The Internal Emergency, declared in the early hours of 26 June 1975, was for many a turning point in the politics of India. Despite a growing sense of crisis throughout 1974-1975, and amid general discussions over the prospect of a coup or some form of extreme government action, the event itself was a complete surprise. Yet the ending of the Emergency in March 1977, and the subsequent electoral landslide for the Janata Party, were equally surprising, if not bewildering, to those who had come to support the Emergency regime and who believed that it had, under the auspices of the 42nd Amendment, become in effect a permanent feature of political life. The extraordinary victory of democracy over dictatorship, and the sheer decisiveness through which the Indian electorate reaffirmed its commitment to an elected parliament, gave the event widespread international coverage, and became part of the mystique of India as the world’s largest democracy. Mrs Gandhi was unseated in the constituency of Rae Bareilly, and over 22 members of the council of ministers also lost their seats.