Maulana Abul Kalam AzadBorn: November 11, 1888, MeccaDied: February 22, 1958, DelhiMaulana Abul Kalam Azads real name was Abul Kalam GhulamMuhiyuddin. He was popularly known as Maulana Azad.Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was one of the foremost leaders ofIndian freedom struggle. He was also a renowned scholar, andpoet. Maulana Azad was well versed in many languages viz. Arabic,English, Urdu, Hindi, Persian and Bengali. Maulana Azad was abrilliant debater, as indicated by his name, Abul Kalam, whichliterally means "lord of dialogue".He adopted the pen name Azad as a mark of his mentalemancipation from a narrow view of religion and life.Following Indias independence, he became the first Minister of Education in the Indian government.Early Life:Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was born on November 11, 1888 in Mecca. His forefathers came from Herat(a city in Afghanistan) in Babars days. Azad was a descendent of a lineage of learned Muslim scholars, ormaulanas. His mother was an Arab and the daughter of Sheikh Mohammad Zaher Watri and his father,Maulana Khairuddin, was a Bengali Muslim of Afghan origins. Khairuddin left India during the SepoyMutiny and proceeded to Mecca and settled there. He came back to Calcutta with his family in 1890.Because of his orthodox family background Azad had to pursue traditional Islamic education. He wastaught at home, first by his father and later by appointed teachers who were eminent in their respectivefields. Azad learned Arabic and Persian first and then philosophy, geometry, mathematics and algebra.He also learnt English, world history, and politics through self study.An avid and determined student, the precocious Azad was running a library, a reading room, a debatingsociety before he was twelve, wanted to write on the life of Ghazali at twelve, was contributing learnedarticles to Makhzan (the best known literary magazine of the day) at fourteen,In fact, in the field of journalism, he was publishing a poetical journal (Nairang-e-Aalam) and wasalready an editor of a weekly (Al-Misbah), in 1900, at the age of twelve and, in 1903, brought out amonthly journal, Lissan-us-Sidq, which soon gained popularity.At the age of thirteen, he was married to a young Muslim girl, Zuleikha Begum.First Education Minister ofIndia
Revolutionary & Journalist:On his return from abroad, Azad met two leading revolutionaries of Bengal- Aurobindo Ghosh and SriShyam Shundar Chakravarty,-and joined the revolutionary movement against British rule. Azad foundthat the revolutionary activities were restricted to Bengal and Bihar. Within two years Maulana AbulKalam Azad helped setup secret revolutionary centers all over north India and Bombay. During that timemost of his revolutionaries were anti-Muslim because they felt that the British Government was usingthe Muslim community against Indias freedom struggle. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad tried to convince hiscolleagues to shed their hostility towards Muslims.In 1912, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad started a weekly journal in Urdu called Al Hilal to increase therevolutionary recruits amongst the Muslims. Al-Hilal played an important role in forging Hindu-Muslimunity after the bad blood created between the two communities in the aftermath of Morley-Mintoreforms. Al Hilal became a revolutionary mouthpiece ventilating extremist views. The governmentregarded Al Hilal as propogator of secessionist views and banned it in 1914 under the Press Act.Maulana Azad then started another weekly called Al-Balagh with the same mission of propagatingIndian nationalism and revolutionary ideas based on Hindu-Muslim unity. In 1916, the governmentbanned this paper too under the Defence of India Regulations Act and expelled Maulana Abul KalamAzad from Calcutta and interned him at Ranchi from where he was released after the First World War in1920.Azad Decided the name of Muslim political party Majlis-e-Ahrar-ul-Islam. He was also a friend of SyedAta Ullah Shah Bukhari founder of All India Majlis-e-Ahrar. When Gandhi embarked on the Dandi SaltMarch that inaugurated the Salt Satyagraha in 1930, Azad organised and led the nationalist raid, albeitnon-violent on the Dharasana salt works in order to protest the salt tax and restriction of its productionand sale.After his release, Azad roused the Muslim community through the Khilafat Movement. The aim of themovement was to re-instate the Khalifa as the head of British captured Turkey. Maulana Azad supportedNon-Cooperation Movement started by Gandhiji and entered Indian National Congress in 1920.He was elected as the president of the special session of the Congress in Delhi (1923).In 1923, at an age of 35, he became the youngest person to serve as the President of the IndianNational Congress.Maulana Azad was again arrested in 1930 for violation of the salt laws as part of Gandhijis SaltSatyagraha. He was put in Meerut jail for a year and a half.As the Muslim League adopted a resolution calling for a separate Muslim state in its session in Lahore in1940, Azad was elected Congress President in its session in Ramgarh and remained in the post till 1946.Azad occupied the time playing bridge and acting as the referee in tennis matches played by hiscolleagues. In the afternoons, Azad began working on his classic Urdu work, the Ghubhar-i-Khatir.
Partition of India:With the end of the war, the British agreed to transfer power to Indian hands. All political prisonerswere released in 1946 and Azad led the Congress in the elections for the new Constituent Assembly ofIndia, which would draft Indias constitution. He headed the delegation to negotiate with the BritishCabinet Mission, in his sixth year as Congress President. While attacking Jinnahs demandfor Pakistan and the missions proposal of 16 June 1946 that envisaged the partition of India, Azadbecame a strong proponent of the missions earlier proposal of 16 May.Jawaharlal Nehru replaced Azad as Congress President and led the Congress into the interimgovernment. Azad was appointed to head the Department of Education.However, Jinnahs Direct Action Day agitation for Pakistan, launched on 16 August sparked communalviolence across India. Thousands of people were killed as Azad travelled across Bengal and Bihar to calmthe tensions and heal relations between Muslims and Hindus. Despite Azads call for Hindu-Muslimunity, Jinnahs popularity amongst Muslims soared and the League entered a coalition with the Congressin December, but continued to boycott the constituent assembly.Azad had grown increasingly hostile to Jinnah, who had described him as the "Muslim Lord Haw-Haw"and a "Congress Show boy."Post Independence:Indias partition and independence on 15 August 1947 brought with it a scourge of violence that sweptthe Punjab, Bengal, Bihar, Delhi and many other parts of India. Millions of Hindus and Sikhs fled thenewly created Pakistan for India, and millions of Muslims fled forWest Pakistan and East Pakistan,created out of East Bengal. Violence claimed the lives of an estimated one million people.Focusing on bringing the capital of Delhi back to peace, Azad organised security and relief efforts, butwas drawn into a dispute with the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patelwhen he demanded the dismissal of Delhis police commissioner, who was a Sikh accused by Muslims ofoverlooking attacks and neglecting their safety.Elected to the lower house of the Indian Parliament, the Lok Sabha in 1952 and again in 1957Azad supported Nehrus socialist economic and industrial policies, as well as the advancing social rightsand economic opportunities for women and underprivileged Indians.In 1956, he served as president of the UNESCO General Conference held in Delhi.Azad spent the final years of his life focusing on writing his book India Wins Freedom, an exhaustiveaccount of Indias freedom struggle and its leaders, which was published in 1957.Maulana Abul Kalam Azad served as the Minister of Education in Pandit Jawaharlal Nehrus cabinetfrom 1947 to 1958.
He oversaw the setting up of the Central Institute of Education, Delhi which later became theDepartment of Education of the University of Delhi as “a research centre for solving new educationalproblems of the country”.Under his leadership, the Ministry of Education established the first Indian Institute of Technology in1951 and the University Grants Commission in 1953., He also laid emphasis on the development ofthe Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and the Faculty of Technology of the Delhi University. Heforesaw a great future in the IITs for India:Jawaharlal Nehru referred to him as:Mir-i- Karawan (the caravan leader), “a very brave and gallant gentleman,a finished product of the culture that, in these days, pertains to few”Mahatma Gandhi remarked him as:“The Emperor of Learning”Counting him as:“A person of the caliber of Plato, Aristotle and Pythagoras”His Birthday, 11 November is celebrated as National Education Day in India.He died of a stroke on February 22, 1958.For his invaluable contribution to the nation, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad was posthumously awardedIndias highest civilian honour, Bharat Ratna in 1992.
Mahatma GandhijiBorn: October 2, 1869, PorbandarAssassinated: January 30, 1948, Birla HouseAchievements: Known as Father of Nation; played a key role inwinning freedom for India; introduced the concept of Ahimsa andSatyagraha.He was born in his ancestral home, now known as Kirti Mandir. Hisfather, Karamchand Gandhi (1822–1885), who belonged tothe HinduModh community, served as the diwan (chief minister)of Porbander state, a small princely state in the KathiawarAgency of British India.His mother, Putlibai, who came from the Pranami Vaishnava community, was Karamchands fourth wife,the first three wives having apparently died in childbirth.He was the Youngest of the three sons and was the last child of Putlibai and Karamchand Gandhi.The Names of the two elder brothers of Mahatma Gandhi are: Laxmidas & Karsandas.In May 1883, the 13-year-old Mohandas was married to 14-year-old Kasturbai Makhanji (her first namewas usually shortened to "Kasturba", and affectionately to "Baa") in an arranged child marriage,according to the custom of the region.In 1885, when Gandhi was 15, the couples first child was born, but survived only a few days. Gandhisfather, Karamchand Gandhi, had also died earlier that year.Mohandas and Kasturba had four more children, all sons: Harilal, born in 1888; Manilal, born in1892; Ramdas, born in 1897; and Devdas, born in 1900.After completing his college education, at his familys insistence Gandhi left for England on September 4,1888 to study law at University College, London. During his tenure in London, Mohandas Gandhi strictlyobserved abstinence from meat and alcohol as per his mothers wishes.Gandhiji completed his Law degree in 1891 and returned to India. He decided to set up legal practice inBombay but couldnt establish himself. Gandhiji returned to Rajkot but here also he could not makemuch headway. At this time Gandhiji received an offer from Dada Abdulla & Co. to proceed to SouthAfrica on their behalf to instruct their counsel in a lawsuit. Gandhiji jumped at the idea and sailed forSouth Africa in April 1893.Father of the Nation
Civil Rights Movements In South Africa (1893 - 1914):Gandhi spent 21 years in South Africa, where he developedhis political views, ethics and political leadership skills.It was in South Africa that Gandhijis transformation fromMohandas to Mahatma took place. Gandhiji landed atDurban and soon he realized the oppressive atmosphere ofracial snobbishness against Indians who were settled inSouth Africa in large numbers.After about a week stay in Durban Gandhiji left for Pretoria, the capital of the Transvaal, in connectionwith a lawsuit. When the train reached Pietermaritzburg, the capital of Natal, at about 9 p.m. a whitepassenger who boarded the train objected to the presence of a "coloured" man in the compartment andGandhiji was ordered by a railway official to shift to a third class. When he refused to do so, a constablepushed him out and his luggage was taken away by the railway authorities.It was winter and bitterly cold. This incident changed Gandhijis life forever. He decided to fight for therights of Indians. Gandhiji organised the Indian community in South Africa and asked them to forget alldistinctions of religion and caste.He helped found the Natal Indian Congress in 1894, and through this organisation, he moulded theIndian community of South Africa into a unified political force. In January 1897, when Gandhi landed inDurban, a mob of white settlers attacked him and he escaped only through the efforts of the wife of thepolice superintendent. He, however, refused to press charges against any member of the mob, stating itwas one of his principles not to seek redress for a personal wrong in a court of law.Satyagraha:In 1906, the Transvaal government promulgated a new Act compelling registration of the colonysIndian population. At a mass protest meeting held in Johannesburg on 11 September that year, Gandhiadopted his still evolving methodology of Satyagraha (holding fast to truth or firmness in a righteouscause), or non-violent protest, for the first time. He urged Indians to defy the new law and to suffer thepunishments for doing so.The community adopted this plan, and during the ensuing seven-year struggle, thousands of Indianswere jailed, flogged, or shot for striking, refusing to register, for burning their registration cards orengaging in other forms of non-violent resistance. The government successfully repressed the Indianprotesters, but the public outcry over the harsh treatment of peaceful Indian protesters by the SouthAfrican government forced South African leader Jan Christiaan Smuts, himself a philosopher, tonegotiate a compromise with Gandhi. Gandhis ideas took shape and the concept of Satyagraha maturedduring this struggle.
