Dev Anand, the evergreen star who mesmerized one and all with his charming personality. He also enamoured thousands of people with his films and impressed them equally with his off-screen persona. Dev not only spoke against the government-backed harassment that the film industry faced during the 1975 Emergency, he even formed his own party to fight against the atrocities. (Also read: Dev Anand Birth Anniversary: Rare pics of the star with RD Burman, Yash Chopra)
Dev Anand founded a party to oppose Indira Gandhi
A 2015 report in Hindustan Times City recalled how Dev Anand stood his ground during the Emergency. He refused to talk in support of the Emergency on Doordarshan upon being asked to do so. Two years after the Emergency was imposed, Dev Anand led a group of film personalities against Indira Gandhi, during the elections in 1977. He also founded a party called the National Party of India. However, it was later disbanded as he could not find suitable candidates to fight elections.
Dev Anand called Emergency a ‘nightmare’
According to a 1977 India Today report, Dev Anand had described the Emergency as a “dark night, a nightmare, an insult to the people”. The report also mentioned that Dev Anand was a victim of the arm-twisting that was orchestrated by the central government at the time.
When he refused to speak in support of the Emergency, and attend meetings that were summoned, he was even harassed and humiliated, the actor told the news magazine. “I got the impression that my problems would be solved if I canvassed for the candidate,” he said.
In a recent post on social media, filmmaker Shekhar Kapur wrote, “Dev Anand was more than a star, he believed and was unafraid to fight for what he believed in. He came out against the emergency and Indira Gandhi at a time when it was the surest way to prison. He even took out processions fighting against the Emergency.”
Having worked in films such as Guide, CID, Jewel Thief, Taxi Driver, Jaal, Dushman, Kalabazaar, and Bombay Ka Babu, Dev Anand continues to be known for his 1971 directorial Hare Rama Hare Krishna. When he died in 2011, he was already planning to work an extension of his cult hit Hare Rama Hare Krishna. His last film Chargesheet was also set for release at that time.