March 14, 1980, Forty Years Ago: Nuclear decision

By: Editorial |

Published: March 14, 2020 3:40:07 am

“We remain committed to the use of atomic energy for peaceful purposes,” Indira Gandhi had said.

Nuclear decision

Prime Minister Indira Gandhi reaffirmed India’s commitment to the peaceful uses of atomic energy but added that the country would not hesitate from carrying out “nuclear explosion or implosion, whatever is necessary, in the national interests”. She told Rajya Sabha at question time: “We remain committed to the use of atomic energy for peaceful purposes. However, the government must look after the interests of the country and study this question in depth.” The prime minister said: “We must have our eyes and ears open (to what had been happening in this region) and be in touch with the latest technology. We should not be caught napping.”

Assam foreigners

Home ministry sources and leaders of the movement for the detection and deportation of foreigners from Assam sounded optimistic when they said that the door to further negotiations was open. A ministry spokesman expressed the hope that saner counsel would prevail on the All Assam Students Union and Gana Sangram Parishad. The door was still open as far as the government was concerned, he added. Noboron Bora, spokesman of the Assam leaders, confirmed that there was some contact between the leaders and the ministry.

NIC reboot

The National Integration Council is being revived. Announcing this in the Lok Sabha, while replying to a discussion on atrocities against Harijans, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi said that the council was not a solution to such a problem but could serve as a tool to help achieve that objective. The revival of the council was one of the specific suggestions made by the acting leader of the Janata group, Madhu Dandavate, who initiated the discussion. She accepted that it was the government’s responsibility to ensure full protection to weaker sections, and to “cleanse society of shameful blots” like the Pipra outrage.

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