Gayatri Devi living in palaces lived in a smelly cell: Lady Communist leader gave bed in jail, Vijayraje Scindia slept outside

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Today completes 47 years of Emergency. On 25 June 1975, the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi imposed emergency in the entire country and imprisoned the leaders of the opposition overnight. Tales of excesses during the Emergency are told and heard all over the country even today. Rajasthan also has an unwanted relationship with the Emergency.

As soon as the Emergency was imposed in Rajasthan, Jan Sangh and all the opposition leaders were put in jail. Gayatri Devi, the former Maharani of Jaipur, who was one of the beautiful women of the world, was also sent to jail during the Emergency. Gayatri Devi, in her book – A Princess Remembers, has given the details of her 156 days in jail since her arrest in Emergency. Gayatri Devi was released from jail in January 1976 due to illness.

Gayatri Devi was the MP of Swatantra Party at that time. He was arrested from the MP residence in Delhi a month after the Emergency was imposed. For a month, she was evading arrest due to being in Mumbai. Gayatri Devi has written in her book – When the Parliament reached, the seats of the opposition were vacant. The Congress MPs were surprised to see me, as all the leaders of the opposition had been arrested.

As soon as the MP reached the residence, the policemen came after some time, they showed the warrant of arrest. The policemen neither allowed to telephone nor to meet the lawyer and took them directly to the police station. After being kept in the police station for three hours, he was taken to Tihar Jail. Gayatri Devi has written – Indira Gandhi kept me in jail like many others without taking any legal action to take revenge.

Communist leader Srilatha Swaminathan had given his bed
Radical Communist leader Srilatha Swaminathan was already kept in the room where Gayatri Devi was shifted to Tihar Jail. There was a foul smell coming from the surrounding drains till this room. There was only one bed in this room. Srilatha gave the bed to Gayatri Devi and herself slept on the floor. Gayatri Devi has written in her book A Presence Remembers – could not sleep on the first night. Keeps thinking why was I caught? How long will I have to stay in jail and when will I be able to consult my lawyers? The next morning tea was served and asked which newspaper would you read? I asked for all the newspapers and saw that they were all censored. I was kept in the jail like a C category prisoner and was given ‘B’ category food with the permission above.

Gayatri Devi arranged for Vijayraje Scindia to sleep with a curtain
Former CM Vasundhara Raje’s mother and Jana Sangh MP Vijayaraje Scindia was also kept in Tihar Jail during the Emergency. Vijayaraje Scindia was kept in a jail cell near Gayatri Devi. Gayatri Devi wrote – It was the month of August. It had started raining. There was terrible heat in the prison cell. Vijayaraje Scindia wanted to sleep on the verandah outside my room. Gayatridevi arranged for them to sleep by putting a curtain.

A stock of gold coins was found under the floor in Jaipur royal family
On February 11, 1975, four months before the Emergency was imposed, Income Tax raids on major establishments belonging to the Jaipur royal family. The raids and investigations lasted for several days. During this, the tales of confiscating a large number of gold and silver and treasure and taking them to Delhi by trucks were also very popular, although it was never confirmed.

It is said that during the Income Tax raids, a stock of gold coins was found under the floor in Moti Dungri Mahal. Income tax officers were also stunned to see such a huge treasure. Its report was immediately sent to Delhi.

Gayatri Devi has mentioned about these impressions in detail in her book. Gayatri Devi has written that this gold belonged to the treasury of the princely state of Jaipur. This gold was shifted from Nahargarh to Moti Dungri even before the merger of the princely state of Jaipur. There is a complete account of this gold in the last budget of the princely state of Jaipur.

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