Cong blames Sanjay for Emergency ‘excesses’

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by SHASH2K2, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Cong blames Sanjay for Emergency ‘excesses’


    NEW DELHI: The Congress has all but disowned Sanjay Gandhi, blaming the excesses committed during the Emergency of 1975 on his overzealous promotion of family planning and slum clearance programme.

    The rare assessment of the Emergency and the person responsible for the popular anger has come in the party' s official history where it has attempted to walk the tightrope between defending stalwart Indira Gandhi and the stigma that her decision to suspend the Constitution in 1970s carries.

    "Sanjay Gandhi had, by then, emerged as a leader of great significance. It was due to his support to family planning that the government decided to pursue it more vigorously. He also promoted slum clearance, anti-dowry measures and promotion of literacy but in an arbitrary and authoritarian manner much to annoyance of the popular opinion," says the party's official history released at the just-concluded plenary session here.

    Rajiv Gandhi who entered politics after Sanjay's death in an aircrash, has come in for appreciation as a leader whose attempts to reform the Congress organization and cleanse it of "party brokers" could not succeed because of the resistance from the old guard.

    On the Emergency, Congress says that while vast sections of the population had welcomed the move, it was Sanjay Gandhi's rash promotion of sterilization and forcible clearance of slums that sparked popular anger.

    Congress has generally been defensive on the Emergency, but this is the first time that the party has pinned the blame for it on Sanjay Gandhi - the all-powerful son of Indira Gandhi who is believed to have influenced the former prime minister to take the controversial decision in June 1975 after the Allahabad High Court set aside her Lok Sabha election.

    The excesses committed between mid-1975 and tail-end of 1976 provoked a huge backlash, leading Congress to lose the 1977 polls in its first-ever defeat in a Lok Sabha election.

    "Vast sections of the population welcomed it initially since general administration improved. But civil rights activists took exception to the curbs on freedom of expression and personal liberties. Unfortunately, in certain spheres, over-enthusiasm led to compulsion in enforcement of certain programmes like compulsory sterilization and clearance of slums," says the book, edited by a team led by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee.

    The references are clearly to sterilization camps and demolition drives such those carried out in Delhi's Turkman Gate locality. The demolitions at Turkman Gate in the heart of Delhi acquired a sensitive edge as it was largely inhabited by Muslims. Sanjay's personal involvement in the demolitions made it difficult for partisans to blame the actions on the bureaucracy as was done later for family planning excesses.

    While the Opposition as well as popular opinion have all along blamed Sanjay's overzealousness for many of the ills of emergency, Congress has ducked such clear apportioning of responsibility.

    The party dilemma on how to deal with the controversial decision of its towering leader Indira Gandhi has been the chief reason why its views on the issue could never evolve despite a pan-Indian thumbs down in the 1977 elections. The naming of Sanjay Gandhi is the first divergence in the opinion held for decades.


    Read more: Cong blames Sanjay for Emergency ‘excesses’ - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...xcesses/articleshow/7181279.cms#ixzz19RTh5XTG
     
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  3. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    I am waiting for day when Congress with disown Rajeev Gandhi for 1984 excesses and Indira Gandhi for Emergency as well.
     
  4. S.A.T.A

    S.A.T.A Senior Member Senior Member

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    "arbitrary and authoritarian manner much to annoyance of the popular opinion," was exactly how any political historian would characterize Indira Gandhi led Congress regime between 1975-77,Sanjay was one one of the many despots Indira Gandhi's emergency years created and who were allowed to hijack and almost subvert democracy in India.After having given rise to leaders and movements that shaped much of our contemporary history,its nauseating to see the party reduced to a state where concocting history is its only alimony.

    Congress(I) should leave writing history into more qualified hands,lest we forced to redefine 'History'.

    Remaining on the topic of history,i wonder if Congress's official historians read this line to Sonia Gandhi and her inner circle,from the January 26 1929 Lahore declaration,which called for complete Independence for India(The days is still marked as our Republic day).......In the declaration it says "Politically, India's status has never been so reduced as under the British regime. No reforms have given real political power to the people. The tallest of us have to bend before foreign authority"

    Most of us think Congress leaders.tallest or not, still do bend before foreign authority.
     
  5. ashicjose

    ashicjose Regular Member

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    I am a huge fan of indira gandhi,if she were not murdered by the sikh terrorists India may be top of the world now.
     
