India's former Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, has obeyed a summons that she attend the?
India's former Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, has obeyed a summons that she attend the Commission of Enquiry hearing accusations that she mis-used her powers during her emergency rule.
SYNOPSIS: 200 extra armed police were on duty outside the former High Court building where the hearing is taking place. Demonstrations, mostly by people backing Mrs. Gandhi were expected if she appeared. The enquiry is headed by one time Chief Justice, J.C. Shah, who insisted Mrs. Gandhi attend in person and summonsed her when twice she'd refused.
Among the first to arrive, Mrs. Gandhi's son, Sanjay-another powerful figure during the months of emergency rule. Together they headed the Government which its alleged-mis-used its power, the accusation Mrs. Gandhi as its Prime Minister must now face.
The car carrying Mrs. Gandhi received an enthusiastic welcome by her supporters.
Mrs. Gandhi seemed pleased to make political capital out of her arrival. It at least proved o her political opponents that as head of the breakaway group known as the 'True Congress Party' she still enjoys same popularity.
The armed police, managing to retain control of the surging crowd, maintained cordons and shut huge gates. But the large numbers of Mrs. Gandhi's supporters who couldn't get into the Courtroom didn't miss the proceedings. The hours of legal argument between Mrs Gandhi's lawyer and the Government's representative were relayed over loudspeakers to the throngs outside. Armed police kept close watch.
When it came time for the Gandhis to leave, the demonstrators gave another show of their support. First it was Mrs. Gandhi's son.
Then Mrs. Gandhi departed, with the day's hearing nothing more than legal wrangling that bordered on political speechmaking. The former Prime Minister was off for another appointment to meet visiting British Prime Minister, Mr. James Callaghan.