Monday was the 43rd anniversary of the imposition of the the Emergency in 1975. Several Bharatiya Janata Party leaders and union ministers lapped up the opportunity to discredit the Congress. However, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's tweets left people wondering if they were more a commentary on contemporary events than those that took place four decades back. Sample this: "The Lesson from the Emergency is that if you curb free speech and allow only propaganda, you become the first victim of propaganda because you start believing that your own propaganda is the truth and the full truth." External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had registered her protest on the eve of the anniversary by 'liking' some of the tweets that had targeted her in the last couple of days. In Rajasthan, BJP leader Ghanshyam Tiwari said he has quit the party to fight against the "undeclared Emergency" in the state and country. Tiwari had been at loggerheads with state CM Vasundhara Raje, and chose the anniversary to float a new party that will contest the assembly elections.
Mind your language
The audience comprising representatives of different countries were left nonplussed at an Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) session on Monday. There was no interpretation facility. Deputy chief minister of Bihar, Sushil Modi, began his address in English but soon switched to Hindi; Trivendra Singh Rawat, chief minister of Uttarakhand, did not even try to speak in English. The audience started drifting away even before Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister of Maharashtra, had begun his address.
It is rare for a politician to praise another from a rival party. In Andhra Pradesh (AP), the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) are rivals. On Sunday, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan praised TDP legislator Nimmala Rama Naidu, who had spent a night at a crematorium to motivate workers who had refused to enter the place after dark to carry out renovation work. After TDP walked out of the government at the Centre, many in the CPI (M) have advocated an alliance with the party in AP.