  6. Tshering22

    Tshering22 Sikkimese Saber Senior Member

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    जब बात अपने सर पे आई तो अपने ही नेता की बली चढ़ा दी? वाह रे वाह कॉग्रेंस! मान गए तुम्हे ! एक समय था जब तुम इसी संजय को पूजते थे; और आज अपने से पल्ला झाड़ने ले लिए इसी पर थू-थू कर रहे हो?

    This is Congress Party's truth. Born out of illegitimate British empire, the party has been doing nothing other than continuing the policy of her masters; to keep the Indian psychologically a slave to oneself. Congress owes allegiance to no one; it has not loyalty to anyone. Country, people and now as we see, even her own party members are being spat upon. The basic logic of Congress is:

    रात गई, बात गई ।

    Those who fervently support Congress should realize that they too will be used up, abused and thrown away one day. When Sanjay was alive, he was feared by these same Congress politicians who now are spitting at him to dust off the blame from their own heads. The supporters will be also given the same treatment. And to those who are going to say the same thing about NDA to me; my allegiance is to my Dhamma/Nation. Hence anyone who follows this path of Congress even BJP if at all, then that anyone is guilty of treason and should be eliminated.
     
  7. brain_dead

    brain_dead Regular Member

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    please , think twice before u make comments like these.
    there is nothing like Sikh terrorists. Indira Gandhi's assassination was the act of one individual. Even for khalistani extremists you should blame Indira Gandhi only.
     
  8. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Dont worry very soon Indira gandhi and Rajeev gandhi will also be antinationals as per Congress. Congress will not be responsible for their actions.
     
  9. thakur_ritesh

    thakur_ritesh Administrator Administrator

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    oh the holier than thou congress never committed any wrongs, its all our imagination. may be even formation of pakistan had nothing to do with congress, right? how about re-writing our history all over again!

    had your beloved IG not been there, there would never have been any sikh terrorism in the first place!
     
  10. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    There is telling irony in the way in which the BJP has jumped to Sanjay Gandhi's defence even as the Congress knocked him out of its gallery of family icons by blaming him for the excesses of the Emergency.

    Sanjay could never have imagined that one day, the party, whose leaders he threw into jail for those 19 dark months, would speak up for him while the one his mother recast as a family legacy would virtually disown him.

    Thirty years after he died in a plane crash within months of helping his mother avenge her 1977 electoral defeat with a thumping win in the 1980 Lok Sabha polls, Sanjay Gandhi remains a controversial and polarizing figure. It is significant that the Congress has chosen to break its silence on him at this point with critical references in its official history book, released recently to mark the party's 125th anniversary. It coincides with an ongoing exercise, away from public gaze, to clean the Augean stables and throw out family skeletons before Rahul Gandhi's coronation. Sanjay's anti-minority politics and impatience with democracy are heavy crosses to bear for a party seeking to reclaim its scattered voter bases among Muslims, tribals and Dalits.

    The streak of authoritarianism that ran in Sanjay's veins and led to the horrors that marked the Emergency is documented in a rash of articles and books that were published after the Congress lost power in 1977. The muzzling of the press through censorship, the wholesale arrest and incarceration of opposition leaders, the brutal demolition of Muslim slums around Turkman Gate, forcible sterilizations and arbitrary governance through a coterie of subservient bureaucrats and ministers are all well known. But the most disturbing aspect of that period was Sanjay's attempt to kill democracy.

    Indira Gandhi's former principal secretary P N Dhar recalls in his book, "Indira Gandhi, the Emergency and Indian Democracy", that Sanjay opposed his mother tooth and nail when she developed cold feet after 19 months of Emergency rule and wanted to hold elections. They battled for eight days and nights before she finally prevailed and got him to agree to the restoration of democracy. Of course, she paid a heavy price for her maternal indulgence of her son during Emergency as both she and Sanjay lost their parliamentary seats in 1977.

    Sanjay had wanted the Nehru-Gandhi family to rule forever. He persuaded his mother to set up a 12-member committee headed by Swaran Singh to draft a new constitution for India. The document under preparation apparently included a provision appointing Indira Gandhi as the President of India for life and conferring on her family the divine right to uninterrupted rule. To push the process forward, Sanjay got the assemblies of Haryana, West Bengal and Punjab, all ruled by his loyalists, to pass resolutions demanding a new Constitution for the country. Fortunately, Emergency was lifted and the Congress was voted out of power before his plans bore fruition.