Struggle for Indian Independence (1915 - 1947):In 1915, Gandhi returned to India permanently.He joined the Indian National Congress and and on the advice of his political guru Gopal KrishnaGokhale, spent the first year touring throughout the country to know the real India.After a year of wandering, Gandhiji settled down on the bank of the river Sabarmati, on the outskirts ofAhmedabad, where he founded an ashram called Satyagraha Ashram.Gandhijis first satyagraha in India was in Champaran, in Bihar, where he went in 1917 at the request ofa poor peasants to inquire into the grievances of the much exploited peasants of that district, who werecompelled by British indigo planters to grow indigo on 15 percent of their land and part with the wholecrop for rent. Gandhijis Satyagraha forced British government to set up a inquiry into the condition oftenant farmers. The report of the committee of which Gandhi was a member went in favor of the tenantfarmers. The success of his first experiment in Satyagraha in India greatly enhanced Gandhijisreputation in the country.In 1918, Kheda (It is a town in the kheda district of Gujarat) was hit by floods and famine and thepeasantry was demanding relief from taxes. Gandhi moved his headquarters to Nadiad, organisingscores of supporters and fresh volunteers from the region, the most notable being Vallabhbhai Patel.For five months, the administration refused but finally in end-May 1918, the Government gave way onimportant provisions and relaxed the conditions of payment of revenue tax until the famine ended.Non-cooperation movement:In 1921, Gandhiji gave the call for Non-cooperation movement against the ills (Jallianwala BaghMassacre Incident) of British rule. Gandhijis call roused the sleeping nation. Many Indians renouncedtheir titles and honours, lawyers gave up their practice, and students left colleges and schools. Non-cooperation movement also brought women into the domain of freedom struggle for the first time.Non-cooperation movement severely jolted the British government.But the movement ended in an anti-climax in February 1922. An outbreak of mob violence in ChauriChaura so shocked and pained Gandhi that he refused to continue the campaign and undertook a fastfor five days to atone for a crime committed by others in a state of mob hysteria.Gandhi was arrested on 10 March 1922, tried for sedition, and sentenced to six years imprisonment. Hebegan his sentence on 18 March 1922. He was released in February 1924 for an appendicitis operation,having served only 2 years.He became the president of INC in the year in Belgaum session 1924.For the next five years Gandhi seemingly retired from active agitational politics and devoted himself tothe propagation of what he regarded as the basic national needs, namely, Hindu-Muslim unity, removal
of untouchability, equality of women, popularization of hand-spinning and the reconstruction of villageeconomy.Salt Satyagraha / Dandhi March:On March 12, 1930 Gandhiji started the historic Dandi March to break the law which had deprived thepoor man of his right to make his own salt and to protest against the salt tax.This was highlighted by the famous Salt March to Dandi from 12 March to 6 April, where he marched388 kilometres (241 mi) from Ahmedabad to Dandi, Gujarat to make salt himself.On April 6, 1930 Gandhiji broke the Salt law at the sea beach at Dandi. This simple act was immediatelyfollowed by a nation-wide defiance of the law. This movement galvanized the whole nation and came tobe known as "Civil Disobedience Movement". Within a few weeks about a hundred thousand men andwomen were in jail, throwing mighty machinery of the British Government out of gear. This forced thethen Viceroy Lord Irwin to call Gandhiji for talks.On March 5, 1931 Gandhi Irwin Pact was signed. Soon after signing the pact Gandhiji went to England toattend the First Round Table Conference. Soon after his return from England Gandhiji was arrestedwithout trial.Gandhi Irwin Pact:The Gandhi–Irwin Pact was a political agreement signed by Mahatma Gandhi and thethen Viceroy of India, Lord Irwin on 5 March 1931 before the second Round TableConference in London.As per the pact, the British Government agreed to free all political prisoners, in return for thesuspension of the civil disobedience movement and INC was also invited in the Round TableConference.Lord Irwins successor, Lord Willingdon, taking a hard line against nationalism, began a newcampaign of controlling and subduing the nationalist movement. Gandhi was again arrested, andthe government tried and failed to negate his influence by completely isolating him from hisfollowers.Gandhi returned to active politics again in 1936, with the Nehru presidency and the Lucknow session ofthe Congress.Gandhi had a clash with Subhas Chandra Bose, who had been elected president in 1938, and who hadpreviously expressed a lack of faith in non-violence as a means of protest. Despite Gandhis opposition,Bose won a second term as Congress President, against Gandhis nominee, Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya.Gandhi declared that Sitaramayyas defeat was his defeat.
Quit India Movement:As the Second World War progressed, Gandhi intensified his demand for independence, calling forthe British to Quit India in a speech at Gowalia Tank Maidan on August 8, 1942.It was a call for immediate independence of India and the slogan of "Do or Die" was adopted forthe same.Soon the British Government arrested Gandhiji and other top leaders of Congress. Disorders brokeout immediately all over India and many violent demonstrations took place. While Gandhiji was injail his wife Kasturbai passed away. Gandhiji too had a severe attack of Malaria. In view of hisdeteriorating health he was released from the jail in May 1944.Second World War ended in 1945 and Britain emerged victorious.In the general elections held in Britain in 1945, Labour Party came to power, and Atlee became thePrime Minister. He promised an early realization of self Government in India.A Cabinet Mission arrived from England to discuss with Indian leaders the future shape of a free andunited India, but failed to bring the Congress and Muslims together. India attained independence butJinnahs intransigence resulted in the partition of the country. Communal riots between Hindus andMuslims broke out in the country in the aftermath of partition. Tales of atrocities on Hindus in Pakistanprovoked Hindus in India and they targeted Muslims.This angered some Hindu fundamentalists and on January 30, 1948 Gandhiji was shot dead by one suchfundamentalist Nathu Ram Godse while he was going for his evening prayers. The last words uttered byGandhiji were “Hey Ram”.The eminent writer and Nobel Laureate “George Bernard Shaw” remarked on Gandhi’s assassinationwith the comment:“It shows how dangerous it is to be too good”He always referred “Ahimsa and Truth” as his two lungs.The Oscar winner CHARLIE CHAPLIN for best score for “Limelight” had a memorable meeting withMahatma Gandhi In 1931.The farm gifted by the German Jew Hermann Kallenbach is named after the author LEO TOLSTOY ByGandhiji as “LEO TOLSTOY farm”Mahatma Gandhi adopted his Iconic loin cloth attire in the Madurai city.Most of the Ashes of Gandhiji were immersed at the Sangam at Allahabad on 12 February 1948, butsome were secretly taken away.He adopted the moderate Gokhale as his political guru.
The date of the Mahatma return to India in Jan 9, 1915, is now observed as “PRAVASI BHARATIYADIVAS” (NRI DAY)His chief political enemy in Britain was Winston Churchill,who ridiculed him as a "half-naked fakir."His Birthday October 2 is commemorated as Gandhi Jayanti, a national holiday, and world-wide asthe International Day of Non-Violence.Gandhis date of death, 30 January, is commemorated as a Martyrs Day in India.In India he was also called Bapu ("Father").He is known in India as the Father of the Nation, which is first referred to him as such by famousfreedom fighter “Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose”There are two temples in India dedicated to Gandhi. One is located at Sambalpur in Orissa and the otherat Nidaghatta village near Kadur in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka.Literary Works:Gandhi was a prolific writer. One of Gandhis earliest publications, Hind Swaraj, published in Gujarati in1909, is recognized as the intellectual blueprint of Indias freedom movement. The book was translatedinto English the next year, with a copyright legend that read "No Rights Reserved".News Papers:For decades he edited several newspapers including Harijan in Gujarati, in Hindi and in the Englishlanguage; Indian Opinion while in South Africa.Young India, a weekly journal published in English by Mahatma Gandhi from 1919 to 1932.Navajivan, a Gujarati monthly, on his return to India. Later, Navajivan was also published in Hindi.Books by Mahatma:1. The Story of My Experiments with Truth (His autobiography)2. Satyagraha in South Africa (about his struggle there)3. Hind Swaraj or Indian Home Rule, a political pamphlet4. Gandhi translated "Unto This Last" (a book by John Ruskin) into Gujarati in 1908 under the titleof "Sarvodaya" ("well being of all"). Valji Govindji Desai translated it back to English in 1951under the title of "Unto This Last: A Paraphrase".Gandhis complete works were published by the Indian government under the name The CollectedWorks of Mahatma Gandhi in the 1960s. The writings comprise about 50,000 pages published in abouta hundred volumes. In 2000, a revised edition of the complete works sparked a controversy, as itconstituted large number of errors and omissions. The Indian government later withdrew the revisededition.
