On June 25th, it was the 44th anniversary of the darkest day in India’s history. On June 25th, 1975 Indira Gandhi imposed Emergency in India which lasted for a period of 21 month from 1975 to 1977.
Why did Indira Gandhi declare Emergency in India?
It began with the case against Indira Gandhi for election malpractices in Allahabad High Court. The verdict of the same was later challenged in Supreme Court which granted Gandhi a conditional stay. It allowed her to be an MP but not preside over parliamentary proceedings. This was the major reason for imposing Emergency.
Another major blow to Indira Gandhi was when Jayaprakash Narayan demanded the resignation of Indira after the Allahabad High Court gave its verdict. It was on the same day; June 25 that JP Narayan declared the nationwide plan of daily demonstrations in every state capital.
Droughts, unemployment and oil crisis further troubled the Indian economy fuelling massive labour and student unrest in the country.
Emergency has always been labelled as a period of commitment of atrocities. All opposition leaders like Morarji Desai, L.K. Advani, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Arun Jaitley, George Fernandes etc were imprisoned for more than a year. Press was censored and today when government decided to ban NDTV for a day, we saw the Congress shouting that there is no freedom for the media under Modi rule.
What happened during emergency?
Indira Gandhi invoked Article 352 of the Indian Constitution which gave her extraordinary powers. She used these powers to suppress her political opponents and detained protestors and opposition leaders. After the first round of arrests, the remaining political workers went underground but still continued their protests. Not only that, there were reports of protestors who were under detention being tortured to death. The State and parliamentary elections were postponed. This was followed by shameful actions such forced sterilization, eviction of illegal colonies in Delhi and neighbouring areas by the use of brute strength.
Impact of Emergency:
After the Emergency was lifted, Indira Gandhi faced huge oppositions for her actions. The result this was evident in the 1977 Lok Sabha Elections where Janata Party under the leadership of Morarji Desai came to power. Later, Indira was arrested on account of various cases against her.
All those who say that there is an “Undeclared Emergency” under the rule of PM Modi had openly supported the brutal act of imposing emergency in 1975. It is ridiculous that these who oppose Governance under Modi never speak of Indira Gandhi’s Emergency.
Anyone who opposed Indira were arrested and tortured to death. But today anyone can insult PM Modi, anyone can issue Fatwa against PM Modi and walk free and still, they call that there is undeclared emergency.
Mera Bharath Mahan