INDIA: Janata's Bad Smell

A government crisis leaves an opening for Indira

When 82-year-old Prime Minister Morarji Desai returned home from the U.S. last month, portly Minister of Health Raj Narain was solicitously waiting for him at the airport. As the leader stepped out into the 102° summer sizzle of New Delhi, Narain held out a scented handkerchief. Brushing the offer aside, Desai snapped: "You put perfume here, but you spread a bad smell about the party elsewhere." With that retort the Prime Minister triggered a crisis in his 16-month-old government that led to the resignation of...

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