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Saturday, June 14, 2008

One Reason Why Bharat Continues to be a Democracy

The official media tried to suppress the new of the Congress debacle and, especially the defeat of the Prime Minister and her son as long as they could. This gave rise to many wild rumours and speculations. I later came across an account of what happened on that fateful day in the memoirs of K.P.Krishnanunny, a PTI correspondent*. Once the results of the counting in most constituencies showed that the Janata Party was heading towards a great victory, Krishnanunny typed out the story whose lead line was: 'The 30-year Congress rule in India has ended and a non-Congress Ministry will assume office soon....' To his surprise, his Editor asked him to hold on to the story, and according to Krishnanunny, told him that Indira Gandhi was meeting the three chiefs of staff 'apparently to know their mind whether they would extent support to her if she continued in power despite adverse election results.' Only after ascertaining that the 'service chiefs had turned down Mrs Gandhi's attempt to remain in power' did the Editor release the story.

Emergency was officially lifted on 23 March 1976. With that ended the darkest period in the history of the Indian Republic.
Excerpt from My Country My Life, L.K. Advani, Page 266, Rupa & Co.

* - K.P. Krishnanunny, Reporting Memoirs, Kozhikode: Olive Publications [Apparently Krishnanunny's memoir retells the story of Emergency as it unfolded at the level of prime minister, that no one else was able capture.]