The word Mahatma, while often mistaken for Gandhis given name in the West, is taken fromthe Sanskrit words maha (meaning Great) and atma (meaning Soul).Rabindranath Tagore is said to have accorded the title “Mahatma” to Gandhi. In his autobiography,Gandhi nevertheless explains that he never valued the title, and was often pained by it.In Europe, Romain Rolland was the first to discuss Gandhi in his 1924 book Mahatma Gandhi, andBrazilian anarchist and feminist Maria Lacerda de Moura wrote about Gandhi in her work on pacifism.In 1931, notable European physicist Albert Einstein exchanged written letters with Gandhi, and calledhim:“A role model for the generations to come”in a later writing about himAlbert Einstein commented on Gandhi’s assassination:“Generations to come will scarce believe that such a one as (Gandhi) ever in fleshand blood walked upon this earth”Lanza del Vasto went to India in 1936 intending to live with Gandhi; he later returned to Europe tospread Gandhis philosophy and founded the Community of the Ark in 1948 (modeled after Gandhisashrams).Madeleine Slade (known as "Mirabehn") was the daughter of a British admiral who spent much of heradult life in India as a devotee of Gandhi.Time Magazine named The 14th Dalai Lama, Lech Wałęsa, Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez, Aung SanSuu Kyi, Benigno Aquino, Jr.Desmond Tutu, and Nelson Mandela as Children of Gandhi and his spiritualheirs to non-violence.The Mahatma Gandhi District in Houston, Texas, United States, an ethnic Indian enclave, is officiallynamed after Gandhi.Jamnalal Bajaj, the Industrialist is known to be the adopted son of Mahatma Gandhi.Global Holidays:In 2007, the United Nations General Assembly declared Gandhis birthday 2 October as“the International Day of Non-Violence”."First proposed by UNESCO in 1948, as the School Day of Non-violence and Peace (DENIP in Spanish), 30January of every year is observed the School Day of Non-violence and Peace in schools of manycountries, In countries with a Southern Hemisphere school calendar, it is observed on 30 March.
Awards:1. Time magazine named Gandhi the Man of the Year in 1930.2. He was awarded the “Kaiser-i-Hind Gold Medal” for his contribution to ambulance services inSouth Africa in 1915.3. Gandhi was also the runner-up to Albert Einstein as "Person of the Century” at the end of 1999.4. The Government of India awards the annual Gandhi Peace Prize to distinguished social workers,world leaders and citizens. Nelson Mandela, the leader of South Africas struggle to eradicateracial discrimination and segregation, is a prominent non-Indian recipient.5. In 2011, Time magazine named Gandhi as one of the top 25 political icons of all time for theDANDHI MARCH.6. Gandhi did not receive the Nobel Peace Prize, although he was nominated five times between1937 and 1948, including the first-ever nomination by the American Friends Service Committee,though he made the short list only twice, in 1937 and 1947.7. Gandhi was nominated in 1948 but was assassinated before nominations closed. That year, thecommittee chose not to award the peace prize stating that "there was no suitable livingcandidate" and later research shows that the possibility of awarding the prize posthumously toGandhi was discussed and that the reference to no suitable living candidate was to Gandhi.8. When the 14th Dalai Lama was awarded the Prize in 1989, the chairman of the committee saidthat this was:"In part a tribute to the memory of Mahatma Gandhi"Film & Literature:1. Ben Kingsley portrayed Gandhi in the 1982 film Gandhi, which won the Academy Award forBest Picture.Directed by Richard AttenboroughTag line His Triumph changed the world foreverProduced by Richard AttenboroughScreen play John BrileyStarring (Role of Gandhi) Bens KingsleyMusic by Ravi Shankar & George FentonCinematography Billy Williams & Ronnie TaylorEditing by John BloomStudio Goldcrest FilmsDistributed by Colombia PicturesRunning time 191 MinutesTotal Academy Awards & nominated for 8, 3 moreBest Costume Design Award Bhanu Athaiya
2. The 1996 film, The Making of the Mahatma, documents Gandhis time in South Africa and histransformation from an inexperienced barrister to recognised political leader. The film is basedupon the book, The Apprenticeship of a Mahatma, by Fatima Meer (who also wrote thescreenplay).Directed by Shyam BenegalWritten by Fatima MeerStarring Rajit KapurRunning time 144 minNational film Awards1. Best Actor2. Best Feature Film In English2Rajit Kapur as GandhiRole of Gandhi Rajit Kapur3. Gandhi is also a central figure in the 2006 Bollywood comedy Lage Raho Munna Bhai.Directed by Rajkumar HiraniProduced by Vidhu Vinod ChopraMusic by Shantanu MoitraCinematography C.K.MuraleedharanEditing by Rajkumar HiraniRunning time 144 minScreenplayby Rajkumar Hirani, Abhijat JoshiStory by Rajkumar Hirani, Vidhu Vinod ChopraNOTE Lage Raho Munna Bhai is the first Hindi film to be shown at the United NationsThe Prime Minister of India, Manmohan Singh, praised the film, stating that it "capturesBapus message about the power of truth and humanism."Role of Gandhi Dilip Prabhavalkar4. The 2007 film, Gandhi, My Father explores the relationship between Gandhi and his son Harilal.Directed & Written by Feroz Abbas Khan (Chandulal dalal book & Neelamben Parikh book)Produced by Anil KapoorMusic by Piyush KanojiaCinematography David McDonaldEditing by A. Sreekar PrasadRunning time 136 minStarring (Role of Gandhi) Darshan JariwalaRole of Kasturba Gandhi Shefali shahRole of Gulab Gandhi Bhumika ChawlaRole of Kasturba Gandhi Rohini HattangadiRole of Nathuram Godse Harsh NayyarRole of Moulana Azad Virendra RazdanRole of Acharya Kripalani Anang Desai
Role of Harilal Gandhi Akshaye KhannaRole of Kanti Gandhi Vinay jainNational Film Awards1. Special Jury Award2. Best Supporting Actor3. Best Screenplay3Feroz Abbas Khan & Anil KapoorDarshan JariwalaFeroz Abbas Khan5. The 2000 film, Hey ram explores India’s Partition and His Assassination. The film was chosenas Indias official entry to the Oscars to be considered for nomination in the Best ForeignFilm category for the year 2000.Directed by Kamal HaasanProduced by Kamal HaasanMusic by IlaiyaraajaCinematography TirruEditing by Renu SalujaRunning time 202 min (Tamil version), 199 min (Hindi ver)ScreenplaybyStory by Kamal Haasan, Manohar Shyam JoshiRole of Gandhi Naseeruddin ShahRole of Amjad Ali Khan Shahrukh khanRole of Saket Ram Kamal HaasanSeveral biographers have undertaken the task of describing Gandhis life.Among them are: D. G. Tendulkar with his Mahatma, Life of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in eightvolumes, Pyarelal and Sushila Nayyar with their Mahatma Gandhi in 10 volumes.There is also another documentary, titled Mahatma: Life of Gandhi, 1869–1948, which are 14 chaptersand 6 hours long.The April 2010 biography, Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle with India by JosephLelyveld contained controversial material speculating about Gandhis sexual life. Because of thismaterial, the book was banned in the Indian state of Gujarat, Gandhis birthplace. Lelyveld, however,stated that the press coverage "grossly distort[s]" the overall message of the book."An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind."– Mahatma Gandhi
Pandit Jawaharlal NehruBorn: November 14, 1889, AllahabadDied: May 27, 1964, New DelhiJawaharlal Nehru often referred to as Panditji is the first PrimeMinister of independent India.Nehru was elected by the Indian National Congress to assumeoffice as independent Indias first Prime Minister in 1947, and re-elected when the Congress party won Indias first general electionin 1951.He became Congress President under the mentorship of MohandasKaramchand Gandhi.He was the father of Indira Gandhi and the maternal grandfatherof Rajiv Gandhi, who were to later serve as the third and sixth PrimeMinisters of India, respectively.He is said to be the architect, the maker of modern India.His birthday, November 14, is celebrated in India as Baal Divas ("Childrens Day") in recognition of hislifelong passion and work on behalf of children and young people.Early Life & Career:Jawaharlal Nehru was born on 14 November 1889 in Allahabad in British India.His father, Motilal Nehru (1861-1931), a wealthy barrister served twice as President of the IndianNational Congress during the Independence Struggle.His mother, Swaruprani Thussu (1868-1938), who came from a well–known Kashmiri Brahmin familysettled in Lahore,was Motilals second wife, the first having died in child birth.Jawaharlal was the eldest of three children, two of whom were girls. The elder sister, Vijaya Lakshmi,later became the first female president of the United Nations General Assembly. The youngestsister, Krishna Hutheesing, became a noted writer and authored several books on her brother.He grew up in a wealthy atmosphere at an estate called the “Anand Bhavan (Now Swaraj Bhavan)” wasowned by the Indian leader Motilal Nehru where the future prime minister of India Indira Gandhi wasborn there… but Pandit Nehru was not born there.First Prime Minister ofIndia
Swaraj Bhawan originally belonged to Sir Syed Ahmad Khan, the 19th century Muslim leader andeducationist.It was donated by Motilal Nehru to the Indian National Congress in 1930, to serve as the partys officialheadquarters in the region.The Nehrus built another house next to the old one and named that Anand Bhavan (lit. Abode ofhappiness); the old house was renamed Swaraj Bhavan (lit. Abode of freedom).Some sources claim that the name Anand Bhawan was coined by the poet Akbar Allahabadi translationof Sir Syeds house “Ishrat Manzil”Indira Gandhi, India’s former Prime Minister, donated Anand Bhawan to the nation in 1970 and turned itinto a museum housing the books and memorabilia of her father and grandfather.He did his schooling from Harrow and Nehru went to Trinity College, Cambridge in October 1907 andgraduated with an honours degree in natural science in 1910.After completing his degree in 1910, Nehru went to London and stayed there for two years for lawstudies at the Inns of Court School of Law (Inner Temple).After returning to India in August 1912, Nehru enrolled himself as an advocate of the Allahabad HighCourt and tried to settle down as a barrister.He married Kamala Nehru in 1916 and the following year saw the birth of their only child IndiraPriyadarshini (Indira Gandhi).Struggle for Indian Independence (1912-1947):Anti-moderate leaders such as Annie Beasant and Lokmanya Tilak took the opportunity to call fora national movement for Home Rule. But, in 1915, the proposal was rejected due to the reluctance ofthe moderates to commit to such a radical course of action. Besant nevertheless formed a league foradvocating Home Rule in 1916; and Tilak, on his release from a prison term, had in April 1916 formed hisown league. Jawahar Lal Nehru joined Home Rule League in 1917.His real initiation into politics came two years later when he came in contact with Mahatma Gandhi in1919. At that time Mahatma Gandhi had launched a campaign against Rowlatt Act. Nehru was instantlyattracted to Gandhis commitment for active but peaceful, civil disobedience. Gandhi himself sawpromise and Indias future in the young Jawaharlal Nehru.Political Apprenticeship:Nehru first met Gandhi in 1916, at the Lucknow session of the Congress. It was to be the beginning of alifelong partnership between the two, which lasted until the Gandhis death. Nehru quickly rose toprominence under the mentorship of Gandhi. By late 1921, he had already became one of the mostprominent leaders of the Congress.
