidelines have been given to the committee, but its composition — both Dharia and Dandawate are Socialists — suggests that the government wants to pursue a left-of-centre programme. The panel is to prepare a basic document, taking into account India’s problems, particularly unemployment and the poor standard of life.