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

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Emergency through Western Eyes

Seema Guha The Press She Could Not Whip edited by Amiya Rao and B G Rao; Popular Prakashan, Bombay, 1977; pp xxi + 399, Rs 48. THIS is a compilation of newspaper and magazine reports that appeared in Western press during the Emergency and unmasks the ruthless distortion of truth by the Indira Gandhi regime. The remarkable service done to India by the newsmen of the West can be fully appreciated when we realise that despite the great efforts of the Indian embassies in the capitals of the West to put forward the official version of the Emergency and despite pre-cen- sorship and even personal harassment of foreign journalists critical of the government, the Western press was able to present the stark reality of life in Emergency India. And while the censored national press was repeating the lies which Indira Gandhi invented as an excuse to clamp dictatorial rule in the country The New York Times Magazine was commenting: "The Emergency began solely to keep her in power and that remains its prime reason for being. All else is afterthought, designed to swathe the naked blade of personal power in the sheath of national interest" (p 103).

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