इंडियन आवाज़     21 Feb 2024 03:49:30      انڈین آواز

40th anniversary of imposition of Emergency

Today is the 40th anniversary of the national emergency. The then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi imposed Emergency on the midnight of June 25th, 1975. Civil liberties were suspended and lakhs of people were put behind the bar across the country. Media was also censored. It is considered as the darkest period in the post-independence era.

In her address to the nation Mrs. Gandhi had said the President has proclaimed national emergency and there is nothing to be worried about it. Days before imposition of emergency, Mrs Gandhi’s election was declared null and void by Allahabad High Court on a petition by socialist leader Raj Narain and she was unseated for her Lok Sabha seat.

The court also banned her from contesting in any election for an additional six years. Mr Narain who was defeated by Indira Gandhi in the Rae Bareilly parliamentary constituency of Uttar Pradesh had challenged her election on charges of corruption in the election process.

Socialist Jayaprakash Narayan had been organizing campaign in Bihar to oust Indira Gandhi and her congress party from office. Mrs. Gandhi appealed for complete and absolute stay which would have permitted her to be a voting Member of Parliament, as well as Prime Minister. Supreme Court granted conditional stay to Mrs Gandhi which gave rise to outcries of opposition for her resignation.

On the evening of June 25th 1975, Jay Prakash Narayan called for a civil disobedience campaign to force the resignation of Mrs Gandhi.

In response, the authority of the maintenance of Internal Security Act was used in the early hours of 26th June and an era of repression of political opponents began which continued till early part of 1977 when the fresh elections for Lok Sabha was announced.

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