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Villains of Emergency must be punished: Prasar Bharati chairman

The "villains" of the Emergency must be tracked down and punished in order to secure democracy in the country, Prasar Bharati Chairman A Surya Prakash said on Monday.Speaking at a discussion on "Emergency: Darkest Hour in Indian Democracy", he said India came under a "fascist regime" for months during the Emergency.

"The villains of the Emergency wrecked our Constitution and the democratic way of life. In my view, we must still track them down. The Nazi hunters are still at work (in the West) even after 60-70 years. We should not let them go," Prakash said.

"We must track them down and punish them. Dr Manmohan Sigh must answer why a person described as a tyrant by the Shah Commission was made an election commissioner. On whose instruction did he do this," he said, referring to Navin Chawla."If we wish to secure our democracy, the villains of the Emergency and their mentors must be made to pay," he added.

Prakash also backed an idea mooted by a member of the audience that a memorial be built for the Emergency victims."There is a lot of real estate in Lutyens' Delhi, which is occupied by a certain family, which can be vacated," he said, in an apparent reference to the Gandhi family.S Gurumurthy, chairman, Vivekananda International Foundation, said there could be no Emergency in India now unless the Constitution was overthrown.

The report of the Shah Commission, an independent panel headed by former Chief Justice of India Jayantilal Chhotalal Shah to probe atrocities during the Emergency, which was "destroyed", was one of the finest documents and must be made part of the library in every school and college of the country, he said.Gurumurthy also called for a debate on the Shah Commission report.The Emergency refers to a period from 1975 to 1977, when then prime minister Indira Gandhi had imposed a state of emergency across the country.

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