Shastri hits out
While the Communist group in the Lok Sabha on April 18 repeatedly denied that its party or its members had anything to do with the publication or circulation of anti-national literature, the Home Minister, Mr. Lal Bahadur Shastri, maintained that the pro-China group of the Communist Party of India was behind it. The Home Minister, who was making a statement in the House in reply to the one made by the leader of the Communist group, Mr. A.K. Gopalan, said that “the role of those who speak and propagate, and carry on whispering campaigns or think in terms of underground work, is a danger to the country.” Mr. Gopalan in his statement to the House said that during the discussions the Communist leaders had had with the Home Minister, Mr. Shastri had not shown item any proof of his conclusions about the alleged connections of certain members of the C.P.I. with the offensive literature. His Party, therefore, wanted to set the record straight. The Home Minister said the pamphlets and articles circulated were found without the names of printers and publishers, which was itself an offence. The intention obviously was to circulate them “surreptitiously”, he said.
Nepal National Panchayat
King Mahendra formally inaugurated the National Panchayat, Nepal’s supreme unicameral legislature, in Kathmandu on April 18. King Mahendra in the course of his address, made a direct reference to his Government’s improving relations with India. He said that some selfish elements unable to put up with the new system in Nepal took shelter in India and attempted to “disrupt our friendly relations with India.’’
Eradication of small-pox
Dr. Sushila Nayyar, Union Minister for Health, described the small-pox eradication campaign in the City of Madras as a “failure.” The Union Minister, who arrived in Madras on April 18, attributed this to the inadequacy of health education among the people and the lack of public co-operation to the campaign. She told a representative of The Hindu , that in the City, primary vaccination and revaccination had either not been done or had been done.