Sunday, December 05, 2021

Forty Years Ago, March 1, 1977: CPI Turnaround

The CPI had thought that the danger to democracy came only from one side but the danger had also come from another side which was within the Congress and ‘‘we must admit that we did not expect this”.

Written by Editorial |
March 1, 2017 12:15:11 am

Stating that the present political situation could not be seen in terms of black and white, CPI general secretary, C. Rajeswara Rao, said both the Congress and the Janata Party have oversimplified the issues at stake during this election. According to the CPI, the issues were much wider. Not only was democracy at stake, the question of whether imperialism would dominate the economy of this country and the question if India would continue to be non-aligned and maintain its friendship with the socialist countries. The CPI had thought that the danger to democracy came only from one side but the danger had also come from another side which was within the Congress and ‘‘we must admit that we did not expect this”. But once the CPI had seen it emerging, it had fought this new danger frontally and openly. Since April 1976, when there had been the Turkman Gate incident in Delhi, the CPI had directly told the prime minister that the Emergency was being misused.

Indira on CPI

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi said she failed to understand the CPI’s stand that it would back only those candidates of the Congress in the coming elections who, according to the party, were progressive. She said that party had backed the proclamation of Emergency as also many plans and programmes of her party as being progressive. Nevertheless, she failed to understand the present stand of the CPI. She did not know how the CPI would decide which of the Congress candidates were progressive.

Bogey of fascism

Cautioning the people against falling a prey to ‘‘the bogey of fascism and dictatorship” raised by the Opposition, Mrs Gandhi, addressing a public meeting in Patna, said if this had been true there would have been no election and the Opposition leaders would not still be having their heads on their shoulders.

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