Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday said that Inder Kumar Gujral's advice to then home minister Narsimha Rao would have prevented the 1984 massacres, if later had heard and acted over it. "When the sad event of 1984 took place, Gujral ji that very evening went to the then Home Minister Narsimha Rao and said to him that the situation is so grim that it is necessary for the government to call the army at the earliest. If that advice would have been heeded perhaps the massacre that took place in 1984 could have been avoided," news agency ANI quoted Singh as saying.
Gujral was the 12th Prime Minister of India between April 1997 and March 1998 and propounded the 'Gujral Doctrine' of five principles for maintaining good relations with India's neighbours.
Speaking about his relationship with the former Prime Minister grew, Singh said, "He was the minister of Information and Broadcasting and he had problems with some aspects of the management of emergency and then he was removed to the planning commission as minister of state. I was then an economic advisor with the ministry of finance... Thereafter our relationship grew", Singh added.
Gujral became prime minister as the consensus candidate between others that included Lalu Prasad Yadav, Mulayam Singh Yadav and his government was supported by the Indian National Congress from outside.
Gujral wrote in his autobiography of the doctrine: "The logic behind the Gujral Doctrine was that since we had to face two hostile neighbours in the north and the west, Manmohan Singhwe had to be at ‘total peace’ with all other immediate neighbours in order to contain Pakistan’s and China’s influence in the region.