Indira Gandhi may face sterner action by the Lok Sabha than a mere reprimand following the privilege committee’s report that she is guilty of “causing obstruction, intimidation, harassment and institution of false cases” against four officers who were collecting information about Sanjay Gandhi’s Maruti car project for an answer to a question in the last Lok Sabha. A high-level meeting felt that no person, however high, should be let off lightly for having harassed innocent officials and their wives and children. However, C M Stephen, Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, has met the prime minister and demanded that the advice of the Supreme Court should be sought on whether this Lok Sabha is competent to punish a member for breach of privilege committed against the previous Lok Sabha.
CPI Censures Dange
The CPI chairman, A Dange, has been censured by his own party for welcoming Mrs Gandhi’s victory in Chikmagalur. The Central executive committee of the party came out with a resolution strongly disapproving Dange’s statement which the CEC says violates the party policy. Soon after Chikmagalur, Dange made a press statement welcoming Mrs Gandhi’s victory. The central secretariat of the party, which has the party’s top decision-makers as its members, called for Dange’s explanation. The committee discussed Dange’s reply and said it is in clear violation of the position of the party as decided at the last meetings of the party’s central executive and the National Council.
Uranium For India
The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission has deferred until next year a decision to release 16.8 tonnes of enriched uranium for the Tarapur atomic power station. The NRC was to have taken a decision by mid-November but certain environment groups intervened, seeking further clarifications on India’s nuclear intentions, before allowing the release.