    It is not entirely surprising that the BJP has displayed a degree of softness towards Sanjay despite the many black marks he collected during his brief fling with politics. The Sanjay brand finds resonance in sections of the RSS and BJP that favour a strong Hindu nationalist approach to nation building. Even during Emergency, while top leaders of the RSS, Jan Sangh (as the BJP was called then) and other parivar affiliates were locked up in jail, a group of Sangh workers organized a function in Delhi in praise of Sanjay. This admiration was on display again when his son Varun, now a BJP MP, was arrested by the Mayawati government in UP for making a communal speech during the 2009 poll campaign. BJP workers raised pro-Sanjay slogans outside the jail.

    Sanjay's anti-minorityism has been a subject of controversy and debate. Although born in a party that likes to think of itself as "secular", Sanjay moved off on a different track. His communal leanings were recorded in an article written by former DDA vice chairman M N Buch on October 6, 2002. Buch wrote: "We had constructed shops in the Meena Bazaar area of Jama Masjid and the Payenwala area of Dariba in Delhi to rehabilitate the shopkeepers uprooted from there during the Emergency. The majority of them were Muslims. Sanjay told me that we were making a mistake because removal of the shopkeepers during the Emergency had eradicated a potential nest of Pakistani supporters. I was horrified to hear this from the mouth of Jawaharlal Nehru's grandson."

    It was only natural then that Sanjay's widow Maneka and other acolytes like Jagmohan, Buta Singh and Bansi Lal would drift to the BJP when Sanjay's death left them bereft and rudderless.

    No analysis of a political figure can be a simple black and white picture. Sanjay loyalists, and there are still some in extended Congress circles, insist that his infamous five-point programme was visionary for articulating in 1975 concerns that have become important in the 21st century. Certainly, Sanjay was the first to lay stress on issues like family planning, urban slum clearance, environment protection through tree plantation and productivity. Work more, talk less was the slogan he coined for the last.

    Today, Varun is trying to create a platform around what he calls his father's "unfinished dream". He hasn't articulated what the dream was but the effect of the distortions Sanjay introduced in the Congress and in the governance system can still be felt. History will be the best judge of his dubious legacy.


    Read more: Can Congress get rid of Sanjay Gandhi's baggage? - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...baggage/articleshow/7202986.cms#ixzz19pNFy8Jn
     
  11. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Rajiv Gandhi wanted to be far more forthright, even contrite, on his mother's Emergency regime than Sonia Gandhi has been in the latest official history of the Indian National Congress. He told me so when I was drafting a document for him for the centenary session of the Congress in Bombay, now Mumbai, in 1985. "I want to come clean on this," he said. "It's hanging like a millstone around every Congressman's neck. The sooner we do it, the better for everyone."

    But he suddenly backed out at the last moment. I don't know why but when he did, he looked uncomfortable, as if he was retreating against his will and under some compulsion. He first approved the three paragraphs in which I had dealt with the Emergency affair starting from Indira Gandhi's disqualification by the Allahabad high court on June 21, 1975 to March 21, 1977, when Emergency was lifted.

    Obviously, something had happened and he changed his mind. He looked rather sheepish when he asked me to drop two of these paragraphs and tone down the third. A few days later, when I met Narasimha Rao, together with the then AICC general secretary Jitendra Prasada, even Rao appeared intrigued by Rajiv's change of mind.

    The story goes like this. Preparations for the Congress centenary session had started early in July 1985 in Delhi and Bombay. Some time in early November, Arun Nehru, while receiving Rajiv at Palam airport on his return from a foreign trip, told him that there was a convention that at every plenary session of the Congress, the senior-most AICC general secretary presented a comprehensive report about the proceedings of the previous session.

    That, he suggested, should be done at the centenary session also with the only change that since this was a landmark session, the report should be presented by the Congress president, that is Rajiv himself. AICC treasurer Sitaram Kesari, who was around, endorsed the suggestion. At this, Rajiv asked Jitendra Prasad, who was in-charge of the session, to prepare a report as was being suggested.

    Prasada felt that the suggestion had been made only to trip him because it wasn't easy to find someone to draft this report within the short time available, and get it printed for circulation among the delegates. It was already November-end. On someone's suggestion to Rajiv that S Gopal of Jawaharlal Nehru University would be a suitable person to draft the report, Prasada contacted him. Gopal declined. Prasada told me that Gopal actually seemed annoyed at the very idea of being treated like a hack. Prasada next approached Prof S R Mehrotra of the Institute of Advanced Studies, who too declined.

    So did several other eminences. Just then Khwaja Ahmad Abbas, the veteran freedom fighter, film producer and journalist, heard of the idea and offered Rajiv a thick typescript of a Congress history he had written a long time ago but was never published.

