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Famous India > Famous India People > Rajiv Gandhi
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Rajiv Gandhi

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Rajiv Gandhi : The Charismatic Leader

The first son of Indira and Feroze Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi, born in 1944. Rajiv attended Cambridge University, where he met and married Sonia. He was not a man of any unusual academic achievements or other distinctions, and appears to have had few ambitions until the death of his brother Sanjay in 1980.

Political Journey
An airline pilot, Rajiv entered the arena of politics in the year 1981when he contested the clections and became a political adviser to his mother. After her assassination in 1984, Rajiv succeeded her as head of the Congress party, and was sworn in as Prime Minister of India. He endeavored to increase Indian investments in modern technology, his "vision" of India, insofar as he had one, was that of a technocrat.

Like his mother, he could not contain the political problems afflicting India, and found refuge in international entanglements and commitments. He committed the so-called Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) to Sri Lanka in an endeavor to help the government there to eradicate militants agitating for a separate Tamil homeland.


Rajiv Gandhi
Scandal Mess
His period in office was marred by scandals and allegations of corruption. He undoubtedly lost the election of 1989 partly on account of the public perception that he had received "kick-backs" from a Swedish company manufacturing Bofors machine-guns. The Congress suffered an electoral defeat.
Rajiv Gandhi
End of a Dynasty
Vishwanath Pratap Singh, his successor, could not hold office for very long, and Rajiv started campaigning in earnest in 1991. It was while he was on this campaign in South India that a bomb explosion took his life.

Rajiv GandhiOn May 21st 1991 Rajiv Gandhi, the 46-year-old former Indian prime minister, has been assassinated

when a powerful bomb, hidden in a basket of flowers, exploded killing him instantly.

Golden Triangle by Train
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