The Political Fiasco of 1975: A Study of the National Emergency

Jay Gajbhiye
National Law University Odisha, India

Volume II – Issue II, 2020

“One of the most important causes for the proclamation of Internal Emergency in India in 1975 was the then Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi’s belief that following the Allahabad High Court’s judgment against her incited the people and created an inflammatory situation. On 26th June 1975, the government decided that a law should be passed to prevent scurrilous and malicious writings in newspapers and journals, news agencies would be restructured and the Press Council of India wounded up. It was felt that the government’s policy regarding the issuing of advertisements to newspapers and magazines should be reviewed. The censorship on the Press, the only independent media in the country, was thus invoked. The reaction of the so-called independent Press, however, left much to be desired and except a handful, the print media presented a reluctant and disinclined picture. The easiness with which it relinquished its independence shocked everyone. The sterility of the fourth estate in India along with the ethics of the Indira government is discussed in this paper.”

“This paper discusses one of the most powerful politicians of India, her most controversial and harsh decision of imposition of Emergency and the response of the press thereto.”

Keywords: Emergency, Constitution, India, Indira Gandhi, Polity


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