Nehru family changed its family according to Mahatma Gandhis teachings. Jawaharlal and Motilal Nehruabandoned western clothes and tastes for expensive possessions and pastimes. They now wore a KhadiKurta and Gandhi cap.Jawaharlal Nehru took active part in the Non- Cooperation Movement 1920-1922 and was arrested forthe first time during the movement. He was released after few months.He was elected general secretary of the Congress party for two terms in the 1920s. His first term beganwith the Kakinada session of the Congress in 1923.Nehru co-operated with Dr. N.S. Hardiker in founding the Hindustani Seva Dal in 1923.Nehru was elected chairman of the Allahabad Municipal Board in 1923.Nehrus second term as general secretary began with the Madras session of the Congress in 1927.In December 1929, Congresss annual session was held in Lahore and Jawaharlal Nehru was elected asthe President of the Congress Party. During that session a resolution demanding Indias independencewas passed and on January 26, 1930 in Lahore, Jawaharlal Nehru unfurled free Indias flag. Gandhiji gavea call for Civil Disobedience Movement in 1930. The movement was a great success and forced BritishGovernment to acknowledge the need for major political reforms.When the British promulgated the Government of India Act 1935, the Congress Party decided to contestelections. Nehru stayed out of the elections, but campaigned vigorously nationwide for the party. TheCongress formed governments in almost every province, and won the largest number of seats in theCentral Assembly. Nehru was elected to the Congress presidency in 1936, 1937, and 1946, and came tooccupy a position in the nationalist movement second only to that of Gandhi. Jawaharlal Nehru wasarrested in 1942 during Quit India Movement. Released in 1945, he took a leading part in thenegotiations that culminated in the emergence of the dominions of India and Pakistan in August 1947.World War IIAt the outbreak of World War II in September 1939, British viceroy Lord Linlithgow committed India tothe war effort without consulting the now-autonomous provincial ministries. In response, the CongressParty withdrew its representatives from the provinces and Gandhi staged a limited civil disobediencemovement in which he and Nehru were jailed yet again.Nehru spent a little over a year in jail and was released with other Congress prisoners three days beforePearl Harbor was bombed by the Japanese. When Japanese troops soon moved near the borders ofIndia in the spring of 1942, the British government decided to enlist India to combat this new threat, butGandhi, who still essentially had the reins of the movement, would accept nothing less thanindependence and called on the British to leave India. Nehru reluctantly joined Gandhi in his hardlinestance and the pair were again arrested and jailed, this time for nearly three years.By 1947, within two years of Nehrus release, simmering animosity had reached a fever pitch betweenthe Congress Party and the Muslim League, who had always wanted more power in a free India. The lastBritish viceroy, Louis Mountbatten, was charged with finalizing the British roadmap for withdrawal with
a plan for a unified India. Despite his reservations, Nehru acquiesced to Mountbatten and the MuslimLeagues plan to divide India, and in August 1947, Pakistan was created—the new country Muslim andIndia predominantly Hindu. The British withdrew and Nehru became independent India’s first primeminister.Prime Minister of India (1947-1964):Once elected, Nehru headed an interim government, which was impaired by outbreaks of communalviolence and political disorder, and the opposition of the Muslim League led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah,who were demanding a separate Muslim state of Pakistan. After failed bids to form coalitions, Nehrureluctantly supported the partition of India, according to a plan released by the British on 3 June 1947.He took office as the Prime Minister of India on 15 August, and delivered his inaugural address titled:“A Tryst with Destiny”Lord Mountbatten swears in Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru as the first Prime Minister of free India at theceremony held at 8:30 am IST on 15 August 1947.Creating the Planning commission of India, Nehru drew up the first Five-Year Plan in 1951, whichcharted the governments investments in industries and agriculture. Increasing business and incometaxes, Nehru envisaged a mixed economy in which the government would manage strategic industriessuch as mining, electricity and heavy industries, serving public interest and a check to private enterprise.In December 1953, Nehru appointed the States Reorganization Commission to prepare for the creationof states on linguistic lines. This was headed by Justice Fazal Ali and the commission itself was alsoknown as the Fazal Ali Commission.The efforts of this commission were overseen by Govind Ballabh Pant, who served as Nehrus HomeMinister from December 1954.On the international scene, Nehru was a champion of pacifism and a strong supporter of the UnitedNations. He pioneered the policy of non-alignment and co-founded the Non-Aligned Movement ofnations professing neutrality between the rival blocs of nations led by the U.S. and the U.S.S.R.Nehru envisioned the developing of nuclear weapons and established the Atomic Energy Commission ofIndia (AEC) in 1948. Nehru also called Dr. Homi J. Bhabha, a nuclear physicist, who was entrusted withcomplete authority over all nuclear related affairs and programs and answered only to Nehru himself.Nehru famously said to Bhabha:"Professor Bhabha take care of Physics, leave internationalrelation to me".Nehru ordered the arrest of the Kashmiri politician Sheikh Abdullah in 1953, whom he had previouslysupported but now suspected of harbouring separatist ambitions; Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad replacedhim.
In 1954 Nehru signed with China the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence, known in India as thePanchsheel (from the Sanskrit words, panch: five, sheel: virtues), a set of principles to govern relationsbetween the two states.In 1957, Menon was instructed to deliver an unprecedented eight-hour speech defending India’s standon Kashmir; to date, the speech is the longest ever delivered in the United Nations Security Council,covering five hours of the 762nd meeting on the 23 of January, and two hours and forty-eight minuteson the 24th, reportedly concluding with Menons collapse on the Security Council floor.Krishna Menon, routinely referred to by western publications as "Nehrus Evil Genius".He was described as the second most powerful man in India by Time magazine and others.Nehru accepted the arbitration of the UK and World Bank, signing the Indus Water Treaty in 1960 withPakistani ruler Ayub Khan to resolve long-standing disputes about sharing the resources of the majorrivers of the Punjab region.Although the Pancha Sila (Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence) was the basis of the 1954 Sino-Indianborder treaty, in later years, Nehrus foreign policy suffered through increasing Chinese assertivenessover border disputes and Nehrus decision to grant political asylum to the 14th Dalai Lama. After yearsof failed negotiations, Nehru authorized the Indian Army to liberate Goa in 1961 from Portugueseoccupation, and then he formally annexed it to India.Nehrus health began declining steadily after 1962, and he spent months recuperating in Kashmirthrough 1963.Upon his return from Kashmir in 27 May 1964, Nehru suffered a stroke and later a heart attack and died.Two years later Nehrus daughter, Indira Gandhi, became prime minister. With an interruption of onlythree years, she held the post until her assassination in 1984. Her son Rajiv was prime minister of Indiafrom 1984 to 1989, but he too was assassinated.Nehru was cremated in accordance with Hindu rites at the Shantivana on the banks of the YamunaRiver,During his prime minister term (15/8/1947 – 27/05/1964), Monarch was George VI (until 26 January1950).President Rajendra Prasad and Vice President S. Radhakrishnan Governor general C.Rajagopalachari(until 26/01/1950).Deputy PM was Sardar Vallabhai Patel, Succeeding PM was Gulzarilal Nanda (Acting).Indian newspapers repeated Nehrus own words of the time of Gandhis assassination:"The light has gone out of our lives and there is darkness everywhere."
In 1955 Nehru was awarded Bharat Ratna, Indias highest civilian honour.Films on Him:1. The canonical performance is probably that of Roshan Seth, who played him three times:in Richard Attenboroughs 1982 film Gandhi, Shyam Benegals 1988 television series Bharat EkKhoj (53 episodes), based on Nehrus The Discovery of India, and in a 2007 TV film entitled TheLast Days of the Raj.2. In Ketan Mehtas film Sardar, Nehru was portrayed by Benjamin Gilani.Written by Vijay TendulkarRole of Sardar Patel Paresh RawalRole of Mahatma Gandhi Annu KapoorRole of Jawaharlal Nehru Benjamin gilaniRole of Mohd Ali Jinnah Sri vallabh vyasRole of H.M. Patel H.M patel himselfRole of Lord Mountbatten of Burma Tom Alter3. Girish Karnads historical play, Tughlaq (1962) is an allegory about the Nehruvian era. It wasstaged by Ebrahim Alkazi with National School of Drama Repertory at Purana Qila, Delhi in 1970sand later at the Festival of India, London in 1982.Writings:1. Discovery of India2. Glimpses of World history3. Toward Freedom (his autobiography)
Muhammad Ali JinnahBorn: December 25, 1876, KarachiDied: September 11, 1948, KarachiMuhammad Ali Jinnah was born December 25, 1876, in Karachi,Pakistan. In 1906 he joined the Indian National Congress. Seven yearslater, he joined the India Muslim League. The independent state ofPakistan that Jinnah had envisioned came to be on August 14, 1947.The following day, he was sworn in as Pakistan’s first governor-general. On September 11, 1948, he died near Karachi, Pakistan.He is known as the Founder of Pakistan.He is revered in Pakistan as Quaid-i-Azam (Great Leader) and Baba-i-Qaum (Father of the Nation) and his birthday is observed asa national holiday.Early LifeMuhammad Ali Jinnah was born in a rented apartment on the second floor of Wazir Mansion in Karachi,Pakistan (then part of India), on December 25, 1876. At the time of his birth, Jinnah’s official name wasMahomedali Jinnahbhai. The eldest of his parents’ seven children, Jinnah was underweight andappeared fragile at the time of his birth. But Jinnah’s mother, Mithibai, was convinced her delicateinfant would one day achieve great things. Jinnah’s father, Jinnahbhai Poonja, was a merchant andexporter of cotton, wool, grain and range of other goods. As a whole, the family belonged to the KhojaMuslim sect.When Muhammad Ali Jinnah was 6 years old, his father placed him in the Sindh Madrasatul-IslamSchool. Jinnah was far from a model student. He was more interested in playing outside with his friendsthan focusing on his studies. As the proprietor of a thriving trade business, Jinnah’s father emphasizedthe importance of studying mathematics, but, ironically, arithmetic was among Jinnah’s most hatedsubjects.When Jinnah was nearly 11 years old, his only paternal aunt came to visit from Bombay, India. Jinnahand his aunt were very close. The aunt suggested that Jinnah return with her to Bombay; she believedthe big city would provide him with a better education than Karachi could. Despite his mother’sresistance, Jinnah accompanied his aunt back to Bombay, where she enrolled him in the Gokal Das TejPrimary School. Despite the change of scenery, Jinnah continued to prove himself a restless and unrulystudent. Within just six months he was sent back to Karachi. His mother insisted he attend SindMadrassa, but Jinnah was expelled for cutting classes to go horseback riding.Founder of Pakistan
Jinnah’s parents then enrolled him in the Christian Missionary Society High School, hoping he would bebetter able to concentrate on his studies there. As a teen, Jinnah developed an admiration for hisfather’s business colleague, Sir Frederick Leigh Croft. When Croft offered Jinnah an internship in London,Jinnah jumped at the chance, but Jinnah’s mother was not so eager for him to accept the offer. Fearfulof being separated from her son, she persuaded him to marry before leaving for his trip. Presumably shebelieved his marriage would ensure his eventual return.At his mother’s urging, the 15-year-old Jinnah entered into an arranged marriage with his 14-year-oldbride, Emibai, in February 1892. Emibai was from the village of Paneli in India, and the wedding tookplace in her hometown. Following the marriage, Jinnah continued attending the Christian MissionarySociety High School until he left for London.He departed Karachi in January of 1893. Jinnah would never see his wife or his mother again. Emibaidied a few months after Jinnah’s departure. Devastatingly, Jinnah’s mother, Mithibai, also passed awayduring his stay in London.AttorneyAfter disembarking at Southampton and taking the boat train to Victoria Station, Jinnah rented a hotelroom in London. He would eventually, however, settle at the home of Mrs. F.E. Page-Drake ofKensington, who had invited Jinnah to stay as a guest.After a few months of serving his internship, in June of 1893 Jinnah left the position to join Lincoln’s Inn,a renowned legal association that helped law students study for the bar. Over the next few years, Jinnahprepared for the legal exam by studying biographies and political texts that he borrowed from theBritish Museum Library and read in the barristers’ chambers. While studying for the bar, Jinnah heardthe terrible news of his wife and mother’s deaths, but he managed to forge on with his education. Inaddition to fulfilling his formal studies, Jinnah made frequent visits to the House of Commons, where hecould observe the powerful British government in action firsthand. When Jinnah passed his legal exam inMay of 1896, he was the youngest ever to have been accepted to the bar.With his law degree in hand, in August 1896 Jinnah moved to Bombay and set up a law practice as abarrister in Bombay’s high court. Jinnah would continue to practice as a barrister up through the mid-1940s. Jinnah’s most famous successes as a lawyer included the Bawla murder trial of 1925 and Jinnah’s1945 defense of Bishen Lal at Agra, which marked the final case of Jinnah’s legal career.StatesmanDuring Jinnah’s visits to the House of Commons, he had developed a growing interest in politics,deeming it a more glamorous field than law. Now in Bombay, Jinnah began his foray into politics as aliberal nationalist. When Jinnah’s father joined him there, he was deeply disappointed in his son’sdecision to change career paths and, out of anger, withdrew his financial support. Fortunately, the twohad mended fences by the time Jinnah’s father died in April 1902.
