dated 10th May, 1952: Grant of voting rights

On May 8, the Ceylon Government reiterated that the present interim Government of the island could do absolutely nothing to redress the grievances of the Ceylon Indian Congress before the selection of a new Parliament and the formation of a new Government.

This was in reply to the Indian Government's aide memoire of May 4. The Ceylon Government emphatically denied that disfranchisement of the Indian community was effected for purposes of the forthcoming election and its note said the Ceylon Government took no steps deliberately with this purpose in view. Ceylon's note did not agree that all Indians in Ceylon were entitled to voting rights and said Indians who registered themselves as citizens of Ceylon according to the law and took their oath of allegiance to Ceylon would be entitled to voting rights.

Pope Pius

Pope Pius XII refused to obey a German order to leave Rome as Allied troops were marching on it in 1944. This was disclosed in Vatican City, on May 7, with the publication of a speech made the previous day, by Monsignor Ferdinando Baldelli, President of the Pontifical Assistance Commission and close collaborator of the 76-year-old pontiff. Mon. Baldelli said that to the German order to evacuate, the Pope had replied with an emphatic "no". He had told the German emissaries that the City of God could not be abandoned by its Vicar. Rome could not become a desert nor a battlefield and the people of the city must remain beside their bishop.

Bhudan Yagna

Addressing a news conference in Lucknow, Acharya Vinoba Bhave said he was happy that people of all shades of political opinion, from the Rightists to the Leftists, had supported the `Bhudan Yagna'.

Asked whether the `Bhudan Yagna' would solve the problems of the rural population and how much time it would take, he said the `Yagna' was a psychological approach to the people. He was not after quick results to be measured by the number of acres of land donated to him. The `Bhudan Yagna' is an ideology and not a new brand of tea or cigarette to be sold to the people, he said.

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