India remembered its third Prime Minister and one of the tallest world leaders — Indira Gandhi — on the occasion of her 33rd death anniversary with leaders across the parties paying rich tributes. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, his predecessor Manmohan Singh and former president Pranab Mukherjee were among those who remembered Indira Gandhi on Tuesday.
The late leader was assassinated by her own bodyguards at her Akbar Road residence in New Delhi this day in the year 1984. She served as the Prime Minister thrice, holding the highest executive office for nearly 16 years.
Pranab Mukherjee, Manmohan Singh and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi were the first ones to pay floral tributes at ‘Shakti Sthal’ where she was cremated.
“Remembering PM Smt Indira Gandhi today. A strong leader and a visionary who served the nation till her last breath,” the former President tweeted.
Later, Singh and Rahul Gandhi also attended a prayer meeting at the Indira Gandhi Memorial at 1 Akbar Road. Many former union ministers, senior Congress leaders and MPs were also present at both the places.
“Forgiveness is a virtue of the brave: Indira Gandhi,” shared Rahul Gandhi in a tweet.
Congress President Sonia Gandhi could not attend the programmes as she is indisposed. She has just returned home after being admitted to a hospital.
Prime Minister Modi also paid tributes sharing, “Tributes to former PM Mrs Indira Gandhi on her death anniversary,” in a tweet.
India’s first ever and so far only women Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi was known for her resolve and tough decision-making, though her tenure is also infamous for the imposition of internal emergency from June 1975 to February 1977.
During her early years as the PM, India went to war with Pakistan in support of the independence movement in Bangladesh (then East Pakistan), which resulted in a historic victory with nearly one lakh Pakistan army soldiers surrendering before India.
As a result, India’s influence increased to the point where it became the regional power of South Asia.
Her tenure is also known for path breaking social and economic reforms with the nationalisation of banks, coal-fields, steel, copper, refining, cotton textiles and even insurance industries. She also abolished privy purses of the erstwhile princely states, the move which is still considered historic.
Indira Gandhi was born on November 19, 1917 to Kamala Nehru and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister. She was the second-longest-serving Prime Minister of India.