Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other top Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders on Tuesday criticized the 19-month-long period of Emergency declared by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, terming it as the “darkest chapter” in the history of India.
On the 44th anniversary of the Emergency, PM Modi paid tributes to the “greats who fiercely and fearlessly resisted” it.
He added that “India’s democratic ethos successfully prevailed over an authoritarian mindset”.
PM Modi also posted a 90-second video detailing on the various aspects of Emergency, from newspapers to justice delivery, referring it as a “dark period” that trampled over democracy.
India salutes all those greats who fiercely and fearlessly resisted the Emergency.
India’s democratic ethos successfully prevailed over an authoritarian mindset. pic.twitter.com/vUS6HYPbT5
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 25, 2019
Home Minister Amit recalled the period as “when the democracy was murdered for political interests”.
In a tweet, he said, the citizens of the country were stripped of their fundamental rights and the media was banned.
1975 में आज ही के दिन मात्र अपने राजनीतिक हितों के लिए देश के लोकतंत्र की हत्या की गयी। देशवासियों से उनके मूलभूत अधिकार छीन लिए गए, अखबारों पर ताले लगा दिए गए। लाखों राष्ट्रभक्तों ने लोकतंत्र को पुनर्स्थापित करने के लिए अनेकों यातनाएं सहीं।
मैं उन सभी सेनानियों को नमन करता हूं। pic.twitter.com/XzRc4vEdJS
— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) June 25, 2019
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh termed the declaration of Emergency on June 25, 1975, and the incidents that followed as one of the darkest chapters in India’s history.
The declaration of Emergency on June 25, 1975 and the incidents that followed, mark as one of the darkest chapters in India’s history.
On this day, we the people of India should always remember the importance of upholding the integrity our institutions and the Constitution.
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) June 25, 2019
BJP Working President JP Nadda took to Twitter, saying that “democracy was murdered by the Congress party on this day merely to remain in power”.
“A grateful nation remembers thousands of unsung heroes from Bhartiya Jan Sangh and RSS, who led the anti-emergency movement from the front,” he added.
वर्ष 1975 में, आज के दिन निहित राजनीतिक स्वार्थों की पूर्ति के लिए तत्कालीन सरकार द्वारा की गयी आपातकाल की घोषणा, भारत के महान लोकतंत्र पर काला धब्बा है।
मैं नमन करता हूँ, उन सत्याग्रहियों को जिन्होंने मज़बूती से इस अंधकाल में लोकतंत्र की आग को जलाये रखा था। pic.twitter.com/W9F8Q27ikE
— Jagat Prakash Nadda (@JPNadda) June 25, 2019
“The Emergency” refers to a 19-month period from 1975 to 1977 when the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had declared a state of emergency across the country.
During the period, elections were suspended and civil liberties curbed.
Most of Congress’ political opponents including Morarji Desai and Atal Bihari Vajpayee were imprisoned and the press was censored.
The Emergency was one of the most controversial periods of independent India’s history.
The final decision to impose an emergency was proposed by Indira Gandhi, agreed upon by the then president of India, Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed and thereafter ratified by the cabinet and the parliament, based on the rationale that there were imminent internal and external threats to the Indian state.