1. What were the achievements of the first non-Congress government? Analyse.
पहली गैर-कांग्रेसी सरकार की उपलब्धियां क्या थीं? विश्लेषण करें।
First non-congress government was formed in 1977 with Morarji Desai as the prime minister.
Its significance lies in the fact that it broke the prevalent party system in India which was till then characterised as “one party dominant or the Congress system” and raised high hopes about the institutionalization of two party system of the British and American patterns of party democracy in India.
- Constitutional reforms aimed to restore the balance between the people and the parliament, the state and the Centre, the citizen and the government and to prevent abuse of power.
(i)Democratic set up restored
- The state of internal emergency was lifted on 21st March 1977 and the external emergency which was imposed on 3rd December 1971 during Indo-Pakistani war was revoked on 27th March 1978.
- The Janata government also restored the civil liberties and freedom to the press by lifting press censorship imposed during emergency rule.
(ii)Court’s jurisdiction Restored
The 44th Amendment Act restored the original power of the High Courts and Supreme Court to examine the constitutional validities of the state and Central laws and replaced the powers of the Parliament to enact laws in respect of antinational activities and to ban political dissent against the government.
(iii)Amendment in Emergency provisions as a check on the misuse or powers:
- Emergency can only proclaimed by the president when the security of India or any part thereof is threatened by war or by armed rebellion. Internal disturbance not amounting to armed rebellion could not be a ground for the proclamation of emergency.
- The act provided that the emergency can be proclaimed after the written advice of the ministers and within one month it will be approved by the two third members of both the houses for six months.
- Social field:
- Appointment of 2nd Backward Classes Commission (Mandal Commission) to identify Socially and Educationally backward classes and steps needed for their advancement which recommended for 27% reservation to people belonging to OBC category.
- Prohibition on Alcohol: Gradual introduction of prohibition was a significant achievement of the Janata Party in the field of social reform.
- Education: The Janata government initiated for the achievement of the directive of the constitution of India. The Janata party government at the centre had made obligatory to the state governments to enable students to study free in the elementary stage ie up to the age of 14.
- Relief to minority and weaker sections: The financial aid for the Haj pilgrims allowed to go to Haj was raised. The number of pilgrims was also raised to 25000 from 15000.
- Foreign policy:
- The government re-established diplomatic relations with the People’s Republic of China, which had been severed due to the Sino-Indian War of 1962. Both nations established regular dialogue to resolve long-standing territorial disputes, expand trade and enhance border security.
- Improvement in relation with USA to avoid perception of India as close ally of Soviet Union and thus genuine adherence to Non Alignment Policy (NAM).
Failures of Janata government:
On Economic front:
- The Janata government had lesser success in achieving economic reforms.
- It launched the Sixth Five-Year Plan, aiming to boost agricultural production and rural industries. Seeking to promote economic self-reliance and indigenous industries, the government required multi-national corporations to go into partnership with Indian corporations.
- The policy proved controversial, diminishing foreign investment and led to the high-profile exit of corporations such as Coca-Cola and IBM from India.
- Government was unable to address the issues of resurging inflation, fuel shortages, unemployment and poverty. The legalisation of strikes and re-empowerment of trade unions affected business efficiency and economic production.
Continuous in-fighting and ideological differences made the Janata government unable to effectively address national problems.
Though Janata Government remained in power for brief period of time, it had quite a number of achievements to its credit which had lasting value for our democracy, administration and society.
Best answer: Ragnar LK