PM Modi Recalls 'fierce' Arun Jaitley’s Struggle During The Emergency


Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley fought actively to protect democracy during the dark years of the Emergency and was even detained for 19 months under MISA

Written By Koushik Narayanan | Mumbai | Updated On:
PM Modi

Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has passed away on Saturday, August 24, 2019 after being admitted to AIIMS in New Delhi on August 9, the hospital has announced in a statement. The AIIMS issued a statement informing about his demise on Saturday. Arun Jaitley unfortunate demise marks the end of an extraordinary career that has witnessed him holding incredibly important positions at various levels, both in the government and outside.

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Arun Jaitley’s role during the Emergency

Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley fought actively to protect democracy during the dark years of the Emergency. Arun Jaitley organized a massive protest at the Delhi University campus on 26 April, 1975 and was arrested for it under the Maintenance of Internal Securities Act. Jaitley was detained for 19 months during the Emergency and did even attempt to seek an early release. Instead, the former Finance Minister fought from behind bars amid cruel conditions such as a ration of just Rs 3 per day for the prisoners. Despite being detained during the Emergency, Arun Jaitley had moved to court on multiple occasions to permit him to write his final exams for Law but was turned down. 19 months after his arrest Arun Jaitley was freed and in 1977 he said “ I first enjoyed my freedom by going home to my parents. But the very next day after that, I thought of the unfinished job we have to do in this country, and I plunged back into politics.” “For many like me who underwent emergency experience in Delhi and successfully fought against it, this became a turning point in our lives. The emergency was perhaps the best political education of my life. It taught me that some compromises were just not possible”, Arun Jaitley wrote about the Emergency in 2014.

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PM Modi hails Arun Jaitley’s struggle during Emergency

PM Modi termed the bond shared between late former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as an unbreakable one. PM Modi spoke to Arun Jaitley's wife and son and expressed his condolences at the former Union Minister's demise. PM Modi recalled the days when young Arun Jaitley was a fierce student leader and his role inm protecting the democracy during the Emergency. PM Modi said that Arun Jaitley became a popular face of the Party who could articulate the Party's ideologies to all levels of the society. Read PM Modi's tweet here:

READ | PM Modi pays tribute to Arun Jaitley, says he was a 'political giant'

Arun Jaitley's political career

The senior BJP leader, who held the portfolios of Finance and Corporate Affairs for the entirety of the first Narendra Modi-led NDA government, had earlier opted out of the second Modi govern

ment that was sworn-in in May, citing health grounds. He had, however, voiced that he would continue to serve the government and his party in what capacity he could.Arun Jaitley’s political career spanned multiple decades and tenures. In the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led government, Mr Jaitley held the portfolios of Information and Broadcasting while simultaneously holding Independent Charge of the Department of Disinvestment and going on to hold the Ministry of Law, Justice and Company Affairs and then the Ministry of Shipping.

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