Jinnah was particularly interested in the politics of India and its lack of strong representation in BritishParliament. He was inspired when he saw Dadabhai Naoroji become the first Indian to earn a seat in theHouse of Commons. In 1904, Jinnah attended a meeting of the Indian National Congress. In 1906 hejoined the congress himself. In 1912, Jinnah attended a meeting of the All India Muslim League,prompting him to join the league the following year. Jinnah would later join yet another political party,the Home Rule League, which was dedicated to the cause of a state’s right to self-government.In the midst of Jinnah’s thriving political career, he met a 16-year-old named Ratanbai while on vacationin Darjeeling. After "Rutti" turned 18 and converted to Islam, the two were married on April 19, 1918.Rutti gave birth to Jinnah’s first and only child, a daughter named Dina, in 1919.As a member of Congress, Jinnah at first collaborated with Hindu leaders as their Ambassador of HinduMuslim Unity, while working with the Muslim League simultaneously.Gradually, Jinnah realized that the Hindu leaders of Congress held a political agenda that wasincongruent with his own. Earlier he had been aligned with their opposition to separate electoratesmeant to guarantee a fixed percentage of legislative representation for Muslims and Hindus. But in1926, Jinnah shifted to the opposite view and began supporting separate electorates. Still, overall, heretained the belief that the rights of Muslims could be protected in a united India. At that stage of hispolitical career, Jinnah left Congress and dedicated himself more fully to the Muslim League.By 1928 Jinnah’s busy political career had taken a toll on his marriage. He and his second wife separated.Rutti lived as a recluse at the Taj Mahal Hotel in Bombay for the next year, until she died on her 29thbirthday.During the 1930s Jinnah attended the Anglo-Indian Round Table Conferences in London, and led thereorganization of the All India Muslim League.Independent PakistanBy 1939 Jinnah came to believe in a Muslim homeland on the Indian subcontinent. He was convincedthat this was the only way to preserve Muslims’ traditions and protect their political interests. Hisformer vision of Hindu-Muslim unity no longer seemed realistic to him at this time.During a 1940 meeting of the Muslim League at Lahore, Jinnah proposed the partition of India and thecreation of Pakistan, in the area where Muslims constitute a majority. At this juncture, Jinnah was bothdispleased with Mohandas Gandhis stance at the London Round Table Conference in 1939, andfrustrated with the Muslim League. Much to Jinnah’s chagrin, the Muslim League was on the verge ofmerging with the National League, with the goal of participating in provincial elections and potentiallyconceding to the establishment of a united India with majority Hindu rule.To Jinnah’s relief, in 1942 the Muslim League adopted the Pakistan Resolution to partition India into
states. Four years later, Britain sent a cabinet mission to India to outline a constitution for transfer ofpower to India. India was then divided into three territories. The first was a Hindu majority, which makesup present-day India. The second was a Muslim area in the northwest, to be designated as Pakistan. Thethird was made up of Bengal and Assam, with a narrow Muslim majority. After a decade, the provinceswould have the choice of opting out on the formation of a new federation. But when the Congresspresident expressed objections to implementing the plan, Jinnah also voted against it. The independentstate of Pakistan that Jinnah had envisioned came to be on August 14, 1947. The following day, Jinnahwas sworn in as Pakistan’s first governor-general. He was also made president of Pakistans constituentassembly shortly before his death.Death and LegacyOn September 11, 1948, just a little over a year after he became governor-general, Jinnah died oftuberculosis near Karachi, Pakistan—the place where he was born.Today, Jinnah is credited with having altered the destiny of Muslims in the Indian subcontinent.According to Richard Symons, Muhammad Ali Jinnah "contributed more than any other man toPakistan’s survival." Jinnah’s dream for Pakistan was based on the principles of social justice,brotherhood and equality, which he aimed to achieve under his motto of "Faith, Unity, and Discipline."In the wake of his death, Jinnah’s successors were tasked with consolidating the nation of Pakistan thatJinnah had so determinedly established."There is no power on earth that can undo Pakistan."– Muhammad Ali Jinnah"My message to you all is of hope, courage and confidence."– Muhammad Ali Jinnah
Lal Bahadur ShastriBorn: October 2, 1904, MughalsaraiDied: January 11, 1966, TashkentLal Bahadur Shastri was the second Prime Minister of the Republic ofIndia and a leader of the Indian National Congress party.Shastri joined the Indian independence movement in the 1920s.Deeply impressed and influenced by Congress leader MahatmaGandhi, he became a loyal follower, first of Gandhi, and thenof Jawaharlal Nehru.Following independence in 1947, he joined the latters governmentand became one of Prime Minister Nehrus principal lieutenants, firstas Railways Minister (1951–56), and then in a variety of otherfunctions, including Home Minister.Shastri as Prime Minister continued Nehrus policies of non-alignment and socialism. He became anational hero following the Indo-Pakistan War of 1965.His slogan of “Jai Jawan Jai Kisan” ("Hail the soldier, Hail the farmer") became very popular during thewar and is remembered even today.The war was formally ended in the Tashkent Agreement of 10 January 1966; he died the following day,still in Tashkent, of a heart attack.Early life:Shastri was born in Mughal Sarai in the Chandauli district of the United Provinces, British India in Britishruled India.His father, Shri Sharada Srivastava Prasad, was a school teacher, who later became a clerk in theRevenue Office at Allahabad. Shastris father died when he was only a year old.His mother, Ramdulari Devi, took him and his two sisters to her fathers house and settled down there.Shastri ji was educated at East Central Railway Inter College in Mughal sarai and Varanasi. He graduatedwith a first-class degree from the Kashi Vidyapeeth in 1926 and he was given the title Shastri ("Scholar").The title was a bachelors degree awarded by the Vidya Peeth, but it stuck as part of his name.On 16 May 1928, Shastri married Lalita Devi of Mirzapur.He had five children, including Hari Krishna Shashtri, Anil Shastri and Sunil Shashtri, who were allCongress politicians.His son Anil Shastri is still a senior leader of the Congress party.Shastri, who belonged to the Kayastha caste, dropped his surname Srivastava as it indicatedhis caste and he was against the caste system, a major principle of the Gandhian movement.Second Prime Ministerof India
There is a very famous incident regarding Lal Bahadur Shastris childhood which took place when he wassix years old. One day, while returning from school, Lal Bahadur and his friends went to an orchard thatwas on the way to home. Lal Bahadur Shastri was standing below while his friends climbed the trees topluck mangoes. Meanwhile, the gardener came and caught hold of Lalbahadur Shastri. He scolded LalBahadur Shastri and started beating him. Lal Bahadur Shastri pleaded to gardener to leave him as hewas orphan. Taking pity on Lal Bahadur, the gardener said,"Because you are an orphan, it is all the more important that you must learnbetter behavior."These words left a deep imprint on Lal Bahadur Shastri and he swore to behave better in the future.Independence Activism:Lal Bahadur stayed at his grandfathers house till he was ten. By that time he had passed the sixthstandard examination. He went to Varanasi for higher education.In 1921 when Mahatma Gandhi launched the non-cooperation movement against British Government,Lal Bahadur Shastri, was only seventeen years old. When Mahatma Gandhi gave a call to the youth tocome out of Government schools and colleges, offices and courts and to sacrifice everything for the sakeof freedom, Lal Bahadur came out of his school. Though his mother and relatives advised him not to doso, he was firm in his decision. Lal Bahadur was arrested during the Non-cooperation movement but ashe was too young he was let off.After his release Lal Bahadur joined Kashi Vidya Peeth and for four years he studied philosophy. In 1926,Lal Bahadur earned the degree of "Shastri" After leaving Kashi Vidya Peeth, Lal Bahadur Shastri joined"The Servants of the People Society", which Lala Lajpat Rai had started in 1921.The aim of the Society was to train youths that were prepared to dedicate their lives in the service of thecountry. In 1927, Lal Bahadur Shastri married Lalitha Devi. The marriage ceremony was very simple andShastri ji took only a charkha (spinning wheel) and few yards of Khadi in dowry.In 1930, Gandhiji gave the call for Civil Disobedience Movement. Lal Bahadur Shastri joined themovement and encouraged people not to pay land revenue and taxes to the government. He wasarrested and put in jail for two and a half years.After Second World War started in 1939, Congress launched "Individual Satyagraha" in 1940 to demandfreedom. Lal Bahadur Shastri was arrested during Individual Satyagraha and released after one year.On 8 August 1942, Mahatma Gandhi issued the Quit India speech at Gowalia Tank in Mumbai,demanding that the British leave India. Shastri, who had just then come out after a year in prison,travelled to Allahabad. For a week, he sent instructions to the freedom fighters from Jawaharlal Nehruhome, Anand Bhavan. A few days later, he was arrested and imprisoned until 1946.