    Rajiv Gandhi leafed through Abbas's work but was unimpressed. He told Prasada he wanted a concise, crisp report. That was when Prasada, an old friend, turned to me. He knew I had resigned from my job in the left-wing newspaper, Patriot, and thought some money would be of help to me. He had guessed right. Besides, I also liked dabbling in politics just for the heck of it.

    One day Prasada took me to Rajiv for a preliminary introduction and briefing. We were in his library at 10, Janpath. Rajiv looked furtive and in some kind of haste. He outlined the idea of the document he had in mind. The meeting was brief.

    While drafting the document I thought I should consult Rajiv before dealing with the controversial Emergency period. I told Prasada so. Again, a meeting was fixed. This time Rajiv was relaxed, and all attention. I was with him for nearly an hour while a large crowd waited outside. That is when he told me about how the Emergency was a millstone for Congressmen.

    When I showed him my draft a few days later, Rajiv said I should show it to Narasimha Rao. Rao sat on it for quite some days. He was disgruntled with Rajiv those days. He was gruff with me too. Rajiv found him unwilling and obstructive.

    He told me this in as many words in a moment of high resentment. Finally, Rao made some minor changes in my draft, but nothing significant. And he didn't touch the three paras on the Emergency. Rajiv saw his corrections, then underlined the three paras and sent the typescript back to Rao. Rao sent the draft back without any change or comment.

    Rajiv was a transparent and artless man. He would often open up his heart to strangers. He did it with me. On Rao, he said with apparent bitterness: "He is so grumpy. All these older leaders are. They are a great burden... no, actually, a great pain to carry along. They hold you back. But what can be done? I must carry them along. And the young, they are of no use... most of them, anyway. You give them a small task and they will go outside and immediately begin throwing around their weight. What can one do?"

    Rajiv had carefully read the three paras on Emergency and made some markings here and there — some question marks on the margin, a few exclamation marks in the middle of sentences, some dark lines on the side of the typescript. Overall, he looked satisfied with the candid description of the Emergency but wished some sentences were given a happier nuance.

    I don't remember how exactly these paras went. Nor I could I retrieve the original typescript afterwards, although Prasada did try to help but without success. But I do remember they were far stronger than what has been said in the latest Congress history, as reported in the newspapers. The three paras said all that Sonia Gandhi's history has said about the Emergency and Sanjay Gandhi's role and a lot more.

    The three paras said that in hindsight, Indira Gandhi was advised wrongly to impose the Emergency, and that censorship, the environment of fear and the Supreme Court's denial of right to life and liberty during the Emergency had badly hurt India's image at home and abroad. Even if Indira Gandhi herself was innocent, people at large and historians would continue to hold her responsible for the excesses because she headed the government.

    Although Sanjay Gandhi was not mentioned by name, his role was harshly dealt with. More importantly, the three paragraphs were contrite in tone, something which Sonia Gandhi's history does not seem to be. Sonia's history states the obvious about the Emergency, without any hint of remorse or regret, at least not explicitly.

    One of the three paragraphs dealt harshly with Jayaprakash Narayan, his "Sampoorna Kranti" (Total Revolution), and the subsequent phase of political "buffoonery" by the Janata Party government of Morarji Desai and Charan Singh. Rajiv wanted me to tone down that too. The language, he said, was too "communistic". After all the changes, a fresh typescript was given to Rajiv which he approved.

    Everything went fine until the day the document went for printing. Prasada called me up at press and said Rajiv wanted to drop two of the three paras that expressed regret about the Emergency, even if in an oblique way. He also wanted the third para to be toned down. I spoke to Rajiv. "Gloss over it," he said, "and immediately send back the entire original typescript without making any copy of it."

    I was not worried about history then but about producing the document on time. It had already gone for printing. We had to produce 1,50,000 copies, with the cover in four colour, double stapled, packed, delivered at the airport to be airlifted to Bombay. Such a big change at this stage was hell of a task. But what had to be done was done.

    The document was printed in English under the title "100 Years: A Milestone" and in Hindi as "100 Gaurav Chinh". Rajiv Gandhi signed a copy of both for me but I have lost the English version, though I still have the Hindi version with me.

    Read more: An experiment with truth - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...h-truth/articleshow/7202988.cms#ixzz19pNXVj7n
     
  12. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Rajive was much more soft person politically but even his political career is not spotless. He also has blood of Sikhs in his hand. May be in few years we will see a statement about congress distancing himself from Rajiv if its a ploy by congress to discredit Varun gandhi from legacy of Gandhi family calling Sanjay a Villian. Soniya mam hamam me sab nange hain ap khud ke pati ko bhi to dekhiye.
     

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