1975 Indira Gandhi Expelled From Parliament
Indira Gandhi was expelled from Parliament after being indicted on a charge of election fraud. She was ordered arrested but was quickly released. On January 3rd, the Congress party, of which she had been one of the founders, also expelled her..
Indira Gandhi, born as Indira Priyadarshini Nehru in 1917, played a pivotal role in shaping modern India. As the third Prime Minister of India, and the first woman to hold this position, she was an influential and, at times, a controversial figure. However, few episodes from her political life stirred as much turbulence as the events of her expulsion from the Indian Parliament and her own party, the Indian National Congress.
In 1975, a political crisis emerged when Allahabad High Court found Gandhi guilty of electoral malpractices during her 1971 election campaign. The court's verdict declared her election null and void and prohibited her from participating in any political activity for six years, effectively expelling her from the Parliament. The accusations entailed misuse of government machinery for her campaign, a charge that caught national and international attention.
Defiant, Gandhi rejected the charges and alleged that the entire episode was a part of a larger conspiracy to weaken India. In a surprising turn of events, she was arrested but released after a brief stint in jail. The events sent shockwaves throughout the country, triggering nationwide protests and political upheaval.
This tumultuous time in Indian politics became more dramatic on January 3rd, when the Indian National Congress, the party of which she was a co-founder and had led to significant victories, expelled her. The move came as a shock to many who had seen Gandhi as the driving force behind the party.
The expulsion was unprecedented in the annals of the Congress party, which had ruled India for the majority of its post-independence era. The party had always projected itself as a broad church, encompassing diverse political views, and Indira's expulsion was seen as a significant deviation from its historical norm.
The exact reasons for her expulsion from the Congress party remain clouded in political maneuvering and intrigue. Many believe that the decision was prompted by a faction within the party, who saw an opportunity to seize control in the power vacuum left by her disqualification. Her uncompromising leadership style and the recent imposition of the controversial state of emergency also played a part in her isolation.
This expulsion marked a turning point in Indian political history. Indira Gandhi, demonstrating a tenacity that had characterized her political career, formed a new political entity, the 'Congress (I)', with the 'I' signifying 'Indira'. The party witnessed considerable success under her stewardship, and she returned to the Prime Minister's office in 1980, until her assassination in 1984.