ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Spectre of Emergency

The spectre of Emergency has returned to public memory thanks to renewed writings and reminiscences in our media on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the event. The stories being recounted highlight the fact that the Emergency was not a “state of exception,” but an event which can recur in the life of the nation and whose dangers we should grapple with for a sane society.

Shiv Visvanathan reminded us that the Emergency deinstitutionalised India, while Sumanta Bandyopadhyay has raised the alarm that the present mode of functioning of the state hints at the possibility of “emergency” at any time. Gopalkrishna Gandhi points to the great Yoga Day assemblage on Rajpath where yoga has been “choreographed into an opera of mass power… a national mission that bears an unmistakable family resemblance to the drills by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.”

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