19 September, 2020

‘Atalji Suggested We Be Ready For The Police’ | Excerpt from L.K. Advani's Book

L.K. Advani, then president of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, was arrested and imprisoned during the Emergency for nineteen months. For a brief period, his fellow prisoner in Bangalore was Atal Behari Vajpayee.

Photograph by Jitender Gupta
‘Atalji Suggested We Be Ready For The Police’ | Excerpt from L.K. Advani's Book
outlookindia.com
2018-08-18T11:50:06+05:30

L.K. Advani, then president of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, was arrested and imprisoned during the Emergency for nineteen months. For a brief period, his fellow prisoner in Bangalore was Atal Behari Vajpayee. “Prison is meant to be a punishment,” wrote Morarji Desai in the foreword to the 1978 edition of A Prisoner’s Scrap-Book. “But the satyagrahi converts it into a challenge for deepening his political faith and his personal capabilities.”

BANGALORE. THURSDAY, JUNE 26, 1975: It is around 7.30 in the morning. The telephone starts ringing. Shyam Nandan Mishra (Shyambabu), with whom I am sharing a first floor room at the MLA’s hostel here, picks up the receiver, but hands it over to me, saying: “It’s for you.”… The police, the message concludes, may shortly be calling for Atal Behari Vajpayee and myself…[I then] hastened to Atalji’s room to convey the news to him. We conferred briefly and decided that neither of us should evade arrest. Let them come and pick us up whenever they...

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