Dr. Indira Gandhi (1917 - 1984)


She was born in a family having an illustrious background and carved out modern India's path of development as the Prime Minister of India.

Indira Gandhi is known throughout the world as the Prime Minister of India and an important world stateswoman. Under her leadership, India became a strong country making all-round progress in diverse fields. She also added a new dynamism to international politics by strongly advocating the case of the poor and backward countries of the world. She was a great crusader of world peace also.

Indira Priyadarshini Gandhi was born in Allahabad (U.R) on 19th November 1917, in a prosperous family. She was the only child of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India. Indira Gandhi was educated at different places – Pune, Shantiniketan, Switzerland and England. When she was just 13 years old, Indira organized a ‘Monkey Army’ (Vanar Sena) comprising of young teenagers and gave an indication of her desire to fight for the independence of her country. In 1942, she got married to Feroze Gandhi. Two sons were born to her – Rajiv Gandhi and Sanjay Gandhi.

She was a Member Congress Woking Committee, President A.I.C.C. The Minister for Information and Broadcasting. The Minister for Atomic Energy, Minister for Space, Chairperson, Planning Commission. President of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. Minister of External Affairs, Minister of Finance Minister of Home Affairs, Minister of Information & Broadcasting, Minister of Defence. After the death of Lai Bahadur Shastri, Indira Gandhi became the third Prime Minister of India on January 24, 1966 and remained in this post up to 1977. In 1975, her election of Parliament was declared invalid and she promulgated internal emergency, which led to her defeat in 1977 election. Indira Gandhi again returned to power in 1980 with an overwhelming majority. The Prime Ministership of Indira is credited with great achievements and most noteworthy of these are nationalization of banks, liberation of Bangladesh, 20 Point Programme for the upliftment of the poor. Mrs. Gandhi, met her tragic end on 31st Oct. 1984, when she was brutally assassinated by her own guards.

She was conferred Honorary doctoral degree by a host of Universities such as Andhra, Agra, Bangalore, Punjab, Gurukul, Nagpur, Jamia Milia, Poona, El Salvador of Buenos Aires, Waseda of Tokyo, Moscow State, Oxford, Charles of Prague, Mauritius, Baghdad and the U.S.S.R. With an impressive academic background she also got the Citation of Distinction from the Columbia University.

She Was awarded Bharata Ratna The highest civilian award by Republic of India.

This list was prepared by Dr. Jinadatha

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