Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday recalled the 1975 Emergency, saying it was the “darkest night for democracy”. While addressing the nation on the 21st edition of his monthly radio programme ‘Mann Ki Baat’, Modi said, “Democracy has given us strength, but the night of June 25-26, 1975, was the darkest night for democracy…but now, the people of India express their views how the government is doing.”

Modi also congratulated Indian students for their contribution towards science and technology, emphasising the need for more youngsters to pursue a career in these fields, IANS reported. Referring to the launch of 20 satellites by the Indian Space Research Organisation, he said the country’s scientists were working hard to take India to greater heights. During his visit to Pune, where he launched the Smart Cities project, Modi met students who had made one of the satellites that was launched. “This satellite signifies the skills and aspirations of the youth of India. Similar work was done by students from Chennai,” he said.

Moreover, the central government has initiated a new scheme according to which people have till September 30 to declare their undisclosed income, he said. Modi urged everyone to “be a part of this transparent scheme” and “free ourselves of several burdens” by paying a penalty. The Centre’s ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ initiative, the Indian Air Force inducting its first batch of women fighter pilots and the celebrations that marked the International Yoga Day on June 21 were among the other subjects he spoke about.

The prime minister’s statement on the Emergency comes in the backdrop of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal accusing the prime minister of having declared an Emergency in the national capital, following the arrest of AAP MLA Dinesh Mohaniya on molestation charges.