US had a mole in Indira Gandhi's household: Diplomatic cable

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Indira Gandhi
New Delhi, April 9: Diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks have revealed that the United States managed to get inside information from even the household of former prime minister Indira Gandhi.

A cable sent from the US embassy here on Jun 27, 1975 quotes "a source in the PM's household entourage" as saying that the then union home secretary was suddenly transferred to the ministry for civil aviation and tourism mainly because he had objected to the declaration of Emergency in the country.

"The names most commonly heard as the key figures behind Mrs Gandhi at this point are her son, Sanjay Gandhi and her secretary, Dhawan. This is confirmed by a source close to the PM's household. Both are non-ideological, extremely authoritarian in their general approach, and focused only on keeping Mrs Gandhi in power," the cable said.

American diplomats based in Delhi at that time felt that Indira Gandhi was "completely unpredictable". Daniel Patrick Moynihan, US ambassador to India between 1973 and 1975, wrote that she had ticked him off for describing India as a "world power".

According to Moynihan, Indira Gandhi averred that India was not interested in "power politics" and anyway it did not have resources to "act as other nations had done in the past".

AK Antony was upset over Sanjay Gandhi's meteoric rise

Some cables have thrown light on the divisions in the Congress party over the free hand given by Indira Gandhi to her younger son Sanjay during the Emergency years.

A cable dated November 26, 1976 mentions how AK Antony, who was leading a faction of the Kerala Congress back then and is currently the country's Defence Minister, slammed Sanjay Gandhi at the All India Congress Committee session in Guwahati.

"Kerala Congress president AK Antony was one of the only leaders to flatly criticise the new Youth Congress and Sanjay. The other key critic was West Bengal Congress leader PR Dasmunsi," the cable noted.

As per another cable, Sanjay Gandhi's "rapid build up" had triggered a sense of unease among several Congress leaders in Kerala.

"Predictably, the KPCC faction led by state Home Minister K Karunakaran supports Sanjay, as does one section of the Kerala Youth Congress. The wing of KPCC led by Antony and the other faction of the Youth Congress do not support him. Antony and those refusing to support Sanjay question his rapid ascent to a position of power, asking themselves, we understand, what sacrifices he has made for the party or the country," the cable added.

OneIndia News (with PTI inputs) 

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