Cong admits 1975 Emergency 'error', now BJP's turn: MVA

By Quaid Najmi

Mumbai, Mar 3 (IANS): Lauding Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's candid admission, that the Emergency imposed 45 years ago was a mistake, the ruling Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) jumped to its feet and said "now it's the turn of the ruling party at the Centre to own up its mistakes", here on Wednesday.

State Congress President Nana Patole, Nationalist Congress Party Spokesperson and Minister Nawab Malik, Shiv Sena leader Kishore Tiwari and Samajwadi Party state President Abu Asim Azmi made near-identical demands from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after Gandhi's surprise statement on Tuesday.

Patole said that the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has owned up that the 21-month long Emergency imposed in 1975 was a 'mistake'.

"Now, will Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP also admit that the 2002 Gujarat riots were a blunder and own up their responsibility?" Patole demanded.

Malik said that after the Congress' submission that somehow the Emergency was not the right step, it's now the turn of the BJP to reciprocate and accept its own mistake of the Gujarat riots.

"Earlier, the Congress had even apologized for the anti-Sikh riots (1984) in Delhi and now they feel imposing the Emergency was wrong They are attempting to improve upon their mistakes. When will the BJP similarly admit and apologise for the Gujarat riots," Malik asked.

Welcoming Gandhi's assertion, Tiwari, accorded a Minister of State status, said that it was a magnanimous gesture on the part of the Congress and its time for BJP to follow suit in a democratic spirit.

"Not only should Modi say sorry, he should also make suitable amends towards all the affected people, if necessary, even resign to prove his sincerity The Congress has realized and trying to erase its past errors, the BJP must also do the same to improve its credibility with the masses," said Tiwari.

Azmi said that the BJP has become a 'Bharat Jalao Party' and it is engaged in blatantly destroying the country on all fronts daily in the past 7 years.

"They must categorically apologise for the Gujarat riots, plus the manner in which minorities are being targeted, for the lynchings of Muslims, Dalits and other poor people, for the harassment of 'love-jihad' the list is long," said Azmi.

The ruling parties' reactions came after Gandhi - in conversation with Cornell University's economic Kaushik Basu - termed the Emergency imposed by the then PM Indira Gandhi, as a 'mistake'.

"I think that (the Emergency) was a mistake. Absolutely, that was a mistake. And my grandmother (Indira Gandhi) said as much."

However, he also added that there was a fundamental difference between what happened during the Emergency which was wrong, and what is happening in the country currently.

Tweaking the Congress' ears further, the SP leader (Azmi) said merely admitting mistakes or saying sorry after the irreparable damage wreaked for past errors or horrors, is not enough, and they (Congress) must go a step further to promise that such things will not recur in future.

"There were many riots even during the Congress rule, they failed to protect the Babri Mosque, and committed other atrocities against minorities or deprived sections of the society The Congress should categorically assure that if they return to power, they will not repeat such things and help to improve the lot of the downtrodden," Azmi said grimly.



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Comment on this article

  • Ramesh, Udupi

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Rahul Gandhi is one of the best politician India has now.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • Pacific Heights, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    RaGa knows . His party and himself have nothing to gain or nothing to lose with such statements after almost 50 years. There are bigger hurdles to encounter before confronting BJP . Tomorrow he may back track and state , that he meant it that way not this way.

    DisAgree [4] Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • Mohan Prabhu, Mangalore/Kankanady, Ottawa/Canada

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Never too late. The Canadian Government has admitted past wrongdoings to native Indians and even to the Japanese and the first ship of Indian immigrants at the turn of the last century, and the Vatican has similarly done for atrocities, They have given formal apologies. What did it cost them after all the perpetrators had gone dozens of years ago, like Indira who is gone for more than 30 years. Does it pain Rahul? The Indira Emergency was Government declared Emergency. No such emergency was declared by Modi in Gujarat - the riots were perpetrated by one group of people against another, and they happened to be Muslims. Should India - and as well Pakistan - sign an accord admitting atrocities during the Partition in 1947 when millions were slaughtered on both sides merely on grounds of religion? What does it cost any one to issue apology without remorse - and remorse then is like shedding crocodile tears. If the State has perpetrated the riots and kept quiet without intervening, then the State is at fault, especially its leaders who did not raise a finger to stop it = perhaps, even, declare martial law (the other face of Emergency rule). Think about it.

    DisAgree [4] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse

  • Makhan C, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    OK. It took 45 years for Congress to admit that emergency was a mistake. So Modi can wait till 2047 to admit 2002 was a mistake.

    DisAgree [5] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • j.anata, Mangaluru / Bengaluru

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    So CONgress has owned up EMERGENCY and Sikh Riots both. Great news! Late realisation for Raul and family

    DisAgree [9] Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • Raviraj Poonja, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Admit today and deny couple of days later. Keep the people confused. Then swim in the sea to demonstrate governance and administration skills. When elections are near , run to a safe constituency to win on Muslim votes. Blame EVM for the next 5 years and contest again . Typical Congress.

    DisAgree [9] Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • N.M, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Great deed of acceptance by INC and this quality of Congress is what makes everyone including minorities trust them although they receive nothing in return from them. On the other hand, BJP is an arrogant party filled with criminals and rioters. In fact, it has become a safe house for anti-nationals.

    DisAgree [13] Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • KRPrabhu, Bangaluru/Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Realisation is too late....

    DisAgree [10] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • Deshbhakt, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    At-least they realized, and admitted it. Please ponder over, will BJP ever say DeMo was a mistake ? Giving defense contract to inexperienced friend, depriving HAL the honor, a mistake ? Selling PSUs a mistake ? Non-auditable PM Cares Fund a mistake ? Unfruitful foreign trips a mistake ? Make in India a mistake ? Namami Gange, that never got clean despite spending so much of taxpayers' sweat/blood until 'Lock Down' did the job, a mistake ? Modi government has a lot to explain.

    DisAgree [13] Agree [17] Report Abuse

  • Navneeth, Mangalore

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Deshbhakt, Mangalore .. Yeah he did admit .The Congress has nothing to gain nor lose with this 'satya harishchandra' act. In that case, Okay BJP can then wait for 50 years and then decide if whatever you mentioned is a mistake or not. Lets be fair.

    DisAgree [5] Agree [2] Report Abuse

  • Eddison, Kuwait

    Wed, Mar 03 2021

    Navneeth, then it is high time to except Savarkar, Golwalkar and Godse's mistakes if timing is the key for you.

    DisAgree Agree [4] Report Abuse

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