November 20, 1977, Forty Years Ago: Janata ginger group

The group’s first meeting was inaugurated by Acharya Kripalani. At the inaugural session were Janata MPs such as S.N. Mishra, Viren Shah, Brahm Prakash, Samar Guha, H Bahadur, Vinod Seth, RK Amin, Prasannbhai Mehta and Ram Jethmalani.

By: Editorial | Published: November 20, 2017 12:40:39 am
At least one instance of the Delhi CID intercepting mail in July 1975 without proper authorisation came to light before the Shah Commission. The group’s first meeting was inaugurated by Acharya Kripalani. At the inaugural session were Janata MPs such as SN Mishra, Viren Shah, Brahm Prakash, Samar Guha, H Bahadur, Vinod Seth, RK Amin, Prasannbhai Mehta and Ram Jethmalani.

A ginger group appears to be taking shape in the Janata Party. With Piloo Mody providing it a nucleus, the group will aim at keeping the party on its toes, fulfilling the promises it made to the people at the polls. The group’s first meeting was inaugurated by Acharya Kripalani. At the inaugural session were Janata MPs such as SN Mishra, Viren Shah, Brahm Prakash, Samar Guha, H Bahadur, Vinod Seth, RK Amin, Prasannbhai Mehta and Ram Jethmalani. Among the ex-MPs who attended the meeting are Dinesh Singh, Erasmo de Sequeira, G Viswanathan and Gayatri Devi. Mody had also invited some intellectuals, who included Nayantara Sahgal, to the meeting for an exchange of ideas for the action programme the group wants to come out with.

Sadat in Tel Aviv

Egypt’s president, Anwar Sadat, arrived in Israel to a full-scale welcome. Israelis clapped in the streets of Tel Aviv as the presidential plane flew low on its approach to the Ben Gurion airport. A military fanfare sounded and applause broke out as Sadat stepped out from the plane. First to greet him was Israel’s president, Ephraim Katzir. Next came the prime minister, Menachem Begin. The two leaders exchanged warm handshakes and then stood to attention as an Israeli military band crashed into the Egyptian national anthem.

Emergency excess

At least one instance of the Delhi CID intercepting mail in July 1975 without proper authorisation came to light before the Shah Commission. A Delhi administration order dated August 4, 1975 authorising the CID to intercept mail during the Emergency was produced before the Shah Commission by the former SP, CID, K.S. Bajwa. During his testimony, Bajwa had causally mentioned that he had intercepted some mail on July 24 and 25, 1975, which contained the open letter to the PM sent by Bhim Sen Sachar and others. A shocked Justice Shah had demanded to know on what grounds Bajwa could have acted so “illegally”.

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