Shastri spent almost nine years in jail in total. During his stays in prison, he spent time reading booksand became familiar with the works of western philosophers, revolutionaries and social reformers. Healso translated the autobiography of Marie Curie into Hindi.Political career (1947-1964):State ministerFollowing Indias independence, Shastri was appointed Parliamentary Secretary in his home state, UttarPradesh of Pandit Govind Vallabh Pant, the then chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.He became the Minister of Police and Transport under Govind Ballabh Pants Chief Ministership on 15Aug 1947 following Rafi Ahmed Kidwais departure to become minister at centre.As the Transport Minister, he was the first to appoint women conductors. As the minister in charge ofthe Police Department, he ordered that police use jets of water instead of lathis to disperse unrulycrowds. His tenure as police minister (As Home Minister was called prior to 1950) saw successful curbingof communal riots in 1947, mass migration and resettlement of refugees and break-in and putting ofidols in disputed Babri Masjid - Ram Janmabhoomi complex on 22 Dec 1949.Cabinet minister:In 1951, Shastri was made the General Secretary of the All-India Congress Committee with JawaharlalNehru as the Prime Minister.He was believed to be retained as home minister of UP, but in a surprise move was called to Centre asminister by Nehru. He was elected to Rajyasabha from Uttar Pradesh w.e.f. 3 April 1952.He served as the Minister of Railways and Transport in the Central Cabinet from 13 May 1952 to 7December 1956.In Sep 1956, he offered his resignation after a railway accident at Mahbubnagar that led to 112 deaths.However, Nehru did not accept his resignation. Three months later, he resigned accepting moral andconstitutional responsibility for a railway accident at Ariyalur in Tamil Nadu that resulted in 144 deaths.In 1957 elections, Shastri returned to the Cabinet following the General Elections:First as the Minister for Transport and Communications, andThen as the Minister of Commerce and Industry.He became the Home Minister in 1961, after the death of Govind Vallabh Pant. As Union Home Ministerhe was instrumental in appointing the Committee on Prevention of Corruption under the Chairmanshipof K. Santhanam.
Prime minister of India (1964-66):After the death of Jawaharlal Nehru in 1964, Lal Bahadur Shastri was unanimously elected as the PrimeMinister of India.In his first broadcast as Prime Minister, on 11 June 1964, Shastri stated:"There comes a time in the life of every nation when it stands at the cross-roads of history and mustchoose which way to go. But for us there need be no difficulty or hesitation, no looking to right or left.Our way is straight and clear—the building up of a socialist democracy at home with freedom andprosperity for all, and the maintenance of world peace and friendship with all nations."Domestic policies:Shastri retained many members of Nehrus Council of Ministers. T. T. Krishnamachari was retained asthe Finance Minister of India, as was Defence Minister Yashwantrao Chavan. He appointed SwaranSingh to succeed him as External Affairs Minister. He also appointedIndira Gandhi, daughter ofJawaharlal Nehru and former Congress President, as the Minister of Information and Broadcasting.Gulzarilal Nanda continued as the Minister of Home Affairs.Shastris tenure witnessed the Madras anti-Hindi agitation of 1965. The government of India had for along time made an effort to establish Hindi as the sole national language of India. This was resisted bythe non-Hindi speaking states particularly Madras State.Economic policies:Shastri continued Nehrus socialist economic policies with central planning. He promoted the WhiteRevolution – a national campaign to increase the production and supply of milk – by supportingthe Amul milk co-operative of Anand, Gujarat and creating the National Dairy Development Board.While speaking on the chronic food shortages across the country, Shastri urged people to voluntarilygive up one meal so that the saved food could be distributed to the affected populace.During the 22-day war with Pakistan in 1965, Shastri created the slogan of "Jai Jawan Jai Kisan" ("Hailthe soldier, Hail the farmer"), underlining the need to boost Indias food production. Shastri alsopromoted the Green Revolution. Though he was a socialist, Shastri stated that India cannot have aregimented type of economy.Foreign policies:In 1964, Shastri signed an accord with the Sri Lankan Prime minister Sirimavo Bandaranaike regardingthe status of Indian Tamils in the then Ceylon. This agreement is also known as the Srimavo-Shastri Pactor the Bandaranaike-Shastri pact.Under the terms of this agreement, 600,000 Indian Tamils were to be repatriated, while 375,000 were tobe granted Sri Lankan citizenship. This settlement was to be done by 31 October 1981. However, afterShastris death, by 1981, India had taken only 300,000 Tamils as repatriates, while Sri Lanka had granted
citizenship to only 185,000 citizens (plus another 62,000 born after 1964). Later, India declined toconsider any further applications for citizenship, stating that the 1964 agreement had lapsed.After the declaration of ceasefire with Pakistan in 1965, Shastri and Pakistani President MuhammadAyub Khan attended a summit in Tashkent (former USSR, now in modern Uzbekistan), organisedby Alexei Kosygin. On 10 January 1966, Shastri and Khan signed the Tashkent Declaration.The Tashkent Declaration of 10 January 1966 was a peace agreement between India and Pakistan afterthe Indo-Pakistani War of 1965.Death:Prime Minister Shastri died in Tashkent due to a heart attack the day after signing the TashkentDeclaration.He was eulogized as a national hero and the Vijay Ghat memorial established in his memory. Upon hisdeath, Gulzarilal Nanda once again assumed the role of Acting Prime Minister until the CongressParliamentary Party elected Indira Gandhi over Morarji Desai to officially succeed Shastri.An epic poetry book in Hindi titled Lalita Ke Aansoo written by Krant M. L. Verma was published in 1978.In this book the tragic story about the death of Shastri has been narrated by his wife Lalita Shastri.Memorials:Shastri was known for his honesty and humility throughout his life.He was the first person to be posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna.Institutes named after him:Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (Mussorie, Uttarakhand)The Shastri Indo-Canadian InstituteIn 2011, on Shastri’s 45th death anniversary, Uttar Pradesh Government announced to renovateShastri’s ancestral house at Ramnagar in Varanasi and declared plans to convert it into a biographicalmuseum.The International Airport at the City of Varanasi is named after him.A Monument and a street are named after him in the city of Tashkent, Uzbekistan.A stadium is named after him in the city of Hyderabad, AndhrapradeshIn 2005, the Government of India created a chair in his honor in the field of democracy and governanceat Delhi University.
Indira GandhiBorn: November 19, 1917, AllahabadAssassinated: October 31, 1984, New DelhiIndira Priyadarshini Gandhi was an Indian politician who served asthe 3rdPrime Minister of India for three consecutive terms (1966–77)and a fourth term (1980–84).Gandhi was the second female head of government in the worldafter Sirimavo Bandaranaike of Sri Lanka and she remains as theworlds second longest serving female Prime Minister as of 2012.She was the first woman to become prime minister in India.She was the first woman to Receive Bharat Ratna Award in 1971.Gandhi was the only child of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister of independent India.She was also the only Indian Prime Minister to have declared a state of emergency in order to rule bydecree and the only Indian Prime Minister to have been imprisoned after holding that office.She was assassinated by her bodyguards in retaliation for ordering Operation Blue Star.Early Life and Career:She was born on November 19, 1917 at Anand Bhavan in Allahabad.Her father Jawaharlal Nehru and grandfather Motilal Nehru were at the forefront of Indian freedomstruggle and her mother was Kamla Nehru.She attended primary school in a variety of institutions in India and Europe, including EcoleInternationale in Geneva, Ecole Nouvelle in Bex, St Cecilias and St Marys convent schools (both inAllahabad), before graduating from the Pupils Own School in Poona and Bombay. In 1936, Nehruenrolled at Somerville College, Oxford, University of Oxfordin United Kingdom.While preparing for the entrance exam, she suffered a personal tragedy after her mother died from aprolonged battle with tuberculosis in Switzerland.Despite the setbacks, Gandhi chose to continue studying in England.During her time in Europe, Nehru was plagued with ill-health and was being treated by the famed Swissdoctor Auguste Rollier in 1940.Indira Gandhi married a Parsi named Feroze Gandhi in 1942.First Female PrimeMinister of India
Shortly after their marriage both Indira Gandhi and Feroze Gandhi were arrested and jailed fornationalist activities.Indira Gandhi was released after eight months and Feroze Gandhi after an year. After the release FerozeGandhi became editor of The National Herald, a newspaper founded by Jawaharlal Nehru, and Mrs.Indira Gandhi became the principal confidant and assistant of her father during the period of Nehrusprime ministership (1947-1965).In 1959, Indira Gandhi became President of the Indian National Congress.Meanwhile, the death of Feroze Gandhi (from a heart attack) in 1960, and the subsequent death of herfather in 1964, caused Indira Gandhi to withdraw into a shell and limit herself to her immediate family.After the death of Jawaharlal Nehru in 1964, she was appointed as a member of the Rajya Sabha (upperhouse) and became a member of Lal Bahadur Shastris cabinet as Minister of Information andBroadcasting.After Lal Bahadur Shastris untimely death in 1966, she was selected as prime minister by party bosseswithin the Congress Party as a compromise candidate. Her candidature was opposed by Morarji Desai, aveteran nationalist and prime ministerial aspirant himself.Legislative Career:When Indira became Prime Minister in 1966, the Congress was split in two factions, the socialists led byGandhi, and the conservatives led by Morarji Desai.Rammanohar Lohia called her ‘Gungi Gudiya’, which means Dumb Doll.In the fourth general elections held in 1967, Congress suffered a major setback. Congress majority wasgreatly reduced in parliament and non-Congress ministries were established in Bihar, Kerala, Orissa,Madras, Punjab, and West Bengal.She had to accommodate Morarji Desai as Deputy Prime Minister of India and Minister of Finance.War with Pakistan in 1971:The Pakistan army conducted atrocities against the civilian populations of East Pakistan. An estimated 10million refugees fled to India, causing financial hardship and instability in the country.The United States under Richard Nixon supported Pakistan, and mooted a UN resolution warning Indiaagainst going to war. Nixon apparently disliked Gandhi personally, referring to her as a "witch" and"clever fox" in his private communication with Secretary of State Henry Kissinger (now released bythe State Department).Gandhi signed the Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation, resulting in political support and a Soviet vetoat the UN.
Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation:The Indo–Soviet Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Cooperation was a treaty signed between India andthe Soviet Union in August 1971 that specified mutual strategic cooperation.Foreign Policy:Gandhi invited the Pakistani President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto to Shimla for a week-long summit. The twonational leaders eventually signed the Shimla Agreement on July 2, 1972.It followed from the war between the two nations in the previous year that had led to the independenceof East Pakistan as Bangladesh., which bound the two countries to resolve the Kashmir dispute bynegotiations and peaceful means.Due to her antipathy for Nixon, relations with the United States grew distant, while relations with theSoviet Union grew closer.Nuclear weapons program:Gandhi contributed and further carried out the vision of Jawarharalal Nehru, former Premier of India todevelop the program.Gandhi authorized the development of nuclear weapons in 1967, in response to the Test No. 6 byPeoples Republic of China. Gandhi saw this test as Chinese nuclear intimidation, therefore, Gandhipromoted the views of Nehru to establish Indias stability and security interests as independent fromthose of the nuclear superpowers.The program became fully mature in 1974, when Dr. Raja Ramanna reported to Gandhi that India hadthe ability to test its first nuclear weapon. Gandhi gave verbal authorization of this test and preparationswere made in a long-constructed army base, the Indian Army Pokhran Test Range.In 1974, India successfully conducted an underground nuclear test, unofficially code named as "SmilingBuddha", near the desert village of Pokhran in Rajasthan. As the world was quiet by this test, avehement protest came forward from Pakistan. Great ire was raised in Pakistan, Pakistans Primeminister Zulfi Ali Bhutto described this test as "Indian hegemony" to intimidate Pakistan.Gandhi directed a letter to Bhutto and, later to the world, describing the test as for peacefulpurposes and Indias commitment as to develop its programme for industrial and scientific use.Test No 6:Test No. 6 is the codename for Chinas first test of a three-staged thermonuclear deviceand,also its sixth nuclear weapons test. The device was detonated at Lop Nur Test Base, or oftendubbed as Lop Nur Nuclear Weapon Test Base, in Malan, Xinjiang, on 17 June 1967. Withsuccessful testing of this three-stage thermonuclear device, China became the fourth countryto have successfully developed a thermonuclear weapon after the United States, SovietUnion and the United Kingdom.
Smiling Buddha:Smiling Buddha, formally designated as Pokhran-I, was the codename given to the Republic ofIndias first nuclear test explosion that took place at the long-constructed IndianArmy base, Pokhran Test Range at Pokhran municipality, Rajasthan state on 18 May 1974 at 8:05a.m. (IST).It was also the first confirmed nuclear test by a nation outside the five permanent members ofthe United Nations Security Council. The explosive yield of the bomb was reported to be 8 kilo tons.Green Revolution:Rather than relying on food aid from the United States – headed by a President Gandhi dislikedconsiderably (the feeling was mutual: to Nixon, Gandhi was "the old witch"), the country became a foodexporter. That achievement, along with the diversification of its commercial crop production, hasbecome known as the "Green Revolution".At the same time, the White Revolution was an expansion in milk production which helped to combatmalnutrition, especially amidst young children. Food Security, as the program was called, was anothersource of support for Gandhi in the years leading up to 1975.Established in the early 1960s, the Green Revolution was the unofficial name given to the IntenseAgricultural District Program (IADP) which sought to insure abundant, inexpensive grain for urbandwellers upon whose support Gandhi—as indeed all Indian politicians—heavily dependedBank nationalizations:In 1969, fourteen major banks were nationalized as a means of encouraging economic development1971 Election Victory and Second Term:Indira Gandhi campaigned fiercely on the slogan of "Garibi Hatao" (eliminate poverty) during the fifthgeneral elections in March 1971 and won an unprecedented two-third majority.Verdict on electoral malpractice:On 12 June 1975, the High Court of Allahabad declared Indira Gandhis election to the Lok Sabha void ongrounds of electoral malpractice. In an election petition filed by Raj Narain (who later on defeated her in1977 parliamentary election from Rae Bareily), he had alleged several major as well as minor instancesof using government resources for campaigning. The court thus ordered her to be removed from herseat in Parliament and banned from running in elections for six years.Thus, this decision effectively removed her from office. Mrs Gandhi had asked one of Indias best legalminds and also one of her colleagues in government, Mr Ashoke Kumar Sen to defend her in court. Ithas been written that Mrs Gandhi was told she would only win if Mr Sen appeared for her.But Gandhi rejected calls to resign and announced plans to appeal to the Supreme Court. The verdictwas delivered by Mr Justice Jagmohanlal Sinha at Allahabad High Court.
It came almost four years after the case was brought by Raj Narain, the premiers defeated opponent inthe 1971 parliamentary election. Gandhi, who gave evidence in her defence during the trial, was foundguilty of dishonest election practices, excessive election expenditure, and of using governmentmachinery and officials for party purposes.After news of the verdict spread, hundreds of supporters demonstrated outside her house, pledgingtheir loyalty. Indian High Commissioner BK Nehru said Gandhis conviction would not harm her politicalcareer.State of Emergency (1975–1977):In India, an external state of emergency was declared two times during wars:In 1962 Sino-Indian WarIn 1971 Indo-Pakistani War of 1971In 1975, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi declared a state of internal emergency after she was indicted ina corruption scandal and ordered to vacate her seat in the Indian Parliament, allowing herself to ruleby decree until 1977 and and jailed al her political opponents.The Emergency lasted till March 1977 andin the general election held afterwards in 1977she was defeated by a coalition of parties called JantaMorcha.A state of emergency is a governmental declaration that may suspend some normal functions ofthe executive, legislative and judicial powers, alert citizens to change their normal behaviors.Imprisonment:The Congress Party split during the election campaign of 1977: veteran Gandhi supporters like JagjivanRam and her most loyal Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna and Nandini Satpathy, the three were compelled topart ways and form a new political entity CFD (Congress for Democracy) primarily due to intra partypoliticking and also due to circumstances created by Sanjay Gandhi.A coalition of opposition parties, under the leadership of Morarji Desai, came into power after the Stateof Emergency was lifted.The Janata governments Home Minister, Choudhary Charan Singh, ordered the arrest of Indira andSanjay Gandhi on several charges, none of which would be easy to prove in an Indian court. The arrestmeant that Indira Gandhi was automatically expelled from Parliament.These allegations included that she “‘had planned or thought of killing all opposition leaders in jailduring the Emergency’”.However, this strategy backfired disastrously. Her arrest and long-running trial, however, gained hergreat sympathy from many people. The Janata coalition was only united by its hatred of Gandhi (or "thatwoman" as some called her). With so little in common, the Morarji Desai government was bogged downby infighting. Desai resigned in June 1979 after Charan Singh and Raj Narain formed their ownbreakaway party. Charan Singh was appointed Prime Minister, by President Reddy, after Gandhipromised Singh that Congress would support his government from outside.
In elections held the following January, Congress was returned to power with a landslide majority.Indira Emerges Once More:By 1980, the people of India had had enough of the ineffectual Janata Party. They reelected IndiraGandhis Congress Party under the slogan of "stability".Indira took power again for her fourth term as prime minister. However, her triumph was dampened bythe death of her son Sanjay, the heir apparent, in a plane crash in June of that year.Operation Blue Star:In the 1977 elections, a coalition led by the Sikh-majority Akali Dal(is a Sikhism-centric political partyin India, mainly active in the Indian state ofPunjab and with a small presence in Haryana) came to powerin the northern Indian state of Punjab.In an effort to split the Akali Dal and gain popular support among the Sikhs, Indira Gandhis Congresshelped bring the orthodox religious leader Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale to prominence in the Punjabpolitics.Later, Bhindranwales organization Damdami Taksal became embroiled in violence with anotherreligious sect called the Sant Nirankari Mission, and he was accused of instigating the murder of theCongress leader Jagat Narain.After being arrested in this matter, Bhindranwale disassociated himself from Congress and joined handswith the Akali Dal.In July 1982, he led the campaign for the implementation of the Anandpur Sahib Resolution, whichdemanded greater autonomy for the Sikh-majority state. Meanwhile, a small section of the Sikhsincluding some of Bhindranwales followers, turned to militancy in support of the Khalistan movement,which aimed to create a separate sovereign state for the Sikhs.Khalistan movement refers to a secessionist movement which seeks to create a separatesovereignSikh state, called Khalistan ("The Land of the Pure") in the Punjab region of South Asia.In 1983, Bhindranwale and his militant followers headquarted themselves in the Golden Temple, theholiest shrine of the Sikhs, and started accumulating weapons.After several futile negotiations, Indira Gandhi ordered the Indian army to enter the Golden temple inorder to subdue Bhindranwale and his followers.In the resulting Operation Blue Star, the shrine was damaged and many civilians were killed. The Stateof Punjab was closed to international media, its phone and communication lines shut. To this day theevents remain controversial with a disputed number of victims;Sikhs seeing the attack as unjustified and Bhindrawale being declared the greatest sikh martyr of the21st century by Akal Takht (Sikh Political Authority) in 2003.
The Akal Takht is highest seat of temporal authority of the Khalsa. The Akal Takht is located inthe Harmandir Sahib complex in Amritsar, Punjab. It was built by the Guru Hargobind Sahib,stands witness to the Sikh idea of sovereignty.Assasination:The day before her death Indira Gandhi visited Orissa on 30 October 1984 where she gave her lastspeech:"I am alive today; I may not be there tomorrow. I shall continue to serve till mylast breath and when I die every drop of my blood will strengthen India andkeep a united India alive."Indira Gandhi delivered her last speech at the then Parade Ground in front of the Secretariat of Orissa.After her death, the Parade Ground was converted to the Indira Gandhi Park which was inaugurated byher son, Rajiv Gandhi.On 31 October 1984, two of Gandhis bodyguards, Satwant Singh and Beant Singh, shot her with theirservice weapons in the garden of the Prime Ministers residence at 1 Safdarjung Road, New Delhi. Theshooting occurred as she was walking past a wicket gate guarded by Satwant and Beant. She was tohave been interviewed by the British actor Peter Ustinov, who was filming a documentary for Irishtelevision. Beant Singh shot her three times using his side-arm, and Satwant Singh fired 30 rounds.Afterwards they were taken away by other guards into a closed room where Beant Singh was shotdead. Kehar Singh was later arrested for conspiracy in the attack. Both Satwant and Kehar weresentenced to death and hanged in Delhis Tihar jail.Indira Gandhi was brought at 9:30 AM to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, where doctorsoperated on her. She was declared dead at 2:20 PM. The post-mortem examination was conducted bya team of doctors headed by Dr. T D Dogra. Dr. Dogra stated that as many as 30 bullet wounds weresustained by Indira Gandhi, from two sources, a Sten gun and a pistol. The assailants had fired 31 bulletsat her, of which 30 had hit; 23 had passed through her body while 7 were trapped inside her.Gandhi was cremated on 3 November near Raj Ghat. Her funeral was televised live on domestic andinternational stations, including the BBC.Following her cremation, millions of Sikhs were displaced and nearly three thousand were killed in anti-Sikh riots.Rajiv Gandhi on a live TV show said of the carnage:"When a big tree falls, the earth shakes."Gandhis yoga guru, Dhirendra Brahmachari, helped her in making certain decisions and also executedcertain top level political tasks on her behalf, especially from 1975 to 1977 when Gandhi "dissolvedParliament, declared a state of emergency and suspended civil liberties.”
The Indira Gandhi National Open University, the largest university in the world, is also named afterher.Indira point:Indira point has the name given for the southernmost tip of Republic of India. It is located in the UnionTerritory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands whom has named on the point in honour of Indira Gandhi. Itwas formerly known by various names that including Pygmalion Point, Parsons Point, and for a briefperiod of time India Point.Atal Bihari Vajpayee called her the Avatar of Durga.
Rajiv GandhiBorn: August 20, 1944, MumbaiAssassinated: May 21, 1991, SriperumbudurRajiv Rotna Gandhi was the sixth Prime Minister of India (1984–1989).He took office after his mothers assassination on 31 October 1984and he himself was assassinated on 21 May 1991.He became the youngest Prime Minister of India when he took officeat the age of 40.Rajiv Gandhi was the eldest son of Indira and Feroze Gandhi.After dropping out of university, he became a professional pilotfor Indian Airlines. He remained aloof from politics, despite hisfamilys political prominence. Following the death of his youngerbrother Sanjay Gandhi in 1980 Rajiv entered politics. Followingthe assassination of his mother in 1984 after Operation Blue Star,the Indian National Congress party leaders nominated him to be Prime Minister.Early life:Rajiv Gandhi was born on August 20, 1944 in Bombay (Mumbai) in Indias most famous political family.His grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru played a stellar role in Indias freedom struggle and becameindependent Indias first Prime Minister.Rajeev Gandhi did his schooling from the elite Doon school and then studied at the University of Londonand at Trinity College, Cambridge in Britain.At Cambridge he met the Italian-born Antonia Albina Maino (Now Sonia Gandhi), then a waitress in arestaurant, whom he later married.In August 1947, Jawaharlal Nehru became the prime minister of independent India, and the familysettled in Allahabad, and then at Lucknow, where Feroze became the editor of the NationalHerald newspaper (founded by Motilal Nehru).In 1952, Indira helped Feroze manage his campaign for elections to the first Parliament ofIndia from Rae Bareli.After becoming an MP, Feroze Gandhi also moved to Delhi, but "Indira continued to stay with her father,thus putting the final seal on the separation."Youngest Prime Ministerof Indi
Relations were strained further when Feroze challenged corruption within the Congress leadership overthe Haridas Mundhra scandal. Jawaharlal suggested that the matter be resolved in private, but Ferozeinsisted on taking the case directly to parliament:The scandal, and its investigation by justice M C Chagla, lead to the resignation of one of Nehrus keyallies, finance minister T.T. Krishnamachari, further alienating Feroze from Jawaharlal.After Feroze Gandhi had a heart attack in 1958, the family was reconciled briefly when they holidayedin Kashmir. Feroze died soon afterwards from a second heart attack in 1960.In 1970, his wife gave birth to their first child Rahul Gandhi, and in 1972, to Priyanka Gandhi, theirsecond. Even as Rajiv remained aloof from politics, his younger brother Sanjay became a close advisor totheir mother.Entry into politics:Following his younger brothers death in 1980, Gandhi was pressured by Indian National Congress partypoliticians and his mother to enter politics. He and his wife were both opposed to the idea, and he evenpublicly stated that he would not contest for his brothers seat.Nevertheless, he eventually announced his candidacy for Parliament. His entry was criticized by many inthe press, public and opposition political parties.He fought his first election from Amethi Loksabha seat. In this by-election, he defeated Lokdalleader Sharad Yadav by more than 200,000 votes.Elected to Sanjays Lok Sabha (parliamentary) constituency of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh state in February1981, Gandhi became an important political advisor to his mother. It was widely perceived that IndiraGandhi was grooming Rajiv for the prime ministers job, and he soon became the president of the YouthCongress – the Congress partys youth wing.Premiership:Rajiv Gandhi was in West Bengal when his mother, Indira Gandhi was assassinated on 31 October 1984by two of her Sikh bodyguardsTop Congress leaders, as well as President Zail Singh pressed Rajiv to become Indias Prime Minister,within hours of his mothers assassination by two of her Sikh bodyguards. Commenting on the anti-Sikhriots in the national capital Delhi, Rajiv Gandhi said:“When a giant tree falls, the earth below shakes”In October 1984 he became the Youngest Prime Minister of India at the age of 40.He called for general elections in 1984 and riding on a massive sympathy wave led Congress to athumping victory. Congress garnered 80 percent of the seats in the lower house and achieved itsgreatest victory since independence.
Economic Policy:He founded the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya System in 1986 which is a Central government basedinstitution that concentrates on the upliftment of the rural section of the society providing them freeresidential education from 6th till 12 grade.His efforts created MTNL in 1986, and his public call offices, better known as PCOs, helped spreadtelephones in rural areas.Security policy:The Indo-Sri Lanka Peace Accord was signed by Rajiv Gandhi and the Sri Lankan President J. R.Jayewardene, in Colombo on 29 July 1987.The very next day, on 30 July 1987, Rajiv Gandhi was assaulted on the head with a rifle butt by a youngSinhalese naval cadet named Vijayamunige Rohana de Silva, while receiving the honor guard. Theintended assault on the back of Rajiv Gandhis head glanced off his shoulder and it was captured in newscrew photographs and video.Anti sikh riots:This refers to the statement of Rajiv Gandhi as Prime Minister at a Boat Club rally 19-days after theassassination of Indira Gandhi, which read as:“Some riots took place in the country following the murder of Indiraji. We know the people were veryangry and for a few days it seemed that India had been shaken. But, when a mighty tree falls, it is onlynatural that the earth around it does shake a little.”This statement sent a wrong signal to the authorities, who adopted a callous approach of not allowingthe truth to come out despite the government setting up probe panels one after the other, includingtwo full fledged judicial commissions, the first headed by retired Chief Justice of India Ranganath Misraand the second by a former apex court judge G.T. Nanavati.Bofors scandal:The infamous Bofors scandal that still haunts the political walls of the country was exposed during RajivGandhis reign.A strong corruption racket involving many stalwarts of the Congress Party was unearthed in the 1980s.Rajiv Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India and several others prominent leaders were accused ofreceiving kickbacks from Bofors for winning a bid to supply Indias 155 mm field howitzer (a type ofartillery piece).The case came into light during Vishwanath Pratap Singhs tenure as defence minister, and wasrevealed through investigative journalism by a team led by N. Ram of the newspaper The Hindu.Rajiv Gandhi also emerged as one of Indias controversial Prime Ministers.
IPKF:In 1987, the Indian Peace Keeping Force was formed to end the Sri Lankan Civil War between theLiberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and the Sri Lankan military. The acts of the military contingentwas opposed by the Opposition parties of Sri Lanka and as well as LTTE. But, Rajiv Gandhi refused towithdraw the IPKF. The idea also turned out to be unpopular in India, particularly in Tamil Nadu. TheIPKF operation cost over 1100 Indian soldiers lives and cost over 2000 crores.Although Rajeev Gandhi promised to end corruption, he and his party were themselves implicated incorruption scandals. The major scandal being Bofors Gun scandal involving alleged payoffs by theSwedish Bofors arms company. The scandal rapidly eroded his popularity and he lost the next generalelections held in 1989.Assasination:Rajiv Gandhis last public meeting was at Sriperumbudur on 21 May 1991, in a village approximately 30miles from Chennai, Tamil Nadu, where he was assassinated while campaigning forthe Sriperumbudur Lok Sabha Congress candidate. The assassination was carried out by the LiberationTigers of Tamil Eelam.At 10:21 pm, a woman (later identified as Thenmozhi Rajaratnam) approached Rajiv Gandhi in a publicmeeting and greeted him. She then bent down to touch his feet (an expression of respectamong Indians) and detonated a belt laden with 700 grams of RDX explosives tucked under her dress.The explosion killed Rajiv Gandhi, his assassin and at least 14 other people.He was cremated on the banks of the river Yamuna, near the samadhis of his mother, brother,grandfather and Mahatma Gandhi. Today, the site where he was cremated is known as Vir Bhumi.The Rajiv Gandhi Memorial was built at the site recently and is one of the major tourist attractions ofthe small industrial town.Rajiv Gandhi was posthumously awarded the Highest National Award of India, Bharat Ratna (1991),joining a list of 40 luminaries, including Indira Gandhi.Rajiv Gandhi was an active amateur radio operator, and used the call sign VU2RG.He alsofounded INTACH in 1984 that seeks to preserve Indias art and cultural heritage.
Annie BesantBorn: October 1, 1847, Clapham, LondonDied: September 20, 1933, Adyar, Madras Presidency, IndiaAnnie Besant was a prominent British socialist, Theosophist, Women’sright activist, writer and orator and supporter of Irish and Indian selfrule.Annie Besant was born as Annie Wood on October 1, 1847 in amiddle-class family in London. She was of Irish origin.She was the daughter of an Irish businessman, William press Woodand an Irish woman, Emily Mary Ruche.She was married at 19 to Frank Besant but separated from him overreligious differences in 1873 and then became the speaker of theNational secular society (NSS) in 1874.At the age of 23, Annie had two children, Arthur and Mabel.Annie Besant fought for the causes she thought were right, such as, womens rights, secularism, birthcontrol, Fabian socialism and workers rights. She became interested in Theosophy as a way of knowingGod. Theosophical Society was against discrimination of race, color, gender and preached Universalbrotherhood. To serve humanity at large was its supreme goal.In 1870, Besant along with Charles Bradlaugh edited the weekly National Reformer.In 1875, Annie joined the religious movement and the supporter of Theosophy (a religious movementfounded by Helena Blavatsky), that was based on Hindu ideas of Karma and Reincarnation.In 1877 Annie Besant and Charles Bradlaugh decided to publish The Fruits of Philosophy writtenby Charles Knowlton, a book that advocated birth control.Annie Besant fought for the causes she thought were right, such as, womens rights, secularism, birthcontrol, Fabian socialism and workers rights. She became interested in Theosophy as a way of knowingGod. Theosophical Society was against discrimination of race, color, gender and preached Universalbrotherhood. To serve humanity at large was its supreme goal. It was as a member of TheosophicalSociety of India that she arrived in India in 1893.She toured the entire country of India. It gave her first hand information about India and middle-classIndians who were affected more by British rule and its system of education. Her long-time interest ineducation resulted in the founding of the Central Hindu College at Benares (1898).First woman presidentof Indian